Now that we’ve had time to settle in to our three-person family routine, I am able to spare a few minutes to share the story of Avery’s (early) arrival. We’re excited to share with everyone about our little surprise…
Wednesday, September 28th
Vinay and I went to work like any typical Wednesday. That night we put up two picture frames in the nursery because they were the last items to complete and I was anxious just to finish it. Then we took the car seat out to my new car and figured out how to attach it and practice pulling it out. Then we sat down in front of the TV for dinner and a little couch time. The baby was very active… moving around a lot in my belly while I laid on Vinay’s lap and he held his hand on my belly.
9:45PM – I took the dishes to the kitchen, knowing it was about time for me to head to bed. While walking I heard a little pop in my lower abdomen, and I thought it might be a gas bubble, until I started leaking (haha, very graphic here). The clear gush of liquid was akward and messy and right then I knew it was time. I called Vinay and he casually came into the kitchen (thinking I just needed help reaching something) to find me sprawl-legged and leaning over the counter. ”I think my water just broke.” We checked our booklet and notes from the birthing class we had taken over the weekend (thankfully!) and knew it was time to call the doctor. As we waited for the on-call doctor to call us back, we called our parents and told them to stand by. The doctor gave us the go ahead and we headed to the hospital (thanks to the birthing class we had the labor bag already packed and ready to go). We made some phone calls and my parents began there 4 hour journey to join us.
11:00PM – We arrived at the birthing center at the hospital. My contractions had started in the car on the way there. I wasn’t sure if they were contractions because they were very light… but became more regular once we got to the hospital. We waited as they prepared us a room and then they took us in. The labor room was huge and the nurses were awesome. They got us settled in and listened to the baby’s heartbeat for a while before we were allowed to move around, and they checked me.. I was 3cm dilated. We walked around and visited with a couple friends that came to support us, then we tried the birthing ball.
2:00AM – The contractions got faster and closer together, so I got in bed and took a little medicine (which made me feel drunk) to ease the pain so I would have enough energy for the whole ordeal. I was about 5-6cm dilated at this time.
3:30AM – My parents arrived from Vermont. Mom joined Vinay and I in the delivery room while Dad anxiously awaited news in the waiting room. At this point, my contractions were pretty intense. Throughout all the pain I never cursed at Vinay or blamed him for anything… but what I do remember is during a big contraction, I was laying on my side (they were trying to turn the baby) facing my mom (Vinay was on the other side of the bed) I was breathing through the contraction, not able to speak because of the pain. I remember Vinay asking a pointless question from behind me… something that really could have waited… and because I couldn’t speak and hardly had any energy, I gave him the finger. Let’s just say there weren’t any more silly questions after that.
4-8AM – The next four hours are a blur. I got an epidural, which eased the pain but certainly didn’t make it go away! Vinay took a nap for about an hour. We both had been up for 24 hours at this point. Mom was coaching me through the contractions. Then they checked me again and I was 8-9cm dilated. Mom woke Vinay up. The nurses quickly began setting up for delivery moving lights and trays and coming in and out of the room. Then a little after 7AM, they told me I could push. At this point, our close friend Ashley arrived to help cheer me on. While pushing, the nurses instructed me to move to my sides and push from there, then alternate. I remember them taking my temperature too. What I didn’t know at the time, was that when I was pushing, the baby’s heart rate was falling. This was an indication that the cord was wrapped around his neck. By moving me on my side, they were hoping to relieve the pressure on the cord.
8:17AM – Then in a whirlwind, the doctor was there, a group of pediatricians, a student nurse observing, and out came baby! I remember looking up and asking Vinay what it was… a boy or girl? Someone eventually answered, “a boy.” Vinay later told me that when he came out, he was very pale, and the cord was around his neck. My mom says he was wrapped up in a little ball and it was almost like they had to unfold him. The doctors quickly removed the cord from his neck, had Vinay cut it, and whisked him off to the table with the pediatricians. At this point I got a little worried because the plan had been to put the baby on me as soon as he was born, for some skin to skin. So, I watched the group of doctors around a table holding a baby I hadn’t seen yet for what seemed to be an eternity. Then I heard it. He cried. Relief. He was OK. Mom, Ashley, & Vinay joined the group of doctors to take pictures and see the little one. I was still in bed so the doctors could deliver the placenta and stitch me up. I had a second degree tear from the delivery – nothing uncommon. Then the doctors held him up for me to see. He was screaming…. but looked absolutely perfect… long limbs and a little head of hair. I remember my mom asking…”what’s his name?!”… and with a little hesitation, Vinay looked at me to check that the name we picked out months ago was good… and he shared “Avery.”
Within the next hour I was able to hold him before they moved him to the nursery. He was perfect… so tiny and sweet. I couldn’t believe he was already here! Dad came in to visit. Vinay made a bunch of phone calls. Then they moved us to another room where I could recuperate for the next 2 days. In that time, Avery had tons of tests done to make sure everything was OK with him. Because he was so early, they were concerned with his sugar levels and signs of jaundice. He eventually passed all tests with flying colors, even his car seat test where he had to sit in the car seat for an hour before they OK’d us to go home. Since we’ve been home, Avery has already had 5 doctors visits. This was to check up on his weight gain and jaundice. His jaundice levels are down to normal and he is almost back to birth weight. (Babies lose up to 10% of their body weight after birth). We even used a billy-blanket at home a couple days to make his jaundice go down. It was difficult to have it on him hours a day, but he did look really cute using it… like a little glow worm.
So, since we’ve been home Avery has been a sleeping, eating, dirty diaper machine. He’s doing well and we appreciate everyone’s cards and gifts and help. Here are a few recent pictures of the little one…
Mommy has been busy trying to squeeze in homework to catch up in her classes, and Daddy is back to work so we’ll be posting again soon… but probably not for a few days…