An Everyday Fairy Tale

It all started the morning of my Grandfather's funeral last January.  I suspected that I was pregnant earlier in the week and had taken a test on "the day", that came up negative.  This was a good thing for me, because I wasn't ready to have a baby just yet...  Except, I couldn't help feeling a little sad that I wasn't.  Human emotions are funny things.  So, as I was getting ready for the funeral that morning, I had an impression that I should check again... you know, just to make sure.  :)  Well, I knew even before that double pink line showed up that my life had changed forever... I was over joyed.  I remember sitting on the edge of the bathtub hoping that our baby would get the chance to meet my Grandfather... her Great Grandfather, before she left that place to come to earth.  I just knew that he would have some nugget of wisdom for her... (He may even have had the chance to call her Magillacutty).
I remember sitting at the funeral.... missing my Grandfather and my unborn child at the same time.  Now, it makes me think of what Gretchen Rueben said in The Happiness Project... "The days are long, but the years are short."  It seemed as though the pregnancy would take forever (not a good sign when you are thinking this on THE DAY you found out you were expecting!).  I couldn't wait to meet her (although, we didn't know it was a her yet either).  At the same time, I was thinking about all the Christmases with my Grandparents.  All the memories with my Grandfather... and it seemed to fly by in a flash.  Bits and pieces of the years stand out, but the rest is a blur... That is the main reason I started this blog... to preserve those memories.  So, here is the story of how I met my daughter on the 15th of September... one day before the scheduled induction; 6 days overdue.

I had been having contractions all week.  Every night, they would get stronger and stronger, and then in the morning they would stop completely.  (I like to think she was getting extra hugs and kisses in on the other side).  I hate being induced.... you have to wait around all day long before anything happens.  So, I talked Taylor into taking me and the girls to 7-11, where I bought the BIGGEST slurpee you can find.  :)  I downed that sucker as fast as I could.  I started to feel some pain, and not from brain freeze.  I was excited that the contractions started to really hurt by the time we got home.  I walked around at home for an hour, timing the contractions.  Finally, it was time to go.  We dropped the girls off at Tasha and Vaughn's house (thanks guys), who would then take them to Danna's house when she and her family got home from Calaway Park.  She ended up taking them over night and had some quality Dora time with a naughty 3 year old who wouldn't sleep.  :)  (Thanks Danna!)
Aaaanyway, We got to the hospital and got situated and just waited... and waited... and waited.  I remember  being able to tell who were new parents through the triage curtains.  I can remember laughing at the newbies, but also feeling so excited for them too.  I am always sort of jealous of those who are having their first child because it is one of the most exciting times.  It is also when you realize that you have never really been petrified before you had a child...  and that never goes away.  Anyway...  getting side tracked... again.
Finally, after 3 and a half hours I was checked and moved to a delivery room.  I will not go into the gory details... just know that I never have that amazing experience during birth...  I am just praying I can hold on until it is all over.  Seriously.  Although we did have so many awesome nurses and great doctors who took extra good care with us.  (I guess we got in just before the rush was beginning).  I remember one nurse who was filling in for our nurse's break.  She was so sweet (I am sorry I don't remember her name... like I said...  I was just trying to hang on).  She must have been a cheerleader... because she was a great one for me.  She was so confident in me, even when my epidural didn't work, that I couldn't help feeling the same way.  She also went and found a sweet knitted cap for my baby, instead of one of those funny yellow ones.

Skip the boring details... they broke my water and she was out in 3 minutes.  My Juliette.

That picture right there.... THAT is my favorite moment.  I can barely look at it without breaking into tears.  That is the moment I fell into complete, unconditional love.  I didn't get to see her right away.  Specialists were checking her out and she was getting some oxygen... but the moment they placed her in my arms, I felt that feeling... that heaviness in the heart that feels like a comfort instead of a burden.  That was the moment I knew I was given someone special...  someone who was filling yet another hole that I hadn't known was there.  That is all it took... one tiny moment, one tiny cry, one tiny new life.  And even past all the bruises, I could see she was far more beautiful than I ever could have imagined.  My Juliette.

Juliette Danna Leavitt
September 15, 2012
9 lbs. 2 0z.