This story could take awhile.
But I want to take my time in sharing it, since it's my way of recording June 21st, 2013.
This post is FULL of pictures...oh, but don't worry, I didn't include the graphic ones;)
I haven't had the chance to write it all out, because I haven't figured out a way to put Lux down without her waking up just minutes later.
So, right now, I'm wearing her in my handy dandy Happy Wrap, which is the only way she takes a nap right now, and I'm ready to finish writing her birth story.
I think back to how it all worked out, and how God just has His very perfect timing in EVERYTHING and I can't get over how it all played out amazingly.
First of all, my due date was June 19.
But baby wasn't ready to come...in fact, baby looked like she was enjoying herself right where she was at; so much so, that they had me go in the next day for an ultra sound, to see exactly what she was up to in there.
At the ultra sound, she was looking great, with a good weight, length, and looking and sounding healthy-she just wasn't showing any signs of wanting to come out.
The doctor schedule me to be induced the next Wednesday, June 26th.
Meanwhile, my family was coming in that Thursday night, and I feared that they wouldn't get to meet baby, because they were only going to be here for a few days, and I was bummed after the ultrasound that our lil girl was holding out on us and not planning on coming anytime soon.
Well, my family made it in at 12:49 AM, and it was really cool, because they hadn't ever seen me pregnant besides pics. So they all patted and rubbed my belly, talked to the baby inside of me, and told her she needed to come out. It was SO great seeing my family. We were all just so excited, talking a mile a minute, and enjoying finally all being together. (we don't get to see each other as often as we'd like cuz of the distance.)
At about 2:00 AM, as we're sitting down eating some chips and dip, and dad and Ryan are watching a recording of the NBA finals from earlier that evening, I got my first pang of pain in my back and it traveled around to the front. Didn't know what that was, so I sat down and just relaxed for a little bit.
a little while later, everyone settled in for the night and went to bed, and as the house got quieter and still, i became more aware of the pains that were traveling around my abdomen.
I didn't want to wake anyone up and alert them, just in case what I was feeling wasn't actually contractions, because I still wasn't quite sure what I was feeling. I thought it might be an aftereffect of a very spicy Thai dish I had had for lunch, but I usually can handle spicy food pretty well, so I wasn't quite sure.
after a sleepless night, i finally woke ryan up around 7, and said, "I'm not quite sure, but I think she's coming...I haven't slept all night cuz of this pain." So, we both got up, and I jumped in the shower and got ready to go.
Now, the pain really wasn't all that terrible...only once every 5-10 minutes, so I decided to make some sticky buns for my family before they got up. It was the only time I'd get to make breakfast for them if Baby did decide to show up, so I got to work at making breakfast and coffee.
My sister, Ilene, started tracking my contracions and let me know that they were getting closer and closer together.
finally, at 3-4 minutes apart, she and Ryan urged me to head to the hospital-however, I wanted to finish making the rolls so I did just that.
I knew I could finish making breakfast before going into labor!
Ryan kept urging me towards the door, and finally, once I pulled those yummy sticky rolls out of the oven, I put on my shoes and headed out the door.
(oh, and btw, the rest of the family had been alerted about my possible labor, so mom was running around getting ready, and ashley was watching me wide eyed, and the dogs were chasing each other around, and my dad had just been woken up after his long two days of driving to Iowa.)
we got to the hospital, signed in, and checked with the nurses, it turned out, I WAS having contractions and was dilated 3 cm. yay:)
So here I am in a hospital gown, so excited to be going into labor with my family here WITH me!
When we first got to the hospital, we were all laughing and talking in the delivery room, just waiting for things to progress, and with my family, everything is always really fun when we're together.
After they broke my water, the room became a little more tense as my contractions got worse and worse and I could barely talk between contractions.
I resorted to sucking on lemonade popsicles and squeezing everyone's hands as tight as I could whenever a contraction came...they all took turns, because i, though i didn't realize it at the time, was squeezing them into pain;).
I tell you, I am so blessed with the family that I have.
I wouldn't have wanted it any other way.
Each contraction that took over my body, I got the best encouragement and love and support from my family. my husband, my mom, dad, sisters...
Each time I was writhing in pain, i got told just what I needed to hear.
"You've got it Kristine."
"You're doing great...almost there."
"Kristine, You're amazing, she's almost here."
and at the time that my thoughts are just focused on getting through that one more contraction, those little bits of encouragement, hearing their voices, feeling them near me, just them being there, was exactly what i needed at those times.
When I got to 4 cm, and contractions were like 1-2 minutes apart, they made me walk up and down the hallway to try and get the baby to drop lower.
I was in complete misery.
