We did it! We are officially parents! It has been a LONG day, but I want to document as much as I can before I fall asleep and forget it all.
We got to the hospital right about 4:30am to get all checked in and admitted and prepped for the surgery. It felt like it was taking forever at the time, but now I'm sort of impressed with how quickly the morning really did go by...
Paperwork, an IV, and so many questions later my doctor came in to check on me, the anesthesiologist came and introduced himself, and then they wheeled me in to the OR.
Getting the spinal was probably the scariest thing about the whole process. Luckily, my wonderful Aunt Lori came in on her day off just so I cold have another familiar face with me throughout the morning. She let me rest on her shoulder while they prepped my back and then gave me the good stuff. I probably would have burst into tears without her there - I was so nervous and scared! But it goes to work almost immediately! My butt was numb before he even finished the whole shot.
When I swung my legs back up onto the table and they put in a catheter my legs were so dead that I never even felt the nurses lay them straight. I went thought the entire surgery convinced that my knees were bent!
The c-section itself only lasted 45-ish minutes, but our sweet baby Ruthe was here within the first ten! She was born at 6:45am, weighing a WHOPPING 7lbs. 10oz., and measuring 20.5 inches long. And apparently, her head is so big the doctors had to open the incision even wider to get her through!
There was a LOT of pressure from the doctors pushing her down and pulling her out. For a second I thought they were going to break my ribs. And it was pretty hard to breathe, too.
My arms were so shakey the whole time, which is normal and only makes you look freezing cold and ridiculous, but still not any fun.
Dr. Roberts held her up over the curtain right away so I could see her in all her nasty baby glory. I only remember thinking how marvelous and beautiful she is, although looking back it was totally gross. While the neonatal team cleaned up Ruthe and the doctors started putting me back together, John and Lori were going back and forth between taking pictures of the baby and showing those pictures to me.
Before they whisked her away to the NICU for some testing, one of her doctors or nurses brought her over for me to see and smooch. Her chubby little cheeks are perfect for nonstop kisses!!
John followed Ruthe into the NICU and spent close to the rest of the day in there with her. After they stitched me back together they wheeled me back into the recovery room for about an hour, and then we headed up to the third floor maternity unit. This is a hard floor to be on when your baby's in the NICU on an entirely different floor. I hate hearing sweet babies cry all the time as they're being wheeled in to see their mommas.
John got to hold her for a while, and he helped with her first bath, and even changed her diaper - twice!
I tried to get up around 2:30pm to start stretching my legs and possibly head down to see the baby, but it was just a little too much activity and I made myself sick. I was so devastated. I had been preparing myself all day to go down and see Ruthe at 2:30 that when it was time and I was back in bed with more meds I just broke down. Not seeing my baby for more than five minutes the entire first eight hours if her life just killed me.
Especially since they had to intubate her because the heart medicine she's on causes apnea and her breathing was too shallow in her own. So now I knew for sure I wouldn't even be allowed to hold her whenever I could make it into the NICU. Like I said, devastating.
My nurse gave me some nausea medication and I fell asleep for a while, which really helped. One of Ruthe's cardiologists came in to talk about what they'd seen on her echo and tell us about the plan for tomorrow and this weekend, assuming Ruthe remains stable.
There's a shift change from 7 to 8, during which time we can't be in the NICU, so John came upstairs to help me try getting out of bed again to visit Ruthe. This time I made it!!
It's a slow and steady process, but I got myself out of the bed and into a wheelchair so John could wheel me down to Ruthe's bedside.
Finally, after fourteen hours of her life had already passed by, I got to see my baby girl! And even with all the tubes and tape and wires she is still the most beautiful baby I've ever seen!!
We'll be posting more pictures periodically, and some of them might make your heart sad, seeing little baby Ruthe attached to so many machines and with all the tubes, so I apologize. But I promise, she's not suffering too much... John already knows where to rub her so she calms right down. He really is the sweetest daddy ever!!
Thank you, everyone, for all your love and prayers and well-wishes for our new little family! We can't express how comforting it is to know that so many people care for us and already love our little Ruthe!!