Thursday, October 11, 2007

Happy Birthday Malia!

Wow-really?!? NINE years?!? That makes me feel old! It's really been nine years since I went from being myself to being someone's mom. Time really does fly. What a blessing it is to have Malia here in our family-even though she does sometimes get confused and think she's the mom too!

Her birthday is a bit scattered this year, a few gifts in the mail yesterday, gifts from Beebs and Pomps this morning (they are in Greece today-a stop on their big Mediterranian cruise), and the family thing tonight with our family, Aaron's Dad, and hopefully his brother. Whether or not we'll do something with my siblings this weekend has yet to be decided! We are also taking a big leap this year and having a friend birthday party. I know, I know, we are mean old parents for not having them before for our kids, but really-with this many kids, it's always a big party even when it's just our family! They've asked for years, and to be honest, I was hoping to do it last year since 8yrs old is a big birthday is this neck of the woods, but Lincoln being born just 8 days before Malia's birthday kind of made that prospect not so attractive. So this year we caved, and she gets a friend party on Saturday afternoon. 7 or 8 eight and nine year olds should be all kinds of fun!

Malia's biggest bonus for this year came in the form of UEA break ("fall break" now-watch my eyes rolling here), giving her a looooong weekend off for her bday; Thursday, Friday, AND Monday off school! She got to celebrate and take treats to her class yesterday, and the party will just keep going all weekend long! Not such a bad deal!

(I'm warning you up front-Here's where it gets long!)
A friend of mine shares her childrens birth stories on her blog each year on their birthday. I have loved the idea, but since my blog has been not so active until recently, I obviously haven't taken the chance to do so. I'm changing that today. So the following (LONG story) is Malia's story. Funny-I remember wanting to cry when she was born, thinking that I should be so overwhelmed with emotion, and wondering why it didn't come. I was too much in awe of what was happening-and never really did cry at the birth of my first child, yet it happens now as I reread and relive the events of that day. Becoming a Mom really was the best thing I've ever done. (second only to becoming a wife of course!!)

We married in August of 1997 and planned on having years of fun together. We were both in school and working with awesome travel benefits, and we wanted to take advantage of that! We had a great five-year plan. About two months after we were married, I started feeling like I needed to have a baby. I wasn't baby hungry, in fact I thought I must have been going insane because that was not at all in my plans! But I just couldn't shake the feeling. I kept it to myself b/c I knew Aaron would think I was crazy too, but one night I just couldn't do it anymore. I remember lying in bed staring up at the ceiling and saying, "Aaron, I think we need to have a baby." His reaction was like mine was initially, shock. After much discussion, we decided that I must just be feeling like that must be what needed to come next, because the natural order of things was get married, have a baby. We decided not to act on it; I pushed back into work full speed, began working as a supervisor, and began traveling with my job. I was feeling accomplished, life was good. We put having a baby on the back burner. Little did I know I had experienced motherly intuition before even becoming a mother. I was a day late and dying to test, but was so nervous that I didn't tell Aaron. I bought a test (that stayed hidden under the seat in my car for a day) and snuck it upstairs to test, still not telling him. I will never forget walking down the hall to the living room with a plastic stick in my hand saying "ummm, Aaron? I think you should see this!" Surprise, our first birth control baby! 

We got over the initial shock, although I was still very nervous about telling anyone, I feared that something would go wrong. Aaron on the other hand was already playing the proud daddy role and wanted to tell everyone. Just days past the 12 week mark, my worst fears were confirmed. I was at work when I felt something, upon getting to the bathroom I discovered that I had bled through 3 layers of clothing down to my knees. I was devastated. I went home and broke down; Aaron was wonderful to me as I spent the next 3 days on bed rest. Because of confusion in paperwork, we had been told that our insurance had been cancelled, so I didn't go to the hospital. I spoke with an on call doctor who told me to monitor the bleeding and take another pregnancy test in a few days if the bleeding stopped. Those were the longest days of my life. The test came back positive again, we found out that we DID have insurance after all, so I finally went to see my wonderful OB at 14 weeks. We heard the heartbeat right then, it was amazing. What an indescribable feeling to KNOW that life has been created inside you! 

The pregnancy went very well, except the nausea in the beginning and the swelling over the hot summer months. I kept our thermostat set at 62, which helped me. Aaron kept a sweater on while inside the condo for the month of August! I loved the eating for two and took full advantage of it, gaining 40lbs! 

October finally rolled around, and four days before my due date, I had regular contractions. "Here it is!" I thought! I prepared myself mentally, and slipped into the tub to relax myself into labor. No good, the contractions stopped. Dang! At my 40-week appointment, on my due date, I was still only about 50% effaced and only a bit past 1cm. Dang again! I remember sitting home that night while Aaron was at work. I was watching Friends, the episode where Phoebe gave birth to triplets. I cried because she got to have babies and I was going overdue. 

On Friday the 10th, I told Aaron that if he wanted be "intimate" any time in the near future, that was the night. We ended up having a pillow fight instead. Go figure! Apparently that did the trick, early Saturday morning I woke up wet. I didn't tell Aaron, I knew he had an appt at 9am that morning. I waited until he went to work, and then called the hospital, they said not to worry about rushing in unless I was having contractions. I wasn't, so I waited until 10am when Aaron's appointment would be over, called him and told him not to worry, but that we should go to the hospital when it was convenient for him. He was home in ten minutes! I showered, got dressed, did my hair, put on makeup, it made him crazy as he was dying to go! We arrived at the hospital around noon, they confirmed my water was broken and began Pitocin b/c my contraction were so small. I put up with the pain as long as I could, by about 9:30pm, I was through with it! I called for the epidural, which was very painful, but provided complete relief from contractions despite the nausea it brought along with it. I slept from about 11pm until a flurry of dr's and nurses woke me up around 1am, her heart rate was dropping, she was not tolerating labor anymore. They told me that the time had come. Aaron walked back in right then, he had gone home to get some things--what timing! I was having a very hard time pushing because I was so very numb, but when the nurse said, "look! You can see her head!” I found my motivation! My dr was out of town, so the on call dr delivered. As her head came out, Aaron just kept saying "tiny ears! Look! Look at those tiny ears!" Wow! I did have to have just a few stitches, a huge relief for me! At 2:18am, Catherine Malia Ball made us an official family! My perfect little girl, 6 pounds 15 ounces, 19.5 inches long, with lots of dark hair...all over her body!


Kelsey said...

So crazy! I remember seeing her in the hospital :) She was/is so cute. She was my little buddy forever....until she became my mom :) j/k
I'm glad you posted this, because I've never even heard the story before!

Unknown said...

Great story. Thanks for all your personal thoughts and feelings as your family began as it shows your character development and why you're so awesome today! Long posts are always good too :)