Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Griffin Leslie.

My experience bringing my second little love into this world couldn't have been more different than when I had his big brother. Everything with Nolan was so planned...so smooth. I'd been told so many times that it is actually easier with your next child. I expected a scheduled induction, a fast, easy, and painless labor, and an easy recovery. Silly me.

Griffin was due on August 11. He looked great at all of my appointments. Every time I was checked, I wasn't dilated or anything so I figured I'd be induced either on or right after my due date. Nolan was so late that I thought for sure I'd go over with Griff as well. My entire pregnancy was so smooth. My blood pressure was great, I gained just the right amount of weight, and I managed to stay out of the ER for the most part. I think I was just a lot more laid back. I knew he was going to be okay and I didn't have the freshness of losing Eden in my heart like I did with Nolan.

On July 27, my parents and Chris' parents threw me a brunch to celebrate the new little guy. I said I didn't want a huge shower because I'd just had one a year and a half prior, but I loved that they wanted to show Griff some love. We had some delicious food and got some cute gifts for him. I spent the morning telling friends and family that I couldn't wait to meet him, but I knew it was going to be a while. I'd been on leave from work for a few weeks already, just getting stuff done. I was going to spend my last couple of weeks spending some quality time with Nolan and enjoying my "only child." That's what I get for making plans!

The next day, July 28, my family came over to help get some stuff done around the house. We put Nolan's water table together, changed light bulbs, plugged electric outlets, locked toilets, drawers, and cupboards, attached large furniture to walls so it couldn't be pulled over, and cleaned. I took it easy for the most part. I pretty much just bossed people around and ate pizza.

We went to bed pretty early that night. I was exhausted. It had been such a miserably hot summer and I was always anxious to get into my cool bed at the end of each day. I fell asleep almost instantly. At a little after 3:00 in the morning, I woke up suddenly to a huge gush of water. I got up and ran to the bathroom to clean myself up, but it just kept coming. I woke Chris up and told him I was pretty sure my water had broken. I was exactly 38 weeks along.

He shot out of bed and asked what we were supposed to do now. I told him I'd call my mom to come sit with Nolan and we needed to get a bag packed. I hadn't prepared at all because I thought I still had a couple of weeks. I started throwing clothes for me and Griffin on my bed as I called my mom. I gave up on trying to pack a bag in my frazzled state and snuck in Nolan's room. I pulled him out of bed and snuggled him for a little while...oh, and I cried. I was so sad thinking about how he didn't know how much his life was going to change. He got ticked off at me for waking him up though so I put him back down. My mom got there about 40 minutes later, and we headed to the hospital with just my purse. I figured I could text her what I needed after I was set up in my room and she could get a bag packed for me.

Everyone was so calm when I got to the hospital. They sent me to Labor and Delivery and I fully expected to get sent right to a room. Instead, I had to wait in triage for about an hour. Apparently, I was #13 to come in that night claiming my water had broke, and 1-12 had actually just peed themselves. I wasn't having contractions, but my water had clearly broken. They finally came in to do the test strip, and it couldn't have been more obvious that I wasn't mistaken. They didn't even let me get off the bed. Instead, they pushed me on the bed to the delivery room. The lady who was pushing me should have her bed driving licence taken away. She ran me into multiple walls, hard. I had to just laugh.

By the time I got set up where I was going to meet the little guy, it had been about 2 1/2 hours since my water first broke. I still wasn't feeling any contractions, so they got me hooked up to the monitors to see if they were even happening. They weren't. Not regularly, anyways. They were concerned because with every small contraction I had, Griffin's heart rate dropped. They were worried that of they started me on meds to regulate them and kick start my labor, it would stress him out too bad and they'd end up having to do an emergency c-section. He was hardly moving and just seemed a little too cozy in there. However, he didn't really have a choice. His fluid was running out. He was coming out one way or another.

We decided to wait a little while and see if he became more active and his heart rate picked back up. It wasn't down far enough that we had to get him out right that second and I really wanted to avoid a c-section if possible, so I was more than fine with that plan. I knew how well my body responded to Pitocin and felt comfortable that if we could get him stable enough to get that flowing, it would be a relatively quick process from there. Chris went to sleep on the couch and I settled in to watch some TV as they pumped me with fluids to hydrate me and try to get little boy moving.

