December 28, 2015

The Story of Rhema, Part 3: The Arrival!

As with our 3 previous babies, we had at least a couple of occurrences during which we thought we might be heading to the hospital only to have the contractions wane. But July 15 we suspected we were finally getting close! I had awakened several times during the night with painful contractions but was able to fall asleep and get a fair amount of rest, considering. Ted chose to stay home from work just in case, and it's a good thing he did! While the morning was quite slow, starting around 11:30am I had a few breathtakingly painful contractions that had us scurrying to grab our bags and head to the hospital.

Rhonda was already with us, having arrived the evening of the 4th of July to be available in case of an early delivery. My mom was planning to drive out closer to the due date but had agreed to come before that weekend of the 18th, as Rhonda had planned to go to Montana for a family wedding. The timing was such that we were able to take Charis to the hospital with us, leaving Grandma in charge of the other kids. It was a blessing that she had been with us long enough to know the kids' routine, so they spent a pretty normal day at home!

Meanwhile, Ted was speeding down the highway to get us to the hospital, as my contractions were about 3 minutes apart and pretty intense. I think it was somewhere around 12:30 or 12:45pm when we arrived and took this picture:

Shortly after this we were ushered into the first L&D room (my status as being-pregnant-with-number-eight undoubtedly had something to do with this, lol), where I was somewhat dismayed to hear that I was only 5 cm dilated. Ah, well. Enough time to visit the restroom another time, anyway. The nurse who did my IV line set-up was close at hand when I tried to settle back onto the bed only to be overcome with a huge contraction. I tried to stand up to deal with the pain, and as I leaned on her arm, I gasped, "Is it possible that it's time to push already?!" Because that's what my body wanted to do!

Things happened in a flurry after that. Rhema was about ready to make her entrance, and the only thing that slowed her down was the fact that she was face up like her big brother Lucan had been! However, unlike during my labor with Lucan, I was not numb from the waist down, so I was actually able to more effectively push our little girl right out into the delivery room. It did take a fair amount of pushing, probably about 50 minutes or so. Definitely longer than I would have hoped, but when all was said and done, the natural delivery was a success, having hurt less than I remember it hurting with Kenna or Zaden. Whereas the doctor had had to use a vacuum with Lucan, we needed no other intervention with Rhema's delivery. But like her big brother, she arrived with some distinguished markings on her forehead indicating her sunny-side up arrival! (Even now at 5.5 months she has a pronounced red mark on her forehead, although we assume it will eventually fade.)

I had a minimal number of stitches, and the recovery from her face-up delivery was so much better than it had been with Lucan. I can't help but wonder if perhaps that labor and delivery would not have been so difficult and traumatic (25+ hours total with 4.5 hours of pushing) if I had not gotten the epidural with him? Ah, well, it's in the past...

Rhema and I got to enjoy some beautiful bonding time immediately after she came out. I was so thankful the staff weren't in a hurry to whisk her away and clean her up. In fact, they didn't even weigh or measure her until after she had nursed for awhile.

Welcome, Rhema Riyel!
Born July 15, 2015, 1:55pm
7 pounds, 9 ounces, 21 inches
Rhema (Greek, pronounced RAY-ma): the specific word of the Lord
Riyel (from the Hebrew Ariel, pronounced Rye-YELL): lioness of God

Because of having tested positive for Group B strep, I had to stay in the hospital 48 hours, which was honestly fine with me! It allowed us to get Rhema's lip tie taken care of, and while I didn't rest terribly well, it was at least nice to have that extra time to recover enough so that I would have the stamina to face the welcome-home herd, lol! Rhema has lots of adoring fans, that's for sure!

Big sister Charis was so thrilled to be able to witness Rhema's birth!

Proud big brothers Tobin and Arden

Grandma J...this is the first time Rhonda has been able to hold one of our babies in the hospital! The soonest she has seen any of our babies was after Lucan was born and she drove from CO to Las Vegas and saw him at about 2-3 days old.

Lucan and Zaden are pretty smitten!

Ted attended an ALS graduation dinner the night after Rhema was born. He stopped in at the hospital on his way home so he could see his girls!

My mom drove from Wisconsin right after she got the news and was able to spend a morning with us at the hospital right before we were discharged to go home.

At home there was a warm welcome for our new wee one! Kenna's words right before I took this photo, when I asked the kids to look at the camera and smile: "I'm looking adoringly down at her." Indeed, lol!

No comments: