It had been years. Kind of crazy to think about actually. We had started trying about the same time we moved to Florida. Sophie wasn't even 2 yet. And here it was, over 4 years later. Sophie was halfway through kindergarten, James was in his last year of elementary school. We had moved across the country 3 different times, and lived in 5 different houses. A business started and lost, 9 marathons completed, different assignments in church, lots of vacations, lots of memories. And all the while, we were waiting. Wanting. Hoping. For this little one to arrive.
I'll spare you the details of the why we weren't getting pregnant. But basically, I was constantly having very early miscarriages during that entire time and just didn't realize it. And then as mentioned in my previous post, His Name Was Fawkes, we had a late miscarriage the spring of 2014. It wasn't until that loss that I realized just HOW MUCH I wanted another baby. Losing him was beyond hard. And before I had gotten pregnant with him I had come to terms with the idea that we just weren't meant to have any more children, and that was okay. Our path lead some other direction I thought. But then, I got pregnant, and it stuck. And we were soooooooo excited and I realized it was what I really wanted, more than anything. And then, as you already know. We lost him. And that was just, the worst. So, we decided to do whatever it took to have a baby. And so off to the fertility specialist we went. Once again, I will spare you the details of all this. We all know how babies are made. ;) Haha.
It was the Savannah RocknRoll Marathon. November 8th 2014. I hadn't super trained for it. Just enough that I wouldn't die while running the thing. The race started and I started running. And I realized a few things... every dang step I took, my chest hurt. Like, a lot. A super lot. Also, I had to pee like no other. My mind started doing all the math and I thought, "holy crap I think I'm pregnant." Finished the race, with a 3:50 time, drove home, took a pregnancy test and boom! It was positive. Now, I had taken several positive tests over the years, and still no baby. So I didn't jump for joy just yet. I shared the news with Ben, and to be honest both of our reactions...we were scared. Not of being pregnant, but of being hurt. We were happy that we had gotten pregnant, but neither of us could get excited. I wanted to, but I just couldn't.
Morning sickness kicked in right away. And I mean RIGHT away. I thought I was just being over dramatic about it, but then when someone comes up to you and tells you you look very green, you know its for real. And it wasn't just morning sickness, it was 24 hr-shoot-me-now-cause-I-am-wishing -for-death sickness. Nauseated constantly. Could smell every. dang. thing. And it made me run to the nearest sink, garbage, or toilet. Oh man it was awful. But, as friends told me, being sick is a good sign that things are going well. And then in my mind I would think, I was pretty sick with Fawkes too. Once again, could not get excited, did not want to get hurt.
And then it happened. I started bleeding. A lot. In an instant I was angry. So angry. I couldn't even cry about it. I was just mad that once again the rug was being ripped out from under me. I was 8 weeks along. Ben and I went to the Dr. They did an ultrasound. No heartbeat. Of course. The Dr said our date could just be off and that was why we weren't seeing anything. He did see that I had an internal hemorrhage and that was what was causing the bleeding. They told us to come back in one week to see if there was any growth or heartbeat. If so, great. If not, well then this was another miscarriage.
That was a very. very. long week. I couldn't even hope or pray for this baby to make it. I couldn't even believe that that could happen for us. It had been years of loss and I just figured that was how it was going to be. I was reading the New Testament at the time. And I read the story about Peter walking on the water, and then falling, and Christ saying "Oh thou of little Faith, wherefore didst thou doubt?" and I thought, "why can't I pray for a miracle? Why can't I have a miracle?" And so, I prayed. And I called a few family members and asked them to pray for me. Ben called his family as well and asked them to pray. His parents are currently in Korea as Mission Presidents. So we literally had people all over the world praying for this little baby to make it. And I prayed. I prayed like I have never prayed before. I pleaded for a miracle.
And then, a small voice said to me "I'm still here. I'm still here." I suddenly had this tiny bit of hope, that my prayers were being answered, that this little one of ours was indeed, still here.
