Sunday, October 17, 2010

Lydia Gray is here!

The day we've all been waiting for over the past many months came over the weekend and it was nothing short of a series of answers to prayer. Lydia Gray is here!

Here's the story:

As the doctor's calculated due-date came and went*, Jenn and I were having visions of Lincoln's labor story again.
We really wanted things to happen naturally, have a "normal" labor process, and end with a healthy, vaginal birth. But then at Jenn's doctor's visit on Thursday, October 14, they talked about scheduling induction for the following Monday. They described this process as routine and no-big-deal. Jenn and I then went to our small group on Friday evening and heard about just what the type of induction that the doctor was speaking of would entail, and we were not looking forward to it. (*The doctor calculated the due date as October 12. Jenn, with her months of charts and notes, calculated the due date as October 16. Jenn has a slight amount of satisfaction about this!)

We know that many folks were praying for us and for Lydia. Jenn and I had been praying for a long time that God would give us wisdom and clarity when it came to the birthing decisions we'd have to make. There was certainly anxiety in the back of our minds following our first experience, and the unknown of the coming delivery was weighing on our minds.

I mentioned a few posts back that I'd recently listened to Rich Nathan talk about waiting, how God's timing isn't our timing. He spoke about how it is not often that we take a request to God saying, "Fix this now," and have God simply fix it "now." And he's so right. But I also recall hearing and reading on a number of occasions that God wants us to share our concerns with Him, that He's interested in what we're interested in, and that a failure on our part to raise a concern that we may think is too small for Him is really a confession that we think He's too small for the concern. So I prayed on Friday evening that God would begin the labor process before our induction time on Monday.
I'm not saying that this all worked out as it did simply because I'm a good prayer, but certainly the LORD heard our concerns and provided for our desires.

Jenn began feeling contractions that were different from all those before on Saturday morning. We went about our weekend routine of spending time outside, as evidenced by the recent blog posts. By mid-day Jenn felt confident that Lydia would arrive by the end of the weekend. We continued to pray. By the time we got to Boo At The Zoo at 4:00pm, the contractions were coming about every 5 to 7 minutes. Then, sometime around 8 to 9, they started coming about every 3 to 4 minutes and they were increasing in intensity. In a very short period of time, they went from bearable to nearly unbearable, and that's when we went to the hospital. Jess, our Doula, was surprised how fast this period passed.

When we arrived at the hospital, Jenn couldn't talk through the contractions, they checked her and she was 6 cm dilated and 90% effaced. This was fantastic news. We had determined between the two of us (with some Godly wisdom) that if she was only 1 or 2 cm dilated then we'd move for the C-section right off the bat. We saw no use in complete exhaustion and depression. But a vaginal delivery was looking possible (we took this as an answer to the "please provide clarity" prayer.) The nurse then hooked her up to a fetal monitor, and then they determined that Lydia's heart rate was slower than it should have been. It's not an exaggeration to say that a panic ensued. Nurses were scrambling, the on-call OB was paged, an IV catheter was placed, fluids were run,
an oxygen mask was applied. Thankfully, her heart rate picked back up again. Jenn needed and asked for an epidural.

Placing the epidural required a full liter of fluids to be given, and that was taking some time. And then it took a while for the epidural to be placed because of a slight curvature of Jenn's spine. Once the epidural began to take effect (it took a little longer to help the left side than the right), labor became bearable again for Jenn, and things started moving nicely. The midwife planned to break Jenn's water once she wasn't painful through a contraction. This happened after an hour or so, and once the water broke,
it was about 20 minutes of pushing before Lydia was born. This is apparently a short period of time for pushing with an epidural. Jenn was able to feel well enough to know when to push, and that was a good thing.

Her arrival was at 2:25 am on October 17, 2010.

This entire ordeal could not have been more different than our first delivery experience. And Lydia is certainly a unique baby. She's been nursing very well and sleeping very well (of course babies sleep more in the first day), two things that took us months and a week, respectively, to experience the last time around. No two are the same.

Grandpa Doug, Grandma Paulette and Lincoln came for a visit today. Lincoln was very good holding Lydia, but I'm not sure he really understands that we'll be taking her home with us. It'll be an adjustment, but judging by how he's handled transitions in the past, it'll take some easing, but he'll be great about it.

Lincoln gave Lydia her first present,
a Pink Elephant that he picked out from Carter's,
not unlike his own Bear.

We can't wait for all of you to see Lydia. I know Grandma Laura and Auntie Em are chomping at the bit to see her, and the time will soon come.

As I write this, Jenn and Lydia are still at the hospital. I'll pick them up tomorrow. I'm certain that there will be more anecdotes to share that will come up as time goes by. It's nearly impossible to recount all of the details here, though I've tried to hit the high points. That Lydia was born healthy and that Jenn is relaxed and only mildly uncomfortable is nothing short of the LORD hearing our cares, concerns and prayers over the last two and a half years and answering our requests to Him. Praise God!


Eric and Allyson said...

Congratulations Gates family, she is beautiful and glad that things went so well!

Emily said...

All of the Hopwood's are thrilled that Lydia is here, and that things went smoothly! She is PRECIOUS! I want to see more pictures!
Love to all of you! We can't wait to see her in person. I'm not sure if I'm going to be able to wait until Thanksgiving.

Angela said...

Praise the Lord! So glad everything went well. Lydia (and Jenn) are absolutely beautiful! Congratulations to you all! We are hoping our second experience is a smooth one as well. :)

Mary Zolene said...

We are so happy for you guys and thrilled that things went so well for her arrival!! Cant wait to meet her, she is gorgeous!

emily powers said...

a beautiful testimony of God's grace and faithfulness :). she is beautiful and matt and i are so thrilled for you all!!!

Michael and Annie king said...

What a wonderful ending that is such a blessed beginning! Congratulations to you all! I think Lincoln will be a wonderful big brother to his adorable sister!

Anonymous said...

Ahh, great story. I'm so glad everything went well and everyone is doing great. She is beautiful. I'm excited to meet her! -Maria