We finally have a new baby and I finally have a minute to sit down and write about it. After my OB appointment on Monday, June 4, I had pretty much given up hope of having the baby any time soon. I figured he was going to be 9 days late just like Hannah was and there was no point in being anxious about his impending arrival. So I went on on with life as normal.
Then, on Tuesday morning around 4:00am, I started having contractions. I thought it was the same "false labor" I'd had before so I just ignored it and tried to sleep. Around 6:30am I was still unable to sleep and my contractions had started getting closer together and a bit stronger. Sean woke up around then and I told him I thought it might be baby day. He asked me what I wanted him to do. I told him to go on with his day as normal but not to go to work yet. He went to the office in the basement and started working. He was downstairs for maybe 15 minutes before I told him to get his butt upstairs and help me get ready for the hospital.
Sean took a shower and got cleaned up while I called my mom and told her it was baby day. By 7:30am I could barely stand during the contractions but I was determined to take a shower before going to the hospital. Since Hannah was still sleeping, I got into the shower and Sean packed the hospital bag. And ooohhh, the shower was SOOOO nice. If I ever have another baby I will try to labor in a tub or shower. It was much more relaxing to be able to lean against the shower wall with warm water pulsating on my back while I had contractions than it was for me to labor away in a bed.
Hannah got up around 8:15am. We got her dressed and left for my in-law's house to drop her off. We arrived at the hospital just before 9:00am and were sent into triage. I had to give a urine sample and have my blood pressure checked right away because of the blood pressure problems I had been having. The resident put a heart monitor on my belly and checked the baby's heart rate. Everything sounded good so she (the resident) checked me to see how dilated I was. At that point she said, "Oh my goodness, you're 7cm." Then she shouted out the curtain for someone to call my doctor ASAP, get a blood draw, call for a delivery room and the Anesthesiologist for my epidural. About 20 minutes later I was in a delivery room waiting for my doctor and my epidural.
My doctor arrived around 10:00am. She checked me (I was dilated to 8cm) and she broke my water. The anesthesiologist arrived shortly after that but my blood work wasn't back from the lab yet so I had to wait another 10 minutes or so for the epidural. By then my contractions were VERY strong, lasting about a minute and a half and only 2 minutes apart. They were coming one after the other and it was all I could do to breathe through them. I keep wondering if I could have done the delivery without the epidural. I'm sure I could have but I am still glad I did it. I was so much more comfortable after getting the epidural that I'd do it again in a second.
Around 11:15am I was dilated to 10cm. I started pushing but I wasn't really having the "urge" to push because the baby was still pretty high. So we waited for him to drop. I finally started pushing at 11:30am and the baby was born at 11:55am. Our baby was a perfect 8 pounds, 5 ounces and 20.5 inches long. It took us quite a while to decide on a name but we finally agreed on Daniel Edgar. I'm still amazed at how quickly and smoothly everything went. I pushed for less than 30 minutes and I didn't even have to have any stitches. The only negative thing about the delivery is that my mom didn't make it in time to be there. She arrived about an hour after he was born. Daniel was just too impatient to wait for her, so he's her only grandchild who's birth she didn't see.
We've been home for a week and a half now and things are going very well. Hannah has adjusted quite well so far. She loves Daniel and always wants to kiss him. When she wakes up in the morning, the first thing she does is ask where Daniel is. She gets very concerned when he cries and tries to soothe him and give him a pacifier. It's very sweet. Daniel has been a dream. He sleeps almost all the time and he's a pretty good eater. He has expressed breast milk during the day and formula at night. Pumping is exhausting but so far it's going okay. I'm not sure how well I'll be able to keep it up once Sean goes back to work. Having him home to help out has been a dream. He's been so helpful with both of the kids, a real hands-on father and he's done an amazing job with the house work as well. I think he must be looking forward to a bit of a break when he goes back to work.
I would say the pregnancy this time around was much more difficult than Hannah's was but the delivery and recovery have been much easier by far. I am almost feeling 100% back to normal. I have had some mood swings but I haven't experienced Post-Partum Depression like I did with Hannah. It's really helped to have the experience and secureness as a parent, having gone through it before with Hannah.
Thank you to all who have followed my pregnancy and the safe arrival of Daniel into the world. It's really been a pleasure sharing this special change with you. Thank you Maribeth, for the opportunity to tell my story. Good luck to all of you who are pregnant or trying to conceive. May you have a happy and healthy 9 months. Maybe I'll write again . . .for baby #3??
The photos are as follows...
Daniel with eyes open (just minutes after his birth)
Hannah holding Daniel (the afternoon he was born)
Daniel sleeping (10 days old)
Congratulations Stacie, Sean and Hannah!