Friday, June 19, 2015

Sweet Sisters

When we were getting ready to bring Emma home from the hospital, I broke down and started crying. Up to that point I had been focusing on Emma for two days. I was so scared to go home to two kids and evenly spread my love. I was nervous Hailey wouldn't feel loved, or get enough attention. I didn't want to make her sad.

When we got home, Hailey was napping at our friend Brielle's house. We got settled at home with Emma and then Brielle said Hailey woke up. Travis went to get her and my nervousness came back. How was I going to share the love in my heart between two very different and needy babies? 

When Hailey walked in, she immediately noticed Emma on my lap. It was so cute how she froze and stared for a while. Then she approached me and started asking questions. She was mostly confused. Here's the full video of Hailey meeting Emma. I posted a condensed version on Facebook earlier this month. 
We were all sick with a cold when we brought Emma home. I didn't make Hailey get close because I didn't want her to get Emma sick. Our coughs lingered for weeks it felt like. Hailey noticed Emma, but didn't approach her too much for a few days. But I was okay with that, she wasn't acting jealous or negative, just content. We made sure Hailey got quality mom and dad time without the baby. Travis would take her outside to swing and play. One day they came back inside and Emma was sleeping upstairs. Hailey immediately noticed and said, "Where's Baby?". It melted my heart that she noticed her missing. 

After a few days, Hailey warmed up to Emma and began approaching her. She started laying next to her on the floor and talking to her. She loves having Emma lay next to her to watch a show. I have to be sitting close though, since Hailey doesn't understand how little and fragile Emma is quite yet. Hailey loves helping with Emma. She brings us diapers, helps feed her, gives Emma a binky, and helps when Emma needs something.

She loves watching her do tummy time and helps us cheer Emma on.
 It was kind of a blessing for us to be sick when Emma came home. I didn't force any interaction between them. Hailey warmed up to Emma at her own pace and loves her like crazy. I'm so excited for these sweet sisters to grow up together. We are so blessed! 
I was so worried about showing my love to two babies. But it worked itself out. My heart has grown so much. I have sooooo much love for my girls. It's crazy. I can't even describe the love that I feel. And watching Hailey interact with Emma just makes my love grow more and more. Ahhh the feels!

Friday, June 5, 2015

A Birth Story- Emma June

I'm sitting here looking at my sleeping newborn, so grateful she's here. Her entrance into this world was nothing short of fantastic. The whole thing. We are so blessed. 

The story starts off the night of Saturday (May 30th). Travis was gone all day at a certification seminar. I was so mad that he signed up for a two day class when I would be almost 39 weeks pregnant and so uncomfortable. Lucky for him, he came home with a technique he learned to help induce labor. He rubbed my feet and calves, and I managed to forgive him. ;) When we went to bed that night, I started getting intense cramping. They were coming in waves, but weren't very strong. I decided to try to sleep and if I could sleep through them then it wasn't time. After a while, I managed to fall asleep. 

The next morning, I woke up with the cramping still coming in consistent waves. I told Travis I was going to time them and see what was happening. He left for his certification class, knowing I'd be updating him in an hour or so. When I started timing them, I noticed they were every 5-7 minutes and about 1 minute long. Holy moly!! Was this it?! I called the on-call doctor and she advised me to go in if they don't let up in the next hour. Well they didn't let up, and I told Travis to come home. He only sat through an hour of his seminar. While he was coming home, I threw a bag together for Hailey and I. We dropped Hailey off at Brielle's house and left for the hospital. 

They had me go to triage and they hooked me up for monitoring. We could see my contractions coming in waves on the monitor. They checked my dilation and I was at a 3, close to a 4. That's what I was at my appointment the Wednesday prior, so I was hoping to be more progressed than that. I didn't dilate anymore in the next hour, so they sent us home. I was so sad. And still experiencing contractions. I was mad that I had to feel these and they weren't doing anything. And Travis had to miss his seminar for no reason. I felt bad. 
The rest of the day Sunday, contractions were coming continuously. They still weren't too strong. I'd wince every few, but most were doable. We went on a walk that night, hoping to help further things along. On Monday morning, I walked again. I bounced on a ball. Hailey even joined me.
Throughout the day, I noticed the contractions getting stronger. But they were too far apart, happening every 10-20 minutes. I was seriously so so mad that I had to experience the pain and not be in active labor. As I was preparing a grocery list to use when Travis got home from school, I noticed them getting closer. I started timing them and they were coming every 5-7 minutes. And they were INTENSE. I had to lean over and hold onto something through a lot of them. Hailey noticed me in pain and would rub my back and say, "Is okay Mom". I love that girl. 

