July 4, 2014
Getting you here was quite the adventure—one we’ll never forget! Ever since your Dad and I got married, he was ready to have kids! 🙂 On the other hand, I’m a little ashamed I wasn’t ready yet. Had it been up to me, I thought 5 years was good because there were things I wanted to do, just your Dad and I. But, looking back they were unimportant plans, selfish plans. Little did I know then how much we were missing out on. You’ve brought so much joy and purpose into our lives—I keep saying that our lives really didn’t “start” until we became parents. We sacrificed some “worldly” things to bring you here and we turned to our Heavenly Father for guidance and aligned our will to His.
So, February 2013 came. It had been a topic of discussion between your Dad and I—whether it was time to start our family—for some time, but for some reason we really started talking serious about it in February. Once again, your Dad was ready to jump in and once again, I was not. We attended the temple regularly and each time we went, I felt a little more like it was time, despite not feeling “ready.” One time, however, I couldn’t deny the Spirit I felt as it told me it was time. I knew you’d be a choice spirit. I felt you’d be a girl and later on, felt your name “Lydia” was the perfect name for you since I felt like you’d be like me—sometimes struggling to find peace of mind since we always worry, are guilt-ridden, and fear we’re not being our best selves. I remember feeling forgiven (again!) for something I felt bad about (and beat myself up about again) and immediately after feeling your sweet spirit. I’ve always loved the name Lydia. As a little girl, I found myself trying so hard to curl my hair like Lydia’s from The Work and The Glory.
We finally aligned our will with Heavenly Father’s when we decided it was time and left it up to Him in the Fall of 2013. We found out in October that we were expecting you and surprised our families in December! I found out before your Dad and waited a week or so to surprise him since he wanted a surprise and our Friday night BYU football game date seemed like the perfect time to surprise him! Prior to the game, I took him up to the “Y” and gabe him a poem I had written him on his mission with a couple extra parts added in 🙂 (It was also the poem he re-wrote for me the night we got engaged!) He was soooo surprised (I told him the test was negative, fingers crossed, so he would be surprised!) We surprised my side of the family when Santa Claus showed up at the door Christmas Eve with gifts, one with a onesie announcing you were to come the following June! Then, on Christmas day we surprised Cam’s family with a stroller and onesie as well! Everyone was so excited!
We weren’t going to find our if you were a boy or girl (even though I thought and hoped you were a girl!), but finally decided to at our 20-week appointment. Nannie and Grandma Joan came to it and everything looked healthy. They did a 3D ultrasound and it was so neat to see you—you even rubbed your eye with your little hand when we were watching! We told the ultrasound tech we didn’t want to find out the gender, but afterwards when we had left, your Dad and I ran back to tell them we had changed our minds and were dying to know! We did another quick ultrasound to be 100% and your Dad was the first to yell out, “It’s a girl!!!” We left the hospital and took each of our family members pink balloons and a pink cigar! 🙂
We waited eagerly until June when you were due! June 25th (your due date according to our first ultrasound) came and gone, still no you! June 30th (the original due date) came and gone, and still no Lydia! Your Dad was so anxious, he was struggling to focus on school or work, all he wanted was you! We moved upstairs a couple weeks before you were born and had everything in order and finally felt “ready” for you to come any day!
We went in for an appointment on June 2nd, your Dad’s birthday. The Dr. checked my cervix and I was about a 2 cm. He also stripped my membranes to speed things up (that was the 3rd time). We talked to the Dr. about letting me go one more week before they were to induce me (the had planned and wanted to do it the following day). They warned me and your dad about potential risks and did a stress test to make sure you were okay and healthy in there. We still wanted to wait to see if you would come on your own (I didn’t like the thought of inducing something to come when it wasn’t “naturally ready”) The Dr. felt my belly and said you were going to be at least 8 lbs and if we waited another week, you’d more than likely be an additional .5 lb more! We didn’t believe him since your Dad and I were 6 lb babies! Everything on the stress test looked great and they scheduled me for another stress test if you hadn’t already come on your own—I was really hoping your would to have that excitement and I was planning to have a natural birth, without any pain medication. The remainder of the day I felt cramping. We had friends and family over for your Dad’s birthday and once they had left we headed to Grandpa Jay and Grandma Joan’s to watch the season finale of 24. I fell asleep and was super uncomfortable. When we arrived back home around midnight, I started cramping a lot. I began having contractions every 10-12 minutes so I didn’t get much sleep! I was able to breathe through them still and your Dad was so sweet to help me in any way he could.
