Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Owen Matthew Vancil

On July 19th, we made our way to Sacred Heart at 6 AM to begin delivering our baby. I was induced at about 6:30 AM with a small amount of Pitocin which quickly got the contractions started. Although my contractions were intense on the monitor, I wasn't feeling any unbearable pain, which is how my body operated the final month of my pregnancy anyway. We had lots of family stop by, we watched YouTube videos, ate some delicious chicken broth and orange flavored "gel" (can't call it Jell-o because the hospital couldn't splurge on the name brand), and listened to a special mix just waiting for the doctor to tell us it was time.

I got to 7 centimeters before I got the epidural, which is funny because I don't know why I waited to get that magic juice if I knew I would eventually get it. I think it was the fear of getting an epidural put in that made me wait. I held onto JJ while my body shook uncontrollably from fear. The woman who gave me the local before the epidural said that the local was the worst part and it felt like a wasp sting. Now, I know that wasps hurt worse than regular bees, so I thought it was funny that she made the distinction. I wonder if there is some rule that if you tell a patient that it's like a bee sting and it hurts worse than that, you can be sued. So, they have to clarify that it's more like a wasp, just to be safe. I get the local, then they give me the epidural which didn't hurt, but I could feel it going through all the layers of my back (whatever those are). I was still lucid and doing a pretty good job shaking. Then they told me that they were putting the catheter in. Catheter? What? Because I wasn't prepared for that minor detail, my adrenaline caught up with me and I said to a nurse, "I can't hear. I can't see and I can't hear. You're gonna want to stand right here next to me." You see, I am an experienced fainter so I knew the tell-tale signs. I came to with an oxygen mask and a shiny new epidural, fully equipped with its own medicine-releasing button I could push at any time. Once that medicine took effect, all I remember thinking was, thank God my sciatica is gone. Nine months of aches and pains just drifted away as I asked for another round of broth and gel.

The doctor woke me up from a nap to break my water, which was ridiculously anticlimactic. The baby's head was so far down that nothing happened when my water broke, like in the movies with the gush and the freaking out. Nothing. Just baby head blocking my Hollywood labor moment. Once that happened, I progressed quickly. JJ and I took the last hour before the delivery to pray and talk. This is when the reality of the day finally washed over us. We were about to meet our son. We held one other and looked in each other's eyes in disbelief that this moment was finally arriving. I was also pretty excited about not being pregnant anymore and that I could stop pretending to love the hospital broth and gel.

The doctor came in to check me and said it was time to push. I didn't even have a second to consider what that meant, but I quickly figured it out. So much of this day had been unknown and happened so suddenly I never had time to think. I'm thankful for that because I never had time to freak out either. In my mind, I knew that my delivery would be easy. I knew that it wouldn't take long. I felt like my body knew what to do and I went on autopilot. Four cycles of contractions and nearly twenty minutes later, Owen Matthew Vancil made his way into the world. We were overjoyed and flooded with the most intense kind of love that I could never describe or imagine. It was incredible to me that only a day before, I was e-mailing and calling about graduate school and jobs and the second they laid Owen on my chest, my priorities completely shifted. There is nothing more important or precious to me than this child. Not even Tucker:)

When we had a moment alone after we went to recovery, we played the song "Love Never Fails" by Brandon Heath. We chose this song because we want Owen to know that his Savior is love and that this sacred love from God will never leave him or our family. Here are the words:

Love is not proud
Love does not boast
Love after all
Matters the most

Love does not run
Love does not hide
Love does not keep
Locked inside

Love is the river that flows through
Love never fails you

Love will sustain
Love will provide
Love will not cease
At the end of time

Love will protect
Love always hopes
Love still believes
When you don't

Love is the arms that are holding you
Love never fails you

When my heart won't make a sound
When I can't turn back around
When the sky is falling down
Nothing is greater than this
Greater than this

Love is right here
Love is alive
Love is the way
The truth the life

Love is the river than flows through
Love is the arms that are holding you
Love is the place you will fly to
Love never fails you

So a 7 pound, 8 ounce, 20.5 inch long person has totally changed our lives forever. It has been two challenging weeks of adjusting to having him in our house and of the three of us (myself, JJ, and Tucker) I think the cat is doing the best. Tucker tasted Owen's arm once and decided he wasn't interested in eating the baby like we all thought he would be. It's long days and longer nights, joy mingled with fear, and an overload on love. JJ and I have never loved each other more and we feel so complete with Owen in our lives.

"Month Nine" will be coming, but tiredness has sucked the humor right out of me. I can't even shoot the breeze with strangers at the supermarket anymore.

40 Weeks

Sleeping after the epidural

Cuddling after a long day of being born

Dad is in awe of his little boy

My sister McKenzie was a total pro. at holding Owen. He didn't open his eyes much until she held him which is ironic because she rarely closed her eyes when she was a baby

Auntie Shauna was at the hospital all week waiting for Owen's buddy, Hudson, to arrive

My dad stopped by to hold his first grandson

Mimi and Poppie with grandchild number four

I'm so in love with this little tree frog

Owen is ready to head home

JJ got him in the car seat and he slept the whole way home

Family of three, ready to leave the hospital

He loves his bouncer (little did we know he'd have to start sleeping in it!)

Auntie Manders stopped by for a visit before she headed off to Spain

Yay! Grandma Kathy came by to see Owen

We took a stroll around Whitworth to try out the new wheels and scope out his future dorm

Maybe you wouldn't be so upset if you hadn't peed all over the place
Think about that next time

He loves to sleep in our bed. I think he prefers to throw up in our bed rather than his

It wouldn't be summer without an Arnold Palmer

He has man hands, but they are still super cute

He smiles whenever we kiss him on the lips
Can't wait for those real smiles

He sleeps just like dad

Trying to hide from Tucker

Grandpa's Sidekick

My cousin's son Coleman loved holding Owen

Annika is an expert at feeding babies

Matt, JJ, and Owen do manly things


Uncle Bob (who gave him the name Hansel) flew in all the way from Madison, Wisconsin

Grandma loves to snuggle Owen

JJ and Owen looking good

We walked down to the neighborhood coffee shop
This is our favorite outfit for Owen. He has it all the way up to 6 months and then a zip-up and sweatpants version for this Christmas. He's a California baby, so it's only right that he should have a beach bum outfit.