I spent the two weeks before her birth at the hospital on bedrest because of pre-eclampsia. Those weren't the most fun weeks of my life but as I look back at it now I should have appreciated the quiet, peaceful time more than I did!
Lily was born 6 weeks early, at 34 weeks exactly. I didn't know when I went into the hospital on April 13, 2011 that her being born so early would mean that I would have to leave the hospital without her or how difficult that would be for me. I am still grateful for kind friends and family who helped us through that time with prayers, sweet words and kind service.
I was told that I might have to have a c-section with her, something that I wasn't looking forward to since I'd already been through it when Aimee was born. I think that Lily must have known how I felt about that because the night before I hit my 34- week mark I started having more regular contractions and I once the doctors deemed it was time for Lily to be born it took only a couple of pushes and she was here!
What a sweet little thing she was, born at 5 pounds and 15 ounces (HUGE for a preemie born 6 weeks early, and we were SO grateful because that would help her fight through the next couple of weeks spent in the NICU at the hospital).
She was adored by her sisters instantly; they got the chance to visit her in the NICU and give her a little stuffed animal. I don't think they understood why she couldn't come home to stay with us but couldn't get enough of her once we brought her home and that hasn't changed- they love their baby sister!
Lily does everything on her own timing; because she was born so early we knew that there might be some developmental delays and while she has always been good-sized she has learned how to do things a little slower than we'd imagined. She is just now starting to get up onto her hands and knees and loves to rock back and forth. One of these days she'll take off crawling, and then running! For now we just get to enjoy this baby stage a little bit longer and we are okay with that. She does scoot all over the place- backwards and in a circle- she hasn't quite figured out how to go forward but if she sees something that she wants she can usually find a way to get it and has already started pulling things off of the lower bookshelves.
We love our sweet girl and I can't get enough of her! I am sure she's grown weary of having a camera in her face so often but I just can't resist her cute little face! I think that her daddy is pretty smitten, too.
Like I said, she's had lots of pictures taken of her; you can be sure that her life will be very well-documented. I love to just sit and watch her, to see her facial expressions change, to watch as she intently tries to figure out a toy or some little piece of paper or string she might have found on the floor as she's gone exploring.
We love our sweet Lily girl; I remember when we thought that we wouldn't be able to have any more kids. We'd already given away a lot of clothing to others who could use it and then I went to the doctor because I just hadn't been feeling well. They ran a bunch of different labs and I found out that I had a UTI and they used that to explain the nausea and dizziness I'd been feeling. I was waiting for my husband in the lobby of the clinic- he'd dropped me off because I was too dizzy to drive myself- and the doctor came out to find me to tell me that they'd gotten the results of some of the other labs and that I was pregnant, too. He seemed concerned and asked if I was okay with that news. Was I? Here I'd thought that we wouldn't be having any more kids and we'd gotten used to the idea that Aimee would be our youngest and now we were going to have a baby. We were more than thrilled and LOVE this sweet little girl.
Last night she gave me the first real hug that I've ever gotten from her. I had been with Sarah at her gymnastics practice and Lily was home with daddy and two of her sisters. I got her up out of bed because she'd been fussy, gave her a bottle and was getting ready to put her back to bed, gave her a big hug and her little arms squeezed me back and it was the sweetest thing!
We love her so much and wish her a very happy birthday.