Hubs and I headed to the hospital at 1:30 am Monday, to be induced. We got there, I changed into the cute hospital gown I brought for the occasion, and the nurses got to work.
Except I was already in active labor. I had been having contractions all day and night, and they came every five minutes the entire drive to the hospital. I was already dilated to a four, so they called the doctor. He said to start pitocin at 6 am, to get my contractions stronger and faster.
They gave me an epidural around 4 am, and we settled in to wait.
Some of us were more settled in than others. Don't worry; Hubs didn't let those nurses interrupt any of his precious sleep.
Throughout the day, my doctor and the nurses checked on my progress. I stopped dilating at 5cm, so they upped the pitocin, and my doctor broke my water around noon.
But then the baby's heartrate dropped, so they backed off on the pitocin. And once again, progress stalled. After this happened a few times, and my blood pressure dropped, my doctor called it: a c-section. It was the scenario I refused to mentally prepare for, since I was dead set against it. But with a baby that wasn't happy with stronger contractions, there was really no way around it.
So Hubs changed into his scrubs... as you can see, this was at 3:30.
We were both quite nervous.
Twenty minutes later, at 3:50 pm, Carleigh Addison was here.
And she was perfect!
She was bigger than Cullen, but smaller than both Christian and Cavan.
After they fixed me up, they took me back to my room to recover. Hubs had already made it there with the baby.
I got to hold her for just a few minutes, because something went terribly wrong.
They took my epidural out in the OR, and it was supposed to take about two hours to wear off.
But it started wearing off in 15 minutes.
At first, I just felt a burning sensation in my lower abdomen, but it very quickly worsened.
Within minutes, I felt like I was being ripped open. Which I guess makes sense.
At first, I grabbed the bed rails, trying to deal with the pain. But as I gained more and more feeling, grabbing the bed rails stopped helping.
I began shaking, and crying, which progressed to full-blown sobbing, as the pain became more than I could take.
There were a lot of people in my room, and Hubs asked them all to leave, while the nurses tried to get some pain medication into me as quickly as they could. They just weren't expecting the epidural to wear off that quickly. It was so bad, I was completely tense and had my back arched off the bed. I couldn't relax my muscles enough to actually lie on the bed. After about 45 minutes of this, I first started to get some relief. With each push of the button that dispensed medication every six minutes, I felt just a little better. An hour later, and I could finally stop crying, start taking deep breaths, and deal with the pain.
At least I had this as my reward.
While I was doped up on three different pain medications, baby Carleigh got her first bath.
There I am, on my way to some relief, holding onto that button for dear life.
Grandma helped the nurse get her ready for her first photo.
All four of my babies wore this outfit for their first hospital picture.
Isn't she gorgeous???
I'm looking a little loopy.
I just wish I felt as loopy as I looked.
Hubs fell in love with her in the OR.
Actually, we both did.
He's the official burper in the family. I am almost incapable of getting my babies to burp, but he does it every time.
He's also the official swaddler. I suck at that, too.
Our first night with her was so sweet. She was definitely the best of the four while in the hospital. She hardly ever cried, and nursed and slept like a champ.
Unfortunately, Cavan got sick with fever and vomiting, so the other three were quarantined at my in-laws' house for a few days. They didn't get to meet Carleigh until Wednesday night when we came home, and then they left for a few more days. I missed them so much.
So many sweet people brought us thoughtful gifts and beautiful flowers and plants.
We brought our precious girl home Wednesday afternoon, after two days in the hospital.
She is so stinkin' cute!
Her hair is darker than the others, but otherwise she looks just like they did as newborns.
As I write this, she is now six days old. Hubs keeps saying that it's so weird how she just got here, but it feels like he's known her forever. He's so right. Lord, I love that man.
And I love this sweet little girl, too.
And this one.
When Hubs and I saw this picture, we both laughed. I'll have to find it, but somewhere we have this *exact* picture from when Cullen was born: Christian cuddling him while he's on a Boppy pillow. Unless I'm mistaken, he's even lying in her right arm, just like Carleigh is here.
The kids fell in love with her the moment they saw her.
My precious ten year-old, holding my precious two day-old.
He says she's his baby.
Which makes sense, I guess. He's the only one she talked to while in utero ("She said B, Mommy!!! She said, B!!!").
Cavan was pretty taken with her, too.
But he thinks her umbilical cord is the most disgusting thing he's ever seen!
But her super-cool binky makes up for it.
So... our little family has grown once again.
We're settling in, and trying to find our new normal.
Unfortunately, once again, my boys are sick. Cavan came down with fever today, and Cullen followed suit shortly after. So they're gone again, at my in-laws' house.
And it absolutely breaks my heart. When they're sick, all they want is to be in my lap. And all I want is to hold them and kiss them and hug them and love them.
Twice this week, I haven't been able to.
I really hope we find our normal soon.