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Saturday, January 31, 2009

Welcome Lea Paxton Eble-Schrader!

Introducing the newest addition to the blogosphere:

Lea Paxton Eble-Schrader
6 lbs. 7.6 ounces, 19.75 inches
January 31, 2009, 8:23am

39 Weeks Gestation!!!





After a long day and night of regular contractions, Sharon finally began to feel some significant pain (she has an acutely high threshold for this, which did her well in subsequent hours) at about 2am. We woke up Grammy (Sharon's mom) who had come in from the Jersey Shore earlier in the day and had her switch places with us in the futon (where we practice a significant amount of attachment parenting by co-sleeping with Hallie) and we called ourselves a cab, whose arrival was amazingly fast. On the way to the hospital, we called Aunt Laura, who jumped out of bed, into the car, and managed (thank goodness) to arrive safely in Philly by four am (without having stopped for coffee on the way...do not try this at home, folks!).

Laura got there in time to help us pace the halls of Pennsylvania Hospital for a couple of hours. By six am, the contractions were more intense and coming one to two minutes apart and our room in Labor and Delivery was ready (we managed to score the newly-renovated birthing suite, but did not have time to enjoy its amenities). Things happened very quickly from there on out. By seven am, Sharon began to transition into hard labor and by a quarter or a half an hour later, she went from six to ten centimeters dilated in a matter of seconds. We remain ever grateful to her nurse for recognizing this and re-checking Sharon herself after the resident toodled off, assuming we still had a lot of time, to do something else. At that point, Sharon's water had broken, but no one but Sharon had evidence of this, and things began in earnest. And less than an hour later, Lea made her debut.

The irony of the whole event? At six centimeters, and operating under the assumption that the resident was correct in her assessment that we still had a ways to go, Sharon called for an epidural. But anesthesia was held up with a C-Section. Lea did not receive the memo, though, and decided to come before the epidural. Thus, Sharon had a natural childbirth, without any drugs at all. Until after the delivery, that is. It turns out that the pushing was so intense that Sharon needed a spinal block AFTER Lea was delivered so that they could patch her up (and not cause her excruciating pain to intensify even further).

Anyway, all of that was well worth this:







I am also happy to report that Lea, living up to the acronym G.E., which not only stands for Great Expectation but also Great Eater, came out hungry and ready to nurse. She was rooting and smacking her lips very loudly while I held her in L&D as they finished sewing up Sharon's tears. Lea was relieved to nurse for the first time and we were thrilled that Sharon's milk had already become to come in (truth be told, Sharon's milk has been coming in for weeks now and its flow had intensified over the past three days when all of the pre-labor hormone changes began to kick in). Thus, I have little doubt that little Lea has taken in more milk today than did big sister Hallie who set some sort of record today by drinking fewer than four ounces, total, of goat milk.

Before I go, a few more pictures of our little girl with some of the important people in her life:

Here's a picture of Aunt Laura holding Lea. None of this would have been possible without Aunt Laura's assistance in the delivery room and inspiration more generally. We are all so grateful for your presence there and are sorry that we needed to wake you in the middle of the night!



And here's a shot of Grammy holding Lea. In the background is Dr. Abbasi, one of the neonatalogists from the ICN/CHOP who took care of our twins and who always encouraged us to have another baby. Her motto: if one mommy is good, then two mommies are better. Thank you Soraya! We are so happy that it was you who had the opportunity to assess Lea today after she was born.



Grammy's role in all of this was really significant. She dropped everything to come down and take care of Hallie for us and make this event possible.

In the same vein, we are grateful for Sheila and Brett, who came over today and relieved Ami (who made it possible for Grammy to get to the hospital to meet Lea sooner rather than later). We could not have done it without them, since they not only hung out with Hal, but were also the prime movers of our furniture and de-clutterers of our mess.

And, here's a picture of your's truly with her little girl. I don't look great after an evening of labor coaching, but I'm glad that I managed to stay upright for the whole thing, help Sharon through it (even if I did have the tendency to continue grasping her leg AFTER a contraction was over and while she was trying to relax...hey, at least I didn't break it...and only managed to burst into tears once during the whole process:



Finally, I want to thank all of our friends, virtual and real, who have supported us through this pregnancy. It was no easy matter to decide that we were brave or crazy enough to do this again. We were inspired by the many micropreemie moms (you know who you are) who carried their subsequent pregnancies a lot longer than their micropreemie ones and whose strategies for coping with things (psychologically, perinatalogically, etc) were so important to us. We are thrilled to have everyone out there rooting for our family, offering to drop everything to come lend a hand, and just being there with us on this journey.

38 comments:

Bartleby the Scribbler said...

Hi there! A hearty congratulations on the birth of your newest daughter! I'm a newish reader of your blog, and have never commented, but I've greatly enjoyed reading about Hallie. What a cool little kid she seems! Best wishes to your whole family, and I'll look for more updates soon! :)

Trisha said...

She is BEAUTIFUL! Congrats to all of you!

Sara, Dan, & Maggie Daley said...

I'm just bawling... positively bawling...

So thrilled for all 4 of you!!!

~Sara

Proud preemie mom said...

It is very, very nice to see good things happen to good people. I'm so happy for you both and the new addition to your already beautiful family. Congrats!

Liz and Luke

Michele said...

CONGRATULATIONS!!! I am very happy for you all! Now go get some needed rest! LOL

Katie said...

I'm sooo happy for y'all. She is beautiful! Congratulations!!!

Heidi said...

CONGRATULATIONS!!! The picture of Sharon gazing at Lea is precious. I look forward to seeing some Hallie meeting her baby sister shots, too. Hooray for full term, nursing well, and a safe delivery...

