Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Laina's first few weeks home

Elaine (my grandmother's middle name)
Elizabeth (my mother's middle name)
I'm trying to catch up on my blogging so forgive me if this post is a little all over the place.

(2 days old)

Laina is now officially 3 weeks old. She has changed so much since those first moments when she was born. She's gained over a pound and continues to gain about an ounce per day. She seems to be going through a growth spurt lately and wants to eat constantly. We've both figured out what we're doing in that department so feeding her isn't as difficult as it was the first two weeks. (1 week old)
Everyone asks about the amount of sleep we're getting, and the answer is that we're getting more than I expected to get! She'll usually give us about a 4-5 hour chunk of time during the night but other than that she likes to eat every 3 hours on the dot. I'm definitely enjoying the time off from work to be with her and just trying to soak up every moment since I know it'll be over soon and back to work I'll go. Hence, why I've been unconnected from the world wide web for the past few weeks... it just seems more important to hang out with Laina. I'm edging my way back into the real world though.
This past weekend we had my cousin over to take some pics of Laina and our family. I'm really looking forward to seeing them since the last ones came out so great. Here's a pic of us after our photo shoot was over. We were all ready for a nap afterwards.
(3 weeks old)
I'll try to be better at updating the blog reguarly with the news about what's going on. Hope your summer is going well wherever you are! I know ours certainly is different than last year's!

Elaine Elizabeth's Arrival

Well she made her appearance right on time. On June 21st, 2009, Elaine Elizabeth Shepard joined our family at 9:22pm.
The Story:
After feeling like I was going to be pregnant forever, I finally gave in and resolved that this baby was going to come when she wanted to. Saturday night the 20th, we hung out with our neighbors. We came home about midnight and I fully expected that I would wake up the following morning with absolutely no indicators that Laina was coming anytime soon. At about 1:45am, I woke up with the urge to use the bathroom. I almost made it to the toilet when I felt a huge rush of liquid fill my pants... I mean it was not a cup of liquid like they said... this was a pitcher of water that someone dumped in my pants! Shocked, I quickly reached and closed the bathroom door, accidentally slamming it. Dan woke up and said "you ok?" and I said "yeah, I think my water just broke" to which he responded, "oh, ok.". He brought me my phone and I called the doctor. She said "go on into the hospital, I'll call them and let them know you're coming." So we gathered up our bags, etc and headed to the hospital. We both said goodbye to Monroe (our cat) and our life as we knew it. It was a weird feeling knowing we were going to come home with a baby.

Once we got to the hospital and got settled in the room that would become our world for the next 3 days (I literally didn't leave that room once until left), we were told that I had an hour to start contracting on my own until they would give me Pitocin. The fluid tested positive for meconium which is the baby's first bowel movement. That means Laina had her first poop inside! Since this could indicate that she could be in distress, they put us both on monitors. I had really hoped to do the whole delivery without any drugs but the risk to the baby and to me of infection was great if I didn't deliver her within 24 hours. Even after 12 hours of labor there would be a mild risk. So, when I didn't start contracting within the hour, they hung the bag of Pitocin and at that moment my birth plan got thrown out the window... but I wasn't too worried about it.

The contractions came with gusto and I made the decision with Dan to get an epidural. Needless to say, it made things much better! The day went by pretty quickly in my eyes as I had my mom and my sister around to distract me. Dan was pretty busy delivering the news to everyone and making sure I had everything I needed that he didn't provide as much comic relief as he usually does. I can't blame him, he was getting ready to be a daddy and very excited about it.

At about 7:00pm the nurse said I could start pushing, so we said good-bye to mom & Julie and they started getting the room prepped for our delivery. At about 8:00pm I actually started pushing. Man, that was rough work. Even though I had an epidural, there was quite a bit of work involved and I was relieved when after about an hour the delivery team started to come into the room. The "team" was comprised of several nurses, some of which were from the nursery to attend to Laina when she came out and make sure she didn't aspirate any of the meconium. If she did, she'd be at risk for pneumonia and would need to stay for observation longer than expected. Pretty soon I heard "the head is out!" and then soon after that, she was here. They took her over to the warmer that was right by my bed. I could see her the entire time as they did some suction and announced that she didn't aspirate any of the meconium. Then once they weighed & measured her they placed her on my chest skin to skin. We just marveled at her and soaked in the first few moments with her. Every moment since then has been so great.