It’s so warm in my house right now. We’ve got the fireplace crackling and I’m wearing a big fat sweater. The heat is turned up and all I can think of is how at this time last week, I would’ve been sweating like crazy in these circumstances. There’s something about unloading an 8 pound, 10 ounce incubator from your belly.
My second son, Samuel Benjamin was born Monday night at 6:53 p.m. He is absolutely perfect, and I am completely smitten with him. (pictures coming soon!) Maybe it’s because I know he’s our last baby or because I feel this inexplicable bond to him thanks to the trauma we’ve both been through. I look at him and it’s so clear that he’s been through just as much as I’ve been through… we both have the battle wounds to prove it. Ointments and painkillers (for me, not him) and confusion and our entire worlds turned upside-down. I just want to sit and hold him.
The other kids seem to love him just as much as Adam and I do. Sophia, of course, is a little mommy. She wouldn’t leave my side Wednesday once we got home. She has a million questions and they alone overwhelm me. Ethan seems a bit indifferent to the whole thing, but tonight, before he went to bed, he asked if he could sing Sam a lullaby. I said, “Sure,” and then I pulled him close so I could hear him. (He sings really quietly… I think he gets embarrassed.) Anyway, the song was to the tune of Brahm’s Lullaby and the lyrics were something like this:
I love you. I love you. I love you, Baby Sam.
You’re the sweetest… Baby… in (two syllables)
Our whole family…
Yeah, he doesn’t quite understand meter yet, but it was still really sweet.
My labor was… well, let’s just say whoever said they get easier every time was really mistaken. It was, by far, the hardest labor I’ve had. The trouble started when the nurses changed shifts at 3 p.m. My first nurse, a lovely young mom named Ellen, was off and my second nurse, Kathy, a crabby older woman wearing blue crocs and a snarly expression, came on.
As soon as Kathy came in, I turned to Adam and said, “I miss Ellen.”
My labor really started kicking in about the same time (perhaps my body was reacting to the crabby nurse?) and it was at about that time that Kathy, the crabby troll tripped over my IV, nearly tearing it out of my arm.
For whatever reason, this really messed me up. It hurt to begin with, but it wasn’t just that – it scared me… and I started crying. I could not control the sobs – and they were sobs. Ugly faced sobs. I’m not ashamed to admit it because darn it, I was going through something major here…
Not long after that, Kathy (who had yet to apologize for destroying my peace and my arm) decided she needed to examine me. I’ll spare you the details, but this sent me straight back into tears. I’m not going to relive it, but it rivaled the worst contractions on the pain scale.
Thankfully, the epidural was on the way.
That’s when we met the anesthesiologist. She seemed nice enough and as she gave us her spiel about epidurals and all of the possible side effects she began yawning. A lot. Then I swear she was slurring her words.
Adam must’ve noticed too because he said “Can I ask you a question?”
“Sure.” She was cheery. My room didn’t understand cheery with Kathy on the other side of the bed punching facts into the computer.
“Why are you so tired?”
I was terrified she would use her needle to take out on me what I’m sure would be aggravation with my husband. But he had the right to ask, and he said, “I just want to know before you stick a big needle into my wife’s back.
He takes care of me. I love him for that.
In the end, she was fine, and for about a solid hour after she gave me the epidural, I felt relief. I was fine. Pain scale went from an 8 to a 2… and then hard labor kicked in and I was certain I was never going to survive.
Obviously, I did survive and I’ll spare you the rest, but I have to say that I have the absolute best husband in the world. I knew Adam was a good husband, but the way he handled my labor – he truly got me through it. It was his voice that I focused on. His encouraging words that I paid attention to. And finally, after five good pushing intervals (pushing for three sets of ten seconds), this baby was placed on my belly, which had been his home for nine months.
They whisked him away seconds later. He needed suctioning and cleaning and all kinds of other things. I had no clue what they were doing with him, but over my doctor’s shoulder I could see them working on him. Suction. Crying. More suction. Crying. Another nurse.
“Is he okay?”
They thought they heard a heart murmur. Called in a NICU nurse to see. I prayed. Made a mental note to ask our pediatrician about it the next morning. Soon after my kids arrived with my mom and our whole family sat together in my hospital room, one more member richer. (Baby doc said no heart murmur after examining him in the morning.)
He didn’t have a name until Tuesday night, but we finally decided on Sam. It was funny because it was my pick months ago. Adam nixed it, convinced it was too popular. Then, during my labor, I told him how Sophia calls him “My baby Sam” (she latched onto it when I was lobbying for the name…) and seconds later, Adam said, “I think I’ve decided on a name…”
I thought it would be Grayson, which was the name we were leaning towards… so when he told me he liked Samuel, I was like, “WHAT?”
He did the same thing with Sophia’s name.
The hospital stay was eventful. I learned that although the epidural might not work in your midsection, it can still completely numb your legs. After delivery, my right leg was fine, but my left leg was unusable. Adam helped me into the bathroom. Once there, I thought I was okay. I sent him out and promptly crashed to the hard tile floor. It was painful and humiliating and the nurse came in and yelled at me. I had no idea I wasn't supposed to try and go to the bathroom. (What's a girl to do?) Anyway... lesson learned.
This is a long entry, but there’s been a lot happening around here. A lot of great, awesome, wonderful stuff. Including the sale of our house, but I’ll get to that later. J I do have baby pictures to post later on today.
Right now, I’ve got a hot shower to take and a baby to feed.
HUGE is the word to describe me right now. And I know this.
Why do people feel the need to TELL ME how big my belly is?
