Monday, March 12, 2007

It's finally here...

It's time for me to write another one of "those" posts. The "where I was a year ago" posts. You know the "birthday letter to your kid" posts. I think I've met my quota of quotation marks now. I will "stop".

Emma Leigh Clare,

My sweet surprise.

A year ago I was in the hospital STILL in labor with you. The nurses were starting to worry me because I wasn't making very good progress. I was so scared to have a c-section. I remember laying there hooked up to so many wires thinking how this was such a terrible way to have a baby. It wasn't supposed to be this way. I had an IV giving me fluids, an epidural killing the pain, pitocin giving me contractions, a catheter taking care of bizness, an internal fetal monitor and some sort of contraction measurement dohickey, an oxygen mask to help with your heart rate, a blood pressure cuff, and a pulse oximeter.

My labor with your sisters was about 5 hours. Yours was over 12 hours. Still nothing compared to many others, but for a third baby after such fast previous deliveries, I was unprepared!

It was a dark and super stormy night when I got the call from my OB that he was transferring my induction to the other hospital. It took us well over an hour to get there. When I was finally checked in and ready to go it was midnight.

Dad spent most of the night snoring in the chair next to me. I tried to sleep but was too anxious and worried. I was thrilled at about 4am when I found Fiddler on the Roof on TV.

I called the house at 6am to tell Meemaw and your sisters that you hadn't come out yet. They were all disappointed and tired. They hadn't slept well either.

You finally came around and started to make your exit. The nurses and my doctor were commenting on the fact that the mountains outside the window were covered in snow. I was disappointed I couldn't see what they were talking about. One of the nurses said she liked the flower detail I had on my freshly pedicured toes. Then - finally - you arrived. As with both of your sisters, you had the cord wrapped around your neck, but pinked up well.

They said you had dark curly hair. Your face was super squishy looking and I was surprised by your blue eyes. You were a fast nurser. We spent the next day enjoying getting to know each other. Your sisters were so excited to meet you. Daddy was enthralled with everything having to do with you.

Of course this begins the next stage of your development. Jaundice. Then a short happy period. Then the screaming began. Reflux. You nursed or screamed all day long. I was sad to pump your little 4 week old body full of Zantac and then Prevacid, but I was desperate for you to have some relief. Some days I wasn't sure you would ever grow out of it. I had several friends that had kids with reflux, and without them talking me through it, I'm not sure how I would have made it through that time. Now there are even some days where the word reflux doesn't pop into my head. We are at the point where we are beginning to wean you from Prevacid. I pray it goes well. I can't wait to get to know you without reflux wearing you down. You have had two ear infections (you have one right now as a matter of fact) and other than the big things, have been relatively healthy.

You are such a passionate little girl. You are either sublimely content and happy or you are ferociously angry. You can go from laughing to screaming in a heartbeat. You love to dance, and you sure can get your little arm a swinging (think Russian soldier style). When your sisters are singing you try and join in which makes us all laugh. Speaking of your sisters, you sure do hold your own with them. You love watching them play and it's been wonderful watching you go from being spectator to actively playing with them.

Your favorite toys are your Bouncing Zebra (which you can know get on and off of by yourself!!) and your Roll A rounds Dino (which you growl back at!) and your little pop up toy. You love to have books read to you., your favorites are "Grow Up" and "Peek a Who".

Your nicknames are Emma Boo, Lizbat (because of your fondness of hanging upside down) and Monkey. When I get frustrated with you, I've been known to call you Emma Leigh Elizabeth. I don't know why.

You have lots of hair. It's sometimes straight, sometimes wavy and occasionally you can even get some little ringlets. It's a gorgeous honey brown color with some red highlights. You have beautiful blue eyes that are framed with long dark eyelashes. You have an amazing smile with dimples on top of your dimples. I love your little teeth, right now they are crooked and too big for your little mouth, but are quite charming.

My favorite and least favorite thing about you are the same thing. Your temper. I know one day it will serve you well. Your determination and fortitude will help you accomplish all of your dreams. In the mean time - your attitude makes me laugh as well as frustrates me. I hope your Dad and I are successful in guiding your strong willed soul down a functional path.

You are still nursing although I see the day soon where you will be weaned. Your stubborness even extends to your eating - you refused baby food early on and only wanted to each what you could feed yourself. Your favorite foods are bananas, broccoli, carrots and apple.

Sleep? Well, lets just say that you don't feel you need a lot of it. I do. Someday we'll meet in the middle. `

You are a speed crawling, stair climbing, cruising little thing. I know that your first steps are only a short while away. I'm nervous for what that will bring.

So, Emma Leigh. Your father and I spent years debating if we would have three children and know we know we were on the cusp of making the wrong decision. I'm so grateful that God took that decision out of our hands and made our lives complete with you.

Emma Leigh, you are loved. So very, very loved.

Happy first birthday,




Dori (Aviva's mommy) said...

HAPPY FIRST BIRTHDAY MISS EMMA LEIGH! I cannot believe it has been a year already.


Momma said...

So beautifully written. Having a cry!!!!!

Kristen said...

Happy Belated Birthday Emma Leigh! I can't believe you're one!