Friday, November 07, 2008

Snapshots from the first few days at the hospital

Surgery was set for 7:00, which meant prep was set for 5:30, which meant we had to start driving by 4:30, which meant we had to get up and throw our clothes on by 4:00. Getting up at weird hours to have a baby is good practice for when you actually get one.

This nurse was the hero of the morning when she handled Deborah's notoriously difficult veins and got her IV on the first try.

I don't know whether it's hospitals in general, or Goshen in particular, but we ran into a wide variety of nationalities during our stay. Our Anesthesiologist was Polish; the baby doctor was English, and a whole host of other nationalities drifted in and out of our days there. It was a bit like being back in L.A. — the variety and accents were wonderful. I sometimes forget how plain and white the midwest can be, and wonder what Goshen did to get so many nationalities under one roof.

Me in my moon suit, waiting for the nurse to come and let me know they're ready for me to join everyone else in the operating room. There aren't any pockets on these things, so I tucked my camera up my sleeve.

I wish I could have gone in during the prep. Deborah needed some moral support right about then, and I was doing my best when they came and whisked her away to the operating room. Fortunately, the doctor and the midwife helped comfort her while she was there.

Deborah was deprived of all kinds of things — food, water, hair pins, clothes, jewelry... but they let her keep the fuzzy socks. It was such a funny sight that I just had to capture it.

The anesthesia made her flushed and nauseous, so it was my job to keep her cool with wet cloths while Dr. Kossar added medications to her IV to combat the nausea.

It wasn't hard to peek over the drapes and see what was going on with the surgery. I've always been fascinated. But Deborah was rather scandalized at my peeking at her insides, so I didn't do it again, even though I really wanted to when the baby was being born. Deborah later reported a sensation of the baby being squeezed out of her like a tube of toothpaste, and I wish I could have confirmed or denied that impression.

The clock in the operating room was huge, and mounted about twelve feet up on the wall. Anyone in the room could see it, no matter what side of the drapes you were on. Risanna was actually born at 8:05:59. They wrote down 8:06 on the birth certificate.

Risanna was cleaned up and placed into my arms just moments after birth. They didn't quite get all the vernix off... she was a cutie anyway.

Once the sound of stapling and vacuuming was done, the drapes came down and the masks came off, and everyone was very congratulatory. They transferred Deborah back to her own hospital bed using a small conveyor belt, and we all walked out of the operating room together.

Deborah wasn't up to snuggling right away.

A few hours later, Deborah's mother arrived with Fiona and Aiden.

A great number of people have asked us what Fiona and Aiden think of the new baby. If the first meeting was any indication, Fiona thinks everything about the baby is adorable, and was loudly cooing every time Risanna did anything interesting, like blink. She proclaimed the baby very soft, "like a little chickie!" ...and I concur. Aiden, on the other hand, was just happy to see us, and ran over to show me the little car he'd gotten in his Happy Meal. Baby? Huh, OK. Hey, look at my new car!

Mere minutes after Deborah's mother left to take the kids home, my parents arrived, and spent a large portion of the rest of the day with us.

Grandma Kerr gets some snuggle time.

Grandpa Kerr gets a turn, too.

Hey, how about Mommy having a turn? Ooo, good idea.

Aren't I cute?

No, no, no, we do not want our hair washed!

OK. I'll try this sleeping thing. But just for a little bit.

One of the charming things they do at Goshen Hospital is to toast new parents with a nice, romantic dinner for two — babysitting included! One of the many little reasons we chose a hospital 55 minutes away, rather than 5.

Nighty night!


May Renaud said...

You should get a picture of the whole family together. And then send it to me... or maybe I'll just print it, whatever.

junglewife said...

Thanks for the story! Makes me think that WE should have had our girls at the Goshen hospital! Cute pictures, too. Love the fuzzy socks!!!

Anonymous said...

What a great story! Kayla's time of birth is incorrect on her birth certificate, too. She was born at 12:00 noon, which we all know is 12:00 p.m. The lady in medical records tried to convince us that noon is 12:00 a.m. until it turns to 12:01. We weren't convinced but decided to accept having an incorrect birth certificate.