Sunday, July 11, 2010

Home, sweet home

I think I will take advantage of the rest of the family being asleep and give some more details of Gwendolyn's arrival and some more pictures. If you are just interested in the pictures, or can't wade through lengthy prose without sneaking a peek first, go right ahead, I can't say that I blame you. I could stare at pictures of these kids all day long.

Without further ado, the story (I will rely on Brittney to improve on those details I either misremember or don't do justice to when she is fully able):

Brittney started having regular contractions at 1 or 2 on friday afternoon. She chatted me at work a little before 4 and said that the contractions were coming regularly and starting to get uncomfortable. I rushed home, and we took a walk as a family, played some, and started to plan for the evening. We really enjoyed not being at the hospital until we had to with Charlie, and tried to follow a similar game plan this time around. We ate dinner and then had a mini-movie night for Alec and Charlie over at their friends' house. When it came time for bedtime we went home, put the kids to bed, and then set out for the hospital. Our neighbors were able to listen for our boys that night, and other wonderful friends helped out for saturday and sunday morning.

When we got to the hospital the contractions were getting more intense, but still not super close together, probably averaging about 5 or 6 minutes apart. Brittney almost felt a little silly giving that as an answer when the nurses asked why we had come in, but since it was our third child, they trusted us that we knew what was going on and let us stay. We got settled in the hospital at around 9 pm. At 9:30 the measured her and Brittney was only at a 3, but fully effaced. I think it was a little depressing for Brittney to only be that far along, but she hung in there.

Within a short while we were just fighting through each contraction and snatching what rest we could in between. By about 10 the contractions seemed as intense as they were when we arrived at the hospital for Charlie, but seemed more spaced out. I was a little worried that we weren't making much progress since there seemed to be so much more space. At around 11:30 the nurse said that they could break Brittney's water to help things along, and in checking her for that, we found out she was at an 8 already. This was very encouraging, and helped moral immensely. The contractions seemed to respond in frequency and intensity immediately to the water being broken, and by 11:50 or so Brittney felt like pushing. Once the midwife had come in, she checked and said that everything looked ready and to go ahead. After 4 trying pushes Gwendolyn was here, right at 12:00 exactly. Brittney said afterward that she wasn't sure if she could have done another push, and so was glad that Gwendolyn had come out when she did.

The immediate aftermath was much harder on Brittney than before, I think she got stitched and pummeled and poked more than she was expecting. The increased after-activity was frightening for both of us, and might end up being the standout memory of the birthing experience.

What an intense evening! Brittney was amazing, and once again blew me away with her depth of strength and willpower. I think it was double hard to go through all this when she normally is just falling asleep.

We stayed the whole night in the labor and delivery room, since they were all full upstairs, which was great because then I could stay the night as well.

The rest of the hospital stay was fairly uneventful, Gwendolyn did great, having a great latch from the beginning and just slept when she wasn't eating. Brittney got a good start on her recovery, and this morning we all came home. It was so much fun to see the boys hold their sister. They were able to come to the hospital saturday afternoon and see her, but not for long, since there is only so long you can keep inquisitive little boys from destroying a fun hospital room with lots of buttons and lights and things on wheels.

Charlie was peeking very cutely into her car seat for most of the ride home, and Alec gave us play-by-plays of all of her cryings and stop-cryings, in case we hadn't heard them from the front seat : ). Once home we had a fun session of holding and kissing the new member of the family, then lunch, and then naps for everyone.

Overall, I think things went wonderfully. We hope the recovery goes smoothly and little Gwendolyn keeps eating and sleeping as well as she has so far. Brittney's mom is due in town tomorrow night so we hope we can stay sane until then. Thanks for all of your prayers and well-wishes, we really appreciate them. And now, the best part, more pictures!


Amy said...

So happy for you!

Michelle said...

Congratulations to all!! She is darling!

Heather said...

Happy Happy Homecoming !!!!! Looks like this little darling is going to be well cherished...what could be more wonderful?

Vhari said...

You guys have the cutest kids! Seriously! So happy to hear everything is going well!

Cuddlydoll said...

Congratulations! We are so happy for you.

And a girl! What fun. I hope we follow your pattern!


The A Team said...

she's beautiful!! congratulations!

Doug and Heather said...

Congratulations! She is beautiful! And your boys are so cute too! I love the name - it was my great grandmother's name and I've always loved it. Glad to see you are doing well!

Radene said...

Can you ask Alec if I can trade him eyelashes?! What a cute cute grown up boy! He looks like he is so sweet with that little Gwendolyn!