Graysie Marie. January 19, 2017. 11:14am. 7 lbs. 8 oz. 19 3/4 inches
January 19, 2017- A day well anticipated. The day we welcomed our second child, our sweet little rainbow, our beautiful baby girl, Graysie Marie.
I went to bed on January 18th anxious, nervous, excited, very well overwhelmed with more emotions than I ever thought I would be. For two years and 17 days I gave my heart and soul to my little boy and for the following five months my arms had been empty. No child to hug, kiss, take to the park, spend my days and nights with. January 19th not only was my heart filled with love again, so were my arms. The first time I laid my hand on Graysie’s soft skin it brought back an emotional roller coaster of emotions just as it did 2 years prior when I felt her brother’s soft cheeks for the first time.
I was always so worried about bringing a second child into the world. I was afraid of being able to love two kids and show them both an equal amount of love. I was nervous that labor and delivery would feel different the second time around, that it wouldn’t feel as special. With all that we have went through the past almost 6 months, bringing a new life into the world was just as special as I had imagined.(Que all the emotions.) The same tears flowed from both Brent and I just as they did that very same day Grayson was born. That moment you see your husband cry at the birth of your child, you know he’s a keeper. I had a repeat c-section, so Brent had on his jumpsuit, mask and hair net and when I’m laying flat on a table with my head sideways it can be a little difficult to see, but those tears you can’t miss. True emotion that we had waited a long nine months for, but an even longer five months since Grayson’s passing.
Now back to the start of my day.
Brent and I woke up and got ready, me skipping breakfast- but hungry, Brent sitting beside me on the couch eating waffles that smelled delicious. 😉 He said he felt bad he was eating in front of me, but I told him he needed to eat so he wouldn’t accidentally pass out in the delivery room. We loaded up the truck and made our way to the hospital. We delivered at the same hospital we had Grayson which is about an hour away from our home. Brent and I made small talk on the way to the hospital and a few times I couldn’t look at him and I looked out the passenger window as tears fell down my cheeks. The whole morning I kept thinking to myself I just want the sun to shine today, and on our drive to the hospital the sky was so peaceful and blue.
I knew the day wasn’t going to go like I thought it would five months ago. And it ripped me in shreds. Grayson was supposed to be there the day his sister was born. I was so incredibly excited to come out of recovery and get back to my room and have Grayson come in and meet his sissy for the first time. I can picture the look on his face now seeing her for the first time. It’s now a memory I will long for, but only be able to dream of what it truly would have been like. Instead Grayson was still with us in spirit and in heart. We had a picture of him on the table in the room with us. That gave me some peace at least having his presence in the room.
We got checked in and the nurses did their normal routine-getting me in a gown, hooking me up to the monitor to listen to the baby’s heartbeat, getting my iv’s in place, starting fluids and then we waited for the doctor and anesthesiologist to come by and chat with us before we headed back to surgery. My doctor came in and touched base with us and said he was waiting for the previous surgery to finish up and once they were done we would head back. The anesthesiologist came in and shook our hands, introduced himself and like most of the nurses-many knew of Grayson and knew our story. He said, I want to let you know I’m very sorry for the loss of your son. I honestly can’t remember what else he said after that because I started crying. Dr. M kneeled down beside me and grabbed my hand and said everything is going to be okay today. He handed me some tissues and I tried to get myself perked back up because we were getting ready to walk down to the OR. A week before I had Graysie I woke up with a little cough that only affected me in the mornings when I woke up and at night when I went to bed. Well…as I am literally getting ready to walk out the door, from crying phlegm got caught in my throat and I couldn’t quit coughing, to the point it was making me gag and dry heave. I had to end up leaning over the sink trying hard to get the tingle out of my throat, but it was a continuous cough I literally could not get to stop. We probably stood there for a good 10 minutes trying to get my cough to go away, I wasn’t allowed to have anything to drink before surgery, but they finally let me take a sip of water because the coughing would not subside. They ended up getting me a wheelchair and once I got into the OR the anesthesiologist let me have a peppermint to soothe my throat. Brent and I both said to each other once we got home, we were afraid they were going to postpone our c-section until later because I couldn’t quit coughing!
Before we headed in, Brent gave me a kiss on the forehead and said see you soon. He stood outside the doors until the nurses were ready for him to head in. I got up on the table and the flood of fear went over my body. They say if women remembered what labor felt like you more than likely wouldn’t have kids again. As I sat there on the table one nurse in front of me, the anesthesiologist behind me, a few other nurses walking around getting things ready, and my doctor standing to the other side of me I began to shake with nervousness. I was anxious. I couldn’t remember what the spinal block felt like I remember feeling a slight burning sensation and then my legs and upper body begin to go numb. This time around was the exact same. I was afraid both times the needle would hurt incredibly bad because that is what I had heard from many people. However in my case I just felt a slight burning for about 10 seconds then a little poke and within just a few minutes from the breasts down I was numb. I kept leaning on the nurse in front of me and repeatedly kept asking her if I was squeezing her hand too hard. 😉
A few minutes later, Brent came in and stood at my side holding my hand. This man is brave, looking over the top of the tarp as they prepare to open me up and pull Graysie out. My team of doctors in the room were beyond amazing. With Grayson I went through about 9 hours of labor before I ended up in a c-section. During my first c-section, I was very shaky and my teeth chattered and the warm blanket they laid on me felt so good as the medicine made me a little chilly. This time around I didn’t shake and I was able to completely talk and have conversation with Brent and the doctors without my teeth in a constant chatter. At one point the room was sort of quiet and I heard the doctor say one more layer and it’s baby time and I said it better be a girl, and she better have a lot of hair from all the heartburn I had. Everyone started laughing, and then I heard Brent say here she comes. The doctor said “by the look of her head it looks like a girl, but now I’m afraid to pull her out cause if it isn’t I can’t put her back!” I said either way I’ll take it. 🙂 It blows my mind at just how quick the whole process goes. Within another minute there is my sweet girl over on the warmer with her dad, nurses, and NICU doctor doing her first set of vitals. Once they got her wrapped up they brought her over to my face so I could see her up close, touch her sweet face, and kiss her little cheek.