After about another hour, my contractions were still inconsistent and not strong at all, but Griffin was a lot more active. I think we just caught him during his sleepy time and he wasn't quite sure what was going on. They decided it was safe for me to start the Pitocin, so they got me hooked up. Just like with Nolan, the contractions started almost instantly. I was in quite a bit of pain, so I decided to get the epidural and relax. It hurt more than it did with Nolan, but it still wasn't awful. I think he may have hit a nerve because I felt a shock through my entire body as he put it in. He had to yell at me to keep still. Once it was in, only one of my legs went numb. He told me to just give it a minute and push the button to release more if it didn't seem to be working.

Things felt better for a little bit, but then it felt like I hadn't even gotten an epidural at all. I could feel everything. They checked me, and it was just about time to push. This part gets a little bit hazy for me. I remember the room getting hazy and just being overwhelmed with the most intense cramping pain. They called the guy who did my epidural back in to give me another direct dose, but it did nothing. Chris kept pushing the button to pump more medicine, but it wasn't working at all. I could feel every bit of pressure and every contraction. It turns out, the epidural wasn't put in correctly and the medicine wasn't even getting where it was supposed to go. I was having him naturally, even though I had the tube in my back.

All of a sudden, I felt this really intense pressure and needed to push. The nurse checked me, and he was right there. They called the doctor in and he basically just caught the baby. He was born in about 2 pushes at 12:22 in the afternoon on July 29. He weighed 5 pounds 3 ounces and was 18 inches long. My sweet, tiny little boy! They put him right on my chest and I was holding him when Chris cut the umbilical cord. My love for him was so instant and so intense.

He had low blood sugar like Nolan did, so they took him to the nursery for a while to give him some formula and get him feeling better. He was gone for a couple of hours, so I just relaxed in the recovery room. Once he was done, they brought him back to me and I snuggled him while Chris went and picked up Nolan. We wanted him to be the first person to meet his brother and we wanted to spend some time together as a new family of four before everyone else came to meet him. This is something that was so, so important to me and I'm very thankful to our family for respecting that and understanding.

Chris returned with Nolan, and he was more excited about everything in the room to play with than he was about seeing me. He gave me a smile and a kiss, but then he was off to play. We let him explore for a little while, but then I pulled him up in bed with me to meet his brother. He just wanted to get down and play. He stopped what he was doing every once in a while to look at Griffin, so he was curious. Just not curious enough to do anything about.

After I snuggled both of my boys for a little while, we invited the rest of our family up. Everyone came and hung out for a little while. Nobody could believe how tiny Griffin was. Chris ended up leaving with Nolan to spend some time with him at home and keep things as normal as possible for him. After a couple of hours, everyone else left and it was just me and my boy for the rest of the evening. I spent the night feeding, holding, and snuggling him. I had so much more time to do that with him than I did with Nolan. I studied him and stared at him and kissed him and hugged him. It was just us and I loved that. I think I'll insist on it again when we have our next child. I wish I would have had that with Nolan.

We ended up having to stay two nights in the hospital. The second day, we didn't have any family visit. Chris and Nolan came just before dinner time and we ordered room service for the three of us. Chris took Griffin, and I snuggled with Nolan in bed as we ate our food. It felt good to spend time with him and just love on him. I remember looking in the mirror that was across from my bed and my heart almost exploded as I saw my new family's reflection. I never knew I could love three people as much as I love those three.

We were discharged on the third day in the early afternoon. Griffin was very jaundiced and we had to be sent home with lights for him to lay on 23 hours a day to get his levels down. There were a lot of blood draws and heel pricks in the following days, but he ended up being okay by his two week appointment.

He's three months old today, and he fits so perfectly into our family. I keep falling more and more in love with him. He is Nolan's complete opposite in pretty much every way. He has a lot of Chris' personality already and I think we will have our hands full with him, but I wouldn't have it any other way.

We love you so much, Griff Griff!

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