We woke up around 7 so I could get in the bath—they started to get really painful and closer together. Your Dad would time each contraction and finally stopped after we got to about 80! The bath felt really good, but finally we moved to the back room since it was nice and cool (when I’d contract, my whole body would heat up, it was crazy!). Your Dad would push tennis balls on my lower back or squeeze my hips together to relieve the pain a little. Nannie, Aunt Ton, Papa and Grandma Joan all came to visit and brought us smoothies (that was the only thing that sounded good!). I thought you’d for sure be here by early afternoon at the latest, but it finally got to 4:00pm and I was exhausted, in soooo much pain, and worried that if we went to the hospital, we’d be sent home, but I was restless to get there. The contractions were just so inconsistent so I couldn’t tell how far I was, some 2 or 3 minutes apart and others still 5 or 8 minutes apart! We had walked around the house far too many times and sat on that birth ball far too long so we made the decision to leave to the hospital. Nannie and papa had come over to give me some soup and your Dad had given me a blessing. We put our bags we had packed (weeks prior) in the car and were off to McKay-Dee hospital (just down the street!)
When we arrived at the hospital, your Dad ran to get a wheelchair for me. He pushed me up to the 4th floor and once we had arrived to Labor and Delivery, I was having a hard time answering their questions without crying. They told me since I was 41 weeks, however, they’d keep me regardless of how dilated I was (one plus to going over)! The nurse asked if I was planning to go natural and I said I wanted to but wasn’t sure anymore! They put me in a normal room since I wasn’t 100% sure about going unmedicated and they like to reserve those rooms for them. After our sweet nurse (she really was the BEST—so willing to answer all my silly questions and concerns and was so confident, I felt really comfortable being her in hands!) checked my cervix, I was dilated to a 4 and about 80% effaced. She told me to get up and walk for an hour to see how I’d progress. She thought my water would break, so she had me put on one of those giant diaper pads and hospital gowns. I felt a little silly walking the halls and having the nurses watch me go around and around and stop every so often for a contraction, but I was also so excited! You Dad would help by pushing hard on my back and have me lean against him each contraction.
After about an hour (still no water breaking) the nurse checked me to find I was at a 5.5-6 cm. She called Dr. Seale and told me they wanted to break my water to help things progress. My birth plan and first desire was to not be induced, not have my water broken, not have an epidural, and not have pitocin. Thankfully, I went with the flow of things and didn’t turn it in to the nurses because I got all of them except being induced! Now came the decision to either get the epidural or not. We finally decided to since I was already in so much pain and the thought of getting my water broke with no pain medication was frightening since breaking the water can cause intense contractions. In retrospect, the decision to get the epidural was so right and we are both so glad we did! It was as relieving for your Dad as it was for me! He finally got something to eat! Getting the epidural wasn’t so bad (except the fear of being paralyzed—I shouldn’t have asked the anesthesiologist if there was a chance of that!), but I started having one of the strongest contractions et during it and I was hurting so bad! I won’t forget the immediate sense of warmth and relief as the epidural spread down my body! At this time family had all arrived! Only 5 guests were allowed in the room at a time so they all would take turns!
