Friday, April 16, 2010

Claire Hazel

Claire Hazel
Born April 5, 2010
7 lbs. 3 oz.

21 inches

So it's been what, 11 days since Claire was born and I am finally posting something about it. Life has slowed to a crawl around here. I have so many people helping me do my life right now. I am so grateful. I have really been able to rest, sleep, and just take it easy and I'm hoping it will help me to be back on my feet and feeling normal sooner rather than later. So for the last week and a half, when I've been trying to decide whether to sleep or blog, I've always chosen sleep. But here I am making an effort. It's not much, but you can be sure there will be more! We just love our little Claire bear.

Here's the story:

The night of Easter Sunday, two days after my due date, Bobby and I were sitting on the couch together after the girls went to sleep flipping between the Lord of the Rings and the show where the two guys go searching through other people's crap looking for treasures. The baby was moving A LOT. I thought maybe something might be finally happening. I called Labor and Delivery at the hospital to see if I should come in but the nurse said it was probably nothing and that if I came in she would probably just send me home. So I went to sleep and the next morning I got up, got dressed, and while I was helping Franny get ready for school I realized I wasn't really feeling any movement from the baby. I called the OBGYN office while driving Franny to school and asked if I could come in right away. The doctor was able to verify that everything was okay with the baby but said when there is a big change like that in fetal movement, she likes to induce labor right away. I was thrilled. I went home quickly to get my hospital bag and make arrangements for great friends to watch my girls and headed back to the hospital. I was induced with both Franny and Sophie and everything about last week's induction felt the exact same until my doctor came in to break my water. After doing so, she was checking to see if I had progressed any further and said to one of the nurses, "Get me an ultrasound." There was silence until I dared speak because her instructions to the nurse and the way she hurriedly washed her hands and took off her white coat made me nervous. "Is everything okay?" I managed to get out. The doctor said, "the baby is no longer in position. I'm going to try and flip her." That did not feel good. And Claire was not cooperative. At all. But I was grateful to my doctor for trying. Finally it was decided that a C-section was in order. My doctor guessed that the baby's arms were up and wrapped around her head and in the way and that perhaps might be why I hadn't gone into labor. I've always hated the idea of a C-section, but when it came down to it, I just wanted the baby out and safe and it didn't really matter how. That said, until I got my spinal I was feeling pretty anxious about what was about to happen to me. Luckily I was surrounded by amazing doctors (3 anesthesiologists, 1 OB, and Claire's pediatrician) and nurses who were there to help me through it. And of course Bobby. Thank goodness for him. He stayed by my head the hold time, holding my hand, telling me I was doing a great job. (I figured my "job" was just to lay there and not freak out that I was being cut open. Easy enough when you can't feel anything but some weird pressure.) Of course the most exciting part was when I started to hear the staff start saying things like:

"There's the foot!"
"She's doing the splits!"
"Here she is!"

When they pulled her out, both of her hands and one of her legs were up by her head! This was not a big baby, and I'm a tall girl. There really shouldn't have been any reason for me to have a c-section except for her bizarre acrobatic position. The nurses said she wanted to come out with flair.

Sophie demonstrating Claire's position in the womb.

I think the first thing I said was, "Does she have hair?" What's wrong with me? Like that matters. Then I said, "Is it a girl?" I've had some weird feelings about this one. She made me wait two extra days, she came out in the most bizarre position causing me to have a C-section... I wouldn't put it past her to change her gender on us at the last minute. ;) Like her sister Sophie, I think this one might be coming with a generous dose of sass.

It was a couple of hours before I really got a good look at her. They brought her right over to the table and got to work on her. I just love the sound of their first cry. Bobby went to check her out and I was craning my neck from behind the drape trying to get a peek. Then they let Bobby hold her for a second and he brought her over to me, but I could still barely see her out of the corner of my eye. So I just pressed the side of my face next to hers and that had to be enough until after she was bathed and cleaned and I had been through post-op. I was so happy to get to my room and finally see her. She looks a lot like my other babies did as newborns. She has a lot less hair than Sophie did, but she still has a decent set of locks. Her hair is much lighter than Franny and Sophie's was. That's kind of fun. I'm hoping she'll be a little blonde toddler like Bobby was. She wants her hands up by her face most of the time.

Here's a picture of me holding Claire for the first time:

And a few more shots of baby Claire. It's so much fun to have a little one around again.
Hands up by her face.

Big sister Sophie holding her for the first time.

Franny holding Claire for the first time.

The first morning we were back at home, Bobby picked Claire up and say, "Hi Claire, I'm your Daddy." And I realized it was the first time he'd seen her with her eyes open! I had to take a picture.

Here she is telling off her sisters. See what I mean about the sass?

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