Saturday, December 8, 2012

the big week

Week 42 of the 366 project was a big one; it ended with us bringing a baby home from the hospital! It started less eventfully, however. It was week 38 of pregnancy, and I had just about completed my pre-baby to-do list. That Sunday's task was to bake some banana bread for the freezer. Since that kept me busy, the picture of the day turned out to be rather similar to the one I took when I made pumpkin chocolate chip loaves the week before.

I used my family's old banana bread recipe this time, just because I remembered it being really easy. It was indeed easy, but I've decided that I prefer the recipe from Molly Wizenberg's A Homemade Life. The texture is a bit better—less spongy and less greasy. And I could just leave out the crystallized ginger (I have before) and chocolate if I want plain banana bread. In any case, it's been nice to have these loaves in the freezer to pull out for snacks or breakfasts. I only just finished the last one yesterday.

288/366 banana bread

Steve's parents flew to SF on Monday. Steve worked from home that morning so that we could pick them up from the airport, and then he headed to the office for a meeting when we got back. The rest of us—Bruce, Bonnie, Carmen, Elsa, and I—got lunch from Papalote and ate it downstairs. I took a few pictures of Bruce and Bonnie playing with Elsa, but Elsa's a bit more active now than when they were here last time in March. None of the shots of them turned out that well, so I opted for a more stationary subject: Elsa's rabbit with the little table and chairs that Carmen found at the Alameda Flea Market.

289/366 lonely rabbit

On Tuesday afternoon, the nursery was the place to be. Carmen and Elsa came upstairs for a while, joining Bruce, Bonnie, and me. Carmen got out Elsa's old Bumbo seat and encouraged her to try sitting in it again, partly to see if she'd get stuck when she tried to stand up. Elsa actually managed to get herself out of it a few times; it took Carmen "helping" her up to get it to stick.

290/366 bumbo butt

Then there was Wednesday. It began like any other day, and then I went into labor. In the early afternoon, I had my weekly OB appointment. I was now 2cm dilated, rather than the 1cm I had been for the previous two weeks, but my doctor told me there was still a good possibility that I would be making it to my 39-week appointment the next Wednesday.

Later, I met Carmen and the in-laws for a photo shoot with Elsa in the park after her nap. (Carmen gave me the bird when I told her I was at 2cm.) Elsa had gotten a Detroit Tigers shirt and hat when it looked like the Tigers had a good chance of getting into the World Series, so we had to take some pictures of her in it. Plus, it was really nice out that day—in the upper 70s or low 80s. I got some cute shots of Elsa alone and some with the grandparents, and then we ended at the swings, where we stayed quite a while. That's probably where I was when contractions started, but since they didn't really feel much different from the Braxton Hicks contractions I had been experiencing for the last couple months, I didn't take note of when they began. I didn't even think to start timing them until I was back in the house, around 7:30pm. 

291/366 swinging with grandpa

So this is where the whole birth story comes in. (Read it all here if you missed it.) The short version is that we checked into the hospital around 11pm Wednesday night, I got the epidural at about 4am, and Evan was born at 1:09pm. I was actually glad that he waited until the next day to come, since the light in the labor/delivery room was drastically better during the day than it had been at night. I set up my camera when it was almost time to start pushing, and I let Steve take over from there. Not every shot turned out very well, but I really liked the one below.

292/366 the arrival of evan

The rest of the afternoon on Thursday was spent making phone calls to family, moving to our postpartum room on the other side of the floor, and getting the hang of breastfeeding. Luckily, Evan was pretty good at latching right away, so that was one less thing to worry about. In the evening, the whole gang came to visit: Bruce, Bonnie, Dan, Carmen, and Elsa. The adults took turns holding the baby and corralling Elsa, who "brought" Evan a stuffed squirrel as a gift.

That night, we decided to let Evan go to the nursery, rather than having him room in with us. After the long night and day we had just had, we needed a little sleep. The nurse still brought him in every couple of hours so I could feed him, but at least I didn't need to worry about him at all in between. (We kept him in our room the next night and got to hear all his squeaks and stirrings.)

Friday was a little less eventful for us. There was lots of eating on Evan's part, as well as some standard newborn tests and his circumcision, but we didn't have any visitors besides my doctor and one of the pediatricians. Steve and I decided that our room was small and crowded enough as it was, and we would be seeing the family again when we came home the next day anyway. We also had our "fancy" celebratory dinner that evening, since it was our last night in the hospital. I say "fancy," but it was definitely still hospital food, steak or not. It's nice that they try to make it special, though.

I actually didn't take too many pictures that day, because I was recovering. But I did make it out of bed long enough to take some photos of Evan on Steve's cot by the window.

293/366 one day old

Finally, we came home from the hospital on Saturday afternoon. It was a little stressful trying to get Evan dressed and into his car seat for the first time, but we managed. The one thing that didn't get put on him was his hat; it was too late once he was strapped in. Luckily, it was in the low 60s that day, so he didn't really need it for the short trips to and from the car.

The grandparents, Dan, Carmen, and Elsa met us at the house when we pulled up. Elsa got to see Evan in her old car seat, and after a quick photo op, we took Evan upstairs. Carmen and Bonnie had decorated a little with flowers, balloons, and a Tigers bib in the nursery. And on the kitchen table, there were more flowers, some fruit, and a card addressed to "Stevily." Apparently, our "Stemily" nickname had been updated.

294/366 welcoming party

We all hung out for a while in the nursery, and then we went downstairs for Evan's first pizza night. He pretty much slept through the whole thing.

1 comment:

  1. You're a dedicated photographer that's for sure. The fact that you took the time to set up the camera just before the pushing started is a hoot! And, because of your dedication, we have great pictures! I love to hear your story again and again. Thanks for sharing! BSD