Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Happy Birthday SJ!

Well she's one year old. I can't believe it! Where did the time go? It just seems like yesterday. So bear with me as I remember (in more detail than you probably care to know) ... February 12th, 2007 6:30 am - I drove myself to the hospital, checked myself in, they placed an IV, started Pitocin, and I received an epidural. All before Wes even showed up. No worries - this was all part of the plan. For several reasons including not wanting to burden a babysitter that early in the morning and the fact that it was Dads and Donuts Day at the kids school, we decided it would be best if I started the process alone. At first I thought - what? No husband during the beginning hours of labor? It's just not how it's done! But the more we discussed it - it was only logical. Anyway, it wasn't a big deal at all. Wes showed up a few hours later and it all worked out. And a few hours after that, Sarah Jane was born. It was probably the most pleasant delivery of all my kids. Seriously! No complications, not too painful - but still just enough work to make me feel like I accomplished something (don't worry - the hard part was yet to come).

It was a nice day with visits from family and friends. Sarah Jane was beautiful with quite a bit of brown hair. She was small - just 6 lb 12 oz. I was just keeping my fingers crossed at this point thinking - maybe she will be a good baby. Isaac was a dream baby but my other girls were little fuss budgets (what does that phrase mean, anyway? Oh well). But we would have to wait and see! We did have a little scare at the hospital. Wes, my kids and parents were visiting - the baby was laying on the bed and the kids were trying to get her to suck on a pacifier. Suddenly she started choking, Wes lifted her off the bed and she started to turn blue. I was trying to stay calm in front of the kids suggesting to Wes that maybe he take her down to the nursery to do whatever he felt like needed to be done. He was patting her quite hard on the back and suctioning her out with the bulb suction (he's a pediatrician in case anyone who is reading this doesn't know). She just was not clearing whatever was preventing her from taking a breath! It was a scary and tense few minutes. After enough suctioning and stimulation she finally took a breath. Whew. That night as I watching the news I heard about a shooting a Trolley Square...

We tired to be so careful about the kids washing their hands and using hand sanitizer before they touched the baby, but at about 1 and 1/2 weeks when the baby had a little cough with some noisy breathing - we dreaded the worst. It turned out that she had Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) and when we took her into the clinic, her oxygen saturation was low enough that normally she would have been admitted to the hospital. However, Wes was able to arrange for home oxygen administration and suctioning. It was a frightening and stressful experience. There was fasting and prayers and blessings. I was also most grateful that my pediatrician husband was taking care of her every step of the way. It was so comforting to have him around during those nights when she would cough and cough and start to turn blue. I fretfully asked him once in the wee hours of the morning - what will we do if she can't clear the secretions? He calmly stated - we will start rescue breaths and call 911. Yikes! It took about two weeks but she finally pulled through.


After all that wishing and hoping, she turned out to be a fussy baby. Oh well. We got through it. It only lasted a few months but those were some long days and long nights! I started to feel bad for my other kids because I was such a wreck and felt like I was neglecting them. I would cry and apologize and tell them I promised things would get better (ahhh the horomonal post-partum woman!). And they did get better. After about month four Sarah Jane turned into a delightful baby! She started to laugh and babble and play with toys and the kids really started to pay attention! Hey she's pretty cute! Oh they love her to death and that has been the most fun of all. After that I couldn't complain - she was a good sleeper and a good eater and so adorable. She definitely fits the Spencer girl mold but we can't wait to see how her personality blossoms!
Here is a slideshow of my favorite pictures of SJ over the past year...

And here is her photo shoot as a 1 year old...

7 comments:

Julie said...

That was so sweet! I loved reading everything about SJ. What an adorable child. We love her!

Anna said...

Happy birthday Sarah Jane! I can't believe it went so quickly. It is scary how fast this last year went. She is absolutely adorable and sweet.

Jennette said...

Happy birthday SJ! I didn't realize (or I forgot) that she and my Max shared a birthday.

It was fun to read about her first few weeks....now that it's all behind you and that she's safe and healthy and happy. She is one darling little girl!

Diana said...

What a beautiful little doll. I really love the year in review.

Bek said...

What a great post. Happy bday SJ!!

Those blue eyes are yummy!! It sure is nice to have a ped husband? No long hospital stays for you....

Have a good weekend.

lisa v. clark said...

You just described my life over the past 6 weeks! Thanks for sharing the details. I love hearing that other moms stress out as much as I do. It's so sad, but she looks so cute with the little oxygen tubes. . .I'm glad she's okay and a healthy, happy 1 year old!

Nellie said...

I had no idea about all the craziness when SJ was born! I was starting to feel like a terrible friend, but then realized that SJ is just 1 and that we were "neighbors" when Cate was born. Duh. Just a little slow. The time really goes by quickly.