Saturday, June 27, 2009

She's gaining weight!

Yesterday's pediatrician appointment went well for Amalie: she gained 5.5 ounces in four days. This means that at her current weight of 7 pounds, 7.5 ounces, she has surpassed her hospital discharge weight. Jon and I have both noticed that her face is fuller than it was at the beginning of the week. So for now, it looks like I'm making enough milk for her.
Amalie is still a good baby. She loves to sleep at night, and we really only have to get up once to feed her. Last night she gave us five hours of sleep in a row. Then, during the day, she's a voracious little shark. I've learned that I can pump in the middle of the night to create a "strategic reserve" for when she is in shark mode. It's barely enough to keep her happy.
Her eyes have started to focus on more specific targets, including our eyes, and she's started learning a little bit of control over her hands. It's fun to watch her play with her hands while she's nursing or when she is awake and alert!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

The first week

Happy one week old, Amalie! This is a photo of her in one of her favorite configurations: scrunched up like a little frog and swaddled up like a chunk of sushi. Of course, given that it has become so hot here this week, she is in actuality spending more time in her second favorite configuration: practically naked.

Amalie's a good baby. She does get fussy around matters of food, and she seems to think about food all the time. We took her to the pediatrician on Monday, and he told us that she has lost a little weight since she was discharged from the hospital (she's 7 pounds 2 ounces now), so we need to bulk her up. I've been trying to let her dictate when and how much she eats...which basically means that she snacks for 45 minutes, sleeps for 5, fusses, then snacks for another 45.

The transition to parenthood has been a surreal one for Dad and Mom, but I think we're doing as well as can be expected.

Poor Angus, on the other hand, is having some difficulty accepting our new addition. He is torn: he wants to hang out with us and rub his face on us and the furniture like he usually does, but he is terrified of Amalie and must suppress the urge to flee in order to do so. It's like I told Jon: he has realized that on the Driscoll totem pole, he's basically the sneakers.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Introducing Amalie!

Amalie Maren Driscoll was born at 12:53 p.m. on July 17, 2009. The c-section was a bit delayed (only by a few minutes), but once it was begun, it went incredibly smoothly. I had a fantastic surgical team, including the anesthesiologist, the attending nurses, and Dr. Baer himself. The procedure took maybe ten minutes (not counting the stitching afterward), and it was almost completely painless. Weird with the tugging and pushing sensations, but very, very easy otherwise.

I was overwhelmed with joy the moment I heard Amalie cry. She did it! After that, nothing mattered. As I stared at the ceiling while Jon and Amalie retreated to another part of the OR for her assessments, I was filled with an elation the likes of which I have never felt before. Nothing could touch me.

Here she is!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

One more day... (39 weeks)

In precisely 24 hours, our dearest Peanut/Amalie will be entering the world. Will you look like you did ten weeks ago, or will you look different? Will you be healthy? Will you like what you see? We will see!

We love you! Dad and Mom

Saturday, June 13, 2009

First real contractions

They came last night (Friday)--two that were less intense, 20 mintues apart, and then one really long (nearly a minute in duration), painful one six minutes later. I was in a state of disbelief after the third one: Peanut, didn't you know that we have this thing scheduled?? I also started to panic a bit about all of the things that I have not finished for work, so the evening turned into a flurry of email/document-creating activity and packing for the hospital.

Of course, that third contraction was the last one, and there have been no serious ones today. False alarm. Dr. Baer doesn't want me to come in unless the contractions are regular. So we will relax and enjoy one more day of pre-baby life. Time for a silly movie. :)

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Thirty-eight weeks and the name is set!

We are so, so close now: the c-section is a week from Wednesday. I cannot wait to meet this little girl for real! She is still kicking and thrashing about like crazy, especially in the early evening and when Mom takes Tums.

Finding the appropriate middle name to go with Amalie was more excruciating than was deciding on the first name. I'll spare everyone the details, but suffice it to say that Jon and I 1) are poor decsion makers, and 2) have fairly different tastes in names. Last night we planted ourselves in front of our laptops (again) and swore we would come away with our choice before the night was over. I thought we would tear our hair out by the time we were done. In the end it was Jon who saved the day. He went back to our family trees and found a name that was not only highly utilized by my Danish ancestors (he counted 13 occurrences between 1530 and 1820!), but also held a host of profound meanings and ties with more current family members. And it doesn't sound too bad to boot.

The name is Maren (pronounced "mah-ren"), and it means "wished-for child". It is also an oceanic name, which pays tribute to Jon's seafaring Irish roots. Finally, it is a derivative of Mary and Marie. Mary was my maternal grandmother, and Marie is Jon's mom's middle name. How could we ask for more?

Amalie Maren Driscoll, we're ready for you now!

Monday, June 8, 2009

From Mareike

We have recieved many, many wonderful gifts over the past few months. This is one of them. I thought it would be a good one to share with everyone as the time draws near.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

And she shall be called Amalie (37 weeks)

Happy Full Term, Peanut! You've done it!

I would be thrilled if she would decide to come today--Jon and I are both ready to have her here. Unless she initiates the process, we're looking at 13 more days: she is scheduled to be delivered at 12:30 p.m. on Wednesday, June 17.

The name game continues. However, in part out of a desire that our child not be referred to as a legume postpartum, we have decided upon Amalie for the first name. Jon found the name when he was researching our family trees; Amalie was the wife of one of my German ancestors (on my mom's Brunkhardt side). It means "eager"and "hard worker". I am more fond of the name as a first name than Jon is, so expect Jon to hold more sway in the choice of a middle name. The frontrunner is Tora, which means "thunder" in Norse. (Expect the other options to be relatively loud and raucous as well.)

Peanut's Aunt Merritt (Jon's sister) called us on Monday to inform us that her children, Skylar and Riley, are sick with Fifth disease (a viral rash). We were exposed to both of them during their incubation period, so she was concerned that Peanut was in danger. However, a quick blood test revealed that I am immune (must have gotten sick with it at some point in my lifetime), so all is well. Fifth disease is extremely dangerous in the first half of pregnancy--it can easily kill a fetus--but it is much less dangerous later in development. Still, I am relieved that we will not have to worry about it.