Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Welcome, Maxwell!

(edited to remove last name)
Maxwell Corbin was born on August 24, 2009 at 6:45 AM.
I’d only been awake since 2 AM. That means that the whole labor experience was less than 5 hours from start to finish! Not too bad, although it made Keith pretty nervous! :)

I woke at around 2 AM on Monday morning with a terrible backache. By 3 AM, I couldn’t lay in bed any longer because it really hurt. By about 3:30 AM, the pain wrapped around to the front, so I decided it might be worthwhile to wake Keith. By 3:45 AM, we were pretty sure it was labor, Keith called the midwife, called Grandma & Papa to come watch Alex, and we were out the door by about 4 AM, I think. In the car, I was finally able to figure out that the contractions were two minutes apart. Let’s just say that’s one way to get a quick wheelchair ride through the hospital!

Last time around, I ended up getting induced with pitocin and having an epidural. It’s not at all what I had wanted, but that’s just how it worked out. This time, I was determined to avoid that…which is why I chose to use a midwife. I’m so grateful that it worked out the way it did, because (although fast) it was exactly what I’d hoped for! I got to start laboring at home, and I didn’t have to endure endless hours of labor in a sterile hospital room. It still wasn’t easy, of course, and I (crazily) decided that I wanted to take a break in the middle of pushing. (It’s amazing how I lose my ability to reason when I’m in pain…as if I could really take a break?!) The midwife & Keith were both very good at patiently getting me through it!

Having a midwife deliver the baby was such a different experience from having a doctor - no monitors strapped to my belly, no IV fluids (other than the antibiotic that I needed), very simple and uncomplicated, and I got to hold the baby as soon as he was born! The whole experience just seemed so much more natural to me.

Once again, when the baby was born, Keith got teary-eyed while I remained totally calm. I think I’m just so grateful that it’s over, and I am in awe at holding that little baby. It keeps me from even thinking about tears! I love that Keith gets a little emotional for moments like this – one of the things that make him so special! (He's going to strangle me for this paragraph, by the way...but I'll deal with it!)

This time around, I felt SO good right after Max was born. Honestly, if they would have let me, I would have gotten dressed, picked up the baby, and walked out the doors. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way…I was released to "boarder" status the next morning, but they wanted to keep Max for 48 hours, so we stayed until Wednesday morning.

Our first night home was MUCH easier than it was with Alex. Partly, that has to do with Max sleeping better than Alex did. I think it’s also because we knew what to expect, which makes it seem easier!

Keith was able to stay home all week, and it was so nice to have him here for Max’s first days. I’m so glad he is willing & able to do that! This time around, it was extra nice because Alex enjoyed a little extra love and playtime with his daddy during this adjustment period.

Alex has been a pretty good big brother. He loves Max, wants us to care for the baby as soon as Max cries, and likes to look at his baby brother in the bassinet. He pats him gently on the head, rubs his belly or legs, and tries to share his toys.

Alex has his moments of jealousy, though. He wants Mama to change his diapers, put him down for naps and bedtime, etc. If anyone else does it, he cries and cries. Once – and only once – he smacked the baby on the forehead. Daddy made it very clear to Alex that he will not be hitting the baby again. Now, we just have to trust that Alex remembers that lesson!

Once again, my mom was able to come and stay with us for the first week. We are SO grateful for her help! She got up with Alex when he woke during the night, she cuddled Max in the wee hours of the morning so we could get a little extra sleep, she cooked and baked and cleaned, she gave Max his first bath, she played with Alex…the list goes on.

Max is a pretty good sleeper, although he’s definitely a newborn! We have the pack n play next to our bed, and we’re trying to get Max used to sleeping in it at night. At first, he preferred to sleep on Mama’s chest…which I allow him to do for part of the night so that I can rest. Each night, though, he’s sleeping in the pack n play just a little bit longer. Last night, he slept all night (except for feedings) in the pack n play. I imagine we’ll move him to his crib in another week...which (with doors open) I can see from our bed.

To this point, Max has been a very easy baby. We don't count on it staying that way, but we can hope! He sleeps a LOT (which Alex never did...), he sleeps soundly, and he rarely cries unless he has a need. At this point, he's a perfect newborn. I told him I'm keeping him at this cuddly little age forever. Do you think he'll cooperate? Ha ha!

We’re so grateful for this sweet little boy, and so thankful that God blessed us with a wonderful, healthy little guy!

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