The day of the ultrasound came. I have never been so nervous in all my life. My blood pressure was through the roof as was my heart rate. I wanted to hope, but didn't dare to. I wanted to believe that the baby was "still here", But I also fully expected to hear the Dr say, "I'm sorry..." The Dr came in, started the ultrasound, and there, the most beautiful thing my eyes have ever seen, a tiny very fast little heart beat. I broke down. I asked over and over, "There's a heartbeat? Are you sure? There really is a heart beat?!" And I just lay there sobbing. It was one of the happiest moments of my entire life.
I carried that ultrasound pic with me everywhere I went. I would pull it out and remind myself that yes, there was a heartbeat. And yes, miracles do exist.
Christmas was right around the corner, we were basically having weekly ultrasounds to keep on eye on the internal hemmorhage and it seemed to have finally disappeared. Baby was growing as expected, so on Christmas morning we decided to tell the kids. Sophie jumped up and down and did a little fist pump while shouting "YYYYYYEEEEESS!!". She was by far the most excited about the news.
The pregnancy continued on as expected. The morning sickness started going away around 15-16 weeks, and for that I was very very grateful. We still hadn't announced to the world that we were expecting, just the family. We were waiting for the baby to be just a little further along just in case. Ben and I were still pretty paranoid about losing this one. I guess that's just how it goes after a lot of loss. Every appt I was nervous that they wouldn't find a heartbeat, or that something else would be wrong. And every appt, baby was fine. I was fine. But I still worried. Constantly.
The day of the 18 week ultrasound came. I was considered high risk due to my history, and so we got to have some high tech ultrasounds done where they can literally see everything of everything. It is amazing. We would find out the sex of the baby at this appt. I knew it was a girl, mostly because of the experience I had had at the Temple as told in my previous post. And so you can imagine how thrilled we were to see that we were indeed having another little girl. And that, this baby girl looked perfect. Everything was developing just as it should be. We decided that it was now safe to announce our pregnancy to the world, and for the first time, Ben and I felt like we could actually get excited about this little baby girl.
And so the fun began...shopping. And lots of it. We didn't own a single baby item and so had to buy everything new, but we didn't mind. It was so much fun putting together a new little nursery and picking out a crib and bedding and clothes and carseats and a stroller and list never ends.
Here I am at 18 weeks.
Here I am at 25 Weeks
And here I am at 36 weeks plus some days
I am going to tell you something right now. I was so grateful to be pregnant and to be having this baby, but oh my gosh. By this point I was way past done being pregnant. I was so so so over it. I could no longer eat more than child size portions because there just wasn't room for it. If I laid down at all ever, stomach acid just found its way right up and out. Baby girl was transverse (sideways) and had been since I was 28 weeks. So imagine a head in one rib cage and a butt and a pair of strong kicking legs in your other ribcage and imagine that for a moment. I couldn't sleep on either side because of that, and couldn't sleep on my back, so I could only sleep by propping up a bunch of pillows around me tried to sleep sitting up. It wasn't awesome. At all.
And then there were the constant labor pains that weren't doing a darn thing. Gah!!! On many occasions I had contractions lasting 1-2 minutes and were 2-3 minutes apart. This would last all night. Or for several hours during the day. The pain was just kind of constant. I was out of my dang mind miserable. I would cry to Ben almost every night that I just could not handle another day. But then, another day would come and go, and I was still pregnant & beyond miserable. For. The. Love.
My due date was July 24th. But because of one, yes one ultrasound out of so many, they had changed my date to August 1st. Even though all the other ultrasounds had her measuring at July 24th or sooner. And here in FL, they do not induce you. They just don't. unless you are very very overdue or there is an obvious problem. So, I was figuring that I would have to be pregnant until August, in the humid summer heat of Orlando, FL. Shoot me now.
So here I am, huge pregnant. Biting peoples heads off (seriously I owe an apology to a cashier at Tj Max) And once again I have contractions. All night long. So bad that I can't settle down at all. I'm trying to breath through them. They are very regular. 2 minutes apart and lasting 90 seconds. And getting stronger. If that isn't labor, I don't know what is. Around 5 am I finally decided to wake Ben up. We head to the hospital, which is 35 minutes away. We pull into the parking garage and BAM. my contractions stop. completely stop. GAH!! So frustrating. We didn't even go in, just turned the car around and went on home. It was a miserable day.
