Tessa makes 3!

The adventures of a young couple starting a family, teaching each other and learning as we go, and having fun doing it!

November 29, 2010

Stupid Carseat Bed

I loathe the carseat bed. Seriously, it is a ridiculous piece of equipment. It is so difficult to take it in and out of the car, and it is just as difficult taking her in and out of it. It makes me question the need to go anywhere, because it's such a debacle. If you take her out of the bed, it's cold and you have to wrap her up in a blanket, and then carry her everywhere.
I have not gotten the hang of the sling yet so one of just carries her. If you take the entire bed out, it doesn't fit in any shopping carts and is super heavy and awkward to carry around. Tessa, if you're reading this, please pass the carseat test so we can use your nice, fancy travel system that is currently collecting dust in the dining room. I understand the safety aspect, but it is just so darn inconvenient! Luckily she's cute so we'll deal with it.

She loves her pacifier. 

 Here she is watching TV! She'll stare at it for hours!

In other news, Tessa loves watching TV. No matter where she is in the room, if she's awake she'll cock her head towards it. She has also started making more noises and talking some. It's pretty funny!

November 24, 2010


It's that time of year, the holiday season is upon us. With our first Christmas down (see post below), we are going to be heading to multiple Thanksgivings tomorrow, and I love it. I have a wild and crazy family and there is never a dull moment with us. I love seeing all my family and catching up, even though it's usually only a few months between visits.

I love that we can reminisce on past stories and laugh until we are crying pee a little. The same stories never get old, and there's always a new one that comes up, even if it happened 20 years ago. There's always a story that somebody hasn't heard yet, usually embarrassing someone else, but it's always a blast. I think it has something to do with the fact that all the grand kids are within a few years of each other (youngest is 21, oldest is 29).

Joel's  family is slightly more subdued, but they are a different generation since they still have little kids around, besides the obvious new babies that joined in the last couple of months. The oldest grandchild is 27, the youngest is 6.

So, in honor of Thanksgiving, we wanted to list what we're thankful for. Yes, Joel is going to participate too!

Andrea's List:
Number 1: Joel. He is such a wonderful husband and dad to Tessa. He puts up with my craziness, allows me to rearrange our house almost weekly, and lets me spend our money on things I can't seem to live without because it's just too good a deal to pass up. But more importantly, he is such a great person and entertains me endlessly. From flashing a smile that makes me melt even when I'm mad, to randomly doing the dishes or grabbing me for a foot rub, he is so helpful in everything.

Number 2: Tessa, of course. I am so thankful that she is here, that she's healthy, and that she's a wonderful baby. I am also thankful that she is a relatively easy baby. She has already changed our lives in so many wonderful ways in the past 4 weeks. I am thankful for the millions of ways she has blessed and changed everything about our family.

Number 3: My family. I have two absolutely wonderful families that have embraced my weirdness and support everything I do. They entertain me endlessly, help me through the tough times, and give me solid advice, whether I ask for it or not. They call and say hi just because they were bored and thought of me, they check in on us just because it's been a few days since they've talked to us, they provide us with so much love, support, and help, whether it is convenient for them or 3am.

Number 4: Coffee in the morning, getting fun mail, sleeping in, being able to provide for our family, lots of pillows, Tessa doing the cutest little things (yes, I've become one of those people!), the outpouring of love and support and concern we have received from friends, family, work folks, and random strangers. There are also a million other things I am thankful for.

Joel's list:
Number 1: Tessa. My wife should be number 1, but I already warned her that if we had a girl it would be a tie. Tessa brings so much joy to my life, with her funny faces and constant entertainment. I love playing with her and can't wait to teach her everything I know.

Number 2: Andrea, the wife. She takes great care of me and Tessa, and somehow makes the time to cook, clean, work, and be wonderful. She keeps me sane, allows me to unwind and clear my mind after work, she spends my money on things I think are unnecessary but she usually convinces me otherwise, and she  talks sense into me. Beyond that, she's pretty cool to hang out with and will watch the same shows I do, let me take naps, and doesn't make me change diapers.

Number 3: A great job and a safe home. I am glad I have a good, secure career that allows us to live comfortably in a decent townhouse, and still gives us money at the end of the month. It feels good to know that I can support our family and I am very thankful for that chance.

I am also thankful that I can use Tessa's naptime as an excuse to take a nap myself. 

