Wednesday, July 18, 2012

the hospital part 1 :: Charlotte's Birth

 Baby Charlotte's Birth Story

Charlotte Grace Beatrice Bates

born Wednesday, July 11, 2012
2:08 pm
7 lb 15 oz
20.5 inches tall

11:00pm-5:00am sleepless night tossing and turning anticipating my induction
4:45am call from the hospital delaying our induction until 7:30am
6:30am making oatmeal for breakfast
7:00am loving our baby

7:00am the kids seeing us off with Mimi,
my dear friend Laura arrived at 9am to care for the kids so Mimi could join us at the hospital
7:30am checking into Providence St. Vincent's Hospital
my sister likes to chart my labor

9:15am IV and pitocin started 

10am-12pm posting on facebook and watching a movie during early labor
9:45 am slowly increasing the pitocin

my birth partner  ::  I love this boy!

11:45am I can't believe we've done this five times!
my amazing sister Anne  ::  she has come to help with 4 of my 5 babies

2:08pm Charlotte is here!  
2:20pm Abraham cutting the cord

7 lb 15 oz  ::  20.5 inches

she is absolutely beautiful

 hearing test: she looked so cute

Only those who have delivered a still baby can know what it is like to face delivery again.  There is so much fear and anxiety, while holding onto hope.  Hope that this time when my perfectly formed baby is placed on my chest there will be beautiful cries of life.  I spent the whole night wondering if there would be a heart beat in the morning, would I introduce her to her siblings, or would I have to break their tender hearts again, would I bring her home with me, or would I have to accept that she has a new home, and I will spend my entire life without my baby girl.  

One of my favorite sounds in the world is the sound of my baby's heart beat.  I remember laying in the hospital on bed rest with preterm labor and wishing I could stay hooked up to this machine that beats with life for the rest of my pregnancy.  We woke not to our alarm set for 5:00 am but rather 15 minutes early to the receptionist asking how I was doing and informing me that my induction would have to be delayed.  I could barely breathe until she went on to ask if 7:30 would be ok.  7:30 would be fine.  An extra hour and half would give me a chance to give my sweet littles one last hug and kiss.  I needed this as much as they did.  

My nurse Kathy was a gift.  She was simple and kind and intuitive in her care.  I loved that she reminded me of a picture I had seen of my Grandma Baker when she was in her 30s. 

Abraham has been my strength through the labor of our children.  Charlotte was his desire deep in his heart and as he's watched me suffer through five months of morning sickness, and endless sleepless nights, he has shown deep appreciation of all that I have gone through.  

Anne, my dear sister and friend, has traveled from New York to Portland for three of my babies in the last four years.  She offered prayers and friendship when Sabrina left us, and made many phone calls through the year that followed.  She celebrated Sophia's arrival.  And now she stands beside me offering words of comfort and encouragement.  

Helen, my mother-in-law, traveled from Phoenix to experience the birth of her 8th grandbaby.  She stood by the window with my three as we drove to the hospital.  She joined us later at the hospital, while my best friend Laura, visiting from Turkey, watched my children.  Having my life long friend watching my children was a unexpected gift for the day.   

My induction started slowly with mild contractions.  We talked and starred and waited.  It was a strange feeling wanting my contractions to increase in intensity while at the same time never wanting to experience the intense pain of labor. Our uneventful morning was suddenly exciting when Lake Charlotte happened.  As I sat on a birthing ball, water flowed from me creating a lake in the middle of the room.  There were towels, and more towels, and still more towels.  Abraham was a little displeased about having amniotic fluid soaked shoes.  

I debated getting an epidural...but in the end chose the natural route.  I've now given birth five times naturally.  The choice this time was simply out of going with the known, although there were many moments where I wished I had some relief.  Fentanyl brought some relief.  

Hard labor began and within 15 minutes it was time to push.  Tears flowed down my checks as my body labored.  I saw Sophia's smile and focused on the joy she has brought to me.  Charlotte was delivered with a couple pushes and she cried beautiful cries as she was laid on me.  The next part was my least favorite to remember...tares and stitches up and down, torn artery...lots of pain.

I think of Abigail, my first born, she made me a mother.  I loved her big eyes that first day as she took everything in.  I love the beauty she creates with her artistic hands.  Ethan, my son, with his spiky dark hair.  He is tender and sweet and strong all at the same time.  Sabrina, and her delicate features with her sweet strawberry blond curls.  Sabrina, my dear Christmas Eve baby that I long to see one day.  Sophia, our bright sunshine, full of joy and life.  Her enthusiasm is pure delight.   

And now Charlotte,    

What a miracle!  

1 comment:

  1. So lovely to get a glimpse into this special day. Your family is blessed. I praise Jesus to see your hope fulfilled, your partnership & love with Abraham further deepened, and your sweet children welcoming in their baby sister.