Saturday, July 13, 2013
Welcome to the World Liam!
We had hoped that Liam might make his way into the world on his own a little bit early, but as I sort of expected all along he arrived the afternoon that I was induced.
Tuesday, the 9th, was my doctor's first day back from Italy (where she is from) and we both agreed before she left that would be a good day to have a baby! Because he appeared to be so big (and I had gestational diabetes) we didn't want to wait too much longer than that. So that Tuesday morning Joe and I headed to the hospital early in the morning (though we did end up being bumped back an hour). Though we had this same experience giving birth to Eli it's still a strange thing to be driving to the hospital, not in active labor, yet knowing you are going to have your baby that day!
When we arrived at the hospital they got things started fairly quickly. My doctor was already there with another patient so I was able to see her right away. She broke my water, the nurses started the pitocin, and we were off and running! I have to say that we were blessed that day with some really incredible staff. First of all, I can't say enough wonderful things about my doctor...I adore her, respect her, and trust her. She's cried with me and seen me through a lot and it was wonderful to have her be the one helping Liam to arrive. And the nurses we had that day were the best. I had two nurses, both wonderful ladies probably in their late 50's. One had been working in labor and delivery for almost 30 years and the other was brand new and in training. They were hilarious together, so sweet, and put us at ease the entire time. They have been my favorite nurses yet and for that I was very thankful!
Even though the induction got started pretty quickly it's still quite the process and I felt like I was constantly being poked at and hooked up to something. My nurses kept telling me they were sure that things were going to move very quickly because I was having some decent contractions when I came in that morning, but in reality things seemed to move rather slowly that morning...or at least so it felt (probably because I was expecting it to go so fast). It seemed like every time they checked I had made just a tiny bit more progress.
I decided this time around that I would go ahead and ask for the epidural fairly early on. With Lily I was in labor for 17 hours before I got it and with Eli I was induced but also waited a few hours until things got pretty painful. This time around I was certain that I wanted one so I figured that it didn't make sense to wait...I also didn't want to run the risk of waiting to long and missing the opportunity. So I got the epidural after about an hour or two. But sadly the epidural didn't work as well as I was hoping. Well, I should say that it worked really well (too well) on my right side of my body and not so well on my left side. This is exactly what happened with the epidural I had during Lily's birth (yet the one I had with Eli worked beautifully). The nurses and doctor tried a number of different things to help...laying me on my left side, moving the epidural catheter a little bit and those things seemed to help some for a while. I could still feel the contractions on my left side, but it dulled the pain a bit. My right leg, on the other hand, was totally numb and I couldn't move it at all. The doctor suspected that I had a membrane in the way causing less of the medicine to be delivered to the left side (especially since this is exactly what happened with my 1st epidural) and she offered to take it out and put a new one in in a different place. At the time though the pain was bearable so it just didn't seem worth it to me.
And that's how things went for a while...me resting and things slowly creeping along. I began to wonder if it was going to be quite a while and I began to worry a bit that it could go on into the evening and that possibly my doctor wouldn't be the one to deliver the baby. And then seemingly out of nowhere things picked up in intensity really quickly and I went from feeling just a little pocket of pain in my left side to feeling really hard contractions everywhere. Apparently when it was time my body really kicked it into high gear. And that window of pain spread everywhere despite the epidural and it was time to deliver. My doctor got there pretty fast thankfully.
Now, I knew that there was a chance that my labor and deliver would not go as smoothly as it did with Eli, but I was sure hoping. This delivery, however, was far more intense. It was maybe only 20 minutes (and I can't complain about that) but it was some of the most intense, painful 20 minutes I can remember. My doctor and Joe and the nurses did a great job talking me through it and reminding me that I could in fact do it (when my whole body was shaking and I was sure I couldn't)! It's amazing how you can know full well that you can do it and, in fact, that you have to and yet those moments feel so desperate and impossible. My doctor kept telling me that I was doing a great job and that the baby was getting close, but it just didn't feel that way to me. I remember the nurses telling me that during Lily's delivery and two hours later she was still stuck. So, I knew that's not what was happening this time, but it just didn't feel to me like I was making any progress. But I was and then there he was. Honestly I didn't even realize that he was out right away. My doctor didn't say anything immediately after that last push...probably because she was so focused and also because the cord was wrapped around his neck (which she never told me...Joe did later). But it was just a second and she told me that he was out and then in the next second he was up on my chest. There is no replacing that moment in life...it feels like nothing short of a miracle and everything else fades away.
And there was our sweet little Liam. He cried briefly, just enough to make us feel okay, and then he was so peaceful. The whole next hour or two (except for when they were checking him out and cleaning him up) he just snuggled up to us and made these sweet, peaceful little cooing noises like he was talking to us. I've never experienced anything like it before and it was amazing.
And that's how our little Liam entered the world. And yes, he was much smaller than we were expecting. Still a pretty good sized baby at 8lbs and 9oz but we were certain he would be closer to 10lbs to this was a big surprise! He length, I believe was pretty average too, but he does have the large, beautiful, round Smith head!:) And better than anything is that he is perfectly healthy! After all of those months of concerns and worry and test and ultrasounds our little Liam is perfectly healthy and we are so incredibly grateful to the Lord for that and to all of you who having been praying for us and for him.
God is good. All the time. And all the time. God is good. And I see this to be true when I look at Liam.
Welcome to the world my sweet little guy...you are so very loved!