"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11

Saturday, April 04, 2009

First I would like to thank my very best friend, Heather, for redesigning the background of our blog! The background matches Caroline's bedding and its perfect! Thank you Heather- I love you!

Caroline is six days old today! It's hard to imgaine that this time last week I was almost in labor with her! The last six days have been joyful, emotional, and most of all such a blessing! We love Caroline so much! We think she is perfect in every way!!

I would like to say that labor and delivery was all that I thought it was going to be- no, it was better than what I had anticiapted! I went into labor last Saturday, March 28 at 11:15 pm- Sam and I had just finished packing our bags for the hospital and we crawled into bed very tired. Five minutes later I had my first contraction- thinking that it was a Braxton-Hicks I tried to fall asleep. Five minutes later I had another one. This continued every five to seven minutes until 12:30 am- this was when I decided it was time to call the doctor- I was a little nervous calling him because I called him early Saturday morning with a minor issue and he told me that now all I had to do was wait for the contractions to begin- I waited all day- well until 11:15! So anyways, Dr. Salley told me to come on in! We got to Baptist hospital and by 2:00 am we were checked in. I immediately met my labor and delivery nurse that I would have until 7 am- Libby- and she was fabulous. Libby and Dr. Salley checked me right away to see how far I was dilated and it was still 2 cm (same as Friday's doctor's appointment). Libby hooked me to two monitors- one for the baby's heartrate and one that monitored my contractions. Soon after I got nubain and potossin.

I just knew it was going to be a long night so I told Sam to try and get some rest and that I'd do the same. This did not happen- well not for me anyways!! Because of the IV I had to use the bathroom every 30 minutes and I was still having frequent and consecutive contractions. I don't think Sam got much rest either because he was helping me to the bathroom and talked me through the contractions. Every time I tried to fall asleep during bathroom visits I'd have a contraction. Somehow I found myself not exhausted. Libby stayed with me pretty much the whole time. She told me everything she was doing so that I wouldn't be scared or worried. She reassured me several times that everything was going great and all was occuring naturally! Because I was restless I tried moving around in different positions and at one point the baby's heartrate got to 60 bpm and Dr. Salley was paged, but when he got there her heartrate got back up- he told me that if it had lasted a few more minutes a c-section would be needed.

Around 3 am Libby told me that I would be getting my epidural around 5 am. When 5 am rolled around she asked me how I was doing and I told her fine and she said that the anesthesiologist would be by at 6 am to give me the epidural. At 6 am I was dilated 8 cm! I could not believe that I progressed this far and did so without the epidural! The contractions up until this point were not monstrous- the nubain helped take the edge off. I was very nervous about the epidural and the anesthesiologist reassured me that everything would be fine and he even stayed with me a few minutes longer to ease my mind! Soon after my water broke! Sam heard my water pop even before I felt it! Everything was going so perfect! Dr. Salley came in a little later and told me that I would be having my baby probably around 10 am or so. At 7 am I got a new labor and delivery nurse- Lauren- and she too was awesome! She was just what I needed!

When daylight came my family as well as Sam's started arriving. They visited us until about 9:30 and this is when Lauren asked them to leave because it was pushing time! She told me that I was 9 cm dilated and that when I started to feel pressure it would be time to push. She gave me directions for how to push and gave me great advice. At 9:45 I was ready! Sam and Lauren were my coaches during this whole time and they were both great! However at about 10:05 I started to feel a lot of pushing pressure and I didn't like it. Lauren asked if I needed more of the epidural and I said yes. She adjusted it but it didn't much help so the anesthesiologist was called back in to give me what they call the "emergency epidural". In less than five seconds I felt tons better and could better concentrate on the task at hand- delivering my baby! Dr. Salley was called in around 10:45 and at 11:03 our precious Caroline was born! It was amazing- Dr. Salley was wonderful! After Caroline's head and shoulders were out he told me that I could grab under her shoulders and pull her the rest of the way. This was such a special moment- Sam and I both cried when she was born and it was so momentous I cannot even begin to describe here!

We spent Sunday through Tuesday at Baptist. I received excellent care from everyone that took care of us. It's funny that our night nurse was also named Caroline! We loved her! Sam and I still talk about Lauren and Caroline! We also enjoyed our visitors! Caroline had lots of visitors!

Being a mommy has been joyful and exciting! I'm filled with all different kinds of emotions. At times I'm so happy and at other times I'm scared and filled with worry. I know however that the Lord will take care of Sam and our new little family! We have a great support system of family and friends and we're looking forward to all of the things that we'll get to share and experience with Caroline!

Some of you may know but after Caroline was born I noticed a white speck in her right eye. On Monday when the pediatrician came to examine her she also noticed the white speck but said that her eye scope shows a black line- one that she's never seen before. I became very worried at this news. On Tuesday, Caroline's pediatrican came by to examine her before we were discharged and said that she made an appointment for us to see a pediatric ophthamologist on Friday. She couldn't assure me that Caroline could see and when she left I just cried and cried. I was so sad to think that she can't see me and see how proud I am of her. It was a long three days for us. Friday finally came and I was extremely nervous. The nurse tech prepared us for the doctor's visit- she dilated both her eyes and talked to us about the procedure. When we saw her doctor he told us that he'd have to use special instruments to pry her eyes open so that he could get a good look in the backs of her eyes. He told us that she would scream and not like it. He said that I could stay in the room or not. I decided to stay but not look. Sam held her on his lap and the doctor looked into her eyes. When he finished he said do you want the good news or the bad news. Sam said good news. The doctor said good because I don't have any bad news!! She does however have what they call a Mittendorf dot. A mittendorf dot is a congenital anomaly manifested as a small gray or white opacity just inferior and nasal to the posterior pole of the lens, representating the remains of the lenticular attachement of the hyaloid artery; it does not affect vision. We were both relieved to know that she could see- I cried happy tears this time and thanked the Lord for our answered prayers! Dr. Cheeseman also commented that when he looked in the backs of her eyes he could tell that she'd be a blonde and that when she got older she'd need to wear sunglasses when outside! Her hair is blonde and her eyes are blue right now- so we'll see if they both change! We would like to thank everyone for praying for her! She's perfectly healthy and we feel so blessed to have her!

On Thursday we had a follow up with her pediatrician! At birth Caroline weighed 8 lbs and 3 oz when she was discharged she weighed 7 lbs and 11 oz. On Thursday she gained 4 ounces! So now she weighs 7 lbs and 15 oz. I had a host of questions to ask her and Dr. Thomas answered all of them! The questions ranged from swaddling at night to when we might could go back to church. We got a clean bill of health and a new appointment for when she's two weeks.
Enjoy the pictures!

Melissa in Labor!

She's Here!

One Proud daddy with his new daughter!

Bringing Home Baby!

The Leviners

1 comment:

Blythe Royaards said...

Caroline is so beautiful and yall are such a wonderful family! Eric and I are so excited for you and can't wait to meet her! (We are from your Sunday school class)