"Oh God....she's still pooping...."

Monday, December 25, 2006

A Few More Pictures

And now I'm going to go open Christmas presents that I'll have no time to play with for the next few years. . .

Happy Christmas (Hospital Stay Is Over)

More pictures of Elizabeth. I'll eventually sit down and chronicle the last few days...because it has been a bit of a roller coaster...but I'm a little too exhausted to do so. Mama and baby are a-ok, though.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

And, Lo, a Child Was Born

Welcome to the world Elizabeth Caroline Holloway!!!

Measurements: 8 lbs., 9 ozs.; 19 3/4" long; brownish hair; blue eyes (that tend to change color depending on the light); time of birth was 11:04 a.m. Eastern Standard Time.

Mama and baby are doing just fine (baby has already pooped and peed her diapers several times, and Dad has had the unfortunate distinction of dealing with the really icky poops).

I'll try to post more pictures and details later, but I'm kinda spending time at the hospital and I have yet to find an ethernet connection there to work with. Anyway, pictures attached!

Saturday, December 16, 2006

False Start. . # 1 on the Offense . . 5 Yard Penalty . . . Still Third Down

A timeline of the events of Friday, December 15, 2006 and Saturday, December 16, 2006:

December 15, 2006, 11:30 a.m.: Chris has an ultrasound. The tech is concerned because she is reading the level of amniotic fluid around the baby as a 2. The doctor steps in and instructs Chris to go the hospital.

11:40 a.m.: Frank contacted, asked by Chris to come to the hospital and sit with her while they "monitor" the fluid levels for 30 minutes. Frank is skeptical of all of this, but wants to provide moral support; he rearranges his schedule (i.e., "gotta go the hospital, don't know when I'll be back, deal with it").

11:50 a.m.: Arrival at the hospital. Despite the fact that we had a nice form filled out for them called a "pre-admission questionnaire form," the receptionist manages to ask us every question present on said form. She also manages to get Chris's birthdate wrong (an error to be discovered later when all the forms, bracelets, etc., has the wrong birthdate). This should be an omen. We are told to wait in the lobby. This should be a second omen.

12:00 p.m.: Frank has a conference call to attend, so he uses his cell phone to attend said meeting (he puts it on mute).

12:02 p.m.: Frank wants to pound head into wall as a result of said meeting.

12:15 p.m.: Still in the lobby.

12:30 p.m.: Still in the lobby.

12:45 p.m.: Still in the lobby.

12:51 p.m.: Frank's cell phone battery grows weak; call cuts in-and-out, thus making said call even greater to listen to. However, Frank can't abandon said phone call without announcing it to the rest of the group. Silent tears begin to fall.

1:00 p.m.: Still in the lobby.

1:10 p.m.: The meeting ends. Angels we have heard on high...


1:30 p.m.: Huzzah...somebody will FINALLY take us into the triage area (i.e., the "you're not really in labor, so you're not going to get a nice room; instead, you're going to lay on a bed in a common area with a bunch of very whiny women who demand a room like it's the frickin' Ritz Carlton or something").

1:40 p.m.: Will the questions never cease?

1:50 p.m.: A doctor (not our regular OB) comes in and basically announces that Chris will likely give birth by Sunday due to the low fluid levels.

1:51 p.m.: Frank has a silent case of the vapors. . .

2:15 p.m.: Nobody has bothered checking up on us for awhile. The baby monitors are now registering nothing because they got knocked askew. Women next door plead for rooms. Frank pleads for sanity.

2:45 p.m.: A resident does a pelvic exam to see if there is any "leakage" and also to check out the cervix. No leakage, and the cervix is tightly closed. Hmmmmm.....

3:00 p.m.: Baby monitors finally fixed; things all good there.

3:45 p.m.: Frank finally figures out how to operate the personal TV for our curtain area. Dang it, where's the Jerry Springer. . . and why are the volume buttons missing?

4:00 p.m.: Nothing

4:15 p.m.: Nothing

4:3. . . let's skip a bit. . .

