Cate arrived, 38 weeks, planned c-section. And she is spectacular.
Brad and I barely slept the night before; had my counselor, very good friend & support group leader in the pre-op room with soothing music and a massage therapist (seriously - a hospital service!); my counselor who is also an RN held my hand through the entire procedure in the OR and monitored myself, Cate, and the medical staff for status and medical expertise as needed (I. Love. Her.); and other than an epidural that went up too high such that I had trouble breathing or feeling my arms, all went fine.
Except our relief was short-lived. Cate was on my chest for a few minutes, Brad held her for several, and then she was off to the nursery to be evaluated just after we arrived to our postpartum room. Brad went with. They were gone a long time. And then the RN came back to tell me they went to the special care nursery. 10 minutes later Brad returns. WITHOUT HER. And proceeds to tell me they're taking her to the NICU as a precaution because her O2 sats were only 80%.
It only gets worse from there. She was in the NICU 9 days, the first three having a really hard time, improving the last 6. She had a feeding tube but was never ventilated (thank god). We became familiar with the rhythm of the NICU, what all the bells and alarms meant. We lived and breathed by the numbers on the monitor telling us her respiratory rate, her heart rate, her O2 level. We got scared for good reason a few times. We tried desperately to believe when they told us she would be okay. I could not would not go home without my daughter and stayed at the hospital 24/7.
And she came through, she's okay, and we are home. It was not the initial glory that we'd hoped for, welcoming our living child, but you might remember I posted awhile back that a NICU stay would be okay (as would, ironically, a feeding tube but hoped to stay away from intubation) as long as we got to keep her and she would be fine. So…we got that. And we are just so so so very relieved to have brought this living perfection home.
We are gloriously busy with her, sleep deprived and all that comes with newborn parenting. Loving it, ever aware of how lucky we are to have her.
Welcome, most precious girl.