Christmas #1

This past weekend we had our first Christmas of the season. Joel's grandparents live in Texas in the winter from November-April so we have the Delaney Christmas the weekend before Thanksgiving. There is quite literally 2 straight days of eating, with a little football, gift opening, and chatting thrown in between eating sessions. It starts Saturday with platters of appetizers and goodies in the afternoon while we watch college football. Then, Saturday night we have homemade pizzas and watch more football. Sunday morning is a big breakfast for whoever wakes up in time, then gift opening, then another huge meal consisting of Thanksgiving/Christmas food. This year it was roast, ham, potatoes, corn, green beans, rolls, salads, pies, etc.

We are very blessed, and there is lots of love going on in that family. His grandma Alice has a tradition of making a grandma tree every year. She gets ornaments for each grandchild and now great grandchildren and puts them on a tree with the year on them. It is so fun to look at the past years' ornaments, and she always has a different ornament or theme for each year. This year it was small stockings that hung on the tree, but sometimes it is candy canes with their names on them, or handmade ones with their pictures. She also wraps a gift for everyone. One year it was jeans, one year it was slippers, once it was pajama pants, and last year it was wallets/purse clutches. This year it was mittens/gloves! She is so cute and clever! We all get the same gifts but she takes so much time to figure out what colors/styles/sizes fits each of our personalities best, and with 22 of us, that's quite a task!

With this being Tessa's first Christmas, she also got involved! She got a book and some money from GG Alice and PaPa Dale, some jammies from Aunt Annette and Uncle Scott (and Lindsay and Alex!) and of course, she got involved in the lottery.  GG Alice and PaPa Dale wrap up a $1 scratch ticket for each person in the family and put them in a big basket. Then, you pick your box, open it, scratch your lottery ticket, and get whatever you win! Usually no one wins more than a dollar or two, but someone won $10 this year, and Joel won $4. Not bad!

All the families got together and bought Dale and Alice a computer this year! Joel and I got them all hooked up and showed them how to use the computer, as well as download Skype and get them on the internet, creating an e-mail address and sending test emails to everyone! They'll be able to use this in Texas now, since they have WiFi in their community park. It'll be nice to be able to send them pictures and updates via email, and, of course, video chat with them on Skype!

We are now back home after our first long trip away from home. Tessa did great, although babies do require a lot of stuff to pack!

November 19, 2010

Just because

Because I'm biased and I think she's pretty cute....

November 17, 2010

Dr's Appointments

Last Friday, Tessa went back to the Dr. for her 2 week well baby check up. She looked great, everything was fine, she had gained another 6 ounces, and was up to 8 pounds 3 ounces. After her check up, we went up to the nursery to try her carseat test again since she had failed her first one. They said they usually don't retest but we asked that they would just for our own peace of mind before moving her to her regular carseat from her carseat bed.

She failed, miserably. Again. I was a little discouraged but figured she just wasn't ready. I was also very glad that we had asked them to retest. Well, then things got interesting. They put her in her carseat bed to test to make sure that was fine, and she was just as bad. Even laying in her bed, flat on her back, her oxygen saturation levels were fluctuating between 80=95%. The threshold for passing is above 88%. At one point, her lips got a little blue and her oxygen saturation was 84%, so they had to give her oxygen. This freaked me out, big time. If she's laying flat on her back, asleep, why can't she maintain a good heartrate and oxygen sat. levels. By the way, oxygen saturation is a measure of how much oxygen the blood is carrying through the body. Normal levels are 90% and above. Like I said, a passing grade for the carseat test is 88%, but she wasn't even close.

Joel and I were upset and worried about why she wasn't able to maintain normal levels, and why she would drop during a nap while flat on her back. We also started wondering how many times before had that happened and she should have been given oxygen, and how many times in the future could it happen. We have no way of knowing how often it happens, but we knew that it happened at least once, and luckily she was hooked up to a monitor during that one episode. So, we went back to the doctor to see what he thought. He told us he didn't know what was causing it, but that it's not a big deal and not to worry. HMMMMM... not going to work for us. I won't say his name, but he's the only male pediatrician working for Trimark in Fort Dodge. I was very angry at how he had written us off and told us not to worry, when she needed to be given oxygen during a nap. How would we be able to monitor her to make sure it doesn't happen again? Wait for one of us to notice she's not breathing? I vowed not to return to him.

Luckily, we have awesome family members who are medically trained! We got a few tips for how to help keep her airway open when she's sleeping, like roll a wash cloth up and put it under her shoulders so her head and neck were slightly tipped back. We went to Des Moines on Sunday so Joel's mom, a Physician's Assistant, could look at her. She was able to get a pulse oximeter from her office, which is a machine that measures the oxygen saturation. Sunday night we tested Tessa during a nap to see how she was. Again, she kept fluctuating and couldn't maintain a steady heartrate and oxygen sat. level. Although her heartrate never dropped into a dangerous level, it was fluctuating quite a bit and she clearly was having some labored breathing.