5:00 p.m.: The room is now empty. All the whiny women got rooms. But Chris got FOOD delivered to her by an orderlie. Considering she hadn't eaten anything since 9:00 a.m., this was well-received.

5:30 p.m. : Frank leaves to check on the dog (who has now been left unattended for over six hours).

5:32 p.m.: Chris goes off for a second ultrasound

5:50 p.m.: Frank returns. . . and Chris is gone. . . Frank finally convinces a nurse that he's not crazy, and she tells him that Chris went to ultrasound and will return to the triage

5:51 p.m.: Chris returns. . . and apparently the amniotic fluid level is now at 13 (which, apparently, is awesome). ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME? HAVE WE BEEN HERE ALL DAY BECAUSE THE FIRST ULTRASOUND TECH COULDN'T FIND THE HIDDEN FLUID. DAMN COMMUNITY COLLEGES!!

6:30 p.m.: New nurse seems to float the possibility of allowing us to leave Friday night. Feel the excitement!!

6:40 p.m.: More questions (and they're the same questions. . . again)

7:00 p.m.: Blood work; if the blood work comes back okay, perhaps our doctor will allow us to go home. We'll have the results back in one hour (Omen # 3)

7:30 p.m.: Our room went from just us to having three more women complaining about not having rooms. Keep in mind that the maternity ward has had one of their busiest days ever, so the women who were, you know, actually giving birth kinda took precedent.

8:00 p.m.: Hey, it's that "1 vs. 100" show; I've been meaning to see this show. . .

8:05 p.m.: Good lord, who writes these trivia questions? Lenny from Of Mice and Men? The baby could answer these freakin' questions.

9:30 p.m.: Blood work is back; all was fine, except some enzymes on a liver test were a tad high (whatever that means). The doctor decides that we'll be spending the night for observation and some repeat tests, but if everything comes back okay, we can go home in the morning.

9:31 p.m.: Moved from triage to a suite. Oh thank god: Comfortable Chairs! A Private Room! A DVD of How to Lose a Guy in Ten Days (what?)

9:45 p.m.: Chris is allowed to eat food; Frank makes a breakneck run to Chipotle to grab food

10:05 p.m.: Oh Chipotle, you are AWESOME (keep in mind that I haven't eaten since breakfast myself)

10:15 p.m.: Anderson Cooper is one handsome man.

11:10 p.m.: Time for Chris to have a saline IV. Unfortunately, the IV went in at the wrist. . . quite painfully for Chris. . . until the vein blew. A second attempt on the top of the hand did work, but Chris literally squealed in pain. Not a good sign for the impending birth (drugs on standby, por favor)

12:00 a.m.: One more quick check-up on the dog, then sleepy time. . . .

Saturday, 3:30 a.m.: TURN THE DAMN LIGHTS OFF, YOU SADIST! Time for a fetal heartbeat check-up. Unfortunately, the baby is a bit squirmy. 45 minutes later (oh yes, 45 minutes later), after several off-and-on attempts to find the hearbeat, the nurse gives up and finds another nurse to do it.

4:20 a.m.: The other nurse finds it and tells Frank to keep applying pressure to the probe (it seems that the more pressure applied to the probe today, the better it worked at finding the heartbeat). Now, this test is supposed to last for 30 minutes. So, for 30 minutes, Frank (standing) firmly holds the probe in place.

4:22 a.m.: Right foot hurts. Rest it on stool and put weight on left foot.

4:24 a.m.: Left foot hurts. Rest it on stool and put weight on right foot.

(repeat every 2 minutes or so)

4:35 a.m.: Frank makes the comparison of what he's doing to a reward/immunity challenge on Survivor for the 27th time; in her mind, Chris makes Frank's head explode

4:50 a.m.: Success; I can stop it. At this point, though, the tech shows up for blood draws. WHY WON'T YOU BASTARDS LET US SLEEP!

5:00 a.m.: Blood draw complete; blessed sleep returns.

