Friday, December 16, 2011



Mabel Marianne Fields
7 lbs. 9 oz., 21 inches

She's here! She's been here for a little over four weeks and we are in love. What a sweet little baby. She's still in that "bear cub" stage where she makes little animal noises and her little body is always curled up. (Bear cub because of all the dark hair.) She also makes this little Cosby face where her eyes are wide open and she looks up and to the side and purses her lips. It's my favorite thing! I have to describe it here since I probably won't be able to get a picture. I kind of miss the days when I could just sit home and stare at my newborn baby all day... waiting to catch moments like that on film. But then of course during those days I only had six weeks at home with Franny before I had to go back to working full time, and that was no fun.

(here's sort of an example of the cosby face I'm referring to. The forehead wrinkles are relevant to the comparison as well. :)

Anyway, back to Mabel! I guess I should write a little about the day she was born. The doctor noticed a few weeks prior to her birth that she was breech and that a repeat c-section might be necessary. I hoped and prayed that she would flip, but it didn't happen. My one consolation was that the c-section would be scheduled on 11/11/11 and my kid would have the best birth ever. I called my wonderful mother-in-law Louise and asked if she could come a week earlier. She did. She spent nearly two weeks taking care of us here and it was so hard to see her go! It was also really nice to leave my girls in such capable and loving hands the morning Mabel was born. Bobby drove me to the hospital that morning and did my pre-op evaluation. A few of his co-workers stopped in to say hi and give us well wishes or help prepare me for surgery. I spent a few weeks feeling really nervous about being cut open again, but then about a week beforehand, when I knew for sure that I would have a c-section, I started to feel much calmer about it. So it was kind of surprised to see Bobby a little nervous. Bobby is usually the one tempering MY anxiety. But like I said, he was just a little nervous. I think his friends at work were a little surprised to see him so serious. I thought it was cute that he was worried about me.

I love the people Bobby works with. They are all so nice and funny and great at what they do. I'm just so sad so many of them have had to see me naked.

From here on it was pretty much the same as last time, only this time it was scheduled of course and I knew what I was getting into. Bobby was right there next to me holding my hand right up until the baby was out. It actually was really nice to spend some time with him because he had a really busy week at work and we'd barely seen him! The weird thing about c-sections is you don't have to anything. You just lay there, totally numb, and wait while the OB and the nurses do all the work. So I laid there, waiting to hear something, from the doctor, from the nurses, the anesthesiologists, or Mabel herself. And then it came: someone's intake of breath and then the "oh there she is!" and Bobby standing up with the camera with a big smile on his face, and then the best sound in the whole world- my baby's first cry! And then I watched them walk quickly by with her to start cleaning her up. I was twisting my neck as far as I possibly could trying to get a good look. Her face was all mashed up and her head was totally lopsided because apparently she stretched part of the uterus with her head and carved herself a tight little spot. I got to kind of hold her long enough to take a picture and then she was off for her first bath. One of the worst things about a c-section is how long you have to wait before they bring you your baby. Actually that first day was not my favorite- I felt much better the day after. I wasn't very good about remembering to use the morphine pump and I had a really hard time getting on top of the pain after that. And also, I could hardly keep any food down that first day. Which is very typical for me after I've had anesthesia. I had the best nurses- I have always had the best OB nurses, actually. Mabel fussed a lot that first day. It worried me a little, but she's been sweet and calm ever since. Bobby stayed with me that evening and held the baby a lot while I slept. I was so out of it. I wanted to stay up so we could hang out and talk and look at the baby together. But I knew I needed the sleep.

The girls came for a visit with Nona and Bobby in the late afternoon. I hardly remember anything but the sweet looks on their faces and trying to get Claire from jumping on my incision. It was great to see Claire so happy and excited. It was very hard to leave her for so long. She was only nineteen months when Mabel was born and I didn't know how she'd respond when I was gone for a few days. It's not like I could really prepare her for what was coming. But she did fine while I was gone and has been fine ever since.

I love the hospital experience and I'm sad that this was probably my last time! But Sunday afternoon I was ready to come home and be with the family. The house was spotless when I got home and as I said before, Louise took care of just about everything- lunches, cooking, housework, dinner, shopping, laundry- so that I could take naps and take care of Mabel. She is amazing.

Some other things we love about Mabel- the hair! I was kind of hoping we'd have another one with lots of dark hair. One of her features that we love is her forehead wrinkles! She got them from her Mommy. She has about 4 or 5 wrinkles every time she raises her eyebrows. It's adorable. I don't know how much she weighs, but she seems HUGE relative to how she started out. It's rewarding to watch her little cheeks and belly round out after all the many hours I've spent nursing her. She is a pretty decent sleeper, as long as I don't eat too much chocolate or ANY hummus at all. She's not consistently in any pattern at all yet- I wouldn't expect her to be at 5 weeks- but sometimes she'll sleep as long as 5 1/2 hours in a row at night in her own bed which I really appreciate, though I don't mind pulling her into bed and tucking her under my arm for a few hours every now and then. It's just so sweet to be so close to a sleeping infant. I can't resist sometimes. I'm on the verge of tears now just thinking that this is likely the last time I'll get to do this with one of my own children. Although it does feel nice to think of our family as complete for now. Everyone's here.


Anne said...

She is perfect. I love her and haven't even met her yet. Love to you all.

Elsie said...

Such a beautiful family! Congratulations and Merry Christmas y Feliz Ano Nuevo!

The last Unicorn said...

what a doll!!!! the whole csection thing is weird. I am scheduled this time around and I am curious as to how it will be compared to 32 hours of labor!!

Sara said...

Congratulations, she is beautiful! Happy holidays :)

Natalie said...

Katherine-- that was so fun to read. Bless you all! I can't wait to meet Mabel in person!

suzy said...

Katherine! Love your sweet baby! Congratulations!

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