When Travis got home, it had been over an hour of the strong contractions. We decided to wait another hour and then go in. After the hour, we dropped Hailey off at Brielle's again (thanks Brielle) and headed for the hospital. I was so scared they were going to send us home again. I didn't want to live with these contractions anymore, I was so nervous. We got there just after 5 pm. They hooked me up to the machine again and I noticed the waves were a lot higher than yesterday. Yessss. Can't argue with that. She checked my dilation and I was a 4, maybe 4.5. My heart was crushed. How can I be in so much pain and not be progressing?! They had us walk around for 20 minutes to see if that would help. I started crying, thinking we were going to be sent home again. After walking, the nurse checked me again. She was soooo nice. She told us that I was still a 4.5, but close to a 5. She talked the on-call doctor into letting us be admitted. I could have kissed her!! 
We were admitted at 7 pm. They moved us to the room I'd deliver in. I just couldn't believe it! And I kept saying that over and over again. I felt like my heart could leap out of my chest. I was so so happy!! 
The nurse looked at the clock and said, "let's get this baby out before midnight!". I thought that was pretty optimistic thinking, but I liked the idea. The nurse started prepping for the epidural. By the time she got it all done, she checked me again. I was at a 7 or 8. Say whaaaaat?!?!?! All of a sudden, things got serious. My water broke when the nurse checked me. Then the contractions started getting more intense. My body is super weird, and the epidural was stronger on the left side, just like with Hailey. I could feel every contraction on the right side. So I was going 50% all natural. haha. Respect to those that do 100%!
 I kept getting nauseous and puking. That was no fun since I was laying down. I was a mess. Travis was so so so sweet. He would switch out my bags and wipe my face. I seriously love that man. And I couldn't have done it without him.
The nurse checked me again and I was at a 9. It was probably 9:20 at this point. I had only been in the room for two hours and had gone from a 4 to a 9. The whole experience was surreal, and I was so optimistic and happy throughout it. I was holding Travis' hand through each contraction. Even though my left side was completely numb, my right side was sooo painful. The on-call doctor came in to see me. She introduced herself and then said she'd be back soon. She was going to check on another patient. Fifteen minutes after she left, I felt like the baby was going to fall out. I told the nurse and she checked me and said, "Yep! It's time!". That's when the room turned into a circus and everybody got their stations and tools ready. The nurse had me start pushing through a couple contractions. I actually loved being able to feel the contractions. I knew when I needed to push and when to relax between. The doctor arrived just in time. I only pushed through three contractions before Emma arrived. It felt so amazing to push through the pain to see Emma. The pain and pressure immediately disappeared when they pulled Emma out. I wanted to cry, it was amazing. 

Emma June Simmons was born on June 1st at 9:53 pm, weighing 6 lbs 9 oz and was 19 inches long.
Travis cut the cord and they showed me my beautiful little Emma June. Travis said the cord was wrapped around her neck twice, but they quickly unwrapped it when she came out. I had no idea. She was greyish, blue when she came. But I never even knew there was a problem. Since I'm not a fan of ickiness, I had them wipe her off before I held her. 
Look at that lip!
 Travis took most of the pictures. He did such a good job! And this one tugs at my heart strings. At only seconds old, her daddy grabbed her hand to comfort her. And he took a picture of it. That man, I tell ya. He's after my heart.

 I was dying to hold her, so we did skin-to-skin for a little while.
 She looked right up at me when I was talking with her. The love I felt was incredible.
 Daddy was a happy man.

Emma had her first bottle pretty quickly. We immediately noticed she was a great eater. So fast!
Then she was given her first bath. Travis watched closely and held her hand.

The delivery was so quick. The whole experience was amazing. It was such a positive experience. Pretty much euphoric. My nurse was amazing, talking me through each contraction. Travis was THE BEST partner, coaching me and holding my hand. The on-call doctor was so nice. And Emma was ready to come, so it didn't take long. Even my recovery has been fantastic. I tore a little, but hardly at all. I only took ibuprofen to take the edge off for a few days, because the pain was hardly there at all. By the next morning, my legs were back to normal and I felt great!
 Emma's temperature wasn't regulating as quickly as they would like. Her temperature was low for the first day. She spent time under the heat lamp, in the nursery, and doing skin-to-skin trying to get her temperature to regulate. It finally did after lots of skin-to-skin with Mom and Dad.

 Emma is a dream baby. So beautiful and calm. She only cries when she's hungry. The nurses were constantly taking her vitals and doing things, and she just took it like a champ. She's seriously so calm. Travis and I loved those couple days in the hospital soaking up time with Emma. Hailey had a cold, so we decided to refrain from having her visit in the hospital. We missed her like crazy and looked forward to introducing them at home.

So that's pretty much it! Best experience ever! And now for some more pictures of our beautiful little Emma June.

 She has no hair in the front and tons in the back. I love it!

 Pretty girl!!

 On the day we were supposed to check out, it rained and rained. There was actually a flood warning for the area. It delayed us getting discharged as soon as we wanted, but it happened eventually.
 We packed Emma in the carseat and were so eager to go home to Hailey.
I'll save Hailey and Emma's meeting for another post. We are so incredibly blessed with our two beautiful girls!