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Monday, June 11, 2012

Welcome to the world Maggie!

(Note: My 1st draft of this blog was deleted, so I'm starting over again.  I hope to capture all the excitement, but I must admit I'm a little bitter about losing the first story.)

Our precious Maggie Grace is here! Friday, June 1st was our last day of school before summer vacation and it was the first day of our adventure to bring home our little girl! At 3:32 pm, I got a text from our birthmom Tabitha that read: "Get ready.  Possibly inducing today."  I immediately texted Chris (who was sitting in the Fort Mill High School graduation and had to get up and leave). I tried to remain as calm as I possibly could while putting in a pizza to eat on the road (so we wouldn’t have to stop) and giving Riley something to eat when my mom arrived to take care of him.  I started gathering items and finishing our last minute packing while I waited for Chris to come home.  I tried not to think about how much I would miss Riley since we’d been told we could be gone for 7 to 10 days. He was so sweet playing with his golf clubs and Weebles as I packed.  I had to keep stealing kisses and hugs because I knew it’d be awhile before I’d see his sweet little face again.  As soon as my mom arrived around 4:30 pm, Chris and I jumped in the car and began the 4 1/2 hour journey to Douglasville, Georgia.  The trip seemed to go rather fast because we were updating friends and family on our news and talking about how we could hardly believe the big day was finally here! 
We pulled into the hospital parking lot of WellStar Douglas Hospital around 8:45 pm and rushed up to room 202 of the  Women’s Birthing Center. We found Tabitha hooked up to an IV receiving fluids that would prepare her for labor.  She told us the doctor was not formally going to start the pitocin to induce her until the next morning.  So we sat and chatted with her for about an hour. We brought her some Lindor truffles since she had mentioned her love for these chocolates and she gave us a Little Princess outfit and hat for Maggie to wear along with 6 pairs of newborn socks (which you can never seem to have enough of). Tabitha talked about her labor and deliveries of her previous children and at one point made the comment that she hoped this delivery would be fast.  Little did we know how that wish would become a reality in just a few short hours!
Chris and I weren’t allowed to stay at the hospital that night because the baby had not been born yet, so we found a room at a Hampton Inn which was the closest hotel.  We managed to fall asleep around 11:30 and woke up around 6:30 the next morning.  After showering and eating breakfast, we packed up and sent Tabitha a text around 8:30 telling her we were going to stop by Target to get Chris some more socks before we headed to the hospital and to see if she wanted us to pick her up anything.  Seven minutes later, I received a call from the nurse that said Tabitha was in labor and about to have a baby “very soon” and we should come to the hospital.  Needless to say, Chris and I grabbed our bags and scurried down the elevator and out the door.  I almost had to knock down a few priests who were standing by the door and blocking the exit.  :)
We made it to the hospital about 8:45 am and I immediately saw in the partitioned room to the left that our baby girl had been born and was busy being cleaned and attended to by several nurses.  We called out to Tabitha who was separated in another section of the room by a curtain to let her know that we’d made it and to check on her.  Our hearts filled with joy as we gazed at our darling daughter who was calmly laying under the heating light and taking in the world around her. Nurse Tammy and Oretha were busy trying to get Maggie’s oxygen level up to 90 or above because it kept dipping down and hovering around 80 to 87.  Just as they were about to hook her up to an oxygen mask, our little girl rallied and started transitioning and breathing much better on her own.  At this point, the nurses put Maggie on the scales for us to take a picture.  She weighed 8 lbs. 1 oz. and they measured her height at 19 3/4 inches.  Tabitha was recovering and they opened up the curtain for us to go and see her.  I ran over and hugged her and cried my eyes out telling her how thankful we are for this amazing gift! She hugged back and let us know that she knew this was God’s plan and she felt like this was the right choice.  Tammy wrapped our precious Maggie in a blanket, put a pink and navy hat on her head, and then let Tabitha see her and touch her.
Then the moment we’d been waiting for—Tabitha said that we could hold her! See the pictures in the next blog of how happy we are to finally hold and meet our Maggie Grace.  What a precious moment! Chris and I were both so overjoyed.
Around 9:30 or 10, we were told that they had a room ready for us down the hall, so Chris and I left Tabitha to rest and went to feed Maggie. She ate just about one ounce her first feeding.  I fed her first and noticed that she latched on great and had a strong sucking reflex and was super easy to burp. 

The rest of the day seemed to pass like a blur! Chris and I sent pictures and talked to family and friends. We held and cuddled our sweet newborn and took tons of photos. We were able to get a guest lunch tray from the hospital cafeteria for lunch and Chris picked up some chicken salad sandwich. We tried feeding Maggie several times from 1:30 to 4:30, but she refused to eat until she was ready. Around 2 pm, Tabitha called and asked if we could bring Maggie down to her room, so that her dad could see her before he had to go to work. Of course, we were happy to oblige.  We visited for about an hour or so before we went back to our room to rest.  At some point in the afternoon, the pediatrician (Dr. Fox) came in to check out our girl.  She moved her limbs and listened to her breathing and said all looks well.  She did notice that she may have a hernia that should go away by the time she is 3 or 4. We posted a few pictures on Facebook and were overwhelmed by the love and support we were receiving! After supper, we met the night nurse (Tish) who fixed a “bed” for Chris to sleep in and checked Maggie’s vitals. We had a rather calm night.  Tabitha texted around 9:30 or 10 and wanted to come to our room and visit.  So she did and one of the most precious moments occurred. While holding Maggie, Tabitha leaned down and whispered, “I love you.  I will always love you.  I know this is the best decision to make because I can’t give you the kind of home you deserve.  But I want you to know I’ll always be here for you.  I know you’ll have plenty of people to love you, but if you ever need anything I’m here for you.”  I can only imagine what a selfless love it takes to place your child’s needs so above your own.  Tabitha has given us the most amazing gift in the world and we have promised her that we will never take this decision for granted and will raise Maggie with the knowledge of her courageous, loving birthmother!

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