^^When you can’t get up and take pictures, you find a way still!^^
The nurse immediately checked me and my cervix was 8 cm! However, your head was still stationed pretty far up there (I think a 0 or +1 and you needed to get to +3 and then crowning!). An intern for Dr. Seale came and broke my water with a long hook utensil. We didn’t really hear a pop or feel anything, which I was surprised. When the nurse went to check my cervix again, she told us there was so much hair!! We couldn’t wait to meet you. Little did we know there’d be many more hours until we were able to! I think it was at this time that the nurse realized you were faced posterior (opposite than you were supposed to be for an easy, natural way out of the birth canal). I’m certain this is the reason I was in labor for so long and still no baby! It was about 6:00pm and she was positive you’d be here at least by 10:00pm, then at least by midnight (I kept asking, “How much longer!?”) I was nervous there’d have to be a C-section, but she assured me it hadn’t crossed her mind and if it did, she’d let me know! So, for the next 6 hours I was turned side to side, raising one leg to try and get you to turn on your own and you finally did! She wasn’t certain you had turned before you came out since your head had descended so far, but she thought so! At about midnight (the 4th of July it was!) it was time to push! I watched in a mirror for a little bit and it was so exciting to see all that hair on your head! We were surprised to see it didn’t look black like we had imagined! Nannie and Aunt Tonnie stayed in the room for a bit and then left when it was getting close so it could just be your Dad and I! Dr. Seale showed up and after lots of pushing every so often (they had given me pitocin to strengthen my contractions that had started to weaken) since they wanted my pushing to be put to good use (on only the strong contractions), you entered the world!! 1:17am it was and all our family was waiting anxiously outside the door! They said you cried really loud (I can only imagine, you’ve got the biggest set of lungs out there!) but I don’t remember. The nurse immediately put you on my chest and for the first time our eyes met—you were sure wide awake! The first thing I noticed was your biceps—they were full and I knew then, that you were going to be a big baby! Your Dad cut the cord and watched you be placed on the scale—8 lbs 6 oz—Dr. Seale was right! The intern and Dr. stitched me up and after a few moments of just us, I tried breastfeeding you for the first time. Then, your Dad opened the door with you in his arms to show everybody! The nurse encouraged them to quickly say hi so I could get some rest. Everyone loved you so much—you were still so alert! Once everyone started to leave I felt a lot of blood rush out of me and I asked the nurse next to me if that was normal. She immediately called my main nurse who then checked and began pressing on my stomach really hard. She paged several other nurses to come help. One nurse tried to get you to keep nursing to stimulate my uterus to contract. Another nurse gave me another bag of pitocin in my IV. Your Dad walked back in after saying goodbye and was really concerned. Thankfully, I didn’t need a blood transfusion—I had lost about 950 CC and 1,000 CC calls for that. I felt very delirious, weak, and extremely tired though.
Once they wheeled us to our new room, the nurse bathed you as your Dad watched—he said you loved it (I was a little out of it to remember anything!) We sent you to the nursery and got a little rest (as we did every night!). The nurses were so helpful, especially helping me breastfeed you. We finally decided on your name the next afternoon (though we kind of already leaned towards Lydia from day one!)—Lydia just seemed perfect for you even though I wasn’t sure you “looked” like a Lydia yet (naming was a lot harder than I expected). You had so many visitors and your grandparents just couldn’t get enough of you—they visited us many times a day!
^^Holland was too young to come in the room to see you so we brought her a picture of you! She loved it and kept saying “Allie, baby out!”^^
You had swallowed a lot of fluid so they had to place a tube down your nose to suck it out the first day. Despite what the nurses and Dr. told me about having a long 25 hour labor, you still never slept much! You were and still are always alert, loud and fussy, and not wanting to miss out on a party! We can tell there is a special spirit in there, you little firecracker! 🙂
^^You were known as the baby with all the hair and natural highlights in the nursery!^^
^^Your Dad’s “free meal”–of course, Mac and Cheese!^^
I will never forget the sacred, tender feelings we shared as a family in Room 4204. You truly are a miracle and we love you so much!