It's been one week and a day since our beautiful baby boy joined the world. The shortest, longest,best week of my life. Rafe Harrell Noel was born at 8:26am on Sunday, April 3, 2016. He weighed 8lbs even and was 20.75 inches long. He's beautiful and perfect and I love him so much I teared up just typing that sentence,
I've been planning to sit down and write up this post for a few days now. I decided today would be the day at about 7 am and not it's 1:20pm. New Mom Life :)
When my due date come Friday, April 1, 2016 and I was still pregnant, like most women who have ever been 40+ weeks pregnant, I was feeling so ready for the pregnant part to end, but I had no indicators there would be a baby soon. So I got up and got dressed, went to work, and decided to make the most of my last remaining "selfish" time. After work I got a mani and a pedi. I went to the gym. I cleaned my house. I kept busy. Saturday morning, we woke up bright and early to finish knocking off my before the baby comes to do list. This included a trip to Lowes, furniture shopping, Costco, cleaning the house, and cleaning out our yard. My Mom came over and helped me clean and plant flower beds while Nick cleared out leaves from the front and back yard. We have two big oak trees that are shedding right now and it's work to keep the yard looking nice. In short, we were really busy all day. I like being busy, it makes time tick faster. Through out the day I thought I had felt some of the braxton hicks contractions but I just ignored them and kept on going. I really thought I would be at the Doctor's office on Monday morning for my 40 week appointment doing and US and determining how long they would let me go over my due date.
At about 5:00pm I came inside and took a bath because 40 weeks pregnant and doing all the things made me tired. That's when I started to notice those braxtion hicks things I had been ignoring were getting closer together so I started timing them. I used the ap Full Term and it worked really well.
Nick had just gotten done stacking 12 full drum bags of leaves when he came in the house and I told him about 7:00pm I thought we might have a baby soon. Did I mention he had wanted to sleep in Saturday morning? Whoops :) My yard looks amazing
I was worried this wouldn't be the real deal, and I still wasn't convinced that I was in actual labor. I didn't want to go to the hospital prematurely and get sent home so we waited it out. At about 9:30pm Nick called the hospital and asked when we should come in. They told us to wait and hour and if things were still progressing, to come on in. We ended up waiting until; about 11:00pm. I felt comfortable at home so I wanted to stay there as long as possible. I went to the restroom and it was obvious there would be a baby very soon, so off to the hospital we went!
I was scared and excited and experiencing about 1,000 emotions all at one time. Nick was nothing short of amazing and made me fall in love with him all over again. There is no way I could have done this without Nick. He made sure that all I had to worry about was managing these contractions. Check in at the hospital was super speedy. They had me in a gown and in a bed by 11:30pm and I was 4 cm. I had already decided I would be getting an epidural and by the time we got there, I was ready to get in the anesthesia line. At 1am I was 7cm. I had the epidural aka miracle medicine and the pain relief was unreal. Like we turned on the TV and took a nap until I was at 9cm at about 6am.
Rafe's actual birth didn't go exactly as I had hoped it would in my head. My doctor was out of town, so someone I had never met or spoken to in my life delivered our baby. The nurses had shift change at 7am just as it was getting time to meet Rafe, and I had felt attached to the nurse we had at check in. Giving birth puts you in a vulnerable place. At 7am my water still hadn't broken on it's own so the doctor decided to help my labor along and broke my water. At 8am I started pushing and at 8:26 am our baby was born. My entire pregnancy I had been looking forward to that moment. When he was born and they handed him to me.
I didn't get to hold Rafe right after his birth. They held him up so we could see him and then whisked him across the room. I didn't hear him cry, and Nick didn't get to cut the cord. There aren't words to describe the fear that I felt. How long were those moments? 30 seconds? 3 minutes? 10 minutes? I kept asking what's happening? Is he ok? Finally we heard him cry and someone said "Ok Dad! Come take pictures!" Nick looked at me and the joy and happiness I saw on his face told me that everything was OK. That's when the tears came. It was so surreal. And then there were 3!
Rafe had Meconium Aspiration Syndrome, and is totally fine now. All in all, his birth was text book, fast, and smooth. We are both doing really well now.
I am all consumed in being this little boy's mother. It's like the Earth started spinning in a different direction and the only thing that was important in my life was right there in that room with me. This has been without a doubt the best week of my life. Watching my husband become a Dad has been so fun to watch. He impresses me at every turn, and I feel so lucky to be his wife. I wasn't prepared for how much more I would love him too. My heart has grown in more ways than one. Rafe is such an easy happy little baby, and it's been a blur. I feel like the three of us are in this perfect little bubble together and I don't want this time to ever end. It's been incredibly special and I am basking in every single moment. Welcome Rafe, we love you more than you will ever know!