Saturday, October 2, 2010

He's Here!

Actually, he's been here for 3 weeks now as many of you know.

Sorry for the delay in posting about it, but things have been slightly hectic around here and even when there have been extended periods of relaxation I haven't exactly been inclined to sit down and write it all out.

But, lucky for you, I'm feeling up to it now and the boy is sleeping not a foot from me at the moment!

First? The story.

On the morning of September 10, 2010 Veronica got up at around 5am because she was feeling contractions. Now she'd been feeling contractions on and off for a few months now, nothing serious, and we'd had a minor false alarm a few weeks before when they'd grown a bit more intense, so she didn't jump to any conclusions.

Around 7:30am she woke me up, explaining that she was fairly certain that she was going to have the baby sometime that day. Sure enough, the contractions grew in intensity over the next few hours. We puttered around the apartment, we took our dog to his "day camp" appointment, and let the doctor know what was going on. At roughly 10:30 I called the doula, the woman who'd been our birth class instructor and was going to be working to make things easier on Veronica during labor, to let her know Veronica really wanted her to come over soon.

The doula, Michelle, got here at 11 or so and helped Veronica get into the contractions more instead of sort of wincing from them like she'd been doing. Veronica got under some warm water in the shower, got into the breathing, and after an hour we were told "Ok, we need to get to the hospital now."

So off to the hospital we went. Unlike many people, who apparently sort of take a few steps back in the birthing process during the car ride to the hospital because it's uncomfortable and distracting, once we checked in and Veronica was looked over it was determined that she was at 8cm. Once we got into her room we had to answer a bunch of questions that we could have sworn had been on earlier forms, which wasn't really a hassle so much as a little annoying, but things progressed really quickly; our doula was great and our nurse was very understanding. Veronica got in the tub that the birth room had, with the shower on her back, and once she started feeling the need to push she went back to the bed.

Things moved really quickly after that, and even though Veronica was sure that she was exhausted she just kept going on and on. The hardest part was right at the end, but even that wasn't all that long. Michael was born at 3:31pm.

As for me, I spent just about every moment (depending on the stage in question): supporting some of her weight when she was having contractions early on (she was leaning against me), keeping her hydrated, keeping a damp washcloth on her forehead, making sure she didn't roll directly onto her back once we went back to the bed (her back hurt, and it pushes the pelvis slightly closed if you're laying on your back), and acting as a cheerleader at the end. I spent about the entire three and a half hours leaning over at some angle, and I'd been dumb enough to do an aerobics class in running shoes the day before so I had torn up my feet... but honestly I hardly noticed after the first half hour or so.

Little Michael in Hospital 3

Michael was born 19 inches long and 8 pounds 3 ounces. He was fine, but he'd inhaled a little fluid during the birth so after a moment or two with Veronica I had to cut the umbilical cord a little earlier than we'd planned so that they could check him out. After a few minutes they decided they needed to take him to the nursery, and with the support of one of the nurses I was able to convince/force the nurse practitioner from the nursery to roll the little incubator thing over to Veronica so that she could see and touch him again.

She, by the way, did it all without any IV or pain medication aside from a little bit of numbing gel at the end and was absolutely fine about two days after. I can say (and have) without any exaggeration that she is my hero for how she handled this.

Veronica in Hospital 1

Little Michael & Veronica in the Hospital

Little Michael in Hospital 4

We spent the next two days resting and visiting Michael and getting some information on what all we needed to do. Then we got to take him to the room with us, and eventually (on Monday I think) we took him home.

Restless Little Michael

It's been great. We had visiting grandparents, visiting friends, and lots of fun. I will hopefully be able to share more of it in the days to come, especially as I've taken dozens of pictures, but here's a small sample of how great he is to have around.

Michael With Veronica's Dad

Veronica's Mom and Michael

Leah, Annie, Veronica & Little Michael

Dad & Little Michael

Mom & Michael Again

The Pose 1

Michael At The Sports Bar

Out on the Blanket 2

Michael & Me Reading