He's here! As of today he is 10 days old. He was born on Tuesday, May 18th at 10:44 PM - weighing in at 8 lbs 8 oz and 21 inches long. He's far more beautiful than I was anticipating (so terrible, right?) and he's just has healthy as can be. We feel so blessed.
Our due date was May 10th, but that date came and went with no sign of him arriving anywhere near it. Of course, I was hoping he would hold out because my Mom was not able to come into town until May 16th. And wait he did. We scheduled our induction to begin on Monday night, May 17th. That evening, Jesse, my Mom and I had a nice dinner on the patio at a nearby sports bar and then we were off to the hospital.
By Tuesday morning I was dialated to 1-2 centimeters and we started pitocin at 8 AM. To my relief the doctor gave the go-ahead to start my epidural at the same time. So, in went the epidural and the contractions started and continued without me feeling a blessed thing. Ahhh. Modern science. What a beautiful thing.
By about 1 PM my water had broken on its own and I had dialated to about 5-6 centimeters. Seemed like I was well on my way. At that point we stopped the pitocin thinking that my body would naturally take me the rest of the way. Unfortunately, that didn't happen and we spent the next 4 hours regularly contracting, but not dialating any more.
At 5 PM we started the pitocin again. However, we began to see that as we increased the pitocin Jude's heart rate would drop. It seemed like we couldn't get the pitocin to a high enough level without it affecting Jude. So, after another 5 hours I was still contracting regularly but only dialated 5-6 centimeters.
At 10 PM my doctor came in suggesting that we do a c-section. After 14 hours of labor Jesse and I readily agreed. It was pretty clear that we just needed to get him out soon. So, my epidural was increased and I was given several other medications including some anti-nausea. Even so, as they wheeled me to the operating room I felt pretty crappy. I remember thinking that it was too bad I was going to deliver my baby while feeling so crummy from the inside out.
They moved me to the operating table and prepped me for surgery. Throughout the procedure I was able to be awake - just numbed from the chest down. The anesthesiologist was fantastic. He stayed near me and coached me throughout. He was incredibly informative, encouraging and reassuring.
Jesse sat near me and watched as they pulled him out. I could feel some pressure, some tugging and pulling, but no pain. And, eventually, I heard the beautiful cries of a healthy newborn.
The nurses checked his vitals in the operating room while I was being put back together. Jesse got to join them and enjoy those first few moments with Jude. I was feeling very sleepy and could barely keep my eyes open. I laid there with my eyes closed just listening to his cries and to the activity around me.
Eventually they asked if I wanted to hold him. I desperately wanted to, but I told them "no" in fear that I would just drop him. Thankfully, they didn't listen to me. As they put him in my arms I instantly perked up, and I was able to hold him as they wheeled me back to our room.
We stayed in the hospital until Friday, May 21st. We had fabulous nurses and enjoyed our stay very much. It has now been a week at home and we're getting the hang of it (feed, change, console, sleep, do-over) and enjoying it as much as we possibly can.
Welcome to the world, Jude Thomas. We're excited to be your parents.
**The photos were taken at the hospital by my good friend, Diana. I'm so happy with the way they turned out. Just perfect.**