On Friday, July 15th at 5:05 AM our sweet baby girl, Clementine Poppy Thielmann, came into this world weighing 7lbs 5 oz and measuring 19 inches long.
The lead up to our baby girls birth was a roller coaster of emotions. On Wednesday, July 13th I woke up extra sore and crampy and had high hopes that it was my body beginning the pre-labour phase. So I was super excited for our doctors appointment that morning because the previous week I had already been 1cm dilated and almost fully effaced, and if I was feeling this sore it must mean I would be even further along! My doctor checked me and told me I was exactly the same as the week prior. I was completely devastated. She offered to perform a sweep but we really wanted to try to go into labour as natural as possible so I declined. It was still before our EDD anyways. As soon as Adam & I got into our car after the appointment though I broke down into a mound of tears. I was so sure my body was amping up for labour! The rest of the day I pretty much had a pity party for one, watching Netflix, crying on and off, drinking red raspberry leaf tea, eating spicy chips, and telling our little girl I needed her to be ready to get out because I couldn’t wait to meet her any longer! Adam and I stayed up late talking about it, somehow he always manages to make me feel better, and we were just about to go to bed when I had this horrible pain radiate across my back and around my pelvic area! The contractions continued all night long at about 8-10 minutes apart, and by the time the sun came up I was exhausted from no sleep and these pretty constant contractions. Adam stayed home with me that next day, July 14th, in case my body suddenly decided it was go time. It was really wonderful having him at home for support, mentally and physically. I started to feel like I was going crazy half way through the day. We tried everything we could to get labour moving along, but nothing seemed to work.
Throughout the day I had been in contact with our Doula, Tarana, letting her know how the contractions were progressing and how I was coping. I tried all the suggestions she gave me but none of them seemed to work either. She came over around 9pm that evening to try some more manouevres and eventually we decided to go for a nice long walk. My contractions started to get closer together during the walk and by the time we got home I think they were around 4 minutes apart. We then tried the final manoeuvre which Tarana coached us through and all of a sudden my water broke, just like in a movie scene. From there things progressed pretty quickly but very painfully.
Back labour majorly set in once my water broke, causing my entire body to shake uncontrollably during each contraction and making me feel like I was going to pass out from the pain. We left for the hospital about an hour after my water broke, and got checked into Triage. Turns out I was only 4cm at this point, around 2 am. Again I felt defeated. I was in more pain than I could ever imagine and the thought of having to deal with this for an unknown amount of time terrified me. Thankfully I had the most amazing support team, Tarana and Adam. Tarana put the most wonderful pressure on my lower back during my contractions that helped make them more bearable. And they constantly reminded me that I was doing a great job and helped me focus on deep breathing while handing me Powerade and ice chips.
Then suddenly I felt a small urge to push so we went back to Triage and got checked again. I was told I was at 8 cm. All I could think in my mind was “There is no freaking way I’m only 8 cm, I have to push!”. It seemed like the nurses didn’t really believe that I had to push but suddenly believed me when I started to make more noise (apparently I was pretty quiet up until this point, just breathing deeply and focusing on that). They sent me off to the high risk side since no other rooms were available, and checked me again in the delivery room. It was about 5-10 minutes or so after they had just checked me and wouldn’t you know it, I was now 10 cm. 15 minutes of pushing later and our baby girl was born, completely naturally!
We planned to do skin-to-skin uninterrupted for 2 hours after the birth but Clementine was slightly blue and not breathing properly. They had to take her away for a short amount of time to clear her nose and throat so she could breathe well and once she was breathing properly she was back on my chest, cuddling!
My pre-labour lasted about 24 hours and after my water broke it was 5 hours until our little Clementine Poppy arrived. She is truly worth every hour of pain I had to endure.
Becoming a mom is something I could never fully translate into words. When Clementine was placed onto my chest it was hard to comprehend that this perfect, adorable, sweet and innocent little girl was mine and Adams. How could something so precious and incredible be ours? How could this beautiful little girl have grown inside of me, developing into a little human in 9 short months? How am I so lucky that I get to take care of her, be her mom, and watch her grow? To say it was and is an overwhelming feeling would be a huge understatement. And to say I feel honored, lucky, elated, and over the moon joyful to be Clementines mom also doesn’t suffice.
This past week and a half has been full of new challenges for Adam and I. Getting used to a new routine, trying to figure out what our little baby needs from us, and getting only a couple hours of sleep at night (if that) has been quite the experience. We’ve had some amazing help and wonderful visitors which we’re very thankful for. It’s quite the adjustment having a little baby around 24/7 and having someone being completely dependent on you. But being able to cuddle this precious little girl that we’ve been waiting to meet for so long is the most wonderful thing! Her personality has already started to develop and take shape and I can’t wait to see more of it.
Being a parent with Adam has already been better than I could have hoped for. I love being a team with him, experiencing this new chapter of life with him and being able to figure this whole parenthood thing out together. I could not have dreamed of a better person to experience life with and I hope Clementine knows one day just how lucky she is to have him as her Dad. There are times when it seems overwhelming, especially when you’re running on 2 hours of sleep, and post-pregnancy emotions aren’t always the most fun to deal with. Sometimes I worry I won’t be a good enough Mom to our sweet baby girl, that I’m unqualified for the job and that I won’t measure up. I want so badly to have the relationship with her that my mom and I are lucky to share. Sometimes anxiety weighs me down, and I have to refocus on the now and live more in the moment. I have to remind myself that worrying about the future just robs me of the joy I could be experiencing in the present and that there is no need to feel anxious or worried or consumed by thoughts of failure. I have to remind myself that yes, there will be times I will fail because I’m human. But this doesn’t mean I’m a failure and it certainly doesn’t mean I’m a bad mom to Clementine. I feel lucky to have this beautiful little girl in my life and I know she is a blessing. I’m also super lucky to have a husband who is so helpful, loving and caring and who is so involved.
“How glorious the splendor of a human heart that trusts that it is loved.” -Brennan Manning
We’ve experienced so much love this past week and a half, not only our new overwhelming love for our daughter but also for and from many family and friends. We’ve always known that we’re incredibly fortunate to have such amazing family and friends in our lives, there’s no doubt about that. But this past week and a half has reminded us again how truly fortunate we are to have so many amazing people in our lives. The generosity has been overwhelming in people’s visits, kind words, food prepared for us, gifts, and thoughtful texts checking in on us. I hope Clementine knows just how lucky she is to have all these beautiful people in her life one day. We sure know how lucky we are. We are so loved and we feel that love.
I can’t wait to continue to share our journey with you! For now, here are some photos of the first week of little Clementines life!
Clementines One Week photos! Where does time go?!