So, we had a baby! A healthy, full-term, flail-ly baby.
After 294 injections, cervical surgery, and 11 weeks of bed rest, my cervix developed a sense of irony and I had to be induced due to my thrombophilia on June 12 at 38 weeks and 5 days gestation. We were all extremely glad I was induced at that point, as our son, Levi Louis, turned out to be 9 lbs 2 oz and a bit over 22 inches long! Imagine if we had gone another week or two.
After such a complicated pregnancy, we had a relatively straight forward delivery – no surgery, no anything but the epidural, and from the time they broke my water to the time I had my son on my chest was less than six and a half hours. And our same OB who delivered Amy got to deliver him; it felt like we had come full circle and there were a lot of happy tears. Levi is awesome, and watching him outside the womb has been an exercise in “oh, so THAT’S why that hurt so much!” His feet are huge and his movements are strong and we are so very much in love.
His facial expressions are hilarious.
We are all so happy, and feel so incredibly lucky. To have gone from “can we make it to viability” to having a nearly 39 week, 9 pound baby is amazing. Our pregnancy journey and our experience with Amy has amplified our experiences; there are no lukewarm feelings about having a newborn or concern about not being bonded. We love him and in that regard it’s all very simple. But having a take-home baby after losing Amy is sometimes complicated, when other people are involved.
I thought people would stop asking if this was my first after I wasn’t pregnant anymore. I don’t know why, of course they don’t. Except I feel even more awkward now mentioning our dead daughter because here is this happy, squirmy newborn and I feel like the question is more “is this the first time you’re having to wake up 3 times a night to tend a crying baby” or “is the first time you’ve experienced the joy of snuggling your brand new baby,” to which the answers are of course yes. But no, he’s not our first. First living. I have to think it silently in my head, most of the time. Even family – no one wants to think about a dead baby when you’re over the moon about a living one, so in my head I add “living” and try not to correct them out loud. But no, it wasn’t actually my husband’s first Father’s Day, and Levi’s not the first grandchild, and I know it would be more cheerful if he was, but.
There is also a big debate about who he looks most like, me or Dan. Everyone is very certain, but there are a similar number of people in both camps. The only people who aren’t certain are Dan and I. I don’t know which one of us he looks most like, but the thing I don’t say is that the person Levi currently looks the most like is Amy. I got out her pictures to reassure myself I wasn’t crazy and even Dan was surprised at the similarities – their faces share all the same features, the same shape, the same hairline. Siblings, through and through. So I don’t know if he has Dan’s nose or mine or where he gets the dimple on his chin, but if you want to know who he looks like most, it’s his dead sister. I don’t say that out loud, either. Seems like it would bring down the mood.
Which I don’t want to, because we’re not! Down. But I feel like I had to say these things somewhere, other than inside of my head.
Our son is here, and he’s amazing, and we still kind of can’t believe we made it as far as we did and how lucky we are to have him.