What's worse is... these aren't people I know and love (though my sister comments on my belly regularly)... these are strangers. People at church. People in stores. Cashiers.
One cashier in particular could not get over the size of my belly. And she wasn't keeping her opinion to herself. After my doctor's appointment this morning (swollen again - no surprise here...) I went to Toys R Us to pick up some of those necessities we no longer have around. It occurred to me the other day that - oh my gosh - I need a changing pad... and a mattress... and bottles...
So, off I went, waddling around on my swollen feet, busting out of my tennis shoes like sausages. I got the things I need (and a few things I didn't) and made my way to the counter to pay. I roll up with my cart and the girl behind the counter says "Wow. You're getting ready, huh?"
I remove the changing pad from in front of my belly to see her expression widen. "Yeah, I guess it's about time to get ready," she continued... still totally enthralled with my protruding belly.
"Wow. You sure are ready."
(As if I don't know this. I AM the one carting the belly around, after all.)
"Yep." I said, tiredly, maybe a bit annoyed.
She's quiet for a total of ten seconds and then continues... "Wow. You're belly is really big. When are you due?"
"I'm having him in 10 days."
"So, it's a boy."
"Must be a big boy. A really big boy."
"Probably. I have big babies."
She then tells me about her big baby... how he had to be delivered via C-section because she just couldn't take it... he was just too big for her... and she made them induce her two weeks early."
"How big was he?" I ask, innocently.
"He was 8 pounds!"
Whimp. Ha. I think it. I don't say it, of course... but I do manage to tell her I'm pretty sure this one is bigger since my last one was over ten pounds. (I did it politely, though I've noticed that the size of one's baby is always topic of conversation... worn out in the open, almost like a badge - it's as though I've been through something that deserves a medal because that little punk was sooo huge...)
Anyway, I figured maybe she'd shut up at that point, just knowing that I know I have big babies...
no such luck.
"Well, you definitely look ready to pop."
Silence for a moment. Ahhhh... silence. Cursing myself for buying so much stuff.
Another glance at my stomach.
"Are you sure you're not having twins? You really look like you could be having twins."
"Pretty sure it's just the one. I'm going to have him in ten days. I'm supposed to look like this."
(I didn't really say that. I didn't actually respond. The phone rang. I praised Jesus in the high heavens that Adam was calling me needing help locating a plunger. Angels sang as the cashier gave me my total and I was able to go out the door.)
I still can't believe we're ten days away from having our third baby. It's unreal. I've been thinking a lot about it... and if I wasn't in the mood before (which I was) I sure was after Tuesday when this little guy popped over for a visit:
My friend asked me to take some photos of her baby, and he was so sweet. I'm not a photographer, but I do love taking pictures of cuties like this. Here's a couple more. Just for fun... you need to enjoy the cuteness too:
So, the rest of my day is going to be spent getting the baby's room in order and then going to a fundraiser for my uncle who is running for state senate. I've never been into politics, so it'll be interesting... especially since none of my dressier clothes really cover my belly right now. Should be interesting!
...well, sorta. I couldn't JUST post pictures because, you know, I write... and I'm wordy... so weed through the text and look at pictures if you want to. :)
I wanted to post some Halloween pictures. Our theme this year was "Into the Future" so everyone dressed up as whatever they wanted to be when they grow up. Sophia was a veternarian and Ethan was Spider-Man. (Hey, it's a long way from the pumpkin he originally wanted to be!)
Here they are:
And one at a time:
Ethan spent two whole days in this costume. If it wasn't in the laundry at our old house, he'd have it on right now. This was so funny to me. He got all dressed in it himself, so this was the scene the day before Halloween at breakfast time:
Yesterday, we finally moved some of the bigger furniture to our new house. We have a showing tonight, we found out after the couch and kitchen table were already out of the house, but people are just going to have to get imaginative. I really needed a place to sit down. This belly doesn't do well on the floor.
Speaking of my belly... I don't really have anyone here to photograph my belly, so I decided I would try and do it myself. I can't find my tripod anywhere (it's in the garage SOMEwhere) so I just started playing. I know these are not great pictures, but they ARE documentation of a nine month belly, so I'm glad I've got these...
The best part was in the middle of it all... Ethan walked in. Instead of asking me what in the world I was doing, he just did this:
Totally made me laugh. He smooshed his face on mine. I love this kid.
After that, he just REALLY wanted to take pictures. Normally, I probably wouldn't let Ethan have control of my camera, but for whatever reason, I was feeling generous. So, he took a few of me that I may share later on, but I need to look at them again and make sure they're not TOO embarrassing! My belly is REALLY, REALLY BIG! (And I know this for sure because everyone keeps telling me so.)
So, as of yesterday, I have two weeks left in a pregnant body. I can't believe it's gone that quickly, but I'm glad it's almost here. It's different than it has been before, I think because I know we're going to have this whole other person in our lives now... THAT is what excites me. I can't wait to meet him. And finally figure out a name for the little bugger. :)
Sunday afternoon, Adam and I had a date day. Date nights, we've discovered don't work so well when you've got two people who have taken to falling asleep at around 9:30. We went and saw Dan in Real Life and ate yummy stuff at the Olive Garden.
The movie was really SO GOOD. I loved it. I now have a movie crush on Steve Carell. I know it's a little bit predictable, but it was VERY entertaining. Definitely made me laugh. And I didn't even have to get up to go to the bathroom once! (YES!) Highly recommend it, though... it was awesome!
Today is a full day, so I best get on with it, but I hope you're having a great week!