8:20 a.m.: Frank heads home to check the dog (who now has not had a bathroom break in over eight hours . . . he has a bladder of steel, that dog) and brush his teeth.

8:22 a.m.: Doctor pops his head in the door and tells Chris to go home.

8:40 a.m.: Frank returns, told this, and curses that he misses all the fun stuff.

9:15 a.m.: Our prison sentence is complete. An ultrasound on Monday (maybe, if the doctor can get us an appointment) and a (previously scheduled) check-up Monday afternoon.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Dr's Appointment

All quiet on the Elizabethan front. The updates are the good, bad and the ugly... The good, my blood pressure and the baby's heartbeat are all fine and within acceptable ranges. The bad, I have some swelling in my legs and may be retaining water. The ugly, well maybe not ugly but more like disheartening: I am still at less than 1 cm, so still some time (in theory) until the show gets on the road. Other doctor news is that next week he wants me to have one more ultrasound (I guess to double check the baby's size and to confirm that it is in the proper position for delivery). I go back again for another checkup on Monday morning so maybe I'll have some more interesting news by then. The doctor thinks the baby is ... well... a big-un. I tremble in fear (Frank wonders if I'm giving birth to a nuclear sub).

In work-related news, I work with a great group of people. Yesterday, we had our annual winter feast-a-paloza, and the team gave Frank, Elizabeth and I a number of incredible gifts, including a beautiful quilt, a couple of cd's of lullabies, a couple of Target cards (diapers and wipes, here we come), and a signed copy of a children's book illustrated by one of my coworker's/friend's nephew. I was so surprised, and the card that they gave us was super-sweet and homemade. I had to keep biting the inside of my cheek so I wouldn't start crying in front of everyone. I work with some really great people.

In other baby news, I have finally hit the stage where I am feeling really, really pregnant. I feel more "waddledly" when I walk, and if I sit in one spot too long, the baby lets me know about it when I stand up (to go to the bathroom again). Sadly, at this point all the studying for the test is over and it's the last five minutes before the final exam begins. So, you have the fear of the test and the bigger fear that you didn't study hard enough and the biggest fear of all -- failing the test. Granted, the test is an 18 year plus test, but that doesn't mean that the fear and apprehension are any less than a final test for anything; if anything it's greater because if you screw up a test, it's only your own life you're messing up. However, if I mess this final up, I am not only messing up my life, but also a sweet little baby's life too. Okay, I am going to stop writing now because the last line made me want to cry, and once I start crying, well stopping is hard.

(Frank -- in rebuttal to the final paragraph): Don't worry sweetie! I'll be right there for you for "the big exam," making sure you don't fall asleep again like you did during the Ethics Exam (Seriously, people, we're taking a Final Exam, and I'm dutifully writing away about legal ethics -- save your snide comments -- and I hear snoring beside me; sure enough, Chris had fallen asleep during the exam. I tap her in the ribs and remind her that -- hello -- you have an exam to finish. I still give her tons of crap about that to this day). We're in the test together, and I have a remarkable ability to bull**** through tons of things, so it's all good in the hood. So don't cry, or I'll force Marby to kiss you to death!

Doctor's Visit Today

Chris has a doctor's visit today at 4:30 (the "37 week checkup"); this one is in Beavercreek (15 miles away or so) because the local office is full. Of course it would snow today...but at least they're nothing more than flurries. Still, idiots around here automatically default into "Southern Driving" mode and forget how to function in such weather. Anyway, she'll provide updates about the visit tonight (I will pester her into writing an entry tonight detailing what went on).

D-Day is approximately 3 weeks. . . (but I mean that in only the most positive of ways; please, no hate mail).

BTW, it's Pearl Harbor Day. Sixty-five years ago today, we suffered the most devastating attack ever on American soil (at least until 9/11 came around). So, take a minute to say a silent prayer for all those lost on that terrible day, and if you see a WWII veteran. . . and there's not too many left anymore. . . thank them. I'm off my soapbox now.