Einin Rhea

The last couple of months have been a whirlwind. Our little girl was supposed to be born on November 15th but she made an early appearance on October 25th. I have put off this blog post because I felt like I had no idea where to even begin or what to say.  Plus, typing an entire blog post one-handed with a baby in the other arm seemed impossible. Now she is asleep and I guess the best place to start is at the beginning so here goes...

About 2 weeks before Einin was born, I started having elevated blood pressure readings. This was a shock because I have always had great blood pressure.  I had been working-out throughout my pregnancy and hadn't gained too much weight. I didn't have high BP with my previous pregnancies either. The only criteria I met for pregnancy induced hypertension was that I was 40 years old. After a few days on bed rest, a reprieve from bed rest and a subsequent trip to the hospital, the doctor urged us to induce labor to be on the safe side. So, on October 25th, we checked into the hospital bright and early to have our baby girl.

(1 day old)

The labor was forced and painful.  Seeing as it was my last pregnancy, I had hoped for a slow, steady and natural birth. Instead, it was induced and intense but, in the end, she was there in my arms. She was healthy and my blood pressure was immediately back to normal.

Then came the blur of sleepless nights, constant nursing and life in pajamas. I don't think I have ever watched so much HGTV in my life. Little things like a long, hot shower became luxuries.

(three days old)

(6 days old)

Then she smiled at me. After so many weeks of pouring all of my energy into her, some of it came back. It was a miracle moment.

(2 months old, not her first smile but one of my favorites)

Just before Christmas, around 9 pm on a Sunday night, she woke up with a fever. Thankful to call our pediatrician a friend as well, I texted him asking what we should do. After a little bit of back and forth and a few more temperature checks, she and I were sent to TX Children's Hospital's emergency room. They did a few preliminary tests and then came back for more testing. They did a spinal tap on her. They left us to wait for results dropping scary potential scenarios, like spinal meningitis. The image of her laying on the table after that procedure is one that will be burned into my brain forever. We waited for almost 2 hours for the test result. That was one of the longest nights of my life. I just sat there holding her thinking to myself that I could lose her. By the wee hours of the morning, we got the prognosis. She did not have meningitis (so grateful!) but did have a urinary tract infection and we were being admitted. They put an IV in her tiny little hand and sent us to the NICU. Thanks to the amazing doctors and nurses at TCH and to my amazing friends and family, we went home 4 days later with antibiotics.

A few days later our house was filled with family celebrating Christmas together. A week after that, it was Christmas day, our first Christmas with three kids.

And now, it's 2012 and Einin is a little over 2 months old. She is this amazing, snuggly, bright eyed little wonder. She is a gift and I am so incredibly grateful.

Today, while stopped at a red light, I looked in my rear view mirror at my car full of kids and just smiled. The boys were deep in discussion about how to get me or their Dad to touch the trick pen Sayer had that shocks you and Einin was crying (she hates her car seat). It was everything that the last few months have been, perfect chaos.