Saturday, April 14, 2012

Ellie Rae Maynard

Here are some pictures of Ellie's first few weeks. They aren't in order, I'm not very good at this whole blogging thing and don't have the patience to rearrange them!! Birth story follows. :)
Going Home!
First car ride...all cozy!

First Family Pic at Home!
We're HOME!
Cuddle time

The brothers-in-law :)
Just one day old!

Full and Happy.
Easter Dress!
Cuddle time with Daddy.
My Dad got her this candy bar and calls her his little "Idaho Spud". :)

Teensy tinsy!
Diaper C=change duty, what they do best! :)
3 days old.
The day we brought her home.
She loves Grandpa Ray!
and Grandma Sue!
Ellie and Grandpa Maynard
Grandma Maynard
Proud Daddy and Grandpa. This was right after she was born. I hadn't even seen her yet. She is in the NICU here being monitored. Matt and my Dad were getting lots of pictures and video to show me so I could see her!
One of my students made this hat ALL BY HERSELF!! So cute.
The first time Matt held her. Such a precious moment!
First day home, trying out her crib.
Just look at those cheeks! She doesn't look like she only weighed 5 pounds!
1 day old.
All the cousins!! We are excited to get another one next month. :)
Very first family photo. In the NICU. She was 2 hours old.
Well, now that it's been almost 5 weeks since Ellie graced us with her presence, I guess it's time I wrote the birth story down before I forget the details. Life has been busy around the Maynard home, and I hardly have time to shower everyday, let alone blog. Ellie is asleep right now, and I am pumping as we speak (yes, I am getting the art of multi tasking down, it's something that just comes natural once you have a baby!). So while I have a moment, I will take full advantage.

Friday, March 23rd
I had been having contractions on and off for the past couple of weeks. They would come and go, some consistent, others not so much. There were times where I'd have consistent contractions 3-5 minutes apart for an hour or so. We'd get so excited and think it was time, and then they'd just go away. So on this particular day, as I was having consistent contractions, I didn't think much about it because I didn't want to get myself all excited for nothing. I went to work, taught all day, and came home. I felt tired and my contractions were a little more painful than they had been, but again, I didn't want to get my hopes up, so I just disregarded them and went to the gym. Matt had his Organic Chemistry final that day at 4:00. He called before he went in worried about me going in to labor. I assured him I was fine, and just to go take his test.Besides, his teacher was a total jerk and basically said that if he didn't take the final then and there, he'd fail even if his wife was in labor. IDIOT! But that's another story. So he went to take his test, and I went to the gym. I came home, showered, and got ready to go out to dinner. While at dinner, I started to get REALLY tired and the contractions were definitely getting more painful. It was about 8:00. We finished eating and went home so I could lie down. A couple hours passed and at about 10:00 my contractions were consistent and painful enough that I thought we should go in to get checked. I was a little hesitant, because I didn't want to be sent home, but I figured it was better to be safe than sorry- so we went in. The nurse (who was grouchy) checked me and said that I was at a 3 and about 80% effaced. She called my doctor to see what he wanted me to do. At my appointment earlier that week I was dilated to a 2 and 70% effaced. He said that since I hadn't made much progression since then to just send me home. I was so disappointed! The nurse told me that we would be back that night, and that our baby was coming the next day. She also said that the next time we came in, I wouldn't be able to talk or walk...comforting, right!? Why they didn't just keep me there and check me in an hour or so is beyond me. So we went home. I got in the bath and tried to relax. My contractions got stronger and closer together really quick. Around 11:00 pm I called my mom and dad and told them what was going on. They decided to start heading this way, just in case things progressed quickly.

