Sunday, January 8, 2012

The Final Moments

4 more days
Rocking flannel pajamas and watching Dick Clark’s Rocking New Year’s Eve might seem like a pretty insignificant way to ring in the New Year; but as Andy and I counted down along with the crowd in Times Square from our couch, we knew this New Year's was anything but insignificant. 2012 would be the year we become parents – and it was here. It’s was getting really real now.

5 more minutes
...until the bus comes. It was a freezing morning (especially when the size of your belly prohibits you from buttoning your jacket) as we waited at the bus stop during a typical Wednesday morning commute. Only, we weren’t commuting to our respective offices, we were headed to the hospital to start our brand new jobs as parents – a fact my brain still couldn't fully compute.

That's us on the 73...yup, we ended up taking public transit to the hospital after all!

20 minutes until go-time
In the pre-op room, we suited-up for the surgery and exchanged repeated looks of stunned excitement. We marveled over the fact we were finally going to meet the mystery person who has been living in my belly. What would she look like? Who would she be? And, oh my god, what if she is a he? Well, that poor little guy would be wearing a whole lot of pink for the first year of his life!

I don't get any more pregnant that this.
Andy's all scrubbed up and looking cuter than any doctor who ever starred on ER.

"Count to 10
...and take a deep breath," the doctors told me as they administered the anesthesia into my spine. Yes, that hurt as badly as it sounds. (Thank you, hypnobirthing class for helping me to relax through that one!)

Any moment now
After the curtain was raised to block my view of my lower half, Andy joined me in the operating room. During the procedure, I felt a lot tugging, jostling and pressure but no pain (how do they do that?!). When they finally lifted Chelsea up and out for her first breath, I felt 20 pounds lighter and knew she was born.

Chelsea's first breaths

Seconds later, we heard a sound that completely blew us away – her first cry. I never would have guessed the sound of a baby crying would instantly elicit a million powerful emotions but starting with this moment, everything has changed. And actually seeing her for the first time...? Well, to describe the pride, love, shock and joy you feel at the first glimpse of your baby is almost impossible but I can tell you that meeting Chelsea brought on big smiles and tears of joy.

Our first family hug.

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