And Lea just barely missed arriving on Bennett's birthday. :)

Congratulations! I'm so, so happy for all of you!!

23wktwinsmommy said...

CONGRATULATIONS!!!! I am so happy for you guys! She is gorgeous!

Chris & AnnMarie said...

Congrats! I am so happy for your family! And, my full term nephew (born 3 weeks ago) eats more than Coy on a daily basis! I don't know if I should laugh or cry about that! =)

Enjoy your new addition. She is beautiful!

23 Weekers said...

Contratulations!! What a beautiful baby. Enjoy your day.

Shanon Woolley

Jodi said...

Congratulations! She is beautiful. Almost made it to my birthday, but I wouldn't have wanted her to wait an extra day. :) I'm so happy for all of you.

Dubin said...

Yay! Can I just show up? I think I know where you guys are...

Judith and Jason said...

YEAH YEAH YEAH! 39 weeker! Insanity!
So thrilled for you guys!
I love the name. SHe's just lovely!
Can't wait to hear all about Hallie's first encounter with new sis! One thing that worked for my friend was the diapers with Elmo on them. It seemed that once the older sibling saw Elmo on the diaper of new baby all was good with baby!

Emily said...

Welcome baby Lea! Congrats to everyone!

Sarah Furlough said...

I am so happy that Lea Paxton is here, happy, hungry and healthy! I wish you all lots of beautiful days, and a quick recovery for Sharon.

CONGRATULATIONS!!!!

Robin Elizabeth said...

Lea is absolutley beautiful and is very lucky little girl to join such a wonderful family with a sweet heart of a big sister and loving parents. It can't get better than that. I am very happy for you both.

Aidan's mom said...

Congratulations to the whole family on the arrival of beautiful Lea.

I cannot imagine the happiness, relief, elation and other emotions that you both must have felt upon the arrival of a full termer.

I am so happy for you all and as with the others, I am looking very forward to seeing pictures of Hallie and new baby sister.

The pics are beautiful.

Sara Cohen said...

She is beautiful! Hooray for all of you for being so brave and so strong through this all, she is an absolute doll!

Natalie and Abigail said...

Abby and Sharon - I am SO happy for you! What a beautiful baby. I can't imagine your relief at a full-term healthy baby - who eats! Many, many congratulations.

Cora said...

Congrats to all of you! Lea is just beautiful, and I just love her name. Tell Sharon she is my hero!

coley said...

Congratulations! She's beautiful.

Jyothi said...

Welcome Baby Lea!! Congrats to all of you! She is Beautiful.

Jennifer said...

oh goodness! How wonderful!! Isn't 'normal baby after birth' awesome! I was so utterly confused at how to nurse DD - thank goodness my doula was there. I couldn't believe I got to actually hold her for 15 whole minutes before they took her to weigh her etc. It was so unreal that I cried the whole time. I only saw Arianna for a moment and don't remember anything about it other than she didn't cry.

DD's birth was so healing in so many ways, as I'm sure it was for you guys.

Lea is a wonderful name too!

I'm sure Sharon is very sore - it took me days to even be able to sit (child birth was 2 degree laceration and a broken tailbone) so she has my sympathy for the next few days!

Congratulations you guys!!!

Billie said...

Congratulations to two awesome mommies and the big sis! She's beautiful and the pic of Sharon holding her made me cry!

BusyLizzyMom said...

Congratulations you all must be so happy. Hallie is going to be a great big sister.
You bring hope to all us Mom's who are still on the fence about whether to try again.

Erin said...

Congratulations. Look at those newborn pics of a big, fat, beautiful, pink, content, full-term baby. I couldn't be happier for the four of you.

liz.mccarthy said...

Wahoo, 39 weeks, I remember when you guys just started to think of trying again! I'm so very happy for you, what a beauty, I almost cried when you mentioned she came out lips smacking!

Congrats!

Liz

www.MicrPreemies.com

Kellars Mommy said...

Congrats...She is adorable!

Nancy said...

Congratulations mommies!!! She is absolutely gorgeous.

ifindmyselfamother said...

CONGRATULATIONS to you all! I loved the vision of Lea coming out rooting and smacking her lips. And I love the name. So glad you are all healthy and happy!

Susanna

Miracles said...

Congratulations to all of you!! Lea is so beautiful. You both did a great job.

Hugs,
Shannon

Shannon said...

I am SOOO happy for you all!!!! Lea Paxton is an absolute doll and I cannot wait to see big sister Hallie with her!

You two are wonderful mommies and I am sure this baby is going to add so much more to your life.

Hope Sharon starts to feel better soon. What an amazing woman!

K said...

Congratulations to all of you! Lea's a real cutie, and I'm sure Hallie is going to make a great big sister.

Mommato2miracles said...

Welcome to the world beautiful little girl! Happy birthday!!! So happy for you guys, what a beautiful beginning to a new chapter in your lives. Welcome Little Lea

Anne, Eliza Grace's mom said...

Welcome to the world Lea Paxton. You are beautiful!

Minnesota Momma said...

Welcome Lea! Congratulations to all of you! I'm so happy for you guys and a FT birth! Yay!

E said...

Congrats. Nice work ladies!

The Microblogologist said...

The motto for my Scottish surname is "Late but in earnest!", and so late but in earnest I congratulate you both and welcome little Lea into the world! She is beautiful like the rest of her family, I am so happy for you all to have her finally arrive and in such wonderful condition. Now to read the rest of the posts I am behind on to catch up with your little cuties =)!