With Mother's Day this weekend, it only seemed appropriate to post the birth letter I wrote to my sweet baby almost a year ago (see original post here that includes lots of fun hospital pictures!) Reading through it again today made me emotional because I could never have anticipated my love growing any stronger for him than it was the day I wrote it, but it has. Like a million times over! Becoming a mother truly is the best thing that has ever happened to me and I have never been happier. This baby of mine... gee wiz. He's something else!
Since having Radcliff I have realized more than ever just how much work goes into raising a child. Add three more to the equation and I have that much more appreciation for my own mom and for how much she has done for my siblings and I throughout my life! She jokes that my dad is always the good guy and she's chopped liver and I can totally see how this happens now that I'm a mom. Moms are usually the ones at home cleaning (every single minute!), making meals (every single minute!), and just doing the dirty work in my opinion and that can really ware sometimes. Whereas dads get to come home at night and be the hero and a lot of what the mom did throughout the days gets unnoticed. But, I'm here to say... You've worked so hard mom, and I can 100% see! I love you! And same to you Hollie! You work so hard too! I love you like my own and can't believe how lucky I was to marry into... YOU! :) All of the kind things you do for us are forever appreciated! The three of us love both you guys (girls!)
And Happy Mother's Day to all of you fine women out there. I hope you do something real nice for yourselves because let's admit it. We DESERVE it! Without further ado...
To my sweet baby Radcliff,
Where does mommy start with you? We'll start with the day they placed you in our arms. It was a stormy Sunday, one of which was one of the only stormy days this summer, and your mommy woke up around 3:00am with mild back contractions. I could hardly contain my excitement! I just knew that it was the day I was going to get to meet you! Our special, special boy. I laid in bed for a couple ours praying that they were really contractions. Well boy was I right. Within a few hours they had started getting significantly stronger and closer together. Around 5:00am, your daddy told me I should jump in the bath tun to relieve the pressure, as well as to get ready to go to the hospital if we needed to. I did, and sat in the bathtub rubbing my tummy knowing it would probably be the last time I had my special bonding/bathtub/Radcliff time with you. I rubbed my belly feeling a slight twinge of sadness knowing you would no longer remain safe in my belly. I loved being pregnant with you. I felt your little feetsies, in the place where they always remained, and said a prayer that you would come into this world safe and healthy. A few hours later, my contractions were getting closer and closer together. Seven minutes, nine minutes, five minutes, twelve minutes, still not yet consistent enough to go though. I called my midwife to ask her what she thought about everything. She said to wait at least four hours before going to the hospital, she didn't want them to send me home. So wait we did. Your daddy tickled my back and was so supportive as the contractions kept coming. We finally decided it was time to head to the hospital. We walked in and saw little pink and blue footprints directing us to labor and delivery. I got so excited knowing it would be so soon that I would get to hold your little feet in my hands. They checked us in and hooked me up to a monitor to calculate my contractions and see how far dilated I was. After what felt like the longest hour ever, the sweet nurse concluded I was not yet ready for admittance. I was only dilated to a three and my contractions were the furthest apart and most inconsistent they had been all day. We were bummed, but so happy as well to see your strong little heartbeat on the monitor for that full hour. Before we left, the nurse "stired things up" in my cervix and said that she was pretty sure we'd have our baby by night's end. We headed to Walmart to grab a couple last minute items for the hosiptal. My contractions were as strong as they had been all day. The lady at the check out stand was so kind, but wouldn't stop talking, and I was having a horrible contraction and just grinned and bore it. After, we drove up to your mema and grandpa's house so mommy could sit in their big bathtub and try to relax. Right as we got there, my contractions were about five minutes apart and just unbearable. One of them lasted a full seven minutes and I thought I just might die. Uncle Kinley was there and we got some good stories on his dating life, and I'm pretty sure he'll be forever afraid to impregnate his wife after the noises and convulsing he saw me go through :) It was nice to have a distraction to take my mind off the pain. After only a couple hours of being there, daddy insisted I get in the tub. I did and will forever remember the pain I felt there, but also the tremendous love your daddy showed me. He was holding my hands and telling me how strong I was and that I could get through it. By the time I got out of the tub, my contractions were anywhere from a minute to three minutes apart. I started to panic, praying I would make it to the hospital in time. The drive to the hospital was one of the longest of my life. Every bump and turn was excruciating pain and I swore my stomach was so hard it was going to fall off. This was the first time I lost it that day, I started to cry and just felt so physically drained and weak. Daddy dropped me off at the curb, parked the car and ran faster than ever to catch up with me. It was around 6:00pm. We walked to the nurse's desk and with tears rolling down my eyes, I begged them for the epidural. They took me into a room, and I was dilated to a five. This was my green light! They whisked me to the most beautiful and clean delivery room. There they gave me my epidural and hooked me up to all the monitors. Again, there was your strong little heartbeat on the screen, and I said a thankful prayer that you were so healthy. Once the epidural kicked in it was smooth sailing. We were ecstatic and couldn't even wait to meet you. I went from a five to an eight and a half in a couple hours. I stayed at an eight and a half, for about an hour, and they then decided to give me a little pitocin. Your grandparents and aunts came and were so excited to meet you. Shortly after they gave me the pitocin, my midwife came in to check me and with a surprised look on her face said, "This baby is coming!" Within what felt like five short minutes they had everything ready to go, and she told me to push. They complimented me on how strong I was and said you were minutes from being born. Daddy was holding my leg and was so excited he could hardly contain himself. I think I pushed twelve times total, for about ten minutes ...and then it happened. The most incredible thing that has ever happened to me. YOU. Out you came and they let me grab you and set you on my chest. You, my strong baby, arched your entire back up, lifted up your head, and stared me right in the eyes. I melted. You looked so hearty and healthy and I couldn't have been more thankful. You also looked just like your daddy. How lucky am I? Two Wrens? Heaven. I got to hold you and just have mommy and Radcliff time for a minute. I couldn't get over how beautiful you were. Neither could daddy. They brought you over to clean out your lungs and take some measurements They said, "He's eight pounds, two ounces." I was in shock but so happy you were such a healthy size! My midwife had told me lots of times she only thought you would be six or seven pounds, so we all laughed at how big you grew! Daddy held you and could not get over how perfect you were either. Your aunties and grandparents came in to see you and fell in love as well. So many people who love you baby! LUCKY. The next few days at the hospital were heaven. The nurses were incredible and we had two full days to devote all of our attention to you. We joke that is was better than any vacation we've ever taken. That first night, I got to hold you on my chest in our dark hospital room and the phrase, "love someone so much it hurts", finally made perfect sense to me. I was so emotional because I didn't know I could love like that. I remember thinking I would die if anything ever happened to you or if anyone ever hurt you. I'm still trying to reconcile these emotions because this love is making mommy a nervous wreck! The day we left the hospital I was so scared and excited bringing you out into the world. Sad to leave the safe hospital, excited for the new life we'd lead with you. We can't believe how much you have changed our lives for the better. Daddy said the other night how full life seems right now with you. It's true. We will always love you forever, no matter what! You're our baby Radcliff!