Saturday, March 24th

It was about 1:00 when we decided to call the hospital again. At this point I was in so much pain that I was just crying, moaning and screaming with each contraction. I didn't want to get sent home again, so (like an idiot) I told Matt that we just needed to wait it out. I don't know what I was thinking...clearly the contractions weren't going away, they were getting worse...hello dummy, that means your in LABOR! At this point I think I was still in denial. So we waited another hour. At about 2:00 I was in so much pain that I couldn't walk or talk. That nurse was right. That drive to the hospital was the longest drive ever. And of course we hit every red light. Luckily the hospital is close. When we got to the hospital, Matt ran in to get a wheel chair. He wheeled me up to labor and delivery. At this point, I was in so much pain that my entire body was shaking. When they say that labor is a pain you can't describe, they are right. It's like nothing I've ever felt before. It's intense to say the least. As he wheeled me in my contractions were about 3 minutes apart. When the nurse saw me she said, "well I think she's in labor, what do you think?" I wanted to say "You freaking idiot of course this is labor!!!" but since I couldn't talk, I didn't. She wheeled me into the back room to check me, and I was at an 8!!! AN EIGHT!!!! WHAT!?!?! How did that even happen! I went from a 3 to an 8 in 2 hours. I was amazed. I was expecting to be in labor for at least 24 hours, like my mom and sister were...but nope! It was progressing, and FAST!
They got me admitted and in the room I would be delivering in. I was so ready for the epidural at this point. And then it hit me. Isn't there a certain point of dilation that you can't get an epidural anymore? I have heard that if you are dilated past a 7 or 8 that you couldn't get an epidural. That's when I started to FREAK out. I couldn't do it without an epidural. I hadn't mentally prepared myself for that. It wasn't even an option for me NOT to get an epidural. I asked the nurse if this would be the case and she didn't say one way or the other. She just told me to try to stay calm. CALM?? Yeah, right! It seemed like it was taking the anaesthesiologist FOREVER to get there, so I finally asked the nurse where he was. He was in an emergency surgery and they didn't know when he would be able to make it. That's when I lost it. I was so afraid I was going to have to do this natural. I thought I was going to die. That's when they gave me some pain medication, which was a blessing because it made me loopy and calmed me down. It helped a little with the pain, but I could still feel the contractions pretty strong and it made me sick (which was the least of my worries at this point.)
An hour passed and then that magic moment happened. At about 4 am, my anaesthesiologist walked in the room. I was SO HAPPY I could have kissed him. Finally I would be out of pain. I wasn't even scared for the epidural. Nothing could scare me or hurt more than I had been for the past 6 hours. He did an excellent job and before I knew it, the pain was gone, and it was GLORIOUS! I could finally relax and get a little sleep.
About an hour later, I was drifting off to sleep when all of the sudden I felt this warm rush down there. Matt was in a half -sleep state and as I told him my water broke, he said, "was that what that pop was?" I don't remember hearing a pop, but he swears he did. I have heard of that happening, so maybe it did! He went and got the nurse and told her that my water had broke. She came and checked me, and sure enough, it broke. She also checked my progress. I was still at an 8...the epidural had slowed my progress down. I didn't care though, as long as I wasn't in that kind of pain ever again! About an hour later they gave me some pitocin to speed things up, and it worked like a charm.
At 7:00 the nurse came in once again to check me. I was dilated to about a 9 1/2 and 100% effaced. SO close! She said that we would wait just a little while longer to start pushing. At this point, my parents still weren't there. I was starting to get worried that they were going to miss it! We called them to see where they were, luckily they were close. It took them longer than usual because my dad had accidentally taken a wrong turn. It was the middle of the night and my mom was asleep and one wrong turn cost them a 2 hour detour. Not good! Luckily they made it just in time. They got there at about 7:30 and at 8:15 am, it was time to push.
I had my mom stay in the room to push. My dad went out into the hall to wait. I was so excited at this point. It was finally coming to an end! 10 months of hell was finally over, and in a few short moments we would meet our baby girl. So, Matt grabbed one leg, my mom grabbed the other and a pushing we went. The nurse warned me that I could be pushing for an hour and a half at least, since this was my first baby. Pushing wasn't as hard as I thought it would be. By the end, I was tired, but it wasn't bad. I was SO thankful that I had an epidural at this point. There's no way I could focus on pushing being in that much pain. I pushed for 45 minutes, and at 9:02 Ellie Rae was born. She was beautiful, and it was so amazing to see her come out. She was perfect.
We did have a bit of a scare, however. When she came out the cord was wrapped around her neck, and she didn't cry. My doctor quickly unwrapped the cord, but she still didn't cry. Seconds turned into minutes and minutes turned into what seemed like hours. We waited and waited while the nurses had frantic looks on their faces and were trying to get her to cry. But nothing happened. She wasn't breathing on her own, so they had to breath for her with the bagger. I will never forget the panic I was feeling at that moment, getting sewn up staring at my limp baby girl, unable to move. It was so hard to just sit there and watch, but there was nothing I could do. My mind was racing, what was wrong with my baby?! Was she okay? Why wasn't she crying? I was asking all these questions, but no one could give me a straight answer. I overheard the doctor talking to the nurses about her heart rate. At first, it was 120 bpm, then dropped to 60. She had only taken one breath, and in the first minute of life, they are supposed to take 30 to 60 breaths. That's when they rushed her out of the room, and left us there, wondering.
As the doctor was stitching me up I told Matt to go find her and see what was happening. Since I had an epidural, I was stuck in my room. He went to the NICU and found her there, hooked up to the monitors. At this point she was breathing on her own, but still hadn't cried. She was wide eyed and was looking all around the room. Matt got a video of her and brought it back to me. I watched it and just cried. I was so relieved to see her, alive and breathing on her own. She was just fine, and we had nothing to be worried about.
They don't know exactly why she had such a rough start, but I am just glad that they were able to fix it. I'm so thankful for modern medicine. Without it, I don't know what would have happened, and that is a scary thought. I don't know why some women choose to give birth at home. What a selfish stupid thing to do. You never know what could go wrong, and if it did, what would you be able to do to help your baby? Nothing. Anyway, that's a whole different soap box that I won't get into. :)
The NICU wanted to watch her for a couple hours just to make sure she was okay. I couldn't leave my room, so I couldn't see her for 2 hours. Let me just tell you, it was the longest 2 hours of my life. I was so anxious to hold her I could hardly stand it. Finally the time came and my nurse wheeled me to the NICU. My mom, dad, Matt and I all went into the NICU where I would see her for the first time. When I saw her, I instantly had an overwhelming feeling of unconditional love for her. She was MY baby. She was healthy, she was safe. I was so relieved. holding her for the first time was one of the most tender moments of my life. I will never forget that.
She had to stay in the NICU for a couple hours just to make sure everything was okay. So we all stayed there with her until it was time to go to our post-delivery room.
I just loved the stay at the hospital. It was so much fun! And it was nice letting the nurses take her at night so we could get some sleep. :) My sisters and their families all came up the next day to visit. It was so great to have almost everyone there, and so nice of them to come all the way up here! We stayed in the hospital for 2 days and came home Monday afternoon. It was nice to bring her to her own house, and sort of surreal that she was ours.
Life with a newborn has been totally hectic but such a blessing at the same time. We just love her so much. It is weird to think that only three weeks ago, she wasn't here. What did I do before she was here? I probably had so much time on my hands! I am loving my new job, and wouldn't trade it for anything.
We love you Ellie Rae! :)