Aug 31, 2005

Catching up!

Hello everyone! OK, it's been a while since my last post and A LOT has happened. I'll try to get everyone up to speed as good as I can.
June: Mama Diane left for the US to see Michael who would be on leave from the army for 2 weeks. He had no idea she was coming, so seeing her at the airport was very emotional for both of them.
On the 25th I had my 24th birthday. I had a really nice day. Sander, dad, Lara, Liz and I ate out at the TexxMexx in Scheveningen (yum yum!). After that Sander and I went to Rotterdam to see the Cirque du Soleil. That was awesome! I had already seen all their shows on DVD, but the real thing is sooooo much better :)
July: For the first two weeks of July Anneke and her daughters, Jiska and Milenna, came over to have a little holiday at Hotel Koot-Blom. It was busy yet fun having them over. Though I have to admit, I was glad to have some quiet time for the last 2 weeks of my pregnancy. It was really hot too, we had a heatwave and temperatures came up to around 90 Fahrenheit, or 30+ Celsius.
On the 20th mom came back from her 'holiday'. Though she had had a good time in the US, she too was glad to be back and have some quiet time before the birth, because it'd been an emotional trip. An awful thing happened while she was in Kaysville: a 1-year-old boy named Lincoln, the grandson of the family she was staying with (which are also Michael's in-law's-to-be), fell into a stream and drowned. We were all very shocked and sad when we heard the terrible news and our prayers still go out to his parents and family.
It was a good thing mom didn't stay in the US any longer than she did, because she got only a week to recover before I went into labor on Thursday the 28th!
Birth Story
We were in the Ikea in Delft when I started having Braxton-Hicks contractions. They were about 12-15 minutes apart and just strong enough for me to need to stand still for a minute untill the contraction would go away. The contraction kept coming the entire evening and night, though I was able to sleep through most of them.
At 5 am I couldn't sleep anymore and got up. The contractions were now 5 minutes apart and still not very painful. That morning I had an appointment to go see my midwife, so mom and Lara and I walked down to her office, stopping occasionally for me to wait out a contraction. We must've looked funny! We probably looked sweaty too beacuse the 28th turned out to be the hottest and most humid day that week... lucky me! The midwife did the usual check-ups (everything was fine) and also checked to see if my contractions were doing anything. I turned out to be 1 centimeter dialated and 100% effaced. She told me to go home and get some sleep because I might just be having a baby that night!
After that whole walk sleeping sounded pretty good, so when we got home that's exactly what I did..... for about 30 minutes. At 12.30am I was awoken by another contraction, though this time it was a rather painful one... and they kept coming regularly. First every 10 minutes and closer and closer untill they were about 4 minutes apart. That's when we decided to call the midwife. She came over at 3pm and when she checked I was 4 centimeters dialated! I was so excited! With Lara I had been in labor for over 24 hours and was still stuck at 1 centimeter, so this seemed to be going really well.
The midwife decided to come back at 5pm, since things seemed to be going quickly. When she came back I was already 8 centimeters dialated, so we decided to break my water (this usually speeds labor up even more). We all got a little shock when she did that: the baby had pooped in the amniotic fluid which can cause serious problems should the baby inhale the meconuim (=first baby-poop). To be on the safe side we decided I should deliver the baby in the hospital, so an ambulance was called. I was not happy. I had really been looking forward to having a home-birth (a very common thing in Holland by the way!), plus... being rushed to the hospital in an ambulance at 8 centimeters dialation is not exactly a pleasant experience! It seemed like every single bump in the road made my contractions worse. To top things off, Sander had decided it would be fun for all of our neighbors to come and watch while I was strolled outside to the ambulance, strapped onto a guerney, wrapped in a heavy blanket (on the hottest day of the summer so far), and moaning in agony. This of course made me very happy. Not.
Anyway, I survived the ride and finally made it into the delivery room and onto the hospital bed. Everything and everyone was ready for this baby to be born (especially me!), when my contractions became very infrequent. The doctors were thinking they might have to put me on a pitocin-drip to get my contractions going again, but my midwife had a better idea. She told me to try and lie on my left side, since that sometimes seemed to make contractions stronger. So I slowly turned over. In mid-turn I felt a contraction begin. That contraction got very strong, very quickly, until I was having the mother-of-all-contractions! I couldnt move, and suddenly I felt the baby coming out! I yelled 'THE BABY IS COMING!' and the doctors told me to get back on my back, which seemed impossible to me but I managed to do it anyway. (They also told me to stop pushing, but that was not something I was doing voluntarily... my body was just doing it's thing and I had no control whatsoever..) As soon as I was on my back again the head came out. The doctor quickly suctioned the baby's airways and still in the same contraction the baby was born and handed to me. She was very healthy right from the start, but very dirty from the dirty fluid, so after Sander cut the cord she was given a bath and dressed while the doctor checked me for tearing (I had none!). After the doctor was through and everything was fine, The little baby was handed back to me and Sander and I finally got to take a good look at her. That's when we saw exactly how beautiful this little girl was!
We decided to name our daughter
Julia Marianne
Here are some photo's:

Arrival at Leyenburg Hospital Posted by Picasa

30 seconds old Posted by Picasa

proud parents Posted by Picasa

first bath Posted by Picasa

all clean Posted by Picasa

alltogether Posted by Picasa

spending the night... Posted by Picasa

going home! Posted by Picasa

four generations Posted by Picasa

great-grandpa Posted by Picasa

Grandma Koot Posted by Picasa

Uncle Maarten Posted by Picasa

Koots Posted by Picasa

Ineke Spijker... the midwife Posted by Picasa

mommyLUV Posted by Picasa

Jacintha, the 'kraamhulp' Posted by Picasa

Party! Posted by Picasa

all snuggly Posted by Picasa
August: This has been a tumultuous month. When a new baby is born there's a lot of things going on at the same time... and it doesn't help when everyone gets sick at the same time! Lara had the flu, Karina had a breast-infection which she needed anti-biotics for, and poor little Julia had her first operation (hopefully it will be her last!). Luckily it was a small procedure: she had an infection on her right breast that needed to be operated on. Julia and I spent one night at the hospital together and then we were aloud to take her home. One week later she had completely healed and she is still doing great. The only negative that came out of the whole situation is that I couldn't continue breastfeeding, but luckily she is handling bottle-feeding really well.
Apart from that minor set-back we are all doing great and Sander and I love being the parents of two beautiful daughters. It's definetly worth losing a little sleep over! lol
Of course one more thing worth mentioning in August is Marissa's birthday! Our own sister-missionary turned 22 on the 16th. I love you Marissa, happy birthday!! Keep up the good work :)
There, I think that about covers it. The most important bits anyways! I vow to from now on do a better job at keeping the blog updated... which should be easier nog that my little family is starting to get back into something of a regular rythm again.
Love everybody! Till next Blog!

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