Its a Girl!
Wow. What a journey its been to where we are now.
I still have to pinch myself sometimes, it really doesn’t feel real. I feel so incredibly blessed to have carried these beautiful babies and to be given the privilege of guiding them in life.
We had a planned C-section for August 8th ( read more on why here 😉 ) and sometimes it felt like we would not make it, but my body kept it together ( luckily!) and what an amazing day it was.
The weekend before was beautiful, full of cleaning/preparing, special moments with our boy and lots of nerves. My sister came over Sunday night to stay with Bowen while we were in the Hospital and we got some sleep… or at least tried to! I was a bag of nerves that night and we were both very emotional saying goodnight to our boy for the last time that he would be our only child.
Morning took forever to come and came too fast at the same time, my nerves started to slowly turn into excitement but they seemed to have transferred straight to Brent. I love this man so much, and my love for him has grown exponentially with every birth experience. He is my rock and loves his children so much. Dads, I feel, kind of get the shaft when it comes to birth as they are not the ones literally giving birth but they do feel it deeply. The love, the fear. Brent has been so present and emotionally invested in our experiences of bringing our littles earth-side, and I am forever grateful to have him as my husband and father to my babies.
We arrived at the hospital 2 hours before the surgery, we were brought straight to our room and I put away our things (nested haha) while Brent paced and looked as though he was going to be sick, his nerves were in full swing now! We were so lucky to have one of my best friends as our nurse, she was our nurse right after Bowen was born, and now was there for the actual birth of Ivy. Its been so special to have her be there for such beautiful moments in our lives. She also gave both our babies their first baths!
I was hooked up to the I.V and then was wheeled pretty quickly after that down to the waiting room of the OR!
We had kept our date a secret from everyone as with a planned c-section some of the surprise gets taken out of it, and we wanted this time, Ivy’s birth, to remain something special. So sitting in the waiting area we excitedly called our parents and texted our siblings, that “Today was Baby day!” It really helped calm ..well.. the rest of my nerves at least, and brought on such great anticipation for what was about to happen.
We were so blessed with such an amazing team of doctors, nurses, and anesthesiologist. With Bowen we were as well, but there was something about this time that was different, the kindness and love in the care we received was different and so genuine. I am forever grateful. I was whisked into the OR leaving Brent behind to wait, they put in the spinal block and set up the bed and curtain. I knew this was the hard part and painful part, not to mention the anesthesia almost made me throw up everywhere, but that all was overshadowed as we were just moments away from meeting our newest little one!
Brent made his way in, seated next to me, looking excited and shakey. I was laid out on the table and could barely hold his hand, but it was oddly comforting to see him like that, to know I wasn’t the only one jumping out of my skin to meet our new daughter.
We were told we wouldn’t have to wait very long, we knew from Bowens birth this part is super quick. Brent kept jumping up and down looking over the curtain, not wanting to see the actual surgery occurring but also wanting to capture those first moments of our girls life. Its amazing how much the bed moves from tugging the baby out, you may not be able to push but the Doctors sure break a sweat to get baby out. Even more so with our girl. She was pretty jammed in there and they talked about using the vacuum but after a pretty large effort her head came out and we heard that magical cry. Sigh of relief. Then the flood of questions in your mind. Is she ok? Is she healthy? Does she look like Bowen? Is she big? All I heard from across the room was my friend exclaiming “It’s a girl!?”.
We had kept the gender a secret too. We hadn’t planned on finding out as we really didn’t care either way (or so I thought!), but I am glad we did. We were sitting in the waiting room of the ultrasound clinic, when they asked if we wanted to find out the gender that day. We just looked at each other and said yes without saying anything to the other. When we went into the scan we asked if we could guess before they told us, and well it was immediately clear. She was a SHE! and in that instant I learned just how much I was expecting a boy.
Not that I wasn’t grateful and excited but our guess was a boy and I had for some reason had my mind invested in the thought I would end up having all boys. To say it was a shock would be a little bit of an understatement but after a couple weeks of initial shock, the excitement for what our life would now look like started to sink in, leaving nothing but excitement on the day of her birth.
I guess my confidence in thinking we would have boys rubbed off on a few people in our lives so to hear the excited shock from my girlfriend in the OR was so fun!
I had expressed to our surgeon, OB, nurses and anesthesiologist that skin to skin time as soon as possible was really important to me. I didn’t really even know I had the option when Bowen was born ( also it was 2am haha ) and they all were so supportive, so after those incredible first few cries, a look over from the pediatrician – my chubby, (eek I never thought I would say that!) goopy, pink baby was placed on my chest. The most beautiful little girl. She nuzzled and cried against my face and clung to my cheek and nose. Moments I will never forget as long as I live.
Ivy Mackenzie – August 8th 2016
I was left to get all stitched up and cleaned up and Ivy went with her daddy to be weighed and measured. They then wheeled me into recovery and there was my love holding our littlest love, skin to skin waiting for me.
As soon as the freezing started to ween off the placed her on my chest and just like her brother, we nursed right then and there. I am so thankful I have been able to breastfeed these babies, I know it is a battle for so many.
We were quite quickly taken back to our room because I was recovering well, we shared some sweet moments with our new baby, searching her over, memorizing every roll and wrinkle, waiting for Big Brother Bowen to join us!
We called all our close family to tell them the news and texted our friends. We had told my sister to come right away with Bowen so that we could have his time of introduction without the extra excitement of lots of people.
Bo was a little shocked when he came in, she was having her first bath and crying so he did not know what to do, plus Mama was all hooked up to the I.V still which he was very concerned about. After the bath and opening his big brother gift he seemed to warm up, even sharing a few kisses with his new sister.
Words can’t describe the feeling of having your family all together and complete like that for the first time. My heart felt like it would explode.
Ivys turn for her first bath from Auntie Tanis!
I am so grateful for this wonderful sister of mine, she watched Bowen while we were away, allowing him to stay home in his regular environment and schedule. We truly believe it helped our transition from one to two be as good as its been. My sister and I have always been super close and Ivy’s middle name is after her Auntie Abigail, who’s middle name is also Mackenzie.
It was a beautiful day for a beautiful girl to arrive. The experience was so different from Bowens in so many ways even though they were both c-sections. There was this peace about the day, a calm that can’t be explained. We were thankful for sleep and to be rested before the surgery and for family to all come and visit not feeling like zombies. Most of all we are thankful for health, and safety through out the pregnancy and delivery. Now its on to living life as a family of 4!
- A special thanks to Candace Stock Doula & Birth Photography for being there for such an important day in our lives and capturing these precious moments!