Wednesday, January 23, 2013

"C" is for Clare

Marian Clare Cockerham

December 29, 2012

10:26 AM

7 pounds 13 ounces

20.5 inches

Our sweet Clare was born a few days after Christmas!  I woke up at 10:00 AM on Friday, December 28 knowing that she would arrive soon, so I spent the day relaxing around the house through irregular contractions.  Sometime after 8:00 PM things picked up, which was perfect because Tully was already in bed for the night.  My parents stayed the night, so we could leave for the hospital any time we needed.  I labored at home until contractions were two minutes apart, and we left for the hospital around 3:30 AM.  I was feeling intense pain, and we had already modified the birth plan since I would be requesting an epidural as soon as we arrived.  On our way to the hospital, some idiot was driving their untagged maroon SUV 10 miles under the speed limit through our neighborhood, and John knew to go around them without me even saying anything.  He might have ran a red light on the way too, but maybe I was just imagining things during contractions ;)  We pulled up to the main door of the hospital, but the doors were locked.  Grrrr.  As we walked around the building towards the emergency entrance, I noticed the same untagged maroon SUV pulling through the parking lot.  When they saw me and my huge belly waddling to the ER, I guess they decided they didn't need to call the cops on us. Thanks, citizen patrol, for keeping our streets safe.  Move along.

My midwife was still on vacation, so Dr. Whitham was the doctor on-call attending my birth.  Once I got settled in the hospital with my epidural, I quickly dilated from 4 cm to 10 cm in under two hours.  I'm thinking to myself, "This is going fast.  I can totally do this!"  They went ahead and broke my water, and I began pushing shortly after.   I pushed for a couple hours and didn't have much to show for it.  I thought second births were supposed to be faster/easier??  Lucky for me Dr. Whitham had to attend another birth at the hospital across the street, so they continued to let me push for another two hours.  What fun.  At this point I needed to get off my back, so I convinced the nurse that I should be pushing on my hands and knees or in a squat.  She and the other nurse who brought in the squat bar were both shocked I was moving around with my epidural.  In my mind, I just needed to get in a different position no matter what it took, so I could get Clare going in the right direction.  Turns out Clare didn't actually move, but I sure felt better.  Four hours into pushing, Dr. Whitham came back from the other hospital, and he figured out that Clare was sunny side up (posterior).  That explained why I was getting NOWHERE with the pushing.  He worked to manually turn her face-down between contractions, and boy was I glad I had an epidural.  Instead of getting to relax and breathe for a minute between contractions, it was non-stop pain and pressure.  As soon as he got her turned, it only took six pushes (two contractions), and Clare came flying out.  Dr. Whitham didn't even have time to get gloves on!  She latched within 30 minutes, and with the exception of a few bumps in the road when my milk came in, she's been nursing like a champ. 

John and Clare sleeping in hospital

John, Tully, Clare
Tully has adjusted well to the new baby.  He doesn't call her by name, even though we tried to give her a nickname, CiCi (for Clare Cockerham), that would be easy for him to say.  He just says baby.  He likes to touch her nose, eyes, ears, neck, etc., but he also knows "nice", so most touching is done gently.  He likes to bring me burp cloths and blankets to cover her up, and he also pats her and says things like, "It's okay, baby," and "Baby sleep."  Overall, he's pretty sweet with her, and he hasn't sought attention negatively or acted up any more than usual.  I noticed almost immediately that he was having a hard time going to sleep and staying asleep though.  There was just too much going on in the house, and he could totally work my mom into coming into his room.  We gave him his pacifier back, and he's been content ever since. 

My mom was here for about three weeks after Clare was born, so Tully spent a lot of time with her.  He hasn't been able to say Grammy, and while she was here, he officially renamed her Mamay, which sometimes sounds like mom-aye or ma'am-aye, depending on his mood.  It's your world, kid, so the history books have officially been rewritten to note that my mom is Mamay.  Clare was lucky that Mamay was here to help so much.  My house would have been an absolute disaster, and John and I would have likely starved.  Thanks, Mamay!

I think John and I have adjusted well to life with two kids.  We have lots of help from family and the nanny, but Clare is nothing like Tully, so that's made the change easier for sure.  She's more laid back, and I have a better clue about what I'm doing, so the combo of those two things makes for less stress around the house and a happier husband.  John is still a champ at diaper changes, baths, endless hours of bouncing/shushing/rocking, and keeping Tully fed and busy.  Once we get through the new baby/limited sleep phase, I think we'll have it made.  Neither one of us does well without sleep.  Ugh.  Clare has been a sweet, sweet baby though, and I'm actually enjoying my maternity leave.  With Tully I was itching to get back to work after a few weeks, but this time I'm reading books, getting manicures, and I plan to start working out or running again soon.  My recovery has been a breeze compared to last time.

Here is the first photo in the Watch Clare Grow Series.  This was supposed to be her newborn shot, but it's more like a 2 week photo.  Oh well...I love you, Marian Clare.


  1. Yay! Congrats, again! She is a beautiful baby!

  2. She's precious!! Congratulations!!! Pushing forever is the worst. I'm pretty sure Emmy was sunny side up. I kept asking and asking, but they kept saying "we can't tell." Ugh. But I guess all's well that ends well! Glad you're enjoying your maternity leave and that Tully is doing well!

  3. Congratulations on your beautiful baby girl! I can't believe how long you pushed! What made you decide to do the epidural this time?

    1. I actually had an epidural with Tully too, so this wasn't too much of a surprise. The only difference this time was that I made the decision before I arrived at the hospital. It worked out great in the end, since they had to manually turn her, which they wouldn't have done without me having an epidural.

  4. Congratulations, Ash! I'm so elated for you, John, and Tully! I love watching your family grow (not just your belly) ;)

  5. Congrats!! She is such a beauty!!! The second is so much easier. busier, but easier! Guess it helps when we know what we are doing this go-round!! Congratulations again on your sweet girl!

  6. She is so so cute!! Other than pushing for an insanely long time, I'm glad things are going so well!! Have fun!


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