Tuesday, March 30, 2010

The 3rd Week as Baby and Mom

As I type this post with one hand (Mikayla is in my other) it's hard to believe 3.5 weeks has gone by! It's even crazier seeing all the changes that are happening already. These last days were full of firsts for the baby...
- first "playdate" with three boy babies
- first trip to church (we sat in the back and when she made a little peep Dhrumil ran out with her heehee)
- first trip to NY to visit the Shah side of the family... she did great in the car
- first trip to a restaurant
- first bottle (she is not a fan but we will have to keep trying since she'll have no other option when I go back to work)
- first 4.5 hour stretch of sleeping at night!!!
- first big eyed stare and giving me a small glimpse of myself in her

Dhrumil and I are slowly settling in and trying to figure out how to keep our lives going and just adding her into it. I feel like with each day we both become more confident and it's a a good feeling.

I still have so much to learn though... one funny story... I was telling my mom this morning how Mikayla hates hats... she screams when I put them on her. Well my mom replied tough just put it on her you're the mom... DUH... this thought hadn't even crossed my mind. Yes the hat needs to be worn in the cold weather and yes now I'm the mom and I need to just make her wear it. :)

Whew one hand typing takes forever.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

28 Years...

I don't think last year when I was laying on the beach in Mexico for my birthday did the thought cross my mind that maybe I'd have a newborn next year. Yesterday was a special day with a visit from my sister and brother in law, time away with my sister to get our nails done and little surprises throughout the day from Dhrumil. By the end of the day I was a little overwhelmed at the fact that yes now all my birthdays that were once spent "alone" are now going to be spent as a mom. Amazing and crazy to think about! I know that this 28th year of my life is going to hold more in store for it than I have yet experienced and I am excited to see it unfold.

2 Weeks Old!

It feels like she's been here longer, but Friday marked 2 weeks for Mikayla. So many changes have happened in our lives in just 2 short weeks it's a lot to take in. Mikayla had a great checkup at the dr. and is in the 90% for height and 75% for weight! :) She already weighs 8 pounds 4 ounces and so that gives me a peace of mind knowing the breast feeding is working. She has been doing pretty good at night... only making noises when she wants to eat and the past two nights has gone about 4 hours which has been really nice. I'm still trying to figure out when she cries why she is crying and that can be frustrating for me, but overall she has been a very good baby and Dhrumil and I are truly blessed! :)

Monday, March 15, 2010

The Day My Life Changed

The morning after I gave birth to Mikayla I woke up super early still on an adrenaline high and had time before they brought her back to the room. I eagerly spent the next hour recalling my birth story in detail, remembering each part of it. Unfortunately my computer didn’t cooperate and it lost my story. Too exhausted to write it again I have been meaning to do this since we got home and I’m finally doing it! I hope I can recall it with the same accuracy.

** Disclaimer… pretty detailed so might not be for the faint of heart OH and it’s really long**
It all started Thursday March 4th. Little did I know as I woke up that morning what the day would hold. My parents arrived in CT on Tuesday and were eagerly awaiting the birth of their first granddaughter. Of course I couldn’t guarantee her arrival in the short window of time that they had to visit, but we were all hoping. My mom had been encouraging me to walk walk and walk and I was doing that… I also felt terrific except for the stupid itchy rash. That morning I went to the diner with my parents and then they headed off to the city to catch a Broadway show (thank goodness I declined to go) and I enjoyed a calm day at home. The whole day I was having random contractions, but I didn’t think anything of it. Dhrumil got home and we had pizza (in the back of my mind I was thinking maybe I should eat something more nutritious if I go into labor) and we hunkered down on the couch to catch a couple of my shows. While watching Greys Anatomy my contractions seemed to come more frequently, but they didn’t really bother me. After the show I kissed Dhrumil goodnight (didn’t want to watch Criminal Minds with him) and collapsed into bed ready for a good night sleep. Well that didn’t happen… contractions were coming more frequently and when Dhrumil came in an hour later I told him what was happening… I knew this was it.

At midnight I wasn’t sleeping and lying in bed was just too uncomfortable. Dhrumil decided to start timing and though I knew I should continue to sleep I just couldn’t. We discovered, though slightly irregular, my contractions were coming around 7 to 5 minutes apart! At that point I heard my parents come in from the show and popped my head out of my room to inform them I was in labor. Haha… makes me laugh now. They both smiled, acted calm and headed to bed… something I had previously asked them to do. After talking to my doula on the phone and picking another time to call her and check in I told Dhrumil to go to sleep, I filled the bath, put on music and with candles surrounding me I labored for about an hour alone in the tub. Around 2am the contractions became a little more intense and I no longer wanted to be alone. Dhrumil and I then fell into a pattern… with each contraction he would put pressure on my back or let me hang on him or do some of the other things we had practiced. In the middle of contractions I swayed back and forth just remaining focused and at peace and cracking jokes, never once letting my mind wander past that very moment and into the wide unknown of continuous contractions.
My mom came up at some point and as the contractions got more intense she offered wonderful words of encouragement. Dhrumil was amazing and our team work still blows my mind. The technique that really got me through the whole labor was using vocalization. As each contraction came I would chant or just go ooooooooo. :) All the while my dad and the dog were in the basement… my dad was praying. My mom went down for a few minutes and he kept asking… why isn’t she going to the hospital!? By 5am the doula was on her way to our house and the contractions were becoming longer and stronger. Dhrumil called the hospital and they told him I was probably transitioning into active labor and for me to take a shower and come in when I was ready. When the doula arrived I had a moment of feeling overwhelmed that this was really it. With the doula I was able to labor another 2 hours at home. During my last contractions at home I hung on Dhrumil and listened to Celtic Woman. :)

