Today’s Friday Favorites is the story of Gemma’s arrival 💕
The day before Gemma was born, my husband made it back into town! Phew! This was a huge weight off my shoulders because I felt like the baby was starting to get close to arriving on her own. Luckily she held off until my scheduled c-section date on Friday the 20th. 😊
But before I get to that, here’s what I did the day before. I picked up my husband at the airport, and we headed home to see Ashton before his nap. The temps were single-digits out with wind chills of below-zero, so Ashton was not going outdoors. After Ashton went down for his nap, my dad came over to hangout so we could go to lunch and run errands.
We went to lunch at a Greek restaurant we love. We told the server that the baby was arriving the next day, and all the staff was excited for us. They gave us the yummiest salted Carmel chocolates on the house to celebrate! So sweet! After that we went to the mall and Target for some last minute items to be ready for the next day and also when we came home from the hospital.
After the running around we came home and hung out with Ashton until bedtime. It was really tugging at my emotions knowing it was the last time I would see him when he was the only child. He’s been my little buddy for so long, and especially the last month of pregnancy while I was less mobile. We let him stay up a little later than normal that night. ☺️
I showered my last pre-baby shower, made sure everything was packed and then had a big bowl of ice cream for my last meal (it was getting close to my cut-off time for eating and didn’t want to eat a big meal. That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it). Then it was off to bed. Ha! Who was I kidding that I would sleep?! I maybe got 3-4 hours. Maybe.
We had to be at the hospital at 7:30am, but at 4am I think I finally gave into the sleeplessness and got up. It killed me not to be able to drink anything (especially my beloved coffee). I survived on adrenaline and nerves, finished a little blog post, finished last minute packing (chargers, etc) and took a few final bump pics.
(Side note, can I just say how much I love this Evy’s Tree hoodie?! The company is incredible and makes such great pieces)
My belly was in full-force that morning! I definitely looked bigger than with Ashton (and he was a huge baby)!
Then it was time! My mom arrived to stay with Ashton and we headed out.
We got to the hospital, valet parked and made our way to labor & delivery. Wow, my nerves were taking over. It was my first c-section and fear of the unknown was taking over. I was practicing a lot of breathing techniques I learned in yoga, and it did help some.
I got set up in the triage room, had bloodwork done and hooked up to an IV. The different doctors I would see in the operating room stopped in to explain the procedures, and then we waited to get all the tests back in order to head in. I asked a few doctors if they would give me something for my nerves, but that wasn’t going to happen 😄 In the meantime my hubby got in his scrubs.
When we were all ready, the nurse walked us to the operating room (I was surprised that I walked to the room, but since they don’t give you the spinal until you’re in the OR, it makes sense). My husband took stuff to a locker and then waited outside the OR until I was ready. While he waited, I was taken into the OR with all the people I had met in the triage room. The OR was cold, but they gave me warm blankets when I got on the table. Everything happened quickly. I was given the spinal (it wasn’t bad at all) and then they quickly man-handled me to lay me flat on my back. It sets in quick, so my lower body got warm and tingly and then I couldn’t feel a thing. When they tested to see if I felt anything, all it felt like was fingertips tapping on my belly. Apparently that’s what they were hoping for, so who knows what they were actually tapping me with. 😳 The curtain was put up so I couldn’t see anything, and then my husband was brought in.
He was seated right by my head, and was told he could watch as much or as little as he wanted. What?! I told him not to watch so he wouldn’t pass out, but much to my surprise he actually watched a lot of it! I couldn’t have watched if roles were reversed. I talked some and think I just kept saying how weird the whole thing was. It probably was about 10-15 minutes when they said they were going to be delivering the baby and I would feel like the doctor was standing on me. It really did.
Then I heard her cry. It’s what I prayed for, to hear her cry to know she was okay. I started tearing up and crying a little myself. They said she was crying and not even out all the way. They also said she had a lot of hair! Next thing I know they were showing her to me on me left side. She was crying and perfect. My husband went with them while they cleaned her off, etc and then the next thing I knew he was sitting next to me again holding her all wrapped up in the hospital blanket ❤️It Was another 20 minutes or so that they put me back together, an we just looked at the baby. She was so precious. I asked my husband if she felt as heavy as Ashton did, and he said no. They wouldn’t weigh and measure her until we got to the post-op recovery area.
I don’t remember going to the post-op area, but we got there and I tried nursing. She latched on right away, crazy! After she nursed a bit, they took her to get weighed, etc. She was 8 pounds even and 21 inches of perfection.
In order to leave the post-op area, I had to be able to bend/lift my knees up. This was more difficult than it sounded. We ended up having to wait a couple hours because apparently the anesthesiologist had a heavy hand that day 😉 I’d rather that than feeling anything during the surgery, though!
Once we got to the postpartum room (where we would be for the remainder of the stay), we sent announcements and Facebook posts out to our friends and family of the baby’s arrival 💕 Soon after, visitors started coming to meet baby Gemna.
We stayed Friday-Tuesday (this time around I wanted all the help and healing time I could get before starting our “new normal”) with the wonderful nurses and care I could ask for.
The first two days I was sooooo thirsty and not very hungry. The second day was the most painful (which I had heard was the case). That day they took out the catheter and made me get up a couple times. The getting up was painful and difficult, but I kept thinking about what friends and the nurses said “each time gets easier.” And it did. Around 5am Sunday I noticed a big change for the better in pain and mobility, and after my full-octane soy vanilla latte my brother and SIL brought me, I felt pretty darn good! 😊
I had a Remicade infusion Saturday night to ward off any colitis flare-up that could occur, and so far I haven’t had any issues! Yay!!!
The rest of the stay was uneventful. Each day got easier, I was able to do laps around the hospital hallway and my appetite started to return. I gave all the nurses these little tokens of appreciation
And Tuesday morning we loaded up and headed home!
And that is the beginning of how Gemma Paisley was brought into this world!