Emberleigh had a much different beginning than Caedmon. For several weeks, make that 22, I didn’t know I was pregnant. “How did you NOT know?!” you ask? Well, after Caedmon was born, at 9lbs 6oz, I had a lot of extra skin and weight around my mid-section. During the spring the weather warmed up, I was more active and “my situation” as I called it, got better. However, my mother was sick and I was spending a lot of time visiting her and therefore less time in the kitchen preparing my meals. “My situation” started to get worse and I blamed it on bad food choices. Then I noticed that it started to feel hard and when I was laying down my skin no longer sank back into my abdominal cavity. “Weird,” I though. Next, I began to experience a lot of nausea and gas bubbles. These uncomfortable feelings I attributed to poor diet and gluten contamination. Then, in June, my mother passed away. Looking back, I can’t really tell you how I felt physically, but I was a mess emotionally. I felt sick, I’m sure, but I blamed everything from mood swings to weight gain on my grief. After I had had some time to heal and realized I needed to focus on taking care of myself, I had some work to do. It came to the point where I was researching abdoominal hernias on the internet and thinking I was going to need a sheet of mesh screwed to my rib cage to hold my organs in. I couldn’t undertand it, why did I look pregnant when I was 6 months post partum?! Friends and I would joke about it, but I knew it couldn’t be true.
Finally, one evening in late August, as I was getting ready for bed I noticed some vasculation in my chest. “Strange,” I thought. “that also happened when I was pregnant with Caedm- EVAN!! COME HERE NOW!!” I explained what I thought was going on and asked Evan to drive to the nearest 24 Hour CVS and pick up a pregnancy test. “Just to cross it off the list of possibilities,” I said. He came back with 4 tests and you better believe I peed on every one of those sticks. Each test proved the impossible. We were expecting baby number 2.
I had to sit. I had to cry. I didn’t know what to do. I had just lost my mother and my first born was still a baby. We were going to have another baby. My first thought was that I was being robbed of my time with Caed. I felt guilty. I felt helpless. Then I panicked. I’ve been so stressed! I drank wine! I had a cigarette after my mother’s death! I had x-rays at the dentist! I had sushi! Oh my gosh, when am I due?! I immediately realized that all my recent gas bubbles were, in fact, baby kicks. That meant I was between 16-20 weeks along. Well, at least I was halfway there. At our first appointment we would find out if it was a boy or a girl! What if it’s a girl? Everything we have is boy stuff! Evan said no more worrying, no more crying, I needed to sleep.
Thankfully, the rest of my pregnancy was normal and healthy. We found out at our first appointment that I was 22 weeks along with a baby girl. She was due December 8th. I decided that she must be a fighter to have stayed so strong through all of my grief. This baby girl was going to give me a gift. She was going to show me what it was like to be my mother. I couldn’t wait for her to get here.
Emberleigh’s arrival was almost effortless, if you can ever say giving birth is effortless. The last week of November I had been having contractions off and on. By December they were pretty regular but never close enough to warrent heading to the hospital. Finally, on December 4th I had an appointment in which they measured me at 2cm and then they sent me home. Evan and I stopped for dinner on the way home. Walking back to the car was pretty painful and by the time we had reached the house my contractions were 4 minutes apart. I had just enough time to get in the house and pack. Caedmon stayed with grandma and grandpa and we headed back to the hospital. Family was notified. Once I was checked in and settled I wanted to get some sleep. I remembered how tired I was after pushing Caed for two hours and I wanted my rest. I rolled over to doze off and immedately felt the urge to push. Starting to push without letting the nurses know does not make them happy. I told Evan I needed to push and he grabbed a nurse who told me to stop pushing. I couldn’t stop, she was ready! The nurse helped me roll onto my back, then checked me, the baby was crowning. She yelled for the doctor who was able to get set up just in time to catch Emmy. She was here after two pushes and I couldn’t wait to hold her!