When I was younger, I thought my high school graduation was a big accomplishment. And it was. Then I graduated from college and really thought I was something. Then I entered and completed a triathlon. Not bad. I then met a wonderful man that is now my husband and again patted myself on the back for snagging such a good man. The next major thing was my graduation from Graduate School. This was last December. I guess I was pretty proud of myself for all I had accomplished in my 31 years. Still I felt like there was more. AND THERE WAS. 3 days ago on December 1st, 2010, I did the one thing I am the proudest of and can't imagine anything better than the birth of my daughter, Julianna. No, I did not do this on my own, but I feel I can safely say that George and I can brag about the greatest gift we've been given and how with God's blessing we created such a miracle.
I know many of you want to hear about her entrance into this world. George and I had planned a completely natural childbirth at Nativiti Birth Center in the Woodlands. My due date was December 7th. Everything looked good, and I had no complications with the pregnancy other than swelling of my feet and hands. I walked around my neighborhood on Monday, November 29th to see if that would help start labor. I was READY!! Then George and I went looking for a Christmas tree that night and I walked around several stores before we found the one we wanted. I guess it worked because I woke up at 11:30 that night in pain. First I thought I just had to use the bathroom, but after this same pain continuing for the next two hours, I thought it might be the beginning of labor. I ran a warm bath and that helped, but the contractions started getting more intense and closer together. I finally woke George up at about 2:30. I got back in the bath and started timing the contractions. It was pretty painful, but I knew it was just the beginning. At 4:30 we called my midwife, Katherine, and she instructed us to wait until my contractions were under 5 mins apart for 2 hours. At this point I was begging George to take me because I knew the car ride would be painful. He knew we couldn't go yet, so he cleaned up the house and finished packing the things we would need at the birth center. We finally left home around 6:00 and met Katherine at Nativiti. I was dilated to a 5 and definitely in labor. They gave me a shot of Nubain to help with the pain. It didn't eliminate the pain, it just made me not care as much and so I was kind of in a daze. George called family and they were beginning to make their way to the birth center. We thought Julianna would be a November baby and arrive anytime. I must be honest and say that this was the most difficult and painful thing I have ever physically done, and I complained quite a bit. I knew it was worth it though and so I continued (as if I had a choice) on what would be a total of 27 hours in labor. I was exhausted, George was exhausted, my midwife was exhausted. I was completely dilated around 9:00 and began pushing. Julianna was low, but her head was slightly turned to the side, and it made it difficult to get her out. I kept pushing, and the midwife tried many techniques to get her to turn. After midnight we realized that she wanted to be a December baby, and that I was not going to be able to push her out naturally. I had tried with everything I had, but it was time to be transferred to the hospital. Katherine arranged for me to go to Conroe Regional, and away we went. I think George drove 100 mph to get there! We arrived at 1:45, and yes to all who are wondering I received pain meds. Not an epidural but I was given a spinal in case a C-section was needed. Luckily it was not. At 3:07 a.m., the doctor helped me deliver Julianna with the use of forceps. Not my first choice, but she was here, safe, and healthy and so was I. It was amazing and surreal when they placed my daughter on my (numb) tummy and let me see her. She was perfect!!! They had to take her to the nursery, and I had to recover from the trauma of that delivery. She came back soon and I cried when I saw her. 7lbs (6lbs 15.5 oz) and healthy as a horse. She even passed her hearing screen that they do! Praise God!
George has been an angel through all of this, and having Dad and Kelly and Kathy here has been wonderful. We are adjusting to our new (exhausting) life, and just loving Julianna to pieces. Thanks to all of you who have been praying and loving us through this experience. I can't wait for you all to meet her!
Be sure and look at all the pictures on facebook. She is the most precious thing you have ever seen!!