*Side note- when my parents were on their way up to my house to pick up Kellan for the next two nights, I started crying, uncontrollably. At first I didn’t know what it was about, I was kneeling down in the hallway so I could be eye-level with Kellan and was hugging him and giving him kiss after kiss, and I realized it. Kellan would no longer be the only child. I was ecstatic to have another baby, I just didn’t want Kellan to be “mad” at me. After all he is only 19 months old, so he does not comprehend why my belly is so big, why we are reading him “Big Brother” books, why we keep talking to my stomach saying the word “Noah” all the time. Like any first time Mommy I just wanted everything to be okay for my first-born. Noel and I had been prepping Kellan for this day for months, but it seemed like I hadn’t done enough (in my mind anyway). Noel reassured me that everything was going to be okay, Kellan would love his baby brother, we have done a great job raising Kellan and the four of us would and will get through anything & everything together. Noel is such a positive man and when I am being a negative-nelly, he lets me know. Then I think quietly, not saying anything out-loud and realize he is right and snap outta my funk. My crying spell lasted all of about eight minutes but I needed to get it out, hold my little boy one last time as the “only child”, and shower him with a billion kisses. It felt good.
Now, back to Part Four…
My next contraction was coming up, I looked at Noel then at Stacy and she said “Okay Katie, push”, so I did. I pushed once, took a tiny breath, pushed again, took another tiny breath, and pushed again. Done with that contraction. My Mom was trying to take pictures and hold a large mirror for me so I could see my progress, but the mirror was a little cock-eyed so I couldn’t really see, so a nursing student held the mirror for my Mom and that way she could take some really good photographs. Carly was behind me, sort of over my left shoulder video recording. Noel was sitting in a chair holding my left hand, feeding me ice chips, re-applying chapstick for my lips (they get so dry from my “mouth” breathing with the contractions), and resting a cool washcloth on my forehead. He is good! Then a nurse was on my right hand side, spewing out words of encouragement, and of course Stacy was front and center ready to do her job.
The second contraction came, I pushed… The third… The fourth… Then somehow we missed my fifth contraction from all our chatter we were doing. Stacy laughed it off, she was so relaxed which made me feel relaxed, then I thought to myself “I can do this!” Stacy had that much confidence in me that missing one contraction was no biggie. In between my contractions I would look at Noel and we would just smile at one another. Knowing what my job was, what his job was and anticipating in a few short minutes we would meet our second baby boy. Noel would tell me “You are doing such a good job babe” or “You are so strong hunny”, and hearing those positive comments from him kept me going strong. I don’t think he knew how much those words influenced me at the time, but any type of “cheerleader” comment was greatly appreciated. Maybe that’s why I kept hearing my mom and sister saying those encouraging words as well.
The sixth contraction came and I pushed four times. I kept on hearing the clicks of the camera, Stacy saying “good, good, good, steady, good Katie”, and I saw Noah’s dark hair being reflected in the mirror. Yes! Progress. After the sixth contraction I asked Stacy if I could reach down and pull him out once it was time. She smiled and said “Yeah, of course.” So contraction number seven was quickly approaching and I just felt like this was it, I was going to push him out… I pushed hard. Once, twice, a third time, and then I saw Noah’s head start to get further and further out, then I knew this was the moment, I pushed again one last final time and I looked down, I could see half his body, so I reached down with both my hands, I could feel Noah, then I gently pulled him out and up onto my tummy and chest. Oh sweet baby! He was here!! I kissed his little head, I placed both my hands around him. One hand around his back and little tooshie, the other hand cradling his tiny head. I smiled. I kissed Noah again. I kissed Noel. We locked eyes and he looked so proud. Proud of me, and proud to have another little boy. Two sons.
The next little bit seems to have meshed together, but I do remember Stacy taking Noah to the “Panda” baby warmer where he got weighed, his height was measured, and his head & chest circumference were measured as well. He did not make a peep. He was so quiet, it made the nurses nervous. They wanted him to wail a loud cry, but he is just like his Momma: calm and relaxed. He had his first little sponge bath under the “Panda” and came back to me smelling like a fresh, clean lil boy. I started breastfeeding Noah right away, he latched on, hallelujah. Breastfeeding is challenging, painful (at first), and if you don’t have your heart set on it you might end up giving up and giving in to buying formula. But, hey I get it, by all means do whatever you need to do in order to feed your wee little babe. I just love nursing, the bond you develop with your baby, the closeness, not to mention you and only you are keeping your babe healthy, thriving and alive. That is a cool feeling!
The four of us are doing quite well. We are at home, adjusting to this new life with our sweet little Noah. He weighed 7 pounds, 15 ounces and was 21 1/4 inches long. At his two week checkup he weighed 8 pounds 2 ounces and his other stats led our doctor to inform Noel and myself that he is a happy and healthy little dude. He is thriving! Everyone in our families have gotten a chance to see Noah, except my older brother Alex and his girlfriend Christine, who will get a chance to meet & snuggle him during Christmas.
It is hard to imagine my life without my two little boys. What did I do all day long before I had them? My life has changed so much, for the better. I feel like I have a purpose now, I have to be on my A-game, think on my toes, nourish lil’ baby Noah, and teach Kellan right from wrong. However, I get so caught up in daily chores that need to be done around the house, and while my mind is going a million miles a minute I need to just slow down, breathe and remember everything else can wait. The only two things I should be concerning myself with are Kellan and Noah and just being a Mommy to them. I give my boys my everything, from the time I get up in the morning to the time I fall asleep; they are in my thoughts. I think to myself, “could I do this better?”, “did Kellan eat enough veggies for the day? Did he get enough calcium?”; “I wonder how much Noah weighs now?” Every Momma is consumed with these thoughts, right?
Being a wife and Mother are my most proud and honoring titles in my life. I get that warm & fuzzy feeling just thinking about. I count every blessing, honor every smile and giggle I get from Kellan, cherish those deep blue eyes gazing up at me from Noah, and every “I love you” from Noel. Yes, I enjoy the little things in life because they make my life complete.
[photographs, courtesy of my Mom, taken on Noah’s birth day]