Thursday, August 25, 2005
Entrer le Bébé
A wonderful "package" arrived yesterday. My niece entered the world surrounded by the families of both her mother and her father. My mother, step-father, sister-in-law, and brother had gone to the hospital on Tuesday night after a day's worth of on-again-off-again contractions. Not much happened that night but they decided to stay under the doctor's supervision just in case they got stronger. By the morning, she was in full-fledged labor.
The German and I decided to let VanGoghGirl miss school and come along for the trip. When we got to the hospital there was already a pretty good crowd of folks waiting as well. My sister-in-law's mother, nanny, grandmother and aunt had come from Des Allemands to be there for the big moment. My sister-in-law's best friend arrived shortly after us along with her boyfriend. I had met her friend at the baby shower a few weeks ago. I was really happy to see so many people come from all over the area to be there with my brother and his wife.
Me and VanGoghGirl went to see the lady of the hour and I must say she was the most beautiful woman in labor that I had ever seen. I just know that I wasn't that serene when my daughter was making her grand entrance. Of course, the fact that I was almost completely dilated by the time I got to the hospital might have something to do with that. Anyways, my brother was standing next to his wife looking like he was in shock. He was absolutely sentimental with me and my daughter telling us how happy he was that we were going to be here for the delivery.
Well, thanks to the miracle of epidural shots, my sister-in-law didn't even feel most of her labor. The gorgeous mommy only had to push twice and suddenly she was there--the baby. How lucky is that? I'm really glad that she had a positive experience with her first delivery. While she was in labor, the baby went into distress for awhile and the doctors told her that if things didn't improve that they might have to perform a Cesarean Section. However, they were able to get the baby's heartbeat under control and she was able to have a vaginal delivery.
When we came in after the delivery, my sister-in-law was holding the baby and my brother was standing next to her looking like the cat that swallowed the canary. The baby was absolutely angelic! She had a pretty little thin layer of straight black hair on her head. Her face was the only part of her body that had any color. Her whole face was blush-colored from crying. I can't say I blame her, though. Who'd want to be thrust into such unfamiliar environs after spending all your life in a nice cushy mommy-tummy? Heck, if I could go back to being that carefree I would even now!
Her arms and hands were fairly blue. It reminded me of VanGoghGirl. When my baby was born, if she'd have been any more pale she'd have been see-through. My niece already looks like her parents. She has her father's eyes and her mother's eyes. When I looked over at VanGoghGirl she was crying and smiling at the same time. She just kept saying that she'd never seen anything that beautiful before in her life. Seeing her amazement really made me slow down and take in the whole scene a bit more too.
My youngest brother and his girlfriend arrived about a half hour after the birth. My oldest brother is a teacher now so he couldn't just leave work but he got on the phone and congratulated the new mommy and daddy. We stayed with them for a couple of hours and I even got to hold the baby. I had said to myself that I wasn't going to be disappointed if they really didn't want everyone holding the baby just yet. However, my brother saw me looking as my mother held the baby and asked me if I wanted to hold her too. I can't believe how much he has matured. I feel like I'm going to have to get to know him all over again. I think I'm going to have to get past looking at him as just my little brother. He's working full-time with a wife and a child now. That's really awesome if you compare it to his younger days. I can't wait to see where life will take him next.
VanGoghGirl came up with a nickname for the baby already. It's Ladybug. She loves ladybugs. She has ladybug pillows and ladybug toys and she even paints them sometimes. So, when she told me that this was the nickname she wanted to give the baby, I could tell that she's really already in love with her cousin. Since we found out that the baby was going to be a girl, we've talked about all of the cool things she's going to teach her. Now she's really excited and can't wait until we can get started. I'm really looking forward to babysitting and spoiling Ladybug as much as I do VanGoghGirl.
I'm really glad that VanGoghGirl hasn't expressed any jealousy. My brothers were worried that she might feel like her place was threatened now that there would be a second female grandchild/niece/great-grandchild. I think that it helps that there is a big age difference between the two girls and no matter what, my daughter will be the oldest grandchild. She thinks that makes her responsible for teaching her cousins all of the stuff she's learned so far. It's a lot of fun to watch her with my oldest brother's two kids. I have to remind her that she can't expect them to just follow all of her directions perfectly the first time she's trying to teach them how to draw or write something. She forgets that she didn't learn things instantly either. I've also told her that now she'll have someone to help even things out because it will be two boys versus two girls when all of the grandchildren go to their Mimi's house. She definitely liked that idea.
We stayed at the hospital for a few hours after the birth and then we had to leave. VanGoghGirl's school was having Open House and we needed to go and meet her new teacher. By the end of the day we were all totally exhausted and I slept more soundly than I have in weeks.