This is my 700th blog post. Nuts.
Not sure how that happened, but thanks for reading this (and/or any of the previous 699 miscellaneous ramblings I’ve amassed here over the past seven years).
A post this significant should be something momentous, which is fitting since we had a baby since my last update.
Lila Jordyn joined us a week early on August 12 at 6:55 p.m. She is perfect and wonderful and constantly giving her dad and me a run for our money. She’s named after my great aunt and Jim’s great grandma (both Lilas).
Becoming a parent is hard to put into words, and in a lot of ways it still hasn’t fully sunk in. I stare at my baby some days and simply can’t fathom that we created her and I delivered her. It’s astounding and magical.
If asked how I’m feeling, it’s a mixture of awe, love, fear, fatigue, gratitude and confusion. And then more love. And then more fatigue. Everyday I go between extremes of euphoria and complete despair. I’m told this is normal. And that it never goes away…
We have been SO incredibly blessed since Lila’s arrival. Friends brought meals every night for two weeks. Coworkers sent lovely gifts. Family called and visited. My mom spent an entire week taking turns with night feedings to let us get some sleep, cooking for us, and sending me to get a pedicure (the list goes on…). Mom-friends sent encouragement and answered all my frantic (and sometimes disgusting) text and facebook questions. Friends let me cry and babble out my hormones. In short, my cup completely runneth over, and then some. I have never felt so loved and surrounded by my village, and am consciously remembering this with gratitude everyday.
Arrival details (for my own recollection and your overshared enjoyment): My first day of maternity leave was August 11. Jim was off and we spent the day at the DMV. Sadly, I’m serious. First we went to emissions testing and then Jim needed a new license photo, but there was a computer glitch while we were there which resulted in us waiting there for three-plus hours. Not exactly a crazy first day off of work, but we made up for it with a sushi dinner. After which
we I consumed a massive bowl of fried ice cream appropriately named The Ninja.
When we got home, I started having contractions about an hour later. They weren’t too painful but were coming regularly which my doctor had told us was reason to call her. It was about 10 p.m. so we called the office’s answering service and paged the on-call doctor. He didn’t call back right away and the pain started to increase. We decided it made sense to go to the hospital and began packing the car. Baby time! On the ride there I held Jim’s hand and squeezed during each contraction; it was getting very uncomfortable by the time we arrived.
We were admitted and after an exam we were promptly discharged at 2 a.m. and told it wasn’t yet active labor. My response: WHAT?! But yeah, apparently there’s a science to this baby arrival process and we weren’t yet a go. Disappointed sighs.
I was in a ton of pain by then and feeling completely discouraged. We returned home and I spent a sleepless night sitting on a stability ball, face on the couch holding back tears as my body started to endure more pain than I ever imagined. I counted down the hours until my doctor’s office opened and called them immediately at 8:30. They told me to come in right away, so I woke Jim and off we went.
The doctor took one look at me and exclaimed, “You’re going to have a baby today!” She hugged me, praised the power of epidurals and told us to go back to the hospital soon — and that if we had the baby by 7 that evening — she’d be on call to deliver.
We went back home and showered, repacked and drove back to the hospital and were re-admitted around 12:30 p.m. My labor progressed very quickly and I was soon desperate for the epidural. Desperate is putting it mildly. Apparently (I cannot confirm or deny this…) I kept badgering the nurse to re-page the anesthesiologist. Who does that?? I didn’t receive this magical creation until about 4 p.m. at which point I professed my love for all things anesthesia and took my first deep breath in hours. Jim was a complete rock star during this process; he was encouraging, supportive and calm, holding me the entire time. I can’t imagine what it’s like to have to watch someone else in that much pain, but I know it can’t be easy.
My mom graciously drove up to watch our house and take care of our dogs. She didn’t bank on the fact that our AC would go out while it was 110 degrees out, but was a total trooper and toughed it out. A very kind AC vendor took pity on us and got it fixed right away. But still. Brutal.
After the epidural we watched TV in the delivery room and just relaxed until I was ready to push around 6:30. The nurses paged my doctor and thankfully she was able to arrive in 15 minutes. Baby Lila was ready to enter the world after just a few pushes. I know that Seinfeld was on the TV when she was born and can’t remember which episode, but this seemed perfectly fitting.
The moment we laid eyes on her was surreal. I didn’t feel like I was crying but the tears started pouring out and I just stared at her in awe. Time stood still and the rest of the room became a blur. Life was forever changed. Jim cut the cord and then Lila grabbed onto his finger. It was amazing. And here we are.