Monday, May 23, 2011

1 Year Today - May 23rd

To My Sweet Julianna Belle:

I can not believe you are 1 year old today. One year ago today, Daddy and I became parents to the most beautiful baby girl in the world. You have fulfilled our life in ways that we never knew needed fulfilling. We don't remember life before you. We love you more than anything. Daddy and I love being a family and are blessed to have you as our daughter. You are beautiful in every way. We must have done something right in life to have you as our daughter and make our family so perfect!

Here's the story
{It's a long one, go get a cup of coffee first}

On May 23rd 2010, I woke up around 5am with some pretty strong pain that felt like it could be labor but I wasn't sure. Julianna wasn't due until May 27th ... so I figured we had a few more days. Well... we didn't! As the pain got more intense, it sure felt like contractions to me. And uh, pretty close ones at that. Brian said "Maybe you better get up and get in the shower ... so we can get ready to go".
{Note to pregnant moms - Pack your bags wayyy ahead of time and don't assume you will have the baby on time or late!}. Brian was running around packing bags at the last minute. It was pretty funny looking back at it now. Not funny when we were running around like Laurel & Hardy that morning trying to throw things into the duffel bag.

I got in the shower... and at that point, labor came on pretty strong. It felt like Julianna was really wanting to come out and meet us soon! {Uh oh!!} Brian had to help me get ready because I couldn't stand up straight due to the contractions - and they were about 2 minutes apart already! Wow, so much for labor lasting for a couple of days or coming on easy! haha! I called the mid-wife and she said to meet her at the hospital ASAP {but have some breakfast first}.

We got to Hackettstown Hospital, and Brian wheeled me right upstairs in a wheelchair (Nooo way could I walk at that point). He had to come back down and register. At this point, I was bent over in horrific labor pains. Whoever said labor was slow & relaxing & a beautiful experience is a big fat freakin' liar. It hurts. It hurts like hell! It hurts like nothing you never felt before and I don't care how well you breathe or listen to spa music or meditate. It EFFING hurts. My wonderful midwife (Roxy) got there shortly after we did. She had such a calming way about her that quickly made my situation feel much more in control.

Roxy ordered the epidural immediately (those were my wishes since the day I found out I was pregnant). From the time we got to the hospital, to the time I got my AMAZING epidural, it was about an hour and a half.  The epidural did not hurt one bit. I had an excellent anesthesiologist that got the needle & line in... and was all done in seconds it seemed. I even had a contraction during the process and my midwife was able to hold me and talk me through it so I didn't move. I will never forget the feeling when the pain started to slowly go away... Epidurals rock let me tell ya. I would never do it any other way. Sorry but I am just not into the whole natural birth 'experience' thing. It just was not for me. I need pain-free. Give me drugs. I'm a wimp. I know everyone has to have things the way they like it when they are in labor and drugs are not for everyone - but this was how I needed to do it.

So then the waiting began. Roxy said Julianna was not trying to move down even though I was in such hard labor. She was still way up there. We waited a couple hours (I think) and then Roxy started pitocin. After that, Julianna was still not interested in coming out ... then I developed a fever and I forget what the other issue was but it was affecting her heart rate too. She said the baby was getting very stressed due to the fact she weren't able to move down into 'postion'. Roxy was hesitant to wait any longer since we were both starting to have some issues. She made the call for the C-Section. And I will tell you the last thing any mid-wife wants to do is a C-Section. Because Roxy was so concerned and said it was needed right away, I knew it was totally necessary.

We had to wait for the Operating Room ... and I think we went in around 8pm or so. Julianna was born via C-section at 8:21 pm on Sunday May 23, 2010. She was 7 pounds and 10 ounces... and 20.5 inches long & healthy! The minute Jules was born, it was truly the most miraculous moment of our lives. Brian and I both felt the instant bond and loved her immediately. She was our beautiful baby girl. And she was ours! We made her! We love Julianna more and more each day. I did not think it was possible to love anything as much as we love her.

Julianna was born with a fever & it concerned the doctor but it went down after a few hours (or by the next morning). They did not like her rapid breathing (respirationsNICU to play it safe since she still had rapid respirations. He said Julianna had a slight Pneumothorax (pin-hole in the lung) which is a "kind of a normal" thing to be born with.