They next day I went for a good long walk. No pains whatsoever. I let my kids invite friends over and we went to the pool. At this point I was in a lot of pain. But not contraction pain. Just, my whole body just hurt. So going to the pool and relaxing sounded good, and yes it felt good. We came home and the rest of the day I just hurt. But once again, nothing regular. Nothing like a contraction, just whole body awful pain. It got to the point that I couldn't even walk. That's when Ben said, "We're going to the hospital, now." I could barely make it out to the car. On the drive over, the contractions picked up. They were coming hard and fast. We found our way to labor and delivery. I really really wish I would have had Ben video me walking into that hospital. I was in so much pain and was doing that amazing crazy breathing. And everyone, everyone, was staring at me. It was amazing.
We got to Labor and Delivery and tadaaa! I was at a 5! That means they have to admit you! YAY!! It was finally time to have this baby!!! But first, they had to give me antibiotics. 2 rounds of them, 4 hours apart. So, they basically stopped my labor and hooked me up to an IV.
Here I am right after they admitted me. I was so happy to finally be having this baby, but also ready to not be in pain. :)
And here I am I think just after they gave me that beautiful epidural. So grateful for that.
After they finished giving me the antibiotics, they started me on pitocin to get my labor going again. The contractions started up again, and I remembered Sophie's birth, and just how painful that was without an epidural and thought, why in the heck am I even doing a minute of this. So, I got the epidural. I was at a 7 at this point. Now, it was time to just wait and watch the little chart that showed how painful my contractions were and be so grateful that I was not feeling them. haha. My friend, Amy Hillis came at this point, with her daughter Maddie and my daughter Sophie. We had talked about it, and Sophie wanted to be there when baby Lucy was born. I thought it would be special. So we sat, and talked. And then, pop! like a balloon, my water broke! I have always had my water broken by the Dr, so it was crazy to feel it happen on its own. And it really just felt like a balloon popping inside of me. It was kind of cool actually.
So I told the nurse and as she came in to check me, the Dr was coming by to check on me too. I said I was feeling a little pressure so the Dr took a look and said "oh my gosh this baby is coming out, now." And sure enough, she was. The nurses worked super quickly at this point, got me ready to push, legs up and everything (such a lovely position...) And then I pushed. and pushed again. And pushed one more time.
And she was here.
Purpley red and crying and sucking on her hand she was here. My little Lucy.
And shocker, She looked just like James. I laughed and laughed and cried and laughed and cried. They put her in my arms and I held her to my chest. I couldn't believe it. She made it. She was a little beat up from the delivery, squished and red marks all over (she was my biggest by more than 2 inches) But she was here. Safe and sound and in my arms.
Welcome to the world little LucyJayne.
Born July 24th, 2015
7 lbs 12 oz
20.5 inches long
Look at Ben's happy happy face here. He loves this baby of ours. So, so much.
This. This right here, is happiness.
I love this picture. So much I love this picture. You see, I need this baby. I can't even describe it really. But when she was placed in my arms, I felt all the hurt, all the pain, all the bitterness of past years trials just melt away. Like venom being sucked from a wound, it all just left me. It was like taking a breath of fresh air for the first time. This little tiny thing, she saved me. I didn't even know I needed it, but I did. She healed whatever was still broken inside me. And I am forever grateful.
Here is the proud papa. Like I said, he loves this baby. Loves loves loves this baby.
Me and my girls. I am the luckiest.
And here we are, all settled into our room. That room was tiny and awful, but I had little baby there, so it made it all okay. She had some issues with her blood. It seems our blood got mixed somewhere in there so we had to stay a little longer in the hospital while they kept their eye on her to make sure her blood figured itself out. It did. And she's fine.
And then it was time to come home from the hospital. We put her in the car. And I cried. Cried because I thought of all the other times we had brought our babies home from the hospital and cried because I knew this was our last time bringing a baby home from the hospital.
And here she is, home. Where she belongs. Where she is needed and loved so so much. She was born on my brother's, Jay, Birthday, but we had already decided on naming her Lucy Lorraine after Ben's mom, Susan Lorraine. We wanted to still keep Lorraine and Lucy as names, but we really wanted to name her after her uncle Jay who has always been one of my best friends. So, after several days of consideration we decided on naming her LucyJayne Lorraine. And I love it. And I love her.
She is my everything.