We had a scheduled c-section, so there isn’t any real drama with this story. But I want to write it out so I can always remember and cherish the day our Ladybug made her “official” entrance into the world.
I’m very glad that we had the scheduled c-section, as I was 39 weeks and not showing any signs of going into labor. I was not dilated at all at my check up that week. I know that my anxiety would have been unbearable if we had to wait for “nature to take its course.”
Reason for the scheduled c-section: our first daughter was stillborn at 36 weeks less than 2 ½ years before, so we opted for the repeat c-section rather than the “risk” of normal labor and delivery. My anxiety level was so high during most of the pregnancy with Ladybug because of the fear of losing this baby too. Having a scheduled c-section gave me some sense of control.
We didn’t sleep much the night before. My mom had come into town to be here for Ladybug’s birth, so she made a good healthy dinner. I know we tried to sleep. But at that point I wasn’t sleeping much anyway. Between having to pee every few hours and the anxiety and nervousness, I would guess I slept about 4 hours that night.
I was up around 4:30 am to get myself “ready.” We had to be at the hospital at 6 am. We left the house around 5:40. Mom came with us. She didn’t want to sit around the house the extra few hours while we waited. Hubby’s parents would meet my mom in the waiting room at the scheduled delivery time.
We arrived at the hospital at 6:00 am and checked in. We were escorted to the surgery check in and only Hubby was able to go in there with me. So Mom waited in the surgery waiting room.
I got undressed, put on the not-so-modest hospital gown, and waited. Hubby and I took silly pictures of each other while we waited. One last belly shot. Hubby looking all freaked out. Me looking horrid in my glasses. (I wasn’t allowed to wear my contacts.)
Once all the preliminaries were finished, my bed was wheeled into the “queue.” While in there, one of our friends from church who is a nurse at that hospital came by to say hello. Then one of our lay ministers also stopped by to pray with us. The nurse brought a wheelchair for Hubby, as he wasn’t allowed to be on his feet in the OR, just in case he fainted.
We were wheeled to the OR around 7:30. Actually, I was wheeled there; Hubby was allowed to push his own wheelchair. He had already donned his scrubs and looked silly with no pants showing underneath. He was wearing shorts with sneakers!
Hubby had to wait outside the OR door as they gave me the spinal. What was supposed to take 10 minutes took 45 minutes, and they had to try four different places because Ladybug was so big and putting pressure on my spine. Not fun. I hate needles, and I get back spasms when someone touches my lower back. I had some nice bruises when it was all said and done.
Finally, with the spinal done, Hubby was allowed to come in, and they paged my doctor. She didn’t respond to the page immediately, so they paged the back up doc. The back up doc arrived and was ready to begin, when the scheduled doc arrived.
I don’t remember much of the details at this point. The spinal was working well, and Hubby was by my side, so I was strangely calm.
I remember the doc saying that she was making the incision, and within a few minutes say that she was pulling the baby out. As soon as she emerged, we heard a delighted newborn squall – music to our ears!! Both Hubby and I started crying. She was delivered at 8:28 am. The doc guessed that Ladybug was about 9 lbs – she officially weighed 8 lbs 9.6 oz and was 21 inches long. Big girl!
The doc held her up over the drape so that we could see her, then they finished cutting the cord and wrapping her up. They cleaned her up quickly, and within a few minutes were ready to take her upstairs to the nursery.
The nurse brought her to me so I could touch her and kiss her, with tears streaming down my face. Hubby took her in his arms as well, then he was able to accompany her with the nurse to the nursery and let the family and friends in the waiting room know that she was alright.
The doc finished up with me, and I was in recovery around 9:00. I stayed there for about an hour.
Finally, they were able to wheel me up to my room, which happened to be the closest to the nursery. Most of the family stayed out in the hall to ooh and aah over Ladybug.
This particular hospital had the policy that newborns stay in the nursery until they can maintain their body temperature, usually about 4 hours. So I knew that I wouldn’t get to hold Ladybug until about 12:30 or so. A few family members went to get some lunch. My in-laws were hanging around because my mom-in-law wanted to hold Ladybug before they left. Finally, right before they were getting ready to leave, the nurse wheeled Ladybug in! I got to hold her and we took family pictures. Then Grandma was able to hold her too.
The rest of that day is a blur, between the pain meds and the myriad visitors. I think we had about 20 visitors that first day! (I’m serious – it was crazy!)
We were so exhausted that night. We opted for Ladybug to stay in the nursery at night, and have the nurse bring her to me when she awoke and needed to nurse. That first night she slept 4 hours at one stretch. I actually called the nursery at one point and they said she was still sleeping.
The few days in the hospital were filled with many, many visitors. And my mom stayed in the room with me and Ladybug most of the time too. Hubby slept there at night. We soon discovered two things about Ladybug: 1) she wanted to be held ALL the time and would cry if we laid her in the bassinet, and 2) she loved to suck! We gave in and let her have a pacifier. It was either that or let her suck on someone’s finger or my nipples! (She gave up the pacifier after about 2 weeks, thankfully! I didn't want to have to rely on that.)
We stayed in the hospital until the 4th day due to my c-section. When we brought her into the house, we took her out of the infant carrier, and laid her, all swaddled in her crib. We (me, Hubby, and my mom) just stood there and looked at her. I know we were all thinking, “Now what?” We really didn’t know what to do! However, I quickly decided that I needed a nap!
Ladybug was a bit jaundiced so Grammy (my mom) took it upon herself to make sure that Ladybug got in the sun a little bit every day that first week. The jaundice cleared up before her 2 week check up.
The incision staples were removed on day 5 and thankfully the incision healed nicely. There were no complications from the surgery either. I’m sure that my recovery was much faster this time since I had a baby to love, and snuggle, and nurse.
(I’ll be posting our nursing story soon too.)