Ahoy! It’s a boy!

(Breast-feeding) “Ow. Insert funny joke here.”

“I feel like this could go better next time, like ‘Tollllleeeeee, it’s time to feed Laaaaaake.”

“We got clearance for discharge this morning from both of our doctors: the pediatrician and the OB attending. Neither of us looked like we were likely to imminently contract or die of sepsis from the prolonged rupture of membranes prior to his birth. We had been 64 hours since the water broke until he was delivered.

It’s difficult being on the other side of the discharge waiting game process. We had clearance but we still needed a second bilirubin screen and for it to come back within normal limits. Then we had to go through ‘how not to kill your baby’ two or three times, with different forms to sign. I melted into tears as the last straw, the car seat our generous friend had given us, was a tad too large for Lake’s tiny frame. We had no idea of how long he would be when he was born, and we had not planned to drive him home from the hospital when he was 48 hours old; we had been planning a home birth. So my Mama Bear defenses quickly rose up and I was ready to leave AMA!

The staff at Northwest Hospital had been so supportive especially Ali Lewis, MD, our rockstar on-call physician who delivered him. But after an endless parade nursing shifts, and not having been able to appreciate being outside for three days at home and two days inpatient, I was on the verge of developing ‘ICU induced delirium’ (This was my bad joke at the time, but the poor lady was just about done -ed). It was a relief to step outside, and I wept as my emotions overwhelmed me. My mom was driving us home. Times have changed: we safely arrived home while joking and reminiscing about the crib on the floor in the back of the VW van that my parents had brought me home in 38 years prior. As I excitedly and proudly gave Lake his welcome home tour, and introduced him to Mr Cat and Mr Silky, he fell asleep before the tour was halfway over. I guess it was his way of telling me that he already had been living here for 41 weeks and he was glad to be back home. We both were.”

The Morning After

LOVHello little baby.

Name: Lake Odin VanLaanen
Birthday: 5/29/16 @ 1709
Height and weight: 20 inches, 7lb and 3.4oz

“My thoughts are this: I might just edit this away, but for now: a lot of people talk about how miraculous birth is. I would not have chosen the experience myself, however, being hellbent on not having a surgical delivery, and being he seemed like he was getting pretty big to stay inside, really only left me with the one option. Keep going and push him out, strange as that was.”

“I feel broken in half and like I’ve been run over by a truck. Makes it hard to enjoy the wonder of being a new mother in the way I imagined where you can totally focus on the baby. In contrast, it was so easy to cuddle with him when he was in utero and I was all healthy. But here we are: we made it to the present moment: he’s born, and I’m recovering. He’s sleeping on my chest and the sun’s filtering through the blinds. The pediatrician just came in and said that he has time to figure everything out, just like I do.”

“We are blessed. We had an amazing birth team. Every single person contributed to the success of the birthday, and although I was continually filled with self-doubt, and wishing that I could do better during the birth process, the overwhelming feedback that was so encouraging was that I was doing a very good job and really strong (this is true, she was amazing -ed).”

“I want to say something about my husband. Who stayed with me during the entire three day birthathon. He was present and centered with me, calm, supportive and glowing with love. When I was struggling, I could look into his eyes and he would be looking at me in all those ways, and coach me: to breathe, and believe in myself. Because he was believing in me.”