Hunter Ray Ennis was born on April 14th, 2013 at 6:27 PM. He weighed 7 pounds and 13 ounces and was 21 inches. Josh and I are super proud parents and we think he looks like me.
Almost 2 weeks later, we are adjusting well. I am surprised at how much he sleeps now, I guess it is just more than I anticipated. Maybe God made it that way so that we, the parents, can adjust. I don’t know how long this sleepy period lasts but it definitely helps with the adjustment for now. I am still able to work a little, keep up with the house and laundry, etc while he naps most of the day. He is up throughout the night, usually 1 AM, 3:30 or so and then again at 6 or 7. But, after that he sleeps a lot of the morning too.
I did get Braxton Hicks a lot towards the end of my pregnancy. One night it was pretty bad and I almost thought it was labor pains but I guess it was just false labor. At the doctor’s office the next day I wasn’t dilated at all. This was 4 days before I gave birth.
I started getting sharp pains on a Saturday night around 11 PM. I was cleaning the house and getting the spare bedrooms ready for our anticipated guests, my parent and brother, as they planned to travel in after I gave birth. The pains didn’t subside and really began increasing and so after trying to lay down in bed, I called my husband, from upstairs and said, “I think we have to figure something out here…”
I called the Doctor and explained that sharp pains came on very quickly and were only about 2 -3 minutes apart. They weren’t full on contractions but the pains were increasing more and more. Dr. Stowell advised that we go to the hospital to get checked out. We arrived on the maternity floor at 2:08 AM after the ER nurse pushed me in a wheel chair from the Emergency Room where we entered the hospital. The nurses got me in the room, checked me out and confirmed that they were contractions and I had to wait until I was more than a cm dilated before they could give me an epidural. Luckily my doctor was in to deliver another baby and so he checked on me. I was 2-3 cm dilated by 9 AM and so he broke my water and I got the epidural by 10 AM. It was almost 11 hours of feeling contractions before I had any medication but just a small memory in my mind.
The epidural slowed down my dilating and so they eventually gave me petocin too. It was strange to not have much feeling below my waist but I was grateful to not sit through the contractions any longer. The hospital provided a birthing suite and it had a nice shower and jacuzzi. The jacuzzi and hot water felt really good while I was having contractions. I actually would fall asleep in there and wake up as the contractions came on. Once I had the epidural though, I was obviously confined to my bed.
So the rest of the day I couldn’t eat, of course, but I really enjoyed gummy bears and jello and water. I felt really thirsty all day, which wasn’t unusual with my pregnancy (not related to gestational diabetes since I didn’t develop that). The nurses were so great at caring for me and Josh. We had a few visitors throughout the day. I was a little groggy (and itchy!) from the epidural. Finally, in the late afternoon I felt a little pressure and let the nurse know. She checked me out and saw he was crowning! She said, “Well, don’t cough! Dr. Stowell doesn’t like missing his deliveries!” They called the doctor and he rushed over. He examined me and said, “Well he has a lot of hair!”. I began pushing at around 6 PM and had Hunter at 6:27 PM. Luckily it didn’t take long at all and I can’t believe I waited so long to let the nurses know I felt pressure! I didn’t realize I was so close to delivering!
It was the most magical and surreal feeling in the world to see him delivered and placed immediately on my stomach. Josh cut the cord and the nurses wiped him down while I cried and smiled at the same time. Josh was able to watch it all. Hunter didn’t cry until stimulated and then didn’t even cry when he got his Vitamin K shot in his leg. What a tought litle guy, Josh thought.
It was all such a wonderful experience, it is hard to explain. I know everyone’s birth story is different and as much as we try, we just can’t plan for it. I was fully expecting a C section was going to be an option since both of our moms had 2 c-sections. After delivery, the doctor gave me a few stitches that are healing nicely. I didn’t watch to see the placenta or any of the after birth. I was too busy admiring my newborn baby boy. Now, almost 2 weeks later, I am mostly healed up, still a little more recovering to do- but it was not bad at all. The baby is perfect- happy and healthy.
I realized there are so many things that we have here that will come in handy eventually but for the first few weeks, you really just need a car seat, many clothes, diapers and wipes galore, a way to feed him/her and a washing machine. Oh and blankets come in handy too. Hunter doesn’t cry very much but he does get angry if he gets cold. He does not like to have a wet diaper but he really doesn’t like to be changed and get exposed to cold air. He can really show off his lung capacity if it is too cold for his liking. We have a wipes warmer that has really helped with that.
We are still bathing him with a washcloth and can’t submerge him until the umbilical cord falls off. It should fall off any day now. I have learned that we should wash his face just with a warm washcloth every day especially since he is getting milk all over himself. Boys tend to pee through their diapers and so you have to point it down (I learned last night) and that saves us from so many clothing changes. Girls are probably easier that way.
Last night though, Hunter did get his first shower after puking up an entire bottle… Josh took him into the shower and I helped squeeze the Johnson & Johnson soap into Josh’s hand. Josh said “Well you’re a slippery little fella!”. Hunter actually really enjoyed the warm shower and didn’t cry at all. He peed in the shower, typical boy. Afterwards, he fell asleep in his towel immediately.
I was upset that at his first doctors appointment, on April 17th at 2.5 days old, he dropped from 7 lbs.13 ozs to 7 lbs 03 ozs– 10 ounces lost! I realize they are supposed to lose weight and it is ok as long as they are back at birth weight in 2 weeks. We had a hard time with nursing unfortunately and although we haven’t given up, I do pump and use a bottle with breast milk too. Using the bottle helped him with his weight gain and the doctor was pleased that he weighed 8 lbs 1 oz at his 2 week appointment (technically 11 days) on Thursday, April 25th.
Motherhood is absolutely a blessing and I am so thankful for all that God has given us. Our son is perfectly healthy and I couldn’t ask for anything more in the entire world. I feel myself getting protective already and emotional about his safety and well being. I drive slower, talk to him all of the time and only want to very best for our little dude. We are even enjoying our first book together.
We are looking forward to our weekend in our new home, with our new baby. It will be our first weekend alone as a family and it is going to be a gorgeous April weekend.