I can't believe that 9 days have already passed and a week ago we were bringing our sweet baby girl home from the hospital. I haven't blogged, although there have been many hours between 3-5 a.m. that I could have but it seems almost too large to capture all of the emotions, changes, joys and blessings that have taken place in less than 10 days.
Hannah came in to our world a few days later than our original due date (May 16) but also a few days earlier than the doctor eventually thought she would. Believing that I would be later yet, I went with Molly to a girl's night in GR, in hopes to win some giveaways and have some good snacks. I got a whole lot more out of the deal! Just for fun I had gotten a foot massage with some focused pressure on "trigger" spots for labor but hadn't taken it too seriously.
When I got home we went on what Ryan declared the fastest walk I had ever taken, pregnant or not. It didn't occur to me at that time that the burst of energy I was feeling could be related to oncoming labor. It just felt like a good night for a walk and we got home and in bed at a relatively normal time. When I got up for probably the third time to go to the bathroom around midnight, my water broke, just like happens in the movies and I knew at that point that things were getting started. I woke Ryan up to tell him and he jumped in to action with me, calling the hospital to see what to do next. They gave us the advice to stick it out at home for awhile and poor Toby followed me around the house for the next 6 hours or so of contractions.
Per my request, we hit up McDonalds for a smoothie between deep breathing on the way to the hospital out of my fear that once I got in to more active labor, I wouldn't be able to eat. We were set up and in our room by 7 a.m. and although my contractions were closer together and harder, I was surprised to hear that not much was happening yet. Between Ryan's support, a few laps around the hall and trying to focus on the end result, the time went pretty quickly but I couldn't imagine going all day like that without progress. When the doctor gave the invitation for an epidural (my plan all along), I jumped at the opportunity and couldn't say enough nice things about the anesthesiologist. I told Ryan to "write him a check" because his work was invaluable, clearly I was a bit loopy by this point.
After that took place, the game changed incredibly. I was actually able to enjoy the process and focus on the fact that I was going to have this baby within the next 12 hours or so. A couple of times the doctor came back to check me and things were still not progressing to the point that he wanted them to. The biggest issue was that she was not dropping at all and he was pretty sure that she would not fit. We started to wonder around 3 or 4 p.m. if a c-section might be in order. He decided to come back one last time after his 5:00 workday ended and if I wasn't ready at that point, we would get ready for surgery. Ryan and I prayed at that time for peace with whatever happened and to be prepared for either outcome. Lo and behold, within a matter of an hour or so, things changed dramatically and when the doctor came back and told me I was at a 10 I was shocked and elated. The time had come!!
The next 45 minutes were some of the most amazing moments of my life, with Ryan by my side as my coach and an incredibly supportive and encouraging medical team, Hannah was born at 6:35 p.m. The emotions I had when I first saw her tiny nose and heard she was a girl were so overwhelming and beautiful. Something changed within both Ryan and I in that moment, knowing we were going to be parents to a daughter. I know I thought it was a boy all along but it just seemed 100% right when Ryan said "its a girl".
The past nine days since then have gone by in a blur of quiet moments, sharing her with friends, all kinds of firsts and learning more than I ever knew possible about love and our little family. Ryan has made this transition incredibly beautiful by doing all kinds of things to take care of his girls. I really don't know what I would do without him. As I right, he and Hannah are fast asleep on the couch, she on his chest and Toby by their feet. I can't wait to share more about her and the journey we are on as parents but until then, I will be soaking up these moments as the come.