Well, I guess it's been a while since I last posted. Long enough for me to get pregnant, carry a child, give birth to said child, and for the child to be a month old. So, yeah its been a while. And to be honest, I had just about given up on this little blog of mine. But, last night I laid in bed and thought "I don't want to forget all of this." Mainly meaning I don't want to forget all of the little things that Channing does (or that we do as her parents). So I guess what I'm saying is that I'm back, but things will be a little different around here.
So anyway, we had a baby. Should I back up a little more? Long story short- Last October, after four years of trying to have a child, Gavin and I decided to go through the IVF process. So in November we started the grueling process of shots and procedures and, praise the Lord, it worked! Nine months later, out came Baby C!
My due date was Monday, August 4th, but I just knew that Channing would come earlier. Mainly because that's what all women want to believe when they're in their 9th month of pregnancy and its hotter than Hades outside. So August 4th came and went, and I was still pregnant. And miserable. Gavin and I were walking every night (trying to move things along) and on this night, we were discussing when we thought she might come. I was shooting for Wednesday 8-6-14 because 8 + 6 = 14 (I'm such a dork) and Gavin was shooting for 8-8-14 because of 8-8.
I spent Tuesday shopping with a friend and hoping all the walking around would make Baby C come on out. That afternoon I decided to work on a chalkboard sign for the front doorway that I had been meaning to make all summer (instead I spent the summer in either a. the pool or b. the bed). The sign ended up being much more of a job than I expected and 4 hours of crouching over our living room ottoman to work on it wore me out. I finished, but my body was hurting like nobody's business!
Gavin came home, we ate dinner, and sat down to watch a movie. As we were watching the movie, I kept telling Gavin to look at how Channing was balling up and pushing my stomach up. Apparently, that was contractions. Who knew?! Gavin eventually went to bed. By this time he had been banished to the guest room. Our queen sized bed wasn't doing the job for Gavin, Maddie, Maisy, me, and my 6 pillows.
Fast forward to 2 a.m. and I wake up to go to the bathroom (for the 5000th time). When I laid back down, I noticed that Channing was still balling up and pushing hard on my stomach. And this seemed to be happening frequently. After some googling, I realized I was having contractions. I started timing them and they were 8-10 minutes apart. I knew they needed to be consistently less than 5 minutes apart. I sat up the rest of the night (because let's face it, contractions aren't too easy to sleep through) and waited for Gavin to wake up for work. When Gavin finally came downstairs I called him into the room and told him what was going on. After some discussion, he decided to go with me to my doctor's appointment at 11 a.m. and see what he said.
We headed to the doctor later that morning. I just knew something big had to have happened with all of the contractions I was having, but to my dismay I was only dilated 1 cm and the doctor told me I still had a few days. Gavin decided to take the rest of the day off with me, so we headed to lunch. At lunch we decided walking would do the trick. We'd walk the baby out. So we went to the outdoor mall. Then, we went to the indoor mall. And we walked. For five hours. Seriously. My mom even came and walked with us. But nothing happened. In fact, my contractions slowed down (only me, I tell you).
Gavin decided to stay home with my Thursday because he was scared he'd miss something. My contractions had picked back up and were more intense. But they were still around 8-10 minutes apart. Until around 8 p.m. that is. Then, the contractions began to speed up and were much more painful. They were anywhere from 3-6 minutes apart. Gavin was ready to head to the hospital, but I was taking the whole "consistently under 5 minutes apart for an hour" thing very seriously. I didn't want to go to the hospital just to be sent back home. I asked Gavin to sleep downstairs with me and time my contractions because I couldn't manage my pain and time contractions at the same time (I'd done this the past two nights).
At 2 a.m. Gavin couldn't take it anymore (seriously- he couldn't take it anymore) and he called the hospital. The nurse told him the same thing I had been saying- "consistently under 5 minutes apart for an hour." She also told him to give me some Tylenol PM so I could get some sleep (HA!) and a warm bath would probably help. Although I was leary, I tried her suggestions. Tylenol PM and 5 minutes in the tub later, I was screaming for him to get me out of the tub. All either of those had done, was made the contractions stronger.
I managed to fight through the contractions for a couple of more hours, but at 5 a.m. I'd had enough and we were brushing teeth (priorities people) and slinging bags in the car to head to the hospital. Our strategy- lie. Yes, my contractions have consistently been less that 5 minutes apart (they were still 3-6 minutes apart). All I could think is "If I get to this hospital and I'm still 1 cm dilated and they send me home, I'm gonna go psycho!" But thankfully, we arrived at the hospital to find out I was 4.5 cm dilated and they would admit me. As they were doing paperwork, the nurse said I was doing a great job breathing through the contractions and asked if I was sure I wanted an epidural. My response: "I wanted it yesterday."
By 7 a.m. I was in a delivery room and had moved from 4.5 cm to 7 cm. I received my epidural (thank God for modern medicine) and that's when everything slowed down. Well, basically stopped. They broke my water, but I was sitting pretty at 8 cm dilated and nothing was happening. By 4 p.m. our family and friends were waiting anxiously in the waiting room and Gavin decided to visit them in the waiting room. My mom was in the room with me when I mentioned that I was having some pain in my back. When the nurse came back, I told her and she said it was probably just a spot the epidural didn't reach. But that pain quickly began to spread and I realized the epidural was wearing off. I was having 4 contractions every two minutes and felt every bit of it. It wasn't long before I was death gripping the side of the bed, demanding Gavin get back now, and telling the nurse I needed more medicine immediately.
Years later (it felt like years, but was probably around 20 minutes), the anesthesiologist arrived and popped me with a good ole c-section dose epidural. As soon as it kicked in, the nurse checked my cervix and said "time to push!" Apparently, the first epidural wearing off made me progress. My response? "Give me 10 minutes. I just need 10 minutes to rest." I mean, I had been fighting contractions for the past 20-30 minutes. I was exhausted. She told me I had as long as it took her to get everything set up (which ended up being about 5 minutes). I asked how long people normally push and she told me around 1-2 hours. I knew I was too exhausted to push for that long, so when the time came, I wasn't playing around. 30 minutes later baby girl was crowning, the doctor was called in, and 1 push later she was here!.
Our sweet, smiling girl, Channing Faith Graf, was born on Friday, August 8th at 5:36 p.m. weighing 7 pounds 5 ounces and measuring 21 inches long. She is perfect!.
I can't even describe what it felt like to meet this sweet girl after 4 years of hoping and praying for her. Just amazing. We are so blessed to have her!
Soon our family and friends poured in to meet our girl and the visits continued into the next few days..
My best friend Beth even cancelled a trip out of town to be there when Channing was born..
This is my mom's first grandchild. She's pretty excited!.
Berkley is very excited to have a girl cousin!.
This is my dad's first grand child too!.
Alicia was just diagnosed with breast cancer. I'm glad they were able to make the trip to meet Channing before she started treatment..
I think Ashleigh and Lexie are excited to earn some money babysitting!
And here's a few more pictures of our girl. We are completely smitten with her!.
And Gavin was right about her birthday!