Early on the morning of February 12 we left for the hospital while it was still dark. Papa and GiGi would get the boys off to school and as usual Aunt Monica would make the trip with us. It was a wonderful day the day we would meet you our early Valentine...our Harper!
We arrived and parked and walked back to maternity triage and checked in. It was a painless process of insurance info and other details. Then it was goodbye for now to Aunt Monica who would patiently wait while I got squared away before the move up to the OR.
There were blood tests and monitors and other things to keep me distracted and the nerves at bay. The nurses chatted with us about you and your brothers. I am not sure how many times I said your name and their names that day but I was feeling so happy. I knew you would be here soon to make our family complete.
We moved to the OR waiting area and Aunt Monica came with us while they wheeled me up. It was good to see her one more time. She is my touchstone and the one who knows everything about me. And she will know everything about you and your brothers too.
A few hugs and kisses and we were in the new waiting area with visits from doctors and signing papers and Daddy put on his scrubs. This was it. We were almost ready. Then after a short walk to the OR they tried and tried to give me the spinal.
It hurt. It hurt on the left and then the right. It burned it was sharp then they had to try again and again. It just wasn't working. I was anxious and afraid. They brought in Caitlin who was there when Brenton was born. She is and always will be my favorite midwife! She made me feel calmer. She made me laugh through the tears.
Finally they brought in someone else to try and a free 2 more tries it was done and they laid me down and Caitlin brought Daddy into the room. Dr. McCullentalked to me and so did Caitlin and told me that it was almost time and they could see you and you had so much hair. Then you emerged and I heard you cry and I cried. They dropped the drape and I saw your beautiful body and your face and I reached for you. I was filled with joy. You were just perfect.
I watched them take you over and Daddy wemt with you while they cleaned you up. They weighed you and checked you and confirmed what I knew...you were perfect. As they finished up and stitched me back together all I wanted was to hold you. We took our first family picture and then Daddy brought you to recovery to wait for me.
You were sleepy and when they laid you on my chest you inched your way to nurse for the first time. You were perfect. Your warm body against me is a feeling I felt with your brothers, but this would be the last time and it was special. That instant bond of love and admiration for my new child. It is truly miraculous how your heart can burst from an overwhelming feeling of love.
Daddy and I talked about how fast you arrived and how happy we were and how grateful we were and I suddenly noticed I could feel my toes. They took vitals and monitored you and we were both doing well. Before I knew it we were moving again.
We got to the room where we would spend the next few days getting to know each other. Aunt Monica held you and cried. She was so happy to meet you. She brought you presents and balloons. We kept telling each other how beautiful you are.
After a few hours and more nursing and more vital checks and more cooing over you your brothers arrived. Emerson was completely taken by you. He loved you with his big Emerson love right from the start. Brenton was a bit nervous being in the hospital but he was also smitten. My heart was so full watching you together. GiGi held you and Poppie held you and everyone was just thrilled to meet you.
It was one of the very best days of my life. Once again I felt like the luckiest girl in the world. It was the day our family became five. The day Brenton was certain we could form Voltron. The day we were filled with happiness and awe for the tiny being that came into our lives and made us complete. That was you, our one and only Harper!