Wednesday, July 27, 2011

William's Birth Story

(FYI: This is a little long, but I wanted to make sure I wrote it all down.)

William Edwin Gresham made his debut June 24, 2011 at 11:42 p.m. after, shall we say, an "eventful" labor and delivery.

As I've mentioned before, my body likes to spread labor out over several days and weeks. I had been having contractions (sometimes all day long) for a while, but what they call active labor never actually started. So Friday when I was having contractions consistently every 2 minutes for several hours, I wasn't surprised. Some of these contractions hurt, though, so I decided we should probably go to the hospital just to sure nothing was happening.

Cole came home around 2 p.m., we took the twins to my sister-in-law's house, and drove to the hospital. After a couple of hours there it was determined that while I was in fact having fairly strong contractions every 2 minutes, I wasn't dilating at all (which is what they look for when determining if you are in labor), so they sent me home around 5 p.m. Bummer.

We picked up the twins, took them home, fed them, and put them to bed. While doing all of that, I was still having contractions, and they were still uncomfortable. After they were in bed, I told Cole to go to a dinner his firm was having so he could just get out of the house. While he was gone, my contractions went from uncomfortable to downright painful. When he got home at 9:30 he told me we had to go to the hospital. I told him I really didn't want to go yet, but he insisted.

So I called my little sister to come stay at the house with the twins. At this point, I was still thinking that they were going to have to send me back home again and I was less than thrilled with this idea. Cole, on the other hand, was sure this was it and packed a bag in preparation.

We arrived at the hospital around 10:30, and I was in pretty intense pain. They checked me, and I was only 3.5 centimeters dilated (I had only progressed 1.5 centimeters since my appointment Monday.). I was pretty upset and started crying. Cole tried to stay positive, though, and reminded me that at least I had made progress. That meant that they would admit me; this was the real thing.

Thirty minutes later, at 11 p.m., the nurse checked me again and I was 5 centimeters dilated. At this point I was begging for something for the pain. Each contraction was excruciating. I didn't have contractions that painful with the twins until after my water had broken. The nurses told me that the doctor was on his way which I took to mean that I wouldn't get anything for pain until he arrived.

The doctor got there around 11:30ish (things started getting foggy here because I thought I was going to pass out during each contraction). He wanted to check me before we did anything. I asked him how much I had dilated and was worried that I was still at 5 after all that pain. He looked at me and said very calmly, "I think I'm just going to break your water and you're going to have this baby."


I reminded him that I did NOT have my epidural and did not intend on having this baby without it. He simply told me I could do it and would have to do it. He broke my water, and I thought I was going to lose it.

I was so scared to push, but it turns out it didn't hurt nearly as bad as the contractions. About 3 pushes later, William was born.

I absolutely could not believe he was here. It happened so quickly, and Cole and I were so unprepared. Suddenly we were a family of five.

William doesn't look very much like Cole or Ellen. When he sleeps, we see a little bit of little Cole in him, but you have to look pretty hard. He's his own person. His hair is pretty wild, so we think it might be curly.

So far William is pretty quiet. And, honestly, he sometimes gets lost in the shuffle around here. He's just so content (most of the time) that we forget he's sleeping right next to the playroom where the twins are going nuts, banging toys on the floor and laughing hysterically at each other.

Ellen and Cole are becoming a little more interested in him. By interested I mean that they want to pat (read: hit) his head and they laugh when they see Cole or me changing his diaper or feeding him.

He had his four week appointment on Friday, and he now weighs 7 pounds 10 ounces. The doctor was very pleased with his weight gain. We'll go again in two weeks (I think).

We're pretty in love with this little guy.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

We're still around

Don't worry...we're still here. We're just trying to adjust to life as a family of five.

It's truly amazing how much you can forget about having a newborn in one short year. I thought since it hasn't been that long since I had the twins that life with William would be a breeze. I was wrong. Sleepless nights and post-pregnancy hormones do a number on you. Ugh.

In reality, William is a really easy newborn. Cole and I had just gotten used to handling the twins who sleep through the night, hold their own bottles, play by themselves, don't spit up, and when they fuss we put them in the bed and they go to sleep. William does none of those things.

Plus, I know how to read the twins' cues. I know how to figure out what they want and need. William is a HUGE mystery to me. Still. After three weeks, I feel like I should know a little bit more about him, but I'm still clueless. Life with him is a huge guessing game.

I hate guessing games.

I know we'll figure each other out eventually, but we're currently in the phase of newborn-dom that feels like it will never end.

Stay tuned for more posts including

The twins' first birthday!

And more about this little guy, including a birth story.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Checking in...

First, I forgot in my last post to add the link to some pictures my photographer sister-in-law, Emily Joy, took of William. You can see them on her blog Emily Joy Designs. She did a fabulous job (especially considering the less than desirable lighting in the hospital room). I have loved looking at them and remembering our first few hours with William.

Second, I also neglected in my last post to tell y'all about William's name. We decided on this name when I was expecting the twins. Since we didn't know the genders of the twins, we had four names ready to go. William Edwin was our second boy name. William is after Cole's uncle, and Edwin is my dad's name. It's funny that Ellen's name is completely from my family, Cole Jr.'s name is completely from Cole's family, and William is a combination. Our second girl name was also a combination. We didn't really plan it that way, but I'm glad that's how it worked out.

So far we're doing well. My parents came to meet William and hang out with the twins on Saturday, but they went back to the beach for their vacation on Monday. Cole's mom and sister have been a huge help this week. They've even kept the twins overnight twice!

William's doing great. He had his first check-up with our pediatrician on Wednesday and had gained an ounce since we were discharged on Sunday. He's very easy to feed so far. I never realized exactly how difficult and frustrating feeding Cole and Ellen was until I started feeding William. The few extra weeks before birth definitely made a difference in feeding, and I am thankful for it.

He is still in the sleep newborn stage which is lovely. I am a little nervous about how things are going to go once he wakes up and realizes he's alive. Thankfully I am going to have help in the afternoons, so we should make it.

So that's us in a nutshell. More pictures coming soon.