I was so thankful for Ryan as he walked with me and each time a contraction came, I'd lean against him and rock til the contraction passed.
around 1 or 2 pm (lost track of time by that point), I was writhing in pain and couldn't even eat a jello cup or popsicle (oh, which btw, I had been inhaling, because I hadn't eaten since 7 pm the night before...and turns out, you can't eat at the hospital until after the baby comes, so i was STARVING. something about not wanting you to puke on the doctor when in labor...i don't know. lol.)
but anyways, I was at 5 cms, so they brought in this wonderful wonderful man who stuck a needle in my back and gave me the most magical medicine known to man. the epidural.
besides being hungry and fatigued (since I hadn't slept for over 24 hours at this point), I was very much enjoying the rest of the labor process.)
see how at ease I look after getting the epidural?
We were able to talk and laugh again in the room:)
I couldn't believe I was still contracting just as hard and maybe even worse than before, but I couldn't feel it!
I got a fever some point a few hours before delivering, so they hooked me up to antibiotics and kept checking on me and the baby.
at 9:30ish, they started bringing in all the equipment for the delivery, and then it all started...
all the movies and books and stories about giving birth doesn't do the real thing justice.
I couldn't believe I was actually about to meet the little girl that had grown inside of me!
so, i puked.
all of the red jello that I'd been eating all day long.
came out in an explosive projectile vomit.
but I felt oh, so much better.
I was so excited, but so tired at this point.
So tired, that one time after pushing as hard as I could without my brain exploding, I almost fell asleep! hahaha.
ok, so it wasn't funny at the time, in fact, they kept asking me if I was still with them.
Lol, I was - I was just so sleepy. Oh yeah, and hungry.
It was the ultimate coolest experience ever in my whole entire life.
I had my mom and sister in the room...I could feel my mom's hand brushing my hair back with her hand-just letting me know she was there.
Ilene was in the room taking pics, but i could hear her as she encouraged me each time I pushed, that I was so close, and almost there.
and my wonderful amazing husband, Ryan was right beside me, counting through the pushes, holding on to me, and loving me through all of this.
It was all just what I needed until that very. last. push.
and then we heard the coolest sound ever.
an absolutely gorgeous cry fill the air, and i heard, "she's crying! she can go to mama!"
I was so fatigued, but I remember what I could hear.
I heard my mom and sister crying happy tears, as they just saw the miracle of life enter this world.
I could hear our doctor saying that our baby looked good.
I could hear the nurses quickly get baby from the bottom of the bed and grab the hat and blanket.
and then they placed her on my chest.
the most beautiful little person in the world.
her deep dark eyes were open as she searched this brand new big open world.
her cry halted to a stop as she looked up at my face.
in between my tears of joy, i looked over at this little girl's daddy, beaming proudly down at both of us.
I looked at the hat that covered her full head of hair.
her arms that were flailing back and forth.
She was beautiful.
she was perfect.
and she was ours.
Lux Ann Brandenberger.
Lux, which is Greek for "Light," which we pray one day she will follow Psalm 27:1 - "The Lord is my light and my salvation, whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life, of whom shall I be afraid?"
Ann, named after me...my first name being Kristine Ann, but Ann is her middle name, not first.
it was incredible.
I was looking at the very gift God had given us 40 weeks prior.
I was finally holding her in my arms, and looking at that sweet little face.
6 lbs 10 ounces of an absolute miracle.
look at that pucker;)
After cleaning things up, they congratulated my dad and sister into the room to see the new member of the family.
Auntie Ashley's expression is priceless:)
Auntie Ilene got to see her come into the world:)
she did an awesome job documenting it too!
Lolo, Daddy, and Lola with Lux.
Proud Lolo and Lola.
Meeting Auntie Ash.
Meeting Auntie Ilene.
As happy as could be with my 6 lb bundle of joy:)
Our first family photo:) (minus Alexio)
After that, I requested my burger with the works, chocolate milk, fruit bowl, fries, side salad, and juice.
After over 27 hours of not eating anything, I stuffed my face.
I figured, I earned it.;)
It was around 1 AM when my family went back to our house.
Around 2 AM that the nurses wanted to show us how to give her a bath.
Around 3 AM, we got settled into a room.
Around 4 AM, Ryan was able to fall asleep...and the nurses brought Lux in to be fed.
Around 6, they brought her back in to try again.
And then a nurse came in to draw blood.
and then my doctor came in to check on me. and push on my belly. (which was probably the worse part when they'd push on my belly to get whatever was in there, out.)
So, there we go.
I actually didn't sleep for over 72 hours.
Between nurses and doctors that kept coming in and checking on me, adrenaline, and then in the day time with visitors and the excitement of my family being here, I just didn't find myself sleepy.
Needless to say, I still haven't caught up on sleep.
And, I don't know when I will.
But I'm thankful.
So so so thankful.
Thankful for the gift God gave us.
Thankful my family got here an hour before I started contracting.
Thankful for my supportive husband, who is oh SO attractive, especially when he's got his little girl in his arms.
I'm just amazed with how much of God's goodness I got to witness in just a day's time.
June 21, 2013.
I won't ever forget it!