She's here! She's a part of our eternal family. And she's perfect.
Clara Jean Johnson
Wednesday April 20th 2016, 10:44 pm
7 lb 13 oz, 20 1/2 inches
So Clara's official due date was April 26th. The same day as Bryce's birthday. Two days before Camille. 3 and 4 days before Marty and Brynn's concerts. The EVMCO concerts were a big deal because, well they always are to me, and also because Jenny Oaks Baker was playing with them and in a couple months they would be performing and recording in DC. I did NOT want to be in labor on those days. After talking with awesome Dr. Newman about it she was willing to induce a few days early but I just could not make up my mind. I was so excited this time around to feel like I wouldn't have to induce around when my mom could fly out. She was here for the whole pregnancy and I was looking forward to just going into labor whenever Baby Girl was ready. We set an induction date on Thursday April 21st early in the morning, but I kept thinking I was going to call in and cancel it. I also talked it over with my girlfriends a week before on my birthday when a bunch of us met up for ice cream and it made me feel better that so many of them simply said, "Go for it, I say induce next week!"
Well, the very next day (the 14th) I woke up feeling completely horrendous in every way. I felt sick to my stomach, my back pain was very different and intense, so fatigued I felt like I couldn't even roll out of bed (and other unmentionable things). I was having strong contractions, although that was nothing new for that whole last trimester. Basically, I felt just like I had one day at the end of my pregnancy with Camille and my water broke just a couple days later. I called my mom and Marty and put them both on alert. I told Marty to make sure his phone was on during his classes because this was it. After that I tried to just function the best that I could and take care of the kids. And all day I waited; no Baby Girl. The next day I was a little bummed to have not gone into labor plus I still felt awful. Still no Baby Girl. A day or two later my mom's sweet Uncle Garth passed away and I wanted so badly for her to be able to go to the funeral. I thought if I were to go into labor over the weekend she could see the baby for a couple days and then fly out for the funeral. So on Sunday we went to my parents' for dinner and then took a long (and painful) walk to try to get things going. No Baby Girl. I was actually really shocked.
On Wednesday, the day before my induction, I had lunch with my good friend Jana (also pregnant) and we commiserated about struggling to go into labor on our own. I knew I couldn't complain because my babies and I have always been so healthy and safe, plus I wasn't even due for another week. It was just such a very important week for me and I had gotten my hopes up thinking I was definitely going into labor. It felt really good to talk to her even though I think I was pretty poor company. I went home, took a shower, spent extra time on my hair and make up and cleaned my downstairs to get ready for the book club I was hosting there that night. It was complicated because Marty and Brynn had a big MCO rehearsal that night. I had planned on just taking the kids to my parents before book club and letting them sleep there. Then Marty and I would get up at 3 and go to the hospital!
Well at around 4:30 pm I was texting my friend Natalie and she said she was sending all her good vibes that I could go into labor that night on my own and...I got the next best thing. A call from the hospital saying that Dr. Newman was worried I was going to get bumped to another day based on the induction schedule. But at that exact moment they had a couple of beds open and wondered if I could come in right away. Well, Marty had just gotten home from work, the kids' bags were packed and they were ready to go anyway. So we ran around getting a few last minute things ready and hopped in the car and went!
After we got to the hospital I was a nervous wreck that they would send me home for some reason or another. But we got in and prepped pretty quickly and I think Baby Girl was ready! Dr. Newman came in right away to check me and I was already showing lots of contractions on the screen and was at a 4. So she broke my water and left saying she'd go home and take a nap and probably see me sometime in the middle of the night - but everything went so fast!
After just a short time with the pit I was ready for an epidural and it was the best one I've ever had (totally even, and blocking pain without making me so numb). Marty and I thought about starting a movie to pass the time but only made it through a few minutes before I could tell it was time to start pushing. Even though I knew it was time, I think I was sort of in denial because it was all going so fast and that's not usually the case for me. I thought for sure she'd have an April 21st birthday and it had only been a couple of hours since we'd gotten to the hospital. So I felt totally caught of guard. But Marty was so steady as usual and everything went smoothly. What I remember is having my eyes closed concentrating on pushing and someone said, "Open your eyes!" And there she was! The chubbiest little cheeks I had seen on any of my newborns! And the nurses were commenting on "all that hair" while Marty and I gave each other a look to say, "This is a Gabe amount of hair - not much!" Oh, and I squealed, like, a lot. She was just so darn cute.
She was NOT happy about greeting the world! I think she cried twice as hard and twice as long as our other babies. Marty and I said to each other, "Buckle up, it's another April!" I love love love my Bryce and Camille but it's no secret they were hard babies.
I know I look terrible, but honestly I was feeling pretty good! So tired, but good.
I love seeing this guy as a dad. He is such a big teddy bear and makes babies seem even smaller!
What a chubby newborn!