When I first saw her the first time I thought she looked huge! Everyone in the room threw out their guesses for what they thought she weighed I guessed 7.7 and she was 7.8 and had a head full of dark hair. I couldn’t believe how dark her hair was. Brent stood there by her side holding her hand and keeping her calm as they continued to do their assessment. The NICU doctor was doing his assessment and I overhead him say “abnormal”, but being about 5 feet away and him talking softly I couldn’t exactly understand. So when he finished up I asked him to cover over to me and I asked him what he meant by abnormal. He mentioned something about her hip being slightly loose, and said the doctor who does rounds will double check the following day. My heart sank, because that was really all of the information I got. This time around was slightly different then my first c-section. We had Graysie during the day, so she got to stay in the room while they began closing me up. Shortly before I finished up, her and Brent left to head back to the recovery room where I met them roughly 10 minutes later. Once in recovery they brought her over to me where we got to nurse for the first time. We had Grayson in the evening and shortly after he was born they took him to the nursery where Brent followed him. Brent came to the recovery room to check on me and I didn’t get to see Grayson until after I got out of recovery and into my room. I felt so much better having Graysie with me the whole time. Her and Brent did head back to the room a few minutes before me so they could give her a bath and get her cleaned up.
The whole day I felt an over abundance of emotion. I was so happy Graysie was here, but inside Grayson was on my mind. I felt so guilty and sad. He was supposed to be there. I cried tears numerous times and I don’t know if those tears were happy tears or sad tears or a mixture of both. I just didn’t feel myself all the time. Who would. Then in the back of my head I was concerned with this “abnormal hip” I was still confused about. I cried sitting in the bed because why was something else out of the unknown being thrown at us. I just wanted Graysie to be healthy I didn’t care what I had to do, I just wanted her to be okay. The following day the pediatrician did his rounds and first asked me if there was any family history of hip dysplasia, I said no and he checked her hips. Brent stood over by her as I set in the bed and listened to them as they did their assessment. This doctor too said he had a positive finding of her hip being loose and he wanted to schedule an ultrasound for later that afternoon. Again, I began crying. When you go through losing a child everything puts you into instant fear, because you never want to lose another child. I looked at Brent and said “it’s her hip, if something is truly wrong it can be fixed, whether she has to wear a harness or what not.” They ended up doing an ultrasound late that night and of course being so late we wouldn’t know any results until the following day. Fast forward to that next afternoon- everything was normal on the ultrasound! Amen. I was to the point it was going to make me sick I was so nervous. At her first pediatrician appointment that following Monday he could still hear it clicking a little, but he said not to worry most grow out of it, but we will recheck at her one month appointment.
This c-section experience has been quite different from the first. To read Grayson’s birth story, here. I recovered a lot quicker! The first time around I remember being so sore I had to walk hunched over for what felt like two weeks. This time I was off all meds by about day 5. I was really only feeling a burning sensation along my incision and a pain in one side that hurt when I would get up and down, or stood up for too long. I could stand for about 10-15 minutes then I had to sit down. I still can feel some little pains here and there, but I feel really good for 2 weeks post- partum. The worst part of the whole recovery was the Saturday morning we were in the hospital I walked down to the little cafe and as I approached the counter to tell the lady what I wanted for breakfast I had that stinking cough attach just as I did prior to my c-section. If you have had a c-section and have tried to cough or sneeze I’m sure you know the pain. Well I began coughing so hard. I had nothing to hold over my incision, a pillow to be exact. The girl kept looking at me and I literally can’t talk as I’m trying to cover my mouth and hold my stomach at the same time. She finally asks if I need some water and I shake my head yes. I thought I was going to have to have her get me a wheelchair because I couldn’t quit coughing. I hurry and pay and start to walk back to the room. I’m crying at this point because it hurt my stomach so bad. I walk in the room crying and Brent said what’s wrong are you okay. I sat down on the couch and said no I’m not okay and explained what happened. The nurse came in at the right time, at that point I hadn’t needed any strong meds, but that changed it all! Seriously keep a pillow on hand if you need to cough or sneeze, trying to hold in your incision with your hand does no good.
Graysie is a natural nurser like her brother, rooting around immediately in the recovery room! The girl loves to eat and I can’t blame her. She is the sweetest little girl and from the beginning has reminded us so much of her brother. She has the same little under eye lines, and scrunched little nose. They had the same hair color at birth and by 2 months Grayson was blonde, so we are anxious to see how Graysie changes over time.
Today our sweet little girl is 2 weeks old! I wan’t to get this post in before I forgot any little details of the day. Our hearts are full, but still missing one very important piece. I feel anxious at times knowing that our little girl has to grow up without her big brother here and that he will only be pictures to her. She will only ever know him just from our memories of talking about him. I hope one day she realizes just how great of big brother she has. She has her own guardian Angel for the rest of her life.
And the day we went home it’s like he was watching the whole time, the light shined down so perfectly on her. ❤
Thanks to my mom, for grabbing my camera and taking some pictures for us, ones I will truly cherish forever.