Friday was the big day. And guess what... I was SICK!!!! I woke up Thursday with a sore throat and stuffy nose and thought, "Great... If I get any worse, I'm not going to get to see the baby." But, we packed our belongings and started the 8 hour drive to our destination. About an hour into the trip, drugged up with a.lka-s.eltzer plus, I started to feel better. I wasn't sure if it was the medicine or if I was just healing, but I was happy.
There is a cheap-o extended stay hotel about 16 miles from the hospital. Since we have to stay in town for about two weeks, and this place charges by the week, it was a good fit. Let me tell you... you get what you pay for. The bed is a thin little mattress sitting on a piece of wood. The air conditioner is inconsistent. And, it's very small. But, it has a little kitchen, and it works for our budget.
That night, we had dinner with A. She was in really good spirits and suggested her favorite seafood restaurant. Dinner was so good. While there, we decided to give A the present that we bought for her. It was a heart necklace that was half rubies and half crystals, with a tiny gold heart linked to it. I told her that half the heart represented her, half represented me, and the little heart is the baby. She was very gracious and put it on right then and there. Conversation flowed nicely, and we even openly talked about the adoption a little bit. We talked about the fact that she's worried about explaining it to her son, who is four. He knows there's a baby, but he doesn't know about the adoption yet. She doesn't know how to explain it to him. I don't envy her position. It must be very difficult to try to make a child so young understand how and why adoption happens.
After dinner, we all headed home for a good night's sleep. Well, we hoped for a good night's sleep. I woke up at 3:30am sicker than I'd felt the night before. I managed to get back to sleep, but woke up again at 5:30am even sicker. My nose was stuffy and runny. My head hurt. My throat hurt. I had a horrible cough. Keep in mind... This was the big day. THE day. The day that our little girl was going to enter this world. And of all the possible times for me to get sick... this is when it happens! I took my medicine every three and a half hours, and used nose spray to battle the congestion. Surprisingly, it worked fairly well, and I made it through the day without any real trouble. So, we headed to the hospital early in the morning. A had to be there at 7am, and we arrived at 9am. The surgery was scheduled for 11:30am. We were all extremely nervous. A's mom, grandma, and dear friend were all present. Conversation flowed from the moment we got there until the moment A went into surgery. Her grandma is so sweet! She reminds me a lot of my grandma. They were all very supportive, and really helpful to A at this difficult time.
Even though we were all getting along great and smiling and laughing, everyone was scared for A. At her last c-section there were lots and lots of difficulties, resulting in five surgeries, a skin graft, a horrible infection, blood transfusions, and a blood clot in her lung. There were five specialists working with her this time, and that alone made us realize the seriousness of the situation. We were praying that everything would go smoothly and she wouldn't experience any of the trauma that happened last time.
At 11:30am, the nurses wheeled A away and we said our "good lucks" and headed to the waiting room. Her mom was with her for the surgery, so me, nick, the grandma, and friend all had to wait. 11:45 rolled around... no news. 12:00... no news. 12:15... no news. We were getting a little worried at this point. We know that c-sections don't typically take very long, and since it had almost been an hour, we were starting to worry that something bad happened during surgery. At 12:30pm, a nurse came into the waiting room and called for me and nick. OMG! THIS IS IT! We rushed to the hallway to follow the nurse to the nursery, but there in the hall stood A's mom with the baby. She handed her over to us, and we all walked to the nursery together. The baby is perfect! And, to top it off, A's surgery went well; there were no complications. She was headed to recovery soon.
The nurses tagged us with bracelets. Only Nick and I could go back into the nursery. Everyone else had to go to the window. We had to hand her over right away, to be warmed, washed, rewarmed, and fed. There is one nurse in the nursery who is not very nice. She made it very clear that she preferred that we leave. She didn't want us present while she was doing what she needed to do. But, we just wanted to be with our baby. We decided to go ahead and leave and come back when everything was complete. We used this time to call our family members and let them know the baby arrived safe and sound. She weighed 6lbs. 14oz. and is 19 inches long.
We headed back up to the nursery, just in time to watch the bath through the window. Then, we headed down to visit A. She was doing well, and not in too much pain. Our day consisted of going back and forth between A's room and the nursery, where we eventually got to hold and rock the baby. All of the other nurses at the nursery have been great. They're supportive of the adoption and happy for us.
Finally, we called it a night. The lawyer called us, on the way home, and let us know that the relinquishments would be signed the next day (July 10), and told us what to do. Feeling confident and relieved, we went to bed early.
I woke up several times throughout the night, but thankfully I felt much better. My cold has gone away about 85%. We headed back to the hospital and met with the lawyer. She told us to go say goodmorning to our daughter, which we happily did. We were just in time for a feeding, and just in time to learn that she doesn't like to eat. DOES'NT LIKE TO EAT!!!! Who doesn't like to eat??? She will just let the bottle sit in her mouth. She refuses to suck. The nurses have been able to gently force feed her. We're told this is normal. She might have swallowed too much amniotic fluid. So, after a feeding battle, we headed back to the lawyer. She was great. She put our minds at ease, while still telling us about all of the things that could go wrong. She educated us about the adoption proceedings, what would happen next, etc. After about half an hour to an hour, A's attorney appeared, smiling. The papers had been signed! We are officially legal guardians. :)
We said goodbye to our lawyers and then ran to A's room to give her a great big hug. She did not see the baby after birth, and preferred not to have any time at all with her. But, she did take a little stroll to the nursery window after signing the papers to have a peek. She was in as good of spirits as one could be in such a circumstance. We talked for awhile, met more of her family, and enjoyed each other's company.
Again, our day was spent going back and forth a few times, and now we're home for a bit. We're thinking of going back to the hospital to visit the baby here in a little bit. Tomorrow, she will be discharged, and we get to bring her home (to the hotel).
Now, we just wait for the ICPC to clear so we can officially go home!
Her name means "longed for child."
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