Sunday, May 30, 2010

Harper is Here!!!

As most of you have probably heard, our little girl is here!!! These last months of anticipation finally drew to a close last Tuesday, May 25. Although things did not go quite as planned, we could not be more thrilled with the outcome!
So, to fill you in, we went to the doctor last Tuesday for our routine 39 week appointment. I felt great and everything looked good, just a little bummed that it was looking like we were going to go past our June 1st due date. My doctor noticed on the labs that my blood pressure was 120/104 which she soon chalked up to a mistake since it was so bizarre and I felt fine. We scheduled everything for next week and on our way out the door she decided to check my blood pressure again to make sure that it was indeed a lab error. After taking it 3 times and getting a different, wild reading each time, she sent us down to get admitted to have them watch me for awhile. After getting to our room and set up, my blood pressure would not stabilize and my doctor came down and said we need to go ahead and have this baby because it seemed I was in early preeclampsia. So around 10:00 am they induced labor, but said get comfortable because it will probably be a long day. Here is Nick and I shortly after the news that we were getting to met our sweet girl today!
So several hours in I start getting really uncomfortable since contractions were coming really hard and fast due to all the medications and procedures done to induce labor. I decided to go ahead and get my epidural. The anesthesiologist came and afterward I felt a little better. Here I am, still waiting:)
The pain returned not long after the epidural, and the anesthesiologist returned to try to redose the medication going into the epidural 3 times over the next few hours before stating he had no idea why this was not working. By about 6:00 Tuesday night I was so uncomfortable and we were so exhausted (yes, Nick did his fair share of work too:)), they decided to try to take out the first epidural and restart to see if it would work. This one was also unsuccessful and we were forced to plan for a natural, unmedicated childbirth. I was terrified! Thankfully, Nick was there and an unbelievable support person and at 8:48 pm we welcomed the most beautiful little girl into our family!

born 8:48 pm om May 25, 2010 weighing 7lbs 9oz and 19.5 inches long

The minute we met our sweet girl, the long, exhausting day was forgotten and an unexplainable love filled its place. This really was the most amazing experience either of us has ever been a part of, and feel so blessed that God would allow us to be a part of another one of his perfect creations.
The Bradshaw's and my mom were able to be there and meet her for the first time not long after we did. Unfortunately, my Dad had left Saturday to go to Sudan to help Samaritan's Purse with a crisis in which some of their employees had been kidnapped. We wish he could have been there, but he got to meet her on skype in the hospital the next day. Here are the proud grandparents!

We remained in the hospital until Thursday afternoon where we were flooded with love from friends and family coming to meet Harper. We have been home since adjusting to life and loving every minute of it! Here we are getting ready to leave the hospital.
Everyone told me that there is no way to prepare for the joy of motherhood. I usually took this as sarcasm because it was from sore, swollen, sleep deprived women:) But now I see there truly is no way to explain such a deep unconditional love you can feel for this new little being other than a gift from God and a demonstration of his love for us.
Thanks so much for checking on us! I will try to be more consistent and keep you updated as we settle in to life as a family of 3 (oops...5! I'm already leaving out Abby and Jovi:))!

Nick, Rachel, and Harper

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Getting CLOSE!!!

I know, I know...long time no post...sorry! The last few weeks have been so busy! We have had 3 showers, 2 weddings, finished PT school, had a garage sale, once a week doctor appointments, all while I am supposed to be "taking it easy":) It has been so fun getting everything prepared for Harper's arrival. Last post I showed you pics from my sweet Memphis shower, since then my best friends from Ole Miss and our Sunday School class also threw us showers. We have been so blessed with such wonderful friends and family to take care of us and felt so special and loved! Here is her room after with all of her goodies:

So after realizing we only have 3 WEEKS until she gets here, I figured I better get busy putting everything in its place. After several hours of sorting, folding and placing (it shouldn't have taken this long but squealing over every precious item, slows you down a bit) this is what she gets to come home to!

Other than hanging things on walls, her room is DONE...I still can't believe she is almost here! As I mentioned before, I finished Physical Therapy school last week and now am just waiting to walk across the stage at graduation May 21st. Although I have only had 2-3 days of free time, I am already going stir crazy! So I have picked up some arts and crafts:) here are some things I have been working on: (hope she has hair at some point!)

We finished up childbirth classes two weeks ago, and I guess we feel as prepared as we are going to be. And for Nick this includes keeping his eyes shut during every video. He did however pass infant care with flying colors! The husbands were given a doll and told to undress them, remove diaper, replace diaper, redress, and swaddle the baby. Nick was a pro at everything, until it cam to the swaddle. After staring at the doll a few seconds a light bulb went off in his head, as we watched him spread the blanket out and roll the child like a burrito. The instructor died laughing and made everyone stop and watch Nick's technique, as I beamed with pride:) It was so cute, and I will say his "swaddle" looked the best out of all the others! Here is him in action (sorry not very good pics):

Now for baby news! As I mentioned before we are now over 37 weeks! We spent yesterday at the doctor and got one last ultrasound. She was so squished in there and would NOT sit still, none of the pics were worth uploading. She is in the proper "go position" (as Nick calls it) and measured about 6lbs 15oz putting her in the 56th percentile. The ultrasound tech said that these guesses are usually within 1 pound either way, so she is somewhere between 6 and 8lbs most likely. We got to see a glimpse of her face, but could make very little out since she is facing my spine, it was still fun! Nick thinks she looked like she had a head of hair, I couldn't tell. I have packed a bag for her and me, the pack and play is set up in our room and the car seat is in the car. Every step makes all this more real but still somehow DRAGS on! We are just so anxious to meet her! This is us at 36 weeks, then the next is us at 37 weeks with Abby and Jovi.
Speaking of the "girls" I think they know something big is about to happen. They go into her room all the time to sniff around and I have even caught them taking naps in there. Abby even picked out a toy she wanted to borrow from Harper until she gets here. Unfortunately she has already broken it, but somehow keeps finding that same silly toy no matter where I hide it!

Well thanks again for checking in on us! Check back hopefully SOON, maybe the next post will have newborn pics!!!

We love you!!
Nick, Rachel, and Harper Bradshaw