Thursday, February 24, 2011

Joey's Birth Story

Tomorrow is my sweet Joey's third birthday.  I'm grateful that she's survived with two parents who came into parenthood without a clue, and that she has continued to thrive for the past three years.  Babies sure are resilient.

So flash back a few years.  At 39 weeks pregnant, I was not enjoying pregnancy in the least.  There was a baby taking up a lot of room in my belly.  To say that I was a little uncomfortable is an understatement.  We had a 40 week induction scheduled in the event that I didn't go into labor spontaneously, but when my doctor suggested induction for the coming Monday, Paul and I jumped on it.  Although short notice, scheduling an induction allowed our family to be present for the birth.  My mother-in-law drove up from Baton Rouge on Sunday, and my dad drove from Daphne, Alabama, on Monday morning.

We checked into the hospital at 5 am on Monday, February 25.  Once we got settled in I was hooked up to all sorts of monitors and given an IV.  The IV was the most painful part about the whole experience.  I know now that it was probably not inserted properly and it's not supposed to hurt so much, but I didn't know that then.  Anyway, my doctor broke my water around 8 am and then the contractions really started.   Those might have been more painful than the IV.  It's a toss up.

Not that I'm anti-Epidural, but I had decided that I would like to attempt childbirth without one.  For one thing, a needle going into my spine did not sound like very much fun.  But also I didn't want to be so numb that I couldn't push the baby out.  Once my contractions became painful, I asked for Demerol.  That took the edge off, for a little while at least, but mostly made me high as a kite.  After being sober for so many months it was fun.  But eventually the Demerol just wasn't cutting it and the needle in my spine didn't sound so bad.  The Epidural made my labor a more pleasant experience and I remember it fondly.

Josephine Lilly was born at 4:55 p.m. on February 25, 2008, after nine hours of labor.  She weighed 7 pounds, 6 ounces, and was 19.75 inches long.  She was perfectly healthy although I can't recall her Apgar score.  That's one of those things that parents brag about, right?  She didn't have a name for a whole 14 hours after she was born.  We actually brought our baby name book to the hospital because we had no idea what we were naming her.  The hospital records office needed her name to process their paperwork, so we were prodded by them until we made a decision.
Happy birthday, Joey.  I love you.

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