Wednesday, September 23, 2009
In the desert of my dreams I saw you there
OK, so I'll try not to turn this into a "mommy blog" because I know no one wants to read tons of posts about the mundane details about somebody else's kid, but of course I can't avoid the subject entirely, being completely taken over by this new person in our house.
So on Friday Sept 18, on a bright sunny afternoon in Bellevue, Trillian Mira made her debut to the outside world. I honestly *could not* have asked for a better experience.
We had a choice to make a few days before that, about whether we wanted to induce labor, or schedule a C section, since her fluid levels were fluctuating, and it was safer for her to be delivered than stay in. I was not at all attached to the idea of a natural childbirth, and in fact, spent a good deal of my pregnancy being terrified of what was going to happen at the end. I wanted quick, painless, and preferably to not have to be there at all :)
So when my fabulous doctor said she definitely saw medical reasons to do a scheduled C-section, I jumped on board right away. I'm a planner, and oftentimes the anticipation of something bad is worse than the actual event. So we set up our appointment for Friday and went on our merry way. Well, I did. TJ stressed out about it for the 2.5 days, enough for both of us.
We had to get to the hospital a couple of hours early and of course we were a bit late because I couldn't sleep much the night before. After getting shuffled around between buildings due to the various remodeling projects we ended up in the pre-op prep room. At about that time, I decided I didn't like it at the hospital, and wondered if we could just go home. Side note: I've never been in the hospital for *anything*, except to visit other people, so being the patient was weird. TJ, having injured himself many times, was a big help in keeping me calm.
So they did the usual stuff - got the IV hooked up (yuck), took lots of blood pressure readings and blood samples, and the anesthesiologist and my doc and the assisting doc all came by to talk to us before the procedure. Of course, at this point I was internally freaking out, but time has a way of moving along so it was time to go into the OR.
And let me say, that the OR was nothing like Grey's Anatomy. It was *very* brightly lit, unlike at Seattle Grace, where I'm amazed any of the surgeons can see enough to get things done. And there was a ton of stuff in there - coolers with meds, chairs, stools, tables with instruments. It almost looked like a very clean storage room for tons of medical stuff just lying around in random places. I'm sure there was an order to it, of course.
I won't go into the gory details here, mostly because I didn't have any idea what was going on myself. TJ and I specifically asked all of the doctors *not* to give us the play-by-play of what they were doing because we're both horribly squeamish. Oh, and I should back up, for those who don't know, they do a standard C-section delivery with a spinal block, meaning I was numb from about the chest down. Which means I was awake during the whole thing. I tried not to dwell on that before the surgery, hence our request to *not* have the play by play analysis.
The doctors were amazing. The anesthesiologist was about our age, and 36 weeks pregnant, and she was friendly, and gentle, and calm and patient even when I couldn't get relaxed enough for her to do her job easily. That was the roughest part - for her to get the anesthetic in the right spot.
During the procedure, TJ sat next to me and we talked. About what, I don't really remember, but it was a nice distraction. The doctors were working behind a curtain and talking amongst themselves about random stuff, which oddly, made me feel much better because it seemed like this was a normal, routine, procedure. I really did not feel anything, which was GREAT.
And then my doctor announced they were ready to get the baby out (woo hoo!) and we heard that first cry. You always see this moment on TV and everyone gets weepy, and I'm cynical and not particularly sentimental, so I figured it would be no big deal. But I took one look at TJ and got all weepy. In fact I'm a little weepy now just thinking about it (of course, that might be the hormones, too.) They did confirm she was a girl, and I gave silent thanks that we would not have to buy a whole new wardrobe or repaint her room.
At this point I need to give a shout out to the delivery nurses as well - it was brilliant to watch the efficient, practied, expert way they handled my baby, got her cleaned up, and made sure she was healthy in those first few minutes. One of them even took all the early pictures for us, for which we are really grateful.
And the cool thing is that they do all the baby prep (is it like dealer prep when you buy a new car??) so that TJ and I could watch it, which is a nice distraction again from the rest of the surgery. I think the second half was actually longer, but we barely noticed because we were just watching our baby get ready for the world.
My doctor informed me that I had "abs of steel", which I guess I should be pleased about if I can ever get that nice flabby cushion out of the way for anyone to see them ;)
We hung out in the recovery room for a while with our new baby while various people came in and checked on both her and me, and eventually were taken to our "real" room for the rest of the weekend. Again, I was really impressed and thankful for all of the amazing nurses who took care of us. Clearly they love babies, and were so patient with our dumb questions, and spent lots of time educating us on how to feed and take care of this new little person, and how I could speed up my recovery. I am sure that we would not have gotten such a good start without all of these amazing women around to help us out. It was very tiring to be woken up every hour or two for vital sign checks, pills, and feedings, but I definitely think it's the reason I feel so good now.
So here we are, new parents for 5 days. We're pretty lucky because Trillian sleeps for 2-3 hours at a stretch, and has only had a few loooong crying episodes, both of which were fabulously handled by her daddy who seems to have the secret baby juju. He's also a much better baby burrito-maker than I am.
So there it is. More later once Princess SnuffleFlower has eaten and gone back to sleep. Everything gets done in tiny blocks of time around here.