The car ride to the hospital was pretty intense and the only time I really yelled loud. Being stuck on a seat, not being able to move was horrible, but Dhrumil got us to the hospital in record time. It was 7:30am and after getting out of the car I had to lean against it to get through another contraction while a nurse ran out with a wheelchair. I asked her if I could walk in with a surprised look she said of course. Previously Dhrumil and I wanted to ask for the one room in labor and delivery that had the whirlpool, not thinking to do that at the time my nurse led me into the room and asked me to change. Going into the bathroom I noticed the whirlpool… thank you God! :) After getting on the bed and strapped into the monitor I labored through some intense contractions for the next 15 minutes. After being checked by the Dr. she told me I was 6-7 centimeters dilated! We couldn’t believe it!! After that the nurse let me get up and moving… I now understand why some bedridden woman chose drugs… lying there is awful!

*Oh quick comment about the Dr… she was actually the one in the practice that I least liked when I first met her. She had looked at me like I had three heads when I told her my goal of going natural. I must say though she ended up being great. The whole staff was… they were the key pieces that aided me in reaching my goal and they followed my birth plan to a tee!*

The rest of my labor was spent in water... first the shower on the birth ball… I would tap on the wall with each intense contraction and that really helped… strangely enough. Then I got into the whirlpool and went through transition. All the while every 15 minutes the nurse brought over a Doppler and checked the baby’s heartbeat. She didn’t even give me an iv which was wonderful. Transition was the toughest part of labor. The contractions were SO intense and I would just focus on Dhrumil’s or the doula’s eyes to help me stay in reality and get through them. Only once in the tub did I say I can’t do it anymore and the doula responded with… you’re doing it though! Dhrumil was also amazing with his encouraging words and tight handhold. When I yelled “I have to PUSH!” I was quickly ushered out of the tub and back to the bed. The nurse felt me and I was completely dilated and fully effaced and asked me to give a push. After my first push she felt the lip of the cervix still there, but my water had just broken. Though I had to stay hooked up to the monitor at that point she let me get out of bed. I swayed and leaned against the bed, Dhrumil across from me keeping me focused and the doula behind me putting pressure on my back. At one point my mom came in and I smiled and said she was coming. At another point I grabbed Dhrumil, hit him and said ITS NOT FAIR ITS NOT FAIR… to which he replied I KNOW I KNOW. Heehee. Then I was hit by such a HUGE urge to push I almost collapsed into a squat while hanging on Dhrumil. Back into the bed I went and after a couple of pushes the nurse told me to stop and wait for the Dr. WHAT!? You’ve got to be kidding me. Instead of panicking I started to sing “I Have a Maker” and Dhrumil joined in. The Dr. was prepping and Dhrumil and I were singing glories to God!

Next came the intense pushing… which surprisingly didn’t hurt. They kept saying “push into the pain” but I just pushed into the push. The two nurses were wonderful, the doula was yelling out encouraging words, the Dr. was calm and Dhrumil was ecstatic. I then heard “the baby has so much hair!” to which I guess I replied “BECAUSE SHE’S INDIAN” which made Dhrumil burst out laughing. About 30 minutes of pushing later out came my sweet baby. It didn’t hurt… it felt like that was just the obvious next step for my body to complete. They placed her on me and I yelled out “IS IT A GIRL!?” YES… phew all the pink could stay. Mikayla Rose was brought into this world at 11:05am weighing 7 pounds 9 ounces and was 21 inches long. They took her from me to clean her up and though she was crying very loud they were a little concerned because of the extra mucus she seemed to have.
The next part was the one bad part of the whole experience… I had a tear and the stitching did not feel good at all. I kept telling Dhrumil to stay with the baby and the doula held my hand through the stitching. Mikayla had to go to the NICU after I held her for a few minutes and that really worried me. After the Dr. was done I have NEVER felt so exhausted in all of my life but what trumped that was the feeling that I DID IT! I accomplished what I wanted too… I reached my goal that I prepared for the past 9 months. I kept saying I can’t believe I DID IT. It felt amazing SO amazing and I praised God for having His hand with me the whole time. The nurses were telling me they hardly ever see drug free births and though I wasn't trying to prove anything it felt good to have them cheering me on. I have never been more proud of myself for anything in my life.

On the way to the maternity rooms we stopped to push the Brahms lullaby chime that played over the whole hospital telling all that a baby just came into the world. We then stopped by the NICU and I got to truly see my daughter, all the while crying like a baby. :) My parents and sister and brother in law were all waiting for me and though I could hardly move any muscle in my body I was charged with excitement and awe. They brought Mikayla from the NICU about an hour later and she latched on right away. She had a clean bill of health and Dhrumil and I just stared at her in awe of what we had created together.
Thank you Lord for your amazing hand in all of this!

This was the most incredible experience of my life and I couldn’t have done it without my amazing husband by my side and without the people God put into my life that day. This love I feel for my child is something so new and yet something I feel I have been doing all of my life. My eyes have been opened to what my body is capable of, to what I am mentally capable of doing, to what an amazing team my husband and I are and to what a bit of heaven will feel like.

Welcome Mikayla Rose!!

Mikayla Rose was born on March 5, 2010 at 11:05 AM. She was 7 pounds 9 ounces and 21 inches long. What an amazing love and incredible blessing God has given us!

Mikayla means "who is like God" I knew the name and when I saw it in a baby book I mentioned it to Dhrumil and it was a frontrunner. After Dhrumil tried it out for a while he was sold and completely sold me on it. We settled on it and had fun calling her name when she was inside of me. Rose is after my Grandpa's sister who passed away and was a great woman. Mikayla is our sweet little rose!!