After testing her on many different positions, we realized that the only position she was able to keep consistently high levels was sleeping on her stomach. But, due to the SIDS risk, we realized that wasn't going to work, at least on its own. Monday morning we went to a pediatrician in Des Moines, who Joel's mom works for. We also had a chest x-ray and an EKG for her to rule out heart problems. Luckily the heart was just fine!

After a few hours at the doctor, we had 2 possible answers, 3 temporary solutions, and a plan of attack for the next few weeks. Wow! I was so relieved just to have someone that would take the time to help us figure something out and try to come to a solution! So, here's what we figured out.

She has a possible hiatal hernia, which is where the esophagus meets the diaphragm. They think this is putting extra pressure on the lungs, which could cause her levels to fluctuate. She also has some reflux, which can cause her to choke/gag after eating and can cause spit up to sit in her throat. Her levels fluctuated much more when she had just eaten than when she was more than 2 hours after eating.

The solution:
She is now on prevacid 2x a day to help with the reflux and the spitting up, which should help with the breathing if she's not constantly spitting up and swallowing it. She is now sleeping on her stomach, with a wedge pillow under the mattress so she's at a slight incline. Since stomach sleeping is no longer recommended and we were afraid of the SIDS risk, she now has an apnea monitor that she's hooked up to when she's sleeping. This will alert us if her heartrate goes above 240, below 80, or if she stops breathing for more than 20 seconds. Although she's not having true Apnea episodes, this will allow us to sleep when she's sleeping without the worry of SIDS. So, she's hooked up to that and a portable machine when we aren't holding her,and when she's traveling. We go back to Des Moines next Monday for a check-in to see how things are going with this new plan, and we'll retest her carseat in a few weeks.

Nobody knows why a fullterm baby is acting like a preemie, even three weeks after she's born, but at least we have ruled out a few things and have a few possibilities for what the problem is. If it is the hernia that's causing the problems, it'll either work itself out eventually or she'll eventually need surgery,but it's definitely not severe enough to cause worry right now. The treatment for it in babies is the same as the treatment for reflux. She's just being difficult for us, but in our families, should we really be surprised?!

November 16, 2010

Bath Time!!

Tessa's first couple of baths were rough, she did not like the water, the tub, or being rubbed down with soap and water. However, after the first two baths, she loved it! She loves sitting in her bathtub and having the water on her. She looks around and grabs her ducky sometimes. I can't wait until she's old enough to actually play in the bathtub. She's been having some major spitting up issues lately, so we've been taking more frequent baths than the recommended twice a week. Sunday she got 2 baths in the span of 2 hours after she attacked her cute outfit with vomit. Luckily she likes the bathtub or 
she would be majorly angry a large portion of the day!

November 12, 2010

Fighting a losing battle

Well, it's official. Tessa is already a daddy's girl. She wants nothing to do with mom unless it's time to eat. I don't think she's figured out that I also do the diaper changes, but that's not as important as food. While I am absolutely enamored by the fact that she loves daddy and that daddy loves to hold her and let her sleep on him for hours (it gives him the excuse to nap!) it's rough on me. Now that Joel is back to work and working nights, he's not here to hold her when she's wide awake from 10pm to midnight while I catch a snooze. It's like she knows he's gone too.

His first night back to work, which was Wednesday night, she was up from 9pm to 3am, and bam, zonked out 15 minutes before he got home. Magic. Last night he worked the earlier shift so he was home and, lo and behold, she slept 5 hours straight. She's messing with me. I swear she is. Eh, oh well. She's too cute to get mad at, although I wish I could read her mind. That would be fun.  Here's a couple photos of how she feels about having her diaper changed. She's not impressed. The second photo is her hungry face though, it just cracks me up. She gets one eye closed and the other eye we refer to as 'crazy eye'. That's how we know she means business. 

November 11, 2010

our first rough night

Tessa has been a great sleeper, only waking up to nurse and for diaper changes at night every 3-4 hours. She sleeps like a champ and it's been wonderful. Until last night. I'm not sure what her issue was, but from 9pm-3am it was a party. She would wake up crying, nurse for a few minutes, fall asleep. But as soon as I would move her from the rocking chair where I was holding her to the pack and play, she would wake up within 5 minutes, crying again. I nursed her every hour, changed her diaper, rocked her, snuggled her on my chest, and nothing worked to keep her asleep. I felt like I was slowly losing my mind.

