Now back to the program-
Isn’t it amazing that a date can just be a number on the calendar and then all of a sudden, it can take on so much meaning. I’ll never again hear someone speak “June 16th” without automatically thinking “that is the day that the day my baby girl was born.” A day that before was just a date, now is one of the most significant days of my life. AMAZING. I love this picture of our first meeting:In this moment I could care less about the state of my makeup, the fact that someone is taking my picture in the adorable hospital gown, what my hair looked like or what is going on anywhere else in the world. Even more amazing is the disgusting "mess" that is just beyond the cropped edges of this photo yet a million miles from my mind or the pain that I screamed through just minutes before. The space between my nose and hers was all the world to me in that instant.
Just a couple of weeks before Little Miss made her debut, Kristen D pointed out this scripture. I've always thought this to be an amazing truth and loved seeing it in the Word:
"When a woman gives birth, she has a hard time, there's no getting around it. But when the baby is born, there is joy in the birth. This new life in the world wipes out memory of the pain." - John 16:21
I’m sure very few of you care about all of the details of that day in the way that we do, but I am anxious to document them as best I can remember in hopes that one day I can share with Little Miss about the day she came into this world…and changed mine.
I woke up about 3:30am fairly sure that my water had broken. I was not 100% certain, half asleep, and not really wanting to let myself believe that this was FINALLY happening. We waited around at the house for a little while and nothing happened (no contractions or other signs of labor) but RRL was determined that we go on to the hospital…wise since Cbug arrived 1 hour after my water broke and only 25 minutes after we arrived at the hospital. I don’t blame RRL for not wanting to deliver his third baby at home or in our car :)! Our AMAZING neighbors, J&K, came to stay with the boys and my Momma, RRL and I headed out.
We arrived a little after 4 am and still NOTHING. I went straight to the nurses station and basically begged them not to send me home. I was sure they would take one look at me and send me home…I just could not BARE the thought of that. A sweet nurse checked me, said I was at about a 4 (same as my doctor’s visit a week before), but that I was leaking some amniotic fluid so I better stay…HOORAY! She thought it was probably a high leak in the water sack and suggested we do some walking to get labor to progress. We walked and walked and walked, rested a little, then walked and walked and walked. AND NOTHING. Occasionally, when I was hooked to the monitor, we could tell that I was having a few contractions, but nothing more intense than I’d been experiencing for weeks. OH LORD, I prayed, please don’t let this take all day.
Every time a nurse would come into the room, I’d remind them that I was 5 days past my due date and absolutely COULD NOT go home without a baby. Each would sweetly reassure me that I did the right thing by coming to the hospital and that when the doctor came in later in the morning she would get things moving. We really had this same conversation no less than 12 times in the few hours leading up to the doctor’s visit.
AND BOY HOWDY did the doctor get things moving….
When she came in a little after 8am she checked and I was still about a 4, but my water actually had not really broken. APPARENTLY it is possible to have TWO sacks of fluid. Usually these two sacks fuse during pregnancy, but OF COURSE our comfortable baby girl wasn’t ready to release her water bed yet and just decided to hang on to one. So the doctor broke the REAL sack and I immediately started having contractions…like REAL ONES. The pain I had prayed for was upon me and suddenly I was wishing that I hadn’t been so persistent about asking for things to get going!
I had such an awesome experience in the past with natural birth so I told the nurse I wanted to go as far as possible without medication. She, along with RRL and my sweet momma, were so encouraging as I labored, but about 30 minutes in I was already ready to give up. When the nurse said it was too late for medicine I thought about just requesting a rubber mallet to knock myself out with…oh my it was intense.
But just as fast as it began, it was over. Baby sister was born at 9:19, less than 1 hour after the first contraction. I literally gasped in amazement when I saw her, and my first words, overcome with emotion, were “Thank you Lord, Sweet Jesus”…shortly followed by “She is a girl, right?” I was literally in awe as I watched the NICU staff clean her up and check her (she swallowed a little bit of meconium, but was just fine). Every time someone new came into the room we would exclaim “Did you see her, isn’t she wonderful, just perfect, absolutely beautiful?” And she was indeed. Oh, He has been good to us!
Because we thought so much about timing leading up to her birth and prayed for His perfect timing, we were quick to notice and point out all of the ways he worked in the hours of her birth. Here are a few of the miracles that topped off the day:
1) My Momma has been at the birth of all three of my children. This is something I prayed for each time from the first moments of pregnancy. It is no small thing that she was there, considering that she lives 11 hours away yet “happened” to be in town each time.
2) My Daddy’s biggest show of the year is always the middle of June. This is a show that his office spends weeks/months preparing for and the week leading up to the show is especially busy. Baby Sister made her debut less than 24 hours after the show was torn down so Daddy was able to hop on a plane and be here just shortly after she arrived and stayed for nearly a week. He likely would not have been able to do that if she had arrived any earlier.
3) CBUG…so many blessings came through and for this little boy by his sister waiting to arrive. He has grown and changed so much in the last month and I know that in part the Lord was giving our amazing middle child the time he needed to grow into the big brother role. This is probably the blessing that I have thanked the Lord most for. Thank you, Lord, for letting me be home to hear so many of his first words, watch him grown and change, experience his learning process, and for giving me a greater confidence that he is going to be JUST FINE giving up his baby of the family status!
4) Because of my random "second sack" the birth of our sweet girl was pretty uneventful. This was a good thing in our minds! The water leaking from the first sack meant that we were right where we needed to be, when we needed to be there and were able to actually have a doctor deliver baby Sister!
5) We have a sweet high school senior that has been helping me some with the boys this summer. She is like family, the boys LOVE her and she is one of the reasons I know we are going to survive the first few months of family-of-fiveness. Anyway, when it looked like we were going to be at the hospital for a while I really wanted her to be the one to take care of the boys. I knew they would love having her around, J&K could go to work, and my mom would be able to stay with me. One small problem...she is a senior...which basically means she keeps late nights and often sleeps late in the mornings if she doesn't have plans. I knew there was no way she would be up in time to go over to our house, but I sent her a text message just in case. And the Lord did an amazing thing...he turned off the electricity in her house that morning for a very brief time, just long enough for it to get warm, turn off her sound machine, and let her wake up to see her text message! She literally got the message just moments before the doctor came in so we were able to discuss details with her before I was even in labor. We were given a peace that the boys were well taken care of for the day. And of course the boys were thrilled to hang out with her. How COOL is that!!
I'm sure many of the blessings of her arrival have yet to even be revealed to us. What an amazing day, though, and an amazing beginning to so many special memories made with our sweet angel. Thank you (if you made it this far in reading), from the bottom of our hearts, for your encouragement, love, offers to help, and especially your prayers during this special time for our family. We are so blessed and so loved!