As I sit here writing this post, there’s a beautiful, golden-skinned, brown-haired baby fast asleep next to me.
Today was Collins’ due date, but she graced us with her presence last Thursday, making her officially one week old!
Moms love sharing their birth stories, so what better platform to share ours than through our blog. Don’t worry, I won’t share any gross details. I promise.
For those around me, it was no secret that this pregnancy seriously wore me out. The combination of running around (literally) after a willful toddler, not having enough time to properly exercise and a full work week plus weekends, I just didn’t rest much. By the last month of pregnancy, I was truly worn down.
Collins had dropped (or “lightened” as they call it) early in October. I knew it because suddenly one day my heartburn that had plagued me had disappeared. I felt like I was waddling and walking around carrying a bowling ball on my pelvic floor and overall just felt TIGHT. I told my doctor that it felt like someone was stabbing my belly button from the inside–that’s how taut my stomach was.
On October 18, after a day of some seriously good eats (thanks to my colleagues at work for treating my coworker and I to an early birthday treat and lunch and to my mother-in-law for a delicious homemade pasta dinner), we settled in for the night like any other. I gave Evvie her bath, we watched a few YouTube educational videos, made some funny SnapChat videos together and then set off to sleep.
At 11 PM (almost on the dot), I woke up with a bad cramp that felt like those I would get when I was having my “time of the month.” As I stood up to go to the bathroom, I suddenly felt wet. (Okay, so this part is gross-ish, so skip ahead if you’d like.) I went to the bathroom and assumed I had simply wet myself (which totally is not uncommon in subsequent pregnancies). I tried to lay back down but had another bad cramp about 10 minutes later.
I decided then to head downstairs as not to make a commotion in case it was the real deal. I had another cramp and felt another gush of fluid. Following this experience, my cramps, or really contractions, jumped from 10-minute spacings to 2-minutes within a 30-minute timeframe. By midnight, I had called my Mom to rush over as the contractions were 1-2 minutes apart and strong. She flew over (stating at some points she was driving 75mph in areas of low speeds–sorry PD!) to ensure Evvie had someone there and C.D. and I rushed off to the hospital.
Upon arrival, I could barely walk. The nursing staff at the hospital Fetal Care center immediately recognized it was the real deal and skipped the registration process to take me straight to a labor and delivery room. C.D. was quickly behind us. Upon setting into the room, I was 5.5cm progressed and 100% effaced. The contractions were so much stronger than I remembered with Evvie (probably because my water actually broke itself this time) and I did not hesitate to ask for an epidural.
Luckily, I didn’t have to wait long for the Anesthesiologist to arrive and within minutes of the injection, I felt like a million bucks. Remembering how awesome the peanut ball was with progressing Evvie’s labor (google it–it’s exactly what it sounds like), I again asked to use it. Within one-and-a-half hours, I had jumped from 5.5cm to 9cm. The nurse checked me, offered to come back in an hour, and we’d see how things were going.
During this time, I took a moment to rest and close my eyes, as I’d only had one hour of sleep between going down for the night and being awoken by contractions.
When she came back, I was at a 10 and she asked me to give a little push to give the OB an idea of when he needed to be there for the actual delivery. I started to push and she immediately stopped me, telling me the baby had dropped so fast that she was actually at the ready and the doctor needed to arrive quickly.
The doctor arrived shortly after and with four pushes, Collins Claire arrived just before 6 AM, with a head full of beautiful golden brown hair. Admittedly, it was a little tough to see what she REALLY looked like because girlfriend came out covered (again, I’ll stop here with the grossness). They cleaned her up, threw a cap on her and brought her over for her snuggle time. I immediately recognized how many features she had that were similar to Evvie.
Collins has the sweetest round face and full cheeks, much like our Ev. Her eyes are an almond shape and starting to lighten to a bluish-grey color, again similar to her sister. They have the same little nose. Their only differences are in their mouths (Evvie has thinner lips to Collins’ full lips) and hair (Evvie was born with some dark blonde/light brown hair and Collins has a full head of long dark hair).
Oh, and their PERSONALITIES. Collins is our calm to Evvie’s beautiful chaos.
Recovery the following days was so much better than the first time, and I was up and walking around the same day of delivery. Family came by to visit and remarked at how much calmer of a baby she was than Evvie. Now, Evvie didn’t fuss, but she was also awake often and squirmed around a lot. Collins is much more content being snuggled up, whether it’s a swaddle or our arms, and sleeps pretty much 90% of the day (the rest of the time is spent nursing or looking around a tiny bit). She barely cries and only wakes me to nurse in the middle of the night by grunting and sighing loudly (fortunately, my “Mom” ears are still tuned in to hear the lightest sounds).
As for our firstborn, she LOVES this baby so much, but she’s still letting Mom and Dad know how upset she is with us. We’ve had multiple tantrums a day since returning home, with there being some days she refuses to nap whatsoever. I’ve had a few good cries myself, feeling her pain for her. But, C.D. and I have found that, although frustrating, letting her cry and scream (safely) has been the best way for her to let out her anger. Since doing so, she has had better and better days and has enjoyed lots of snuggling with Mom, Dad and sister.
I knew this behavior would be a good likelihood considering her personality and desire for attention, but it doesn’t make it any easier. I’m optimistic that as we get back to our routine, the fits will become less and less and she’ll feel more accepting of our new norm.
So that’s our story! With my leave and this baby who actually SLEEPS, I plan to plot out a few posts to get up on the blog relating to the holidays and adjusting to life as a family of four. Thanks for following and for those who have wished us happiness and joy in our new adventure!