On top of that, it was Joel's first night back at work so I was having a little anxiety about that. But alas, the little booger fell asleep about 3 minutes before Joel got home at 4am and slept until 7:30, woke up to nurse, and slept until 10:30. I think she was just messing with me. I'm hoping I can sneak in a nap today, assuming the munchkin wants to sleep at some point in her little life. 

November 9, 2010

Tessa meets GG

Tessa has the wonderful privilege of being surrounded by lots of loving family. On Joel's side, Tessa makes 5 generations. Yes, 5. It's crazy to me that my grandma and Joel's great grandma are a year apart in age, and Joel still has a great grandfather too, as well as all 4 grandparents. I have 2 of my 4 grandparents, and never knew any of my great grandparents. This past weekend, we went to Des Moines so Tessa could meet my grandma, her "GG" as she is referred by the other great grandchildren. We also got to spend the day with my aunt and my cousin's wives and daughter. It was a great day with lots of fun watching football, watching Tessa, and having some great girl time. Hopefully at Thanksgiving we'll get to take a 5 generations picture with Joel's family.

 My mom and aunt with their granddaughters

Joel went to the ISU/Nebraska football game in Ames with his dad and brothers and had a blast, so he missed girls day. I don't think he missed all the girl time, but he sure missed Tessa as this was his first time away from her for more than an hour. He tailgated all day with the guys and got great seats to the game, even if he was sitting in the middle of Nebraska fans. We both had great days away from the house, but were glad to get home and back into our routine, which we are still trying to establish with Tessa.

November 8, 2010

Tessa's Birth Story Part 2

When Tessa came out, she was gray. As I said in the last post, she wasn't crying either. Her original APGAR score was 1, then her 5 minute one was a 5 after they had started working on her. They did a third APGAR a little later, and that was a 7, which was a huge improvement. Here's some information about how they calculate APGAR.

A score of 7-10 is considered normal, while 4-7 might require some resuscitative measures, and a baby with APGAR of 3 and below requires immediate resuscitation.

Her cord PH was 6.8, which was very low. Normal is between 7.25 and 7.35.

Here's a little information about cord ph:
  • The umbilical cord blood is studied for the status of the fetal acid base. Cord gases are obtained to detect the presence or absence of acidosis and to decide whether the cause of the acidosis is respiratory or metabolic. Establishing the source and type of acidosis make it easier to a.) plan resuscitation b.) treat complications.
  • Umbilical cord blood pH and acid-base balance is most useful in association with the delivery of an infant with a low APGAR score.
  • Only newborns who have a persistent APGAR score of 0-3 for 5 minutes or longer and an umbilical artery blood pH of less than 7.00 are at risk of manifesting anoxic brain injuries.  
Well, no wonder everyone was freaking out.  We knew it wasn't  great, but Joel and I had no idea how bad she was and what the potential complications were for her condition coming out. The pediatrician was baffled as to why a full term baby would come out in that much distress. When they whisked her away, Joel couldn't go with her since she was going to the NICU, so we weren't sure how she was doing or what was going on with her. My mom and Joel's mom were in the waiting room, which happened to have a view into the nursery. When they wheeled her into the nursery, Laura (Joel's mom) knew all too well what was going on.

Laura was a NICU nurse for almost 20 years before going back to school to become a Physician Assistant. So, when she saw and heard how Tessa was doing, she was kind of freaking out because she knew what everything meant and how bad Tessa was. My mom didn't know anything and didn't know what anything meant, so she was freaking out and was watching Laura trying to get cues on how Tessa was doing.

She was immediately put in an oxygen hood and was hooked up to multiple monitors. They also started an IV, which we found out later took 5 tries to do. She still has little bruises on the back of both of her hands and in one her of legs where they tried. They finally got it in her left leg. She also had about 10 heel sticks in her other foot for blood draws. She had heart monitors, respiratory monitors, a huge wrap on her leg to cover the IV, and this darn oxygen hood they stuck her in looked like she was wrapped in saran wrap.

About an hour after she was born, she was stable enough that Joel got to go visit her. He could not hold her or touch her, but he was able to take a few pictures and videos. I was still in recovery from my C-section, but the nurse told me that as soon as I could sit up in bed without feeling nauseous, they would put me in a wheelchair and let me go see her. Meanwhile, Joel brought back the photos of her and uploaded them to the computer so I could see them from bed. The nurses were so wonderful, they said the grandparents could go see her as well, but only after I got to see as many pictures as I wanted. They wanted to make sure I had gotten to 'see' her first, even if I couldn't go into the actual room for many hours later.

