October 16th, 2006. My dad's birthday. My family and I were at my parent's house celebrating his 45 years on this earth. The night started out normal, as usual. Teasing the "old" man about his age, yada yada yada. During the marvelous dinner my mom so lovingly prepared, I began feeling... ummm... weird. I was having stomach pains... but more like I was eating my food too fast or something. I shrugged it off at first, but they were coming on more and more frequent. I mentioned something to my family, but said, "awww it's just a stomach ache. No big deal." The more and more I tuned in on the pain, though, the more and more I began wondering. Mike began timing the pains, and they were 8-9 minutes apart consistently. I went to the bathroom, and came out, knowing that I needed to call my doctor, but it wasn't until my mom said I needed to that I did. Dr. Flannigan... Oh, how I love her!! :) She said to go to the hospital to get checked to just make sure that it was a false alarm. Without going into too much detail, there was a little bit of blood involved.
So, I get to the hospital, register, and get settled in my room... at this time, I am telling myself, "nothing is wrong. It's a false alarm, and they are going to send you home." Man! I wish that were true! My nurse came in... Samantha. She was SO nice! :) She checked to see if I was dilated. Then looked up at my husband immediately and said... "you said your daughter was where tonight?" Well, Angelina had stayed with my parents while we went to the hospital. We didn't feel it necessary for her to be in the delivery room whether I would be delivering then or not. Not appropriate. Anyway...
Mike looks at Samantha and says, "umm, she is at my in-laws. Why are we having a baby tonight?"
Samantha then looks at me, and looks at Mike, and says... "Oh yes! Honey, you are 6 centimeters dilated, and there is nothing we can do to reverse the labor. You are too advanced."
This is when the "Are you serious" comments started. I mean seriously, SHEALYNN, is she really joking around about something so serious? Come on! I was just in shock! Although, Mike was telling me we were going to have Zoe on the way to the hospital. I just didn't want to believe it was true. After the disbelief came mass amounts of tears. And then came more tears. And more tears. After tears, was shear panic and ultimate Fear! I was only 30 weeks pregnant! How could this be happening? So, I made ALL the necessary phone calls. Told ALL of the necessary people what was happening, and immediately asked for prayer.
Then came the labor pains!! I must say, woman who find the need to have their children naturally by choice ARE CRAZY!!! Zoe was tiny, and birthing her was the WORST pain I have ever felt in my lifetime!!! Worth it? Of course! But, if I had it to do again... PLEASE GIVE ME THE EPIDURAL! I mean, people... I was weeping! Not crying. But weeping. You know that BOO HOO cry? That is what I was doing. Boo Hoo Hoo... "Can't you give me something for the pain?" YES! Demerol! But that didn't do much. Just made me feel drunk. LOL. So, from the time I found out we were having Zoe to the time that we had her, was 5 hours. I would of had her in about 1 hour, but my Dr. Flannigan wouldn't break my water, because she didn't want to aid in Zoe's inevitable arrival.
Zoe weighed 3 pounds 4 ounces at birth. She was 17 inches long. Her official birthday is October 17th, 2006. She was born at 2:41AM and was 10 weeks premature.... here is where it got tough.
Since Zoe was 30 weeks, they had to transfer her to WakeMed Raleigh (AKA: The Big House). I had Zoe at WakeMed Cary. So, they had to get her on the ventilator, and let me say goodbye, and then whisk her 20 minutes away to another hospital.
Meanwhile, I am still at the other hospital sleeping and getting my much needed rest. My doctor then told me I could leave at 9am the same day, in which I did. Mind you, I had just had Zoe a mere 6 hours prior. But, my bags were packed and I was more than ready to get to the Big House to see Zoe. So, we left the hospital, and went to see her...
The NICU was a VERY scary place! Seeing Zoe in an incubator was really hard!! She was on a ventilator, and she just looked so helpless! I was scared and VERY emotional! But, Zoe took BIG strides in the NICU! She was off the ventilator in about 6 hours. She was then put on a nasal canula. After the 2nd day, Zoe pulled her own IV out, so they left it out, and never had to put it back in. She did lose some weight. At one point, she was down to 2 pounds 14 ounces. But she gained it back eventually. I think one of the most exciting day for me was when I went into the NICU for my regular visit, and noticed that Zoe was in an Open Crib! No longer in an incubator. The other exciting milestones... getting her feeding tube taken out, and having no more nasal canula!! Meaning, she was no longer reliant on supplemental oxygen!! The all time most exciting day of course, was the day we got to bring her home. Zoe was in the NICU for 5 weeks.
Bringing her home was awesome! We didn't tell Angelina that she was coming home, so when we walked in with Zoe... it was unbelievable! Talk about emotional! My mom was watching Angelina while we went to get Zoe, and we were all balling our eyes out watching Angelina's excitement!! :) There is a post on my blog that you can see the video I took of this wonderful introduction of sisters!
Today... Zoe is doing WONDERFULLY! She now weighs 12 pounds 11 ounces, and is 23 inches long! Quite a difference from her smallest weight!! She is cooing, laughing, sucking her thumb, smiling, sleeping through the night, rolling from tummy to back, wanting to crawl, hold things, tracking things, and so much more!!
Having 2 girls is so incredible!! What an amazing journey!!
This is the day that Zoe was born. The pictures was right after they took her ventilator out. She was SO SMALL!
This is the day that Zoe was born. She just had her ventilator taken out, so daddy got to hold her for the first time!!
I absolutely LOVE this picture!! It is so funny how she was sleeping. All the nurses called her Houdini, because she escaped out of every swaddle, and many times tried escaping out of her bed!
My mom was sick for a time while Zoe was in the NICU, so this is the first time she held Zoe. It was a very emotional time for her while she held the little "peanut".
Look at her NOW!!!