She’s here.

Three weeks. It’s been three weeks since we welcomed our daughter into the world and that is still sinking in for me. In fact, using words like “our daughter” out loud feels so strange to me. We have a daughter! Here on this earth, in our home, in our arms! I feel so blessed to have her here and I spend most of the day staring at her beautiful face in equal parts joy and disbelief.

I wanted to write about her arrival, but it feels like a whirlwind and it still makes me incredibly overwhelmed with emotions. I spent the entire pregnancy imagining having a vaginal birth. If I’m being honest, I spent my entire life thinking my baby would been born that way. The way my mother birthed me and the way my sister birthed my nephew.

Plans changed when I found out Corrine was breech and we were faced with the decision to schedule a version, wait to see if she flipped, or proceeding with a scheduled c-section. First, I will say that my priority was having her arrive safely. But the idea of having her making her arrival in an OR via c-section was a bit terrifying for me. Our first baby was removed from my womb in an OR, and I never got to see her. This was an entirely different circumstance, but it still scared me.

We ultimately decided the c-section was best option for us. We showed up to the hospital at 11am on Thursday, June 28th with our bags full of clothes. They prepped me for the surgery and I was overwhelmed with fear of being awake during the procedure. It made me nervous to be operated on while conscious and mostly to have my baby taken out and me not be able to hold or see her right away. My nerves were at a high all the way through the spinal procedure. It wasn’t until I was laid on the table, the drape hung, and my husband coming into the room did I start to relax a bit.

I remember looking around the room at the doctor, anesthesiologist, nurses, scrub tech, and realized that they were all women. I was overwhelmed by the beauty of my daughter being brought into the world by a team of strong, brilliant, and hard working women. The only man in the room was her daddy. What a beautiful way for a girl to be welcomed into the world.

It felt like a lifetime waiting to hear that she was out. They told me I’d feel pressure and sure enough I felt an extreme tugging sensation that radiated up to my shoulders. One of the nurses said “she is VERY breech.” I stared at my husband’s face waiting to see a look of relief and joy wash over him. As they got her lower half out, they laughed saying she had started peeing and pooping already! Her head came out and I heard her beautiful cries. They held her over the drape for me to see the most beautiful, tiny, and wrinkled feet and toes. She was carried over to the scale, and her daddy followed her. Our precious girl weighed 8 pounds and 4 ounces, and was 20 and 3/4 inches long. As I was being stitched up, I looked over to see Corrine’s hands and feet moving around as nurses cleaned her up, took her vitals, and pressed her feet on ink pads to make footprint impressions on a piece of paper. Tears streamed down my face hearing her cries and seeing her tiny limbs moving. Finally her daddy brought her over to me. She was wrapped up snuggly in blankets with a pink and blue cap on her head. Her eyes were closed when her face touched my own for the first time. It was truly the most amazing moment of my life.

We finally had our Corrine Rose here! I spent the next few hours in the recovery room holding her next to me, breathing in her perfect newborn scent, and feeding her from my breast. I watched her daddy sing songs to her and carry her with such love I thought my heart may burst. We spent the next 3 days in a bubble of bliss. Family and friends stopped by to visit us and to hold our daughter. It was magical. In spite of the mesh underwear, huge maxi pads, sore abdomen, tired body, and uncomfortable beds…it was the best 3 days of my life. I’ll never forget those moments of getting to know Corrine. Learning what her cries mean, skin to skin time with her, feeding her, and enjoying her many faces and noises. I soaked in every second we got to spend in our blissful bubble.

Sometimes I wish I could rewind and relive those 3 days. I look down at the sunshine in my arms and I’m in awe that I get to be her mom. The love I have for her is so special, because every day she is healing my heart and soul. We have been on a hell of a journey to get here. I don’t wish that journey on anyone, but I’m grateful for the lessons I’ve learned, the person it shaped me to be, and that this little baby is here. This journey is what gave me Corrine and it’s what shaped me into the mother I am today. I’m forever grateful.

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