My pregnancy with Riley went off without a hitch. It was a joy being pregnant and I loved every minute. But… the time had come.
We had our last Doctors visit on my due date, November 17, 2010. I didn’t feel like I was going into labor anytime soon, but wasn’t surprised, since it is common to go beyond your due date with a first child. While each of the 5 other Drs in the practice thought Riley was head down, this given Dr disagreed, so did a quick Ultrasound. His immediate feedback, “Yup, I was right. She is breech. You ready to have a baby tomorrow?!” Rileys’ head was what had pushed up into my ribs the last few weeks. Ryan & I stood in the hallway while the Dr scheduled the c-section, giddy as could be. I remember it like it was yesterday- standing there so awkwardly, not knowing what to do besides hug and giggle =)
We had to be at the hospital at 6am on Thursday, November 18, 2010. Upon our arrival, we filled out some paperwork and proceeded up to the Storks Landing Maternity Ward. We got set up in our room and the nurse ran some tests. I thought it was funny when she asked if I’d had any contractions. Mainly because I replied, “No” only to be told that I was having one at that moment.
Once the tests were all done and confirmed good, we headed to the surgery area of the hospital.
Once there, I was prepped for surgery. I hadn’t been nervous or anything, but once they asked Ryan to leave the room for a moment, it began. I started to realize that, although a routine thing for these Drs, a c-section is a major surgery and there is always possibility of a complication. Would my body handle everything okay? Would the big needle in my spine hurt? Would Riley be okay? I calmed myself down by thinking to myself that worrying wouldn’t help anything.
The surgery staff sat me on the side of the surgery table and prepped me for the epidural. They were great when it came to keeping me calm and relaxed, talking me through each detail so I knew exactly what was happening. They let me know it was coming, and while it did hurt, the pain quickly went away, as that is its purpose.
Ryan came back in and continued to reassure me that I would do great, and how proud of me he was. Such a good man! He took one last pre-baby pic. I look excited, huh? A little drugged too! hehe!
My legs, along with the rest of my lower body, went numb very fast. I couldn’t feel much, even the pressure they told me I might. The only pain I did feel was in my shoulder, which was very odd to me. Apparently it had something to do with nerve endings and whatnot. There was an Anesthesiologist that stood at my head, monitoring the drugs and my vitals throughout the procedure. Thank God for him! There were a few times that I felt a little nauseous, but he was quick to adjust the meds and relieve any issues. He couldn’t do too much about the shoulder pain, which was pretty bad throughout. I remember thinking that it felt like I had been a softball pitcher and was in the midst of surgery on my shoulder, and not my uterus.
Ryan sat next to me, holding my hand and watching the Drs work, constantly reassuring me and kissing my forehead. I could see he was a little nervous, but we balance each other out very well- I immediately ‘locked it up’ and felt confident and relaxed.
The Drs then told Ryan it was time, and to get his camera ready (which was already on and hanging around his neck). All of a sudden I saw him light up, then a few seconds later, a few small cries! I hadn’t even thought about the second that I would hear her for the first time, so it took me by surprise. I saw tears in Ryans eyes as he snapped pictures, gave me a glance ad head nod to let me know things were okay, then went over to get a closer look.
I went back & forth about sharing the picture of Riley coming out, but decided to bear you the blood & what not ;)
I thought in that instant that I would be full of tears, but instead I was overcome with a sense of calm and peace. Riley was here, all 10 fingers, all 10 toes, and perfectly healthy.
born at 7:27 am, 7 pounds 13 ounces and 18 1/2 inches long
My poor little girl looks so cold!
That’s better ;)
While Riley was out, there was still work to be done. It seemed to take forever, getting me sewn back up, especially since my shoulder was throbbing with pain. Once done, I was wheeled into the recovery room and able to hold Riley for the first time. As they handed her to me I immediately put her to my breast and she fed right away!
I had never felt so calm and at ease in my entire life. Given, I still had a lot of drugs in my system, hence why it was so hard to even keep my eyes open at this point. They wheeled us back to our room and let us spend a few minutes alone as a family. We were so happy! We just sat there, holding one another and watching Riley eat. We couldn’t believe how lucky we were and what a beautiful little girl we now had in our lives. Check out the proud Daddy…
This picture melts my heart!
Ryan then went with the nurse to give Riley her first bath. He asked if I wanted him to stay, but I knew I was going to be fast asleep in seconds, so let him go with Riley.
The next few days were utter bliss. Riley continued to eat well and my milk supply had come in by Saturday, what I was told was pretty fast. Ryan tended to both of his girls like such a good man, not letting me get up to change any diapers since my body had gone through so much. The nurses were amazing as well, constantly answering questions and offering advice. I couldn’t have asked for a better experience! Here are a few more pictures from Riley’s birth weekend…
Welcome to the world, Riley Kathleen!