Friday, March 1, 2013

40 Weeks: So In LOVE

I have skipped my Week 39 entry because THAT was a CRAZY day: MY BABY ARRIVED!! They say most people go into labor between 39 & 41 weeks. I had an inkling I'd be going into labor before my due date, which was today, but I was in denial even when I started noticing what felt like menstrual cramps - my labor had begun. My sister was coming in two days to be here with me for the delivery, and I wanted this baby to wait!

They also say water doesn't break the way they do in the movies when a woman goes into labor; only 10-15% women experience it this way. And even when the water breaks, it may take a little while for labor to begin. But what happened to me was just like in the movies. My water broke at 5am, and my contractions began to progress quickly.

I was surprisingly calm through the whole process, mostly excited, but also disappointed that my family wasn't here yet. It was just the two of us. But that was okay. I was ready, and so was my husband. We felt prepared.

My labor and delivery mostly went smoothly and as I had hoped, with the exception of the last two hours, when things got potentially dangerous. I'm sure I'll write about it soon, but it got pretty intense. I was in what I could only call some kind of trance with pain and exhaustion. My husband was a mess, and my midwife and her assistants were calling our backup doctor. I was in and out of consciousness as I heard bits and pieces of their discussion. I couldn't help but to feel defeated. But perhaps it was this specific little push-comes-to-shove moment that gave me enough strength to finally finish the job. My beautiful and perfectly healthy baby girl came out as the doctor arrived at the hospital parking lot. Even the NICU staff that came in for newborn emergency care left as soon as they saw the baby because she was perfectly fine. Her Apgar Score was 9.9/10!

It was definitely one of the most traumatic experiences of my life. And my body is definitely feeling it. But oh the love... All the love! And the joy of seeing this beautiful and perfect creature that looks like my husband and myself... This little miracle makes everything worthwhile. I'm puffy like I've never seen, and I'm sore everywhere from all the laboring and pushing. But I might seriously be the happiest I've ever been in my life. I haven't slept in a week, but it's been getting easier every day, and I'm getting the hang of it, especially as my body recovers. And I'm lucky to have my sister's family here to help for a couple of weeks, along with a husband whose nurturing side has been nothing short of amazing.

PHOTO at 40 weeks of my newborn baby girl's feet:
Newborns go through some traumatic pricking at the hospital. For my little girl, she had to get pricked extra few times to monitor her glucose level because of my Gestational Diabetes. And she also had some jaundice, which required several blood tests. My poor baby... But everything is fine now, and she's one beautiful, healthy newborn!

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