There wasn't a NICU in Hackettstown Hospital. So, the doctor set up a transport to bring Julianna to the NICU in Morristown Hospital (about 30 mins away). Brian and I were crying the whole morning because we didn't want her to go and we wanted her to be ok. {Truth be told, we were crying from the minute she was born and it was just such an emotional couple of days!}. I only got to hold Julianna for a few minutes after she was born and then a few minutes in the morning due to the fact she were being monitored all night on the C-Pap machine. It was the most horrible feeling when she left to go to Morristown Hospital ... without her Mama.

It really was dreadful for me to be stuck in the hospital healing from my surgery and I couldn't go visit Julianna in the NICU. Brian went back and forth all 3 days I was there. He would sleep in my room and then go see Julianna at the other hospital... then come back to see me ... and then go to see her... He wasn't going to let his baby girl have her first few days in the world without Daddy around. Brian is an incredible man & father.

I healed up as expected and was discharged on Day Three. We drove right to the NICU to go see Julianna. I burst into tears when I saw her hooked up to all those monitors. But I also knew she was in good hands. The Morristown NICU is brand new and very modern. Only 2 babies to a room - and the nurses there were seriously amazing. They are heroes for real. They were so caring and helpful. THey didn't even make fun of me when I told them I had never changed a diaper before either! LOL.

Brian and I went to the NICU daily until Julianna was discharged 6 days later. It was so weird going home at night and we did not have our baby home with us. It was a difficult few days to say the least. I feel terrible for the parents that can't take their babies home for weeks after they are born. That must be horrible to go through. 6 days was rotten enough for us.

Oh let me touch on the Pneumothorax - the reason she had to go to the NICU. She had this pinhole in her lungs that kept her respirations very high. They needed it to be at a certain # per minute before she could be discharged. Most babies end up having to have a chest tube put in to fix the issue. Some (very few) end up healing on their own. Julianna ended up healing on her own. She was a very mellow newborn baby. The NICU nurses all commented on how mellow & calm she was. She was not a screamer, and that helped tremendously to heal her Pneumothorax. {She really never has been - she has a mellow disposition to this day}. So on the 6th day, we were told she could go home... she healed herself up. She had no other complications or health issues after that.

It's funny. When you are going through the reality of 'about to give birth' - I didn't think about all the things I was worried about & terrified of for 9 months. I thought about how we were going to be ok and make it through everything... and how incredibly wonderful my husband was while I was in labor... how we were going to have a beautiful baby girl. It didn't matter that I had to have an unplanned C-section either. That was what had to be done. Nothing else really mattered in the end. It was the absolute best day of our lives.

In the NICU

We hated to see her hooked up to all this stuff. 

Resting peacefully in the NICU.  

Heading home for the first time!! 

I can't believe what a big girl she has turned into a year later!


  1. Happy Birthday to your baby girl! She is a beauty.

  2. Reading your blog post today brought tears of joy to my eyes. I can remember the day you had Julianna like it was yesterday. Happy 1st Birthday Julianna - - - the Kloss family loves you!!

  3. Great post, Skye! Happy Birthday Julianna!!! :)

  4. Oh my!! ONE YEAR?! Happy birthday!

  5. Happy Birthday darling Julianna Belle. I am such a proud grandma!

    Wonderful post, Skye.

  6. She was and is a beautiful baby! I can't imagine having to leave my baby in the hospital. That was my worst fear. Happy 'birth'day, to you both!

  7. Thank you - I sure can not believe it has been a year! Time flies!

  8. Happy Birthday Julianna Belle!!!!!!

  9. Happy Birthday to Julianna Belle :) She's so cute! I love the last picture of her, so adorable and sweet!

  10. Happy Birthday, Julianna! I had no idea things started out complicated for you guys...I think I started following you around five or six months. Thank goodness for modern medicine! She is so beautiful and happy now! Congratulations on one year!!


  11. Isn't giving birth terrifying and amazing all at once?! I'm with you on the epidural, my water broke at midnight (no contractions before) went to the hospital at 3, admitted at 5 and started pitocin and was getting an epidural by 7 because the contractions were horrible! I think the pitocin makes it soooo much worse from what i have heard. I was also on magnesium to prevent seizures because I had blood pressure issues while pregnant, that was some nasty stuff!

  12. Bella Skye - thank you !!

    Carla - Yes amen to modern medicine - i am all for it! She turned out perfect...!!

    Alicia - yeh it's a crazy thing - the fear and the joy all at once... its indescribable really! Wow then you had the added blood pressure issues too - that had to be scary!


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