“One more big push… Congratulations, Marybeth! It’s a GIRL!”
Those words will be ingrained in my memory for the rest of my life. I can hear Dr. Galus’ voice saying them every time I think back to the day I gave birth to my precious child. I’ve had some remarkable days in my life- trust me, life has been great- but the single greatest moment of my existence happened at 10:31 p.m. on Tuesday, March 1, 2011. The moment I gave one last push and seconds later had my 6 pound daughter on my chest fresh from the inside of my body. Those were the happiest tears I’ve ever cried. The kind that come out in big throw-back-your-head kind of laughter. Some of those moments could never be truly recorded in a book, but perhaps they are just for me to remember and cherish myself. But as for everything else, as always, I have it documented in a book that I’d like to share with you today on Nadia’s 5th birthday. I hope you enjoy looking at these as much as I do.
As always, this book has been overly stuffed with bulky items that people usually put in storage boxes…. but you know that’s not how I do things. 😉 Here we go…
(Aren’t those little diaper baby shower invites so cute? My sister Diana made those… and I made the invites for her baby shower months later!)
And then she was here… I feel like that’s a whole other story in itself (what a whirlwind of surprises that day!!), but perhaps I’ll save that for another time. 🙂
So you know how I’m always saying how Nadia’s beloved Car Fox was there from the moment she was born? 😉
Seriously was in labor with him on my shoulder. Hahahaha!
So, like I just said before, Nadia’s birth story is a whole other story in itself which includes a surprise labor that took place literally 24 hours prior to my husband being released from his duty station in Great Lakes, IL… I know there are many Navy wives out there that can relate to my story when it comes to giving birth to their children without their husbands being present. But here I am on the phone with Dana about 30 minutes after I finished giving birth to Nadia telling him, “We have a daughter!”
And this is him at 7 p.m. the next night after driving WELL over the speed limit just to get to the hospital to see us and meet his little sunshine. I love how he’s holding her… He said he was scared of dropping her. We were silly first time parents. 😉
I think this was a simple & fun page- I loved saving all the little bits and pieces that normally end up getting thrown away. The different sizes of our hospital wrist bands made for a fun “Papa bear, mama bear, baby bear”-esque layout. 😉
I wanted to write on this page all about our first night together… By midnight, I was back up in my own room, and the nurses offered to take Nadia to the nursery so I could get some sleep. But I just couldn’t let them do that. I knew I needed rest, but I was enamored by this little person next to me. So with her in her bassinet, they wheeled her in, and for about 30 straight minutes, we just sat there looking at each other (I quickly took the photo on the right side of the page using my phone so I could always remember her just staring back listening to me talk to her.) I introduced myself, and told her that for the rest of my life I would do whatever it takes to give her a life filled with love and laughter. That I would keep her safe and always be on her side. And I think the reason I haven’t written it out on this page even after 5 years is because I can’t seem to find the words to do it justice.
This part of the book is still very difficult for me to see and talk about- yes, she’s alive and healthy, so I’m eternally grateful for that. Yes, her NICU doctor’s and nurses were spectacular people, and no matter how many times I’ve said “thank you” to them, I don’t feel it will ever be enough. But we watched her color drain and her body go still, and the nurses who responded quickly to my tear-filled calls for help ran her out of the room and down the hallway faster than I’ve ever seen anyone respond to anything. And she remained in an isolette for the next week with multiple episodes of her not breathing. We had to be discharged without our child & we only had a few short hours a day to visit her in the NICU and reach our hands in to touch her. I’m thankful it wasn’t any longer than that. But the good news is, she went home with an apnea monitor that never went off again, and months later the part of her heart that they found hadn’t finished closing prior to her being born was completely and perfectly healed. And we’ve been good ever since. And this is just one of the reasons I sometimes refer to her as my miracle baby. 🙂
But I will say she was a feisty one, even at 5 pounds. 😉
And by “home” we don’t really mean our home. Heck, we didn’t HAVE a home! Dana was set to report to his new duty station in Norfolk, VA a few days later, so until then, we stayed with grandparents. And then once Nadia was allowed to be off the apnea monitor, us girls moved down to Virginia separately. Seriously, her first few months were a whirlwind of events.
The rest of the book contains more pleasant moments during her first year. Somehow, 5 years later, I’m still not done with this book, but it’s close. Maybe this will be the year I do it. Or maybe I should just do it this week while it’s fresh in my mind. 😉
I also kept things like the letter my Aunt Vera wrote when she sent the beautiful yellow crocheted blanket in the top photo. And the other hats & booties are kept elsewhere in a box of the things I just can’t part with…. like some of her itty bitty onesies!
She loved when Dada would give her a bath! She was always giggling at him!! And I took the photo on the right when we made it down to the beach the first time! I did it alone & let me just say it was a total fiasco!!! Let me paint you a picture about it- The stroller wasn’t wanting to collapse leaving me to drag it along in the sand while I carried an infant… our towels were blowing away at the same time, my diaper bag was spilling its contents all over the place, the ramp off the boardwalk was closed leaving me to bump the stupid stroller down steps- meanwhile there’s like 200 people surrounding me that were fully capable of helping a poor new mama like myself, but they just decided to stare instead. But at least my child looked rockin’, right? 😉
And we’ll just leave off with this page of her eating her first mushy meal… and giving Dana the stink eye in the process. 😉
I hope you enjoyed peeking into Nadia’s baby book. It’s one of those books I look at quite often. I can’t believe it’s been 5 years, but I’m thankful for each one of them. She’s a gem of a daughter, and I honestly couldn’t ask for more!
Happy birthday, my precious Nadia Noelle! Your life is my life’s favorite part.
What a beautiful book oft memories. Love it with a little tear in my eyes.