I think I'm going to have trouble keeping up with this blog for awhile. I've been wanting to write this post since Janey was born, and I've had to start it and stop it for the last five days. But there are some things I don't want to forget and one of them was the day she was born.
On the 22nd, we woke up early to celebrate Andrew's 9th birthday. Can you tell he's a bit excited?
He wanted more than ever, a motor scooter. He's so independent and has asked me all summer if he could ride into town. No way is he ready for that, so around the block will do him, and I love watching him take off. (PS. He always wears a helmet but this is him trying the scooter out quickly before we leave for the day.)
Jeff took Abbey off to the bus and Isaac finished packing the car. We all jumped in and drove a couple hours to drop off Isaac at college. I can't believe I made it to this day-as uncomfortable as the ride was, I am lucky that I was able to go.
Here we are in his tiny, hot dorm room helping him unpack. Look at poor Patrick's face in both pictures-he is so confused. So much change-we'll talk about how he is doing later.
After Isaac was settled, we ate lunch together and parked at a far corner of the campus, away from all the move-in hoopla and said our goodbyes. We all did fine. No wailing, a few tears (OK maybe more on the part of the parents as they were pulling away), and we watched our little boy walk away. Except he's 18 and not a little boy. And as sad as we are, we are so excited for him. I think I told him I am so envious of Isaac going to this university he chose. I love everything about it and know he will also. I have found that this whole process is so much like those first days of preschool-heart wrenching, but in your heart you know it's the next step.
We came home, had a birthday dinner and cake and the kids went to bed.
At about 11:30 I told Jeff I was having contractions and thought maybe we should go into the hospital, but I wasn't sure. That meant to Jeff that we were going to the hospital. When Patrick was born, I waited too long and although we made it to the hospital it was sort of a disaster-midwife not showing up till the last minute, super crabby doctor on call having to be called, everything frantic, etc. We didn't want that repeated.
Abbey really wanted to come with us and see the birth and we felt she was old enough, so we woke up her poor tired soul, and she came with us. I had called the answering service for my doctor, but she said to just come in, and they would call the doctor once I was checked. Jeff called on the way and told them to send her now to the hospital, so she could meet us there. He was so worried about the last experience being repeated.
From this moment on, the entire birth process could not have been more perfect. It was exactly what I wanted. Peaceful, controlled, beautiful.
I was 5 cms when I arrived, and my water broke on it's own as soon as I got into the bed I would deliver in. My doctor showed up, said hi, and left us alone.
I had the nicest, kindest nurse possible who knew I knew what I was doing and was just a quiet presence.
Jeff started his complicated (not!) counting thing he has to do for me every time...basically counting through the contractions up to the peak and down again while holding my hand without letting go and not touching me anywhere else, and not talking. (He got a slight reprimand the two times he broke my "rules" :)
He started making it up to counting to 20, by the time Janey was delivered he was up to 70 at the peak....crazy.
I zoned out. I can't even describe it. The room was dark and quiet, I told Jeff that if anyone asked me a question, I wasn't going to talk, he had to answer for me. Everyone at this little suburban hospital was SO respectful of me and the process of natural childbirth.
I put myself in Seaside on the beach to relax.
But I also was able to visualize exactly what my body was doing with each contraction.
When the doctor checked me when they thought I was getting close
She left to go down to the nurse's station, I had a great big painful contraction and the baby was born...the doctor made it back for the shoulders, thanks to the quick call of our sweet nurse.
And someone (I think Jeff?) shouted, "It's a girl!" as they layed her on top of me (and where she stayed for a good hour.) And we all cried (Abbey, Jeff and I) and said, "It's a girl!!! Oh my gosh, it's a girl!" or versions of that statement about 25 more times till I'm sure everyone in that room thought we were really slow learners.
Abbey cut the cord, how cool is that.
We didn't take many more photos-we were too in the moment. Abbey and Jeff stayed for a couple more hours, then went home to the boys. (Abbey was exhausted since she had been up since 6 a.m. for school.) Isaac called the next morning and Matt told him, "We had a girl!" And he said, "Cool! Tell Mom I said congratulations." And that was that. (Typical boy, huh?)
I was up on adrenaline for the rest of the night and the next day just holding her and feeling so grateful and so lucky.
The boys came by and I had to share her with her brothers.
Look at the pure joy on Patrick's face.
We are at home now, and I'm enjoying every minute of my babymoon, till Jeff goes back to work and I have to deal with real life.
PS. Thank you SO much for all your sweet congratulatory comments!