I gave the OK for the grandparents to go see her. Unfortunately, no one but grandparents and Joel and I were able to go see her, so even though my sister and Joel's brother also came up, they were forced to look at her from the viewing window. The next few hours seemed to drag forever. Every half hour or so, I lifted the bed a little more from the laying position to the sitting position, knowing that once I could sit up, I could go see Tessa. My one goal in life that day became sitting in bed, then moving to the wheelchair. Finally, at about 6:30 pm, I was able to enough to go see her. Once I got there, sitting wasn't going to be good enough. I forced myself to stand up so I could look into her eyes, touch her skin, and just stare at her.

We rested that night and at about 5:30 in the morning one of the nurses woke me up. She said that a couple of hours earlier Tessa had been transitioned from the oxygen hood to nasal oxygen, and that she had just transitioned to room air an hour ago and was doing very well. She said it was against the rules, but since she was stable on room air, she snuck Tessa into our room to see if we wanted to hold her. Well, DUH!!!!! What kind of question is that?! Of course!! So, at 5:30 we got our first family photo. It's a terrible picture, yet so wonderful at the same time!

Friday was a blur, except I remember they said I could go visit her and hold her as much as I wanted. I spent 90% of the day in my chair in her nursery room just rocking her, holding her,and talking to her. Around 5pm that day, she was cleared from the NICU and moved into the intermediate care nursery. This meant that she could come out of the nursery and be in our room, although she was still hooked up to most of her monitors and the IV. They were giving her IV fluids her entire stay since she couldn't eat until she was breathing on her own on room air. I didn't really care that we had to wheel her IV stand around everywhere because we had her in our room and could finally hold her, snuggle with her, and share her with our families.

Saturday morning she got her first bath and was able to wear real clothes. She also got taken off of a couple more monitors, but still had the IV.  We had some visitors on Saturday and just relaxed with our little girl. We weren't sure when she'd get discharged, but were told it would probably be Monday. She was doing a little better everyday and was bouncing back from her traumatic entrance very well.

Sunday morning I was discharged but  told we would be able to stay as long as she was staying. Then, at about 11:30, the pediatrician came and told us she was being discharged. Seriously!?!? We were shocked and elated! We packed up our stuff and were ready to hit the road. Except 1 important thing. Our little peanut decided to fail the car seat test. For more information on car seat tests, click here. Basically, since she had to be on oxygen, she had sit in her carseat for an hour to make sure her ability to breathe wasn't compromised.

Yes, it's usually only for preemies. No, the doctor had never seen a full term baby fail it. He was once again baffled as to why or how a full term, 7 lb 7 oz baby would fail this. This failure meant that she couldn't go home in the nice, Chicco brand carseat we had for her. She had to borrow a car seat bed from the nursery.

The bed they gave us didn't fit her, because again, they had never had a full term baby fail this. So they had to scrounge up another car seat bed to let us borrow, which is pretty ghetto looking. But, it's safe and it works until she can retest later this week. For some reason, Tessa just doesn't want to do things the easy way, but I shouldn't be too surprised. So finally, we had a carseat bed to take her home in, and we were ready to go! We made it home on Sunday afternoon and she has been doing well ever since! We had a very scary start, but are so thankful that she is a fighter.

 We came home on October 31st, so we had to change her into a Halloween outfit for a couple photos!

November 4, 2010

Tessa's Birth Story Part 1

It's been a week since Tessa was born, and I am finally ready to relive the 30 hours of labor, plus the scary 3 days following her birth. I want to do this while it is still fresh in my mind, but wanted to wait until she cleared her 1 week appointment, which was today.

On Wednesday, October 27, we went in for an induction. The doctor said we could schedule one for any day that week , but we figured if we were going to do it Friday, we might as well do it Wednesday since I wasn't progressing week to week on my own. Given that I was on bedrest, he said most of the other doctors would have already done an induction, but he let us go as long as we wanted as long as I was doing well and she was doing well. So, Wednesday morning we showed up at the hospital at 7:30am ready to get this baby out. We knew it could be up to 36 hours of labor and we came prepared with movies and entertainment, but we had no idea what was to come.

