Tomorrow will be six weeks since little June came bursting into our world. Six weeks of cuddles and kisses and 4 am feedings.
It hasn't been much of a six weeks of blogging. I have taken more time "off" from my blog, than I ever have before. I have tried to post consistently, but there have been many days when I just haven't gotten around to it. Thank you all for being patient as I try to figure out our new routine around here.
That being said, I would never forgive myself if I let this phase pass without taking the time to write down the events leading up to and surrounding June's birth. I want to record the story for history's sake, for her, for me.
And so, this is June's birth story.
It really started with our doctor's appointment on July 8. For the past three weeks I had been having weekly non stress tests, and now the doctor wanted to do a growth ultrasound to check up on the baby since she had been measuring consistently small the entire pregnancy. The ultrasound, at 37 weeks pregnant, estimated the baby at four pounds, seven ounces.
I could tell something was wrong when he was doing the ultrasound because he didn't say anything. Usually they talk your ear off, tell you everything looks normal, say how healthy your baby is going to be. There weren't any reassurances and when he left the room without a word, I looked at Greg with a pit in my stomach. Something was up.
He came back in the room a few minutes later and laid it all out on the table. There were two main problems with the babe:
1) She did not seem to be growing in my stomach at a very healthy rate. Throughout the entire pregnancy she was consistently measuring two weeks behind schedule and was not catching up. (Like a fool, I took this to mean that she would come two weeks late. Nada que ver.)
2) She was breech.
"From here, our best option is to deliver the baby sooner rather than later," explained the doctor. "We need to try to turn her, and the bigger she gets, the harder it is to turn her- the less space she has. In addition, at this point she is far along enough and healthy enough that we can deliver at any time. It may be better to deliver now and then monitor her nourishment outside the womb, that way we can ensure she is getting all the nourishment she needs, instead of not knowing for sure while she's still inside. We need to deliver by next week."
As you can imagine, it was quite a shock to us. I was literally planning on being pregnant into August- another month for sure, and the doctor was telling us we had less than week.
The doctor scheduled us another visit with the perinatologist (the ultrasound specialist) to confirm what the doctor thought. The next day, the perinatologist confirmed.
On Monday, July 14, Greg and I went to our last doctor's appointment to make a plan for delivery. We were eleven days away from her due date. The doctor looked at the results from the perinatologist and declared that the baby needed to arrive asap.
The doctor laid out the plan. We would schedule to go to the hospital within the next three days- the earlier the better. The first thing we would do in the hospital is try to turn the baby. If the baby turned, I would be induced. (Once a baby is successfully turned they go right into labor because it puts so much stress on the baby. It's safer to get the baby out as early as possible.) If the baby wouldn't turn, we would do a C section. Easy enough, right?
We talked to the scheduling nurse. She called the hospital to see if we could go in the next day. My head was in an absolute spinning frenzy trying to wrap my mind around the idea that we could be having this baby TOMORROW. Greg was nervous, but was much more calm than I was about delivering immediately. He wanted the baby here as safe and as soon as possible. (It made it extra sweet that the next day, July 15, was Greg's birthday. "Having a baby tomorrow would be the best birthday present you could ever give me," he said.)
The hospital, however, had scheduling conflicts for the next day. So it would have to be the day after, Wednesday, July 16.
One of the most stressful parts of this was that we were not in our new home like we had anticipated. Instead, we would be welcoming our baby girl in our little half packed up, one bedroom apartment. As soon as we got home we set to work getting everything ready for our baby who would be here in less than 48 hours. We scrubbed, we disinfected, we got the bassinet ready, the diapers set out, etc, etc, etc. My goal was to get everything done that day, so that the next day we could relax and celebrate Greg's birthday in style. There's no such thing as relaxing the day before you know you are having a baby.
The weekend before, setting up the stroller.
Attempting to organize the baby's clothes.
We tried our best to celebrate Greg's birthday the next day, we did, but gosh darn it, we were just so distracted I don't know that we gave the day the Umph it deserved. I booked a massage for him in the morning and while he did that I went and got my nails done. (My advice to anyone having a baby- get dolled up before you go! The best thing I did before I had my baby was get my eyelashes done and my nails done. I felt feminine and pretty in the hospital, and in the hours and days after June's birth. I know it's weird, but I swear someone should do a psychological study on the effects of feeling beautiful on women giving birth.) (Trent, you listening?!)
We went to the movie in the afternoon, and met Greg's family for dinner that night. Even now, only six weeks later, the whole day kind of seems like a blurry dream. We did our best to go through the birthday motions, but our minds were elsewhere, already at the hospital, already having a baby.
On the eve of parenthood, Greg's 26th birthday.
Last pregnant picture, taken after Greg's birthday dinner.
The hospital had told us that they would try to turn the baby at 7:00 and then either induce or go into a C section from there, so we were already preparing ourselves for an early morning. On the way home from dinner, though, the hospital called to give us extra details. "You will need to be here at 5 am" the lady said. I remember looking at the clock in the car- seeing that it was already almost 9:00 pm. Oh my gosh, I thought. This is going down in eight hours.
We tried to go to bed as soon as we got home, but I think we were both so nervous and excited and anxious that we kind of just farted around the house pretending to get stuff done, but really just filling the apartment with nervous energy. I painted my toenails. Greg took out the trash and dinked around on the computer. (I think he was making a playlist? Very important stuff to do hours before your baby comes, you know.) I packed the hospital bag. (Procrastinators for the win!) Sent an email to my sponsors saying there was no way in hell I could get the giveaway up for tomorrow, please understand. (They did.)
And then we lay on the bed. It was almost 1:00, I remember, and we both kept saying that we should be asleep. But you can't sleep when in the morning you are having a baby and when your whole life is about to get turned upside down. I knew I wouldn't see an entire night's sleep for months and I should take advantage of this one last night of sleep interrupted. But I couldn't.
As we lay there wasting the precious minutes we should be sleeping, Greg asked me, "Bon. What are we going to name her?" We still hadn't agreed on a name for our little baby, and the time to decide was quickly approaching.
"I don't know. How are you feeling about June?" June had been a name that we had both thrown around since the beginning. It had always been an option for both of us, and as other names came and went, June just kind of hung around in the background.
Greg looked over at me. "Yah. I think that's it."
"Really?" We had sweated over this decision so long, certainly it couldn't come that easily.
"I just can't see her with any other name. What do you think?"
I thought about all the names we had tossed around for months and the truth was, it felt like I was trying to choose a new name for someone I had always known by a different name. Her name cemented itself in my mind so easily in that moment, so clearly. June.
We crawled into bed, exhausted and terrified, anxious and excited. I thought sleep would never come to me, but the moment I curled myself up in the blankets, I was gone, off for one last night of parent-less sleep, ready to welcome June in the morning.
Three hours later, the alarm rang.