January 18, 2010 was a Monday as well as Martin Luther King Jr. Day. I was excited because my husband was off work and we planned on just hanging around the house with our son. I was 9 months pregnant with our second child, Mary; and I was 9 days away from my due date so lounging around the house sounded like fun. Mary on the other hand had different plans for our day.
I had been sleeping on the couch the last few months of my pregnancy because my back was really hurting and lying up against the back of the couch was quite comfy, so when I woke up at 6:45 in the morning to my husband typing on the computer it wasn’t a huge surprise. What also wasn’t a big surprise was I was having more contractions. When I was in my 22nd week of pregnancy I was plagued with constant Braxton Hicks contractions so these contractions weren’t anything really all that new. I was going to head upstairs to our bed for a little more sleep time but just minutes after waking the contractions were really starting to hurt, bad!
I must mention that a few weeks prior on January 6th I was having yet more contractions, but they were about every 5 minutes lasting about 5 minutes and I was really watching the clock and the intensity. I had mentioned this to my husband and he just kept a watchful eye on me and kept asking if I needed anything. Of course my parents, who were supposed to help out with Samuel when the baby was ready to be born were in Florida, it was the first real nasty snow storm of the year and to make matters worse it was 5 o’clock, not the best time to be having labor pains! Thankfully I was fooled once again by Mr. Braxton-Hicks and his contractions as they never got more intense and I actually fell asleep.
So when the morning of the 18th arrived and I announced I was having contractions my husband didn’t seem to be all that worried. But when I told him I could barely stand up because of the pain he said ok, let’s go! Since my parents were leaving Florida that morning and my mother-in-law who was in town from Texas was 2 ½ hours away visiting her other grandsons, I had to make a call to my dear friend Lara. Sam wasn’t able to go the hospital with us and wait for my mother-in-law to pick him up (which was plan B while mom and dad were in Florida) because it was the height of H1N1 flu outbreak and hospitals had restrictions on children being at the hospital. So with it being Martin Luther King Jr. Day Lara was off work and at home with her son. I made the call to her around 8am, and we were off to the hospital about 15 minutes later.
Once at the hospital they did the routine check in of name and insurance and set me up in a triage room to monitor my contractions and check my dilation. I was 3 cm and my contractions were pretty intense. They made the call to the on call physician and gave him an update and he told them to admit me and break my water. I think by the time I got in a bed, hooked up to monitors and my dilation was checked again it was about 11am; it was also epidural time! about 2 1/2 hours later I was lying in the bed talking to my husband he happened to look out the window and stated that his mother had just pulled into the parking lot. There were nurses in my room at this point and informed us that I was 10cm and ready to go. I giggled to George, “I don’t want your mom in here!” George agreed and was on his way out to the lounge when the nurse said, “Don’t you go anywhere dad, this baby is coming! I will inform the desk nurse not to allow any more visitors”. She got on her radio and made that announcement to the desk nurse. I won’t go into the labor and delivery freak show but I will say it was easy and quick! Two pushes and she was out at 1:58pm on January 18, 2010. Our little baby Mary was here weighing in at 7lbs 3oz and she was the most beautiful baby I had ever seen, next to my first born of course. She was so tiny yet so perfect.
After Mary was born and all wrapped up in warm blankets they allowed my mother-in-law back to see us. She was so overjoyed. Not only did she get to see one of her grandbabies right after their birth, but this was her first granddaughter. She was so thankful that she could be there to hold her and was as happy as a grandmother could be. After Peggy left to relieve our sitter Mary started crying. I figured she was probably hungry but there were no bottles down in labor and delivery, we would have to wait until we go our room. Since my epidural was still going strong I couldn’t get up and walk and bounce her around so my husband stepped in for “ssshhh-ing” duty. Finally one of the nurses took her temperature and discovered that it was 102 degrees. They swooped in and took her from my husband’s arms and started to perform a ton of vitals on her. Other than the fever she was normal. We couldn’t go up to our room until her fever came down so we had to wait and pray. After a few minutes my husband had realized that she was swaddled in two very warm blankets and mentioned this to the nurses. They explained that they are so warm because they want them to simulate the warmth of the womb. My husband disagreed and proceeded to unwrap her and wha-la! Her fever vanished. She hasn’t been one to be warm since!
The next day the procession of doctors commenced. First, Mary’s pediatrician, then my OBG/YN. We were both healthy and looking good. I was even told I could go home that afternoon if I wished. I did not wish to go home. I was allowed 3 days per insurance and I was using all 3 days! Who doesn’t want to be pampered and taken care of? It turns out my decision was for the best.
George had come back to the hospital that night to hang out with Mary and I and watch the season premiere of American Idol. We chose this show to watch because in hospitals there’s not much of a choice when it comes to T.V. stations. As we were sitting down to cover our ears and watch bad auditions George’s phone rang. His mom had called to let us know that Sam had gotten sick, all over her and the kitchen table. So our American Idol night was cut short and George ran back to the house to check on Sam while mommy sat alone in the hospital room sick with worry and guilt. I know there was absolutely nothing I could for Sam being in the hospital but I still felt upset that his mommy could be there to take care of him.
The next morning George came to pick us up and take us home and I couldn’t have been more ready to go home and see my little boy. Plus my mom and dad were back from Florida and anxiously awaiting our arrival. Once home I rushed into the house to hug and kiss my boy. I missed him so much and was so worried about him since daddy had told me he was up most of the night throwing up and feeling awful. So you can imagine my confusion and hurt when my son ran away upstairs to his room faster than I could move after giving birth. I got to his bedroom and was asking for my hug and kiss when he pointed at me and said “Get Out!” and slammed the door in my face. I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry. I went back down stairs hugged my parents and stood in total amazement over what had just transpired. I had to remind myself that he hadn’t see me in three days, the longest we’ve ever been apart since he was born, his mommy wasn’t there to take care of him when he was sick, Grams was in town from Texas, Grandma and Grandpa, whom he hadn’t seen in weeks were back from Florida and this new little “thing” was here in HIS house! That is quite an overwhelming day for anyone let alone a 2 ½ year old.
After a little time to himself to cool off he came downstairs and joined us. He crawled quietly up on my lap and proceeded to snuggle. I was so thankful for that moment. After my parents held, kissed and gushed over their new granddaughter they departed for their home and left us to unwind and relax. Well the next morning when my husband woke up with a fever and vomiting the unwinding and relaxing came to a halt. Yep, he caught Sam’s bug! Thank GOD his mom was staying with us a few days more because George was downright sick. We quarantined him to the bedroom and away from the baby. Later that night, looking like a zombie, he joined us downstairs for a late movie. He was feeling better, just really tired. So of course when I woke up on Friday I too was sick with a fever and feeling awful, but luckily I didn’t have all the other stuff. PHEW! But I too was quarantined away from the baby. There’s nothing quite like coming home with a new baby and having the flu sweep through the house. I am so thankful Peggy never got sick, she truly was a blessing that week.
So two years later our little Mary is still our "baby" and is such a sweetie, with this tiny voice, beautiful smile, golden curls with killer dance moves. Even though it’s been a struggle getting Sam used to the fact this “Little Sister” thing isn’t going anywhere, he’ll be the first and the loudest to tell you how much he loves her. She is just wrapped so tight around all our hearts. Our kids are truly God’s blessing to us and even though I don’t need a birthday to remind me of that fact, it’s birthdays that really make it hit your heart.
Happy 2nd birthday to my "Tiny Dancer"Mommy, Daddy and Samuel love you very much