I got all hooked up to the monitors and they began the Cytotec at 8am. For those of you unfamiliar, Cytotec is a tiny capsule of a drug that is placed into the cervix to help soften it. This drug is used frequently to soften the cervix and then, in theory, allow the body to start contractions and active labor on its own. I got a dose of this every 4 hours, at 8am, noon, and 4pm. I was having contractions but not regular ones during most of the day on Wednesday so we watched movies and  played around on the computer.

The doctor said it usually took 2-3 doses of the Cytotec to work, but that he would do up to 4. If I made it to 4 doses and it still hadn't kick started labor, he would have started pitocin. Luckily, my body figured it out after 3 doses and I started having regular contractions, although my progress was slow. By about 8pm, I was starting to have strong, regular contractions so they decided they didn't need to do the 4th dose and were hoping I would deliver sometime in the next few hours. 

I wanted something for pain, but since I wasn't progressing very quickly, I opted for some IV pain meds rather than getting the epidural then.  I opted for Nubain since the other option was Morphine and I didn't want the potential side effects of Morphine, aka the uncontrollable itching. Little did I know that the Nubain would spark a whole new series of symptoms my body sprung on me. I began profusely sweating uncontrollably from every pore in my body. Seriously, in between my toes was sweating, my ankles were dripping in sweat, my hair was soaked, and my gown was clinging to me. I had no idea that was a possibility. Then, in true Andrea fashion, I began getting nauseous and the room started spinning. Those of you that know me well know that nausea/vomiting is a pretty standard response to anything going on with me.

That started the downhill spiral that became active labor. I was like this for a good 17-18 hours. For some reason, everytime I needed to vomit, Tessa's heartrate dropped rapidly into the 80's. She was perfectly fine during all the contractions, but everytime I needed to, um, release something, she became distressed.

At 2:30am, I finally broke down and got the epidural. I had told Joel previously that I didn't want to rule it out, but I wasn't going to get it as soon as it was available if I was tolerating the pain well. I also told him I wanted to know when the point of no return was, so that I could make a decision. Well, it didn't get to the point of no return, but I went ahead and got it when I was at 5cm dilated. Best Decision Ever. I managed through the next few hours. Those were a blur to me. At 10:30 I was at 9cm, and the doctor finally broke my water. They thought it would break long before that, but it was just bulging forever and didn't want to break on its own. About 10 minutes after that, I was at 10 and ready to push.

That's when it started going farther downhill. I couldn't feel my contractions so they were telling me when to push. I pushed for about an hour and 20 minutes, and then, the vomit monster came back. At that point, the doctor wasn't impressed. My body was not reacting well to labor and delivery, and Tessa wasn't reacting well to me in labor either. At every contraction, her heartrate would drop. Then, during one vomit attack, we couldn't get her heartrate back up. We tried multiple different positions, being on either side, on my back, laying flat, and nothing was working. Eventually we got it back up, but she wasn't very stable. So the doctor gave me about 30 seconds to decide if we wanted him to try to get her out with the forceps or go for a C-section. Then, he made the decision for us, saying that since she hadn't descended very far he didn't know if he could get her out with the forceps, and that she needed to get out now. So, he wheeled me off for a C-section.

Joel had about 3 minutes to process all of this, go tell my mom and his mom in the waiting room that we were having an emergency C-section instead, and get dressed to go back into surgery. They knew I was pushing, so they were fully expecting Joel to come announce her birth. Well, he didn't even have time to go talk to the parents, he was whisked away to put his attire on and get the C-section going. Some poor nursing student got the privilege of going to tell them.

Luckily I had gotten the epidural because that made it very easy for the anesthesiologist to give me the meds I would need for the surgery. Of course, I was in too much shock to freak out, but I was totally freaking out once I got back into the surgery room. So was Joel, but he kept his cool. I remember feeling some tugging and they asked me a lot of questions, all of which I answered. None of which I remember. I remember the doctor saying, "It's a girl, 12:41pm." Then, I remembered 2 very clear things, both which still stick in my mind. For some reason, these two statements haunt me.

1) A nurse or someone saying, "Oh my God, she's gray. She's gray."
2) Me asking Joel for what felt like an hour straight, " Why isn't she crying, someone make her cry. Joel, make her cry, please, go see why she isn't crying."

We knew she was distressed, but we had no idea why, and certainly no idea how bad she was at the time. I finally looked over, mid vomit and saw them wheeling her out of the surgery room. Joel said he didn't even get good looks at her because they had 6 people around her working on her and  they wouldn't allow him near. All I remember is that her stomach was pink, her hands and feet were blue, and she had dark hair. But, she was beautiful!

Part 2 is coming. This post was long enough!