Saturday, November 20, 2010

Belated Birth Announcement & Coming out of the blurr

Many, many thanks for your loving comments and prayers in my last post.  Quite literally, I felt as if my hospital room and operating room were bathed in prayer.  From the beginning of my birth experience, starting with the midwife telling me to go to the hospital instead of my house to the C-Section, to having to give up nursing (hence, the blurr of this week), it's been clear that things have been outside of my control.  Infertility definitely taught me that concept. 

I felt very priveledged to pray for you and your intentions.  There were plenty of opportunities beyond the IV.  Even the epidural caused its share of pain and I wasn't even in labor to appreciate its benefits. :P  After the picture below, I'll share some of the brief highlights and lowlights of the birth and subsequent week.  So if this is not a good day to read about such details, now is a good place to stop.  Thanks for your prayers!

Kath.erine Eliza.beth, aka K.atie, was born safely via C-Section on 11/11/10 at 5:25pm.  6lbs, 10 oz.  Here's one of the pics from the hospital.

Most surprising moment: "You're going to have a baby in the next couple days." -the midwife.  Second most surprising moment: the hospital had incredible food.  Really!

Most uncomfortable chairs on the planet:  The recliner my husband slept in next to my bed.

Most ironic decision: the C-Section:  After spotting very, very dangerously low amniotic fluid in my ultrasound (indicated that the placenta had shut down), the midwife gave me two choices: C-Section or endure a full day of induction, followed by another day of labor, which could still end up in a C-Section.  I knew that my baby wasn't ready to come out yet; that day the midwife found out I had dilated to 1 cm.  No contractions.  My husband and I were afraid of the stress labor would cause to the baby. 

Most confirmation that it was the right decision: During the C-Section the doctor discovered that the baby had the cord wrapped around her neck 2 times.

Most random comment during surgery: (as I lay on the table, somehow coherent) "I've heard some animals eat their placenta."  The doctor answered, "I hear there's a recipe book for making food items out of placenta, including a recipe for placenta pizza."  A collective "GROSS!" rose up from the room of doctors and nursers.

Most motivation during painful moments: thinking about all of my IF friends and getting the baby out.

Most touching moment: hearing the baby's first cry.  Also, the hospital photographer took some cute photos of the baby and put them in a power point slide show along with background music.  The pictures caused me to start crying, because they made me realize fully the extent of this little miracle.  My husband started to cry too.  In disbelief, the photographer asked, "Oh no, is it because you don't like the photos?"  We assured her that we did and that our tears were happy ones, due to our long wait for a baby.  If that didn't convince her, the fact that we bought a photo package did. :)

Most numbing drugs: OK, this is really hilarious, but the anesthesiologist at this particular hospital is known for his VERY numbing epidurals.  He even gave me some medicine to relax after the baby was born, so much so that I slept through the last 45 minutes of surgery (probably a good thing).  The nurses call his epidurals by his last name.

Most awesome support: All the labor/delivery nurses and mother-baby nurses were incredible.  They enjoyed the candy that I brought for them. Also, my midwife who has been working with me the past 9 months participated in the surgery.  She even held my shoulders and hands while the doctor did the epidural.

Most missed people: my parents in California.  We sky.ped with them after the birth/recovery, but they were missed. 

Biggest surprise:  Recovering from the C-Section went very well.  I was able to walk around 2 days after the surgery.  By the time we went home I felt strong enough to walk around.  The pain pills helped tremendously.

Biggest letdown: I had hoped to nurse from the get-go.  But our baby did not gain enough weight and my milk came in slowly.  We had to supplement briefly with formula.  But even before that, she began to have issues with nursing.  I've had the lactation consultant at my house two days in a row! From what we can gather, my positioning etc. is fine but the baby just doesn't want to nurse.  She screams and fights me every single time.  This had been a long-time wish of mine to do and it was CRUSHINGLY painful to have to give it up after a week.  I'm still pumping but we have to supplement.  I'm not going to get into the arguments of formula vs. nursing (both are worthy options and a personal decision); once again, it's hard to have a deep plan or desire and have to give it up.  Do we see a trend here?

This past week has been very difficult, full of adjustments and loss of sleep.  Despite all of that, we are in awe of our precious little miracle.  The fact that we had to wait so long makes her arrival that much sweeter.  I hope and pray for this moment to come soon for all of you.

Here's me on the front porch sporting the hospital bed hair look.  Yes, that is a St.arbucks cup in my hands; can I help it that my pain pills prescription was filled at a drugstore near my favorite coffee joint?  Don't worry, it's a carmel apple cider.

And finally, this was my favorite picture from the hospital.  If you've made it this far without suffering eye strain from my copious text, kudos to you!! :)

Thanks again for your prayers and encouragement!!  What an awesome community this blogosphere is!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Blog post from the hospital

Well, it appears that I jinxed myself in the previous post by proclaiming KB's late arrival.  During a routine doctor's appointment yesterday, the midwife saw severely low amniotic fluid.  So instead of heading home for the evening, she sent me right over to the hospital.  (Grrr.)  There have already been many opportunities to pray for all of your intentions (try having 5 IV sticking attempts).

By the way, it's super cool that our hospital has free wireless.  How appropriate to post from here. :)

So we were faced with 2 difficult decisions: have a C Section or induce labor.  Because I had only dilated to a mere 1 cm, the latter choice meant a potential for 1 day of induction plus 1 additional day of labor.  After some prayer and consult with each other and my mom, we decided to go for a C section.  That will happen late today, so any prayers are welcome.  I will ask my hubby to post a pic of the baby when things settle down. :)

Thanks for your encouragement and many prayers!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Send in the Petitions!

Arrg, another gap in posts.  No arrival of baby yet, but at least the "to do before she comes" list has been whittled down considerably. Add extra events (a friend's confirmation, All Soul's Day, Christmas shopping, doctor appointment, etc.) to schoolwork and time disappears quickly.

But now for the important part.  With my labor and delivery right around the corner, I would like to use the painful opportunity to pray for any and all prayer intentions you may have.  Other bloggers have done this in the past and I want to follow in the tradition.  Of course, I'm not as brave as some of the other bloggers who endured non-medicated labor; mine will include painkillers and an epid.ural.  But there are still fears of needles, a long labor, the painful after effects....not to mention my cluelessness about taking care of a newborn.  Fears about motherhood and if I'm really ready.  See, there will be plenty to offer up.

Catholics hold a great belief in the redemptive value of suffering. However, my tired brain is not up to writing a concise treatise on this matter, so I'll refer you here.  Suffice to say that offering up suffering while praying for others is akin to a child's painful cry piercing the heart of his mom or dad.

So, feel free to leave any petitions in the comment box, on Facebook, or email them to me.  And remember that as always, all you ladies still traversing IF remain in my prayers.  I will never, ever, forget. 

p.s.  Baby KB seems rather content in the womb, so it's looking like she will arrive past the Nov. 13 due date.