Lydia Grace

Lydia Grace
Our first child, Lydia Grace

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Blessing of our Baby

   I have had good intentions on writing a joyful post regarding the birth of our son, Isaiah. However, my free moments are typically spent in something other than blogging; namely, sleeping, eating, cleaning/doing laundry. Although the fact I've lost all my pregnancy weight in two weeks time and the chaotic state of our house suggest sleep is the activity of choice when presented with an opportunity. Though sleep probably is not accurate, more like "cat naps" between constant breastfeeding (ready to eat every hour and a half to two hours during the day?) and other duties. 
The brief story: 

   My husband and I arrived at the hospital just before 7 a.m. on Thursday, June 9. The pitocin was started around 8 a.m. My labor progressed quickly throughout the morning and, following an epidural, my water was broken by my OB around lunch time. The pitocin was stopped and my body naturally continued in labor. 
   My mother, mother-in-law, sister-in-law, niece, brother, and great aunt were there for most of the day, waiting for Isaiah's arrival. 
    Isaiah Drew was born at 8:08p.m. that evening.  He weighed 7 pounds 9 ounces (I guessed he would be that exact weight earlier that day!!), measured 20 3/4 inches long and is perfect. It was beautiful to hear him cry, watch him move and stretch wide-eyed. 
   We were able to leave the hospital Saturday morning. It has been wonderful having him at home. He is so precious and sweet, a very good-natured and laid back baby. I am so thankful for him! 

less than 24 hours old

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Induction Anticipation

   As I feared, sleep eludes me tonight. Not that sleep has come easily or lasted through the night in the last few weeks, but I was hoping to get some rest tonight. Joyful anticipation and an uncomfortably pregnant body keep me awake. In six hours (probably less by the time I finish this post) I will be checking into the hospital for my induction.
   The last eight weeks of pregnancy have s-l-o-w-l-y passed. They have definitely been the most difficult. I am glad this part of the journey is coming to a close. Over 100 injections, numerous doctor's appointments and sonograms, many prayers and fears, and three visits to the hospital later: it is time. With a gestational age of 38 weeks, 2 days, Isaiah will be born.
   I am not anxious about the labor, I've done that before and have no qualms about getting an epidural to relieve pain. I am ready to get these contractions going so I can hold this little one in my arms. I anticipate feeling relief along with all the other emotions I will feel. Relief that he is outside of my womb where I can hold him, see him, hear him cry, watch him breathe and move.
   I am one excited mama tonight!

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Baby Shower Blessing

     A baby shower for my little Isaiah came to pass a few weeks ago! My sister-in-law did an incredible job putting it all together in a week.
 Fun game we played.

Many, many gifts!

It was a great afternoon with friends and family. The shower was meaningful and special to me. 
Having a baby shower is such a normal thing for mothers to enjoy and I am very thankful I was able to have one for our little boy.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Answering that dreaded question

   "Is this your first?"
I am asked that question almost everywhere I go. 
And my answer is different, even in the same day. 
It is not a simple questions for us mothers who have lost little ones in this way. 

Everyone is always excited about pregnancy and babies and are so enthusiastic in their questions, especially over a first child. But it is the question I dread. 

Today, following this question, I gave two different responses. To the first woman who asked today, I said, "yes", indicating this is my first child. I immediately regretted my response, feeling guilt, apologizing internally to my daughter, considering going back and telling the stranger that this was not my first baby, my first baby is already in heaven.

Later today when asked the same question, I said, "no, it's our second". In that conversation, it was sufficient and no further questions were asked. No need to explain. A response that left me with no guilt. 

However, the line of questioning does not typically stop at that point. The following questions usually involve a question about whether my first is a boy or girl, or the child's age. One woman asked if my first was excited about the new baby and I said yes. (is that considered a lie? with such joy in heaven, isn't she joyful?) Other questions force explanations and my response then also varies. 

I have tried the response, "My first is in heaven", both to the initial question about my pregnancy being with my first as well as to the subsequent questions that all to frequently follow. It makes for some awkward situations where the questioner looks quite uncomfortable and drops the topic or leaves the conversation entirely. Sometimes an apology comes with the look of horror, but not always. I think it just shocks most people. 

I've tried a direct, "my first was stillborn" and it brings the same awkwardness and end to the conversation. I think I have yet to meet someone who responds in any other way. 

Either I have guilt for saying "yes, this one is my first" or it is a conversation ender for me to say, "no, I lost my first." My husband consistently answers "no, this is my second", but he has never been asked the follow-up questions. Then there is my mother who sees and verbally acknowledges Isaiah as her first and only grandchild, but that is another topic entirely.

Ten months later and I am inconsistent in responding and struggle with the question. Maybe I always will. But what feels best to me is stating how things are and letting that person feel what they feel. They may feel uncomfortable, but they don't live with it daily. It might not make new friends, but so be it. Maybe one day my honesty will allow someone else to be open about the same thing.