I can’t believe we have a one-month-old. In some ways, it seems like the fastest month of my life and in other ways, it feels like the longest with all of our days and nights blending together. I decided to share her birth story with all of you since I share all of your important moments with the world, it’s only fair to share mine!
Months ago we decided on a baby girls name. We made lists, scoured websites and tried out different names over and over. Dylan and I have very different tastes in names but we kept coming back to Kallan. I found the name on a Gaelic baby name site and had never seen it before. Growing up with a somewhat different name (for our area anyway!) I knew I wanted something similar for our little gal. It was important to me she had a strong name that looked good on a resume as an adult. Kallan means strong in battle. We were very surprised by how many people have a hard time pronouncing it! Her name is said: K-Allan. Like the man’s name Allan with a K in front. We have been hearing lots of other variations and it makes us laugh every time. We thought we chose a simple and easy name! The moment we found out we were having a girl Dylan said it was important that her middle name be Jillian, after his older sister. I was supportive of this and thought it was a beautiful way to honor an amazing woman in our life.
In the weeks leading up to Kallan’s birth, we knew she was breech. My doctor suggested a procedure call an external cephalic version (ECV). Two doctors attempt to turn her in the right direction from the outside manually. It didn’t work. She wouldn’t budge an inch! At that time my doctor scheduled a c-section for 11/18/18.
Knowing when our daughter would arrive took away some of the nerves but it also added to some in another way. Knowing there was a deadline approaching made us push harder to wrap up all the details we could. The morning of surgery was uneventful. We showered, got ready and got to the hospital with plenty of time to spare. I was surprised at how calm we both were. I was prepped for surgery and they brought Dylan in to meet me as it began. A few short moments later we heard the sound all parents want to hear: a big, loud cry!
Anyone who knows me knows that my personality can be big and over the top and it’s rare to have a lull in the conversation. Surgery may have been the quietest I have ever been. In the movies, the parents cry and there is all this emotion, I didn’t experience that. I was quiet. It was surreal. It was like I was watching a movie and it wasn’t actually happening to me!
After surgery when I finally got to hold Kallan it was more of the same thing. I was excited, I knew I loved her, I thought she was amazing but I felt quiet and reserved. I suppose shock and lots of pain medications can do that to a person! Kallan looked EXACTLY like Dylan was she was born. She came to us with Dylan’s “angry face” and she still does it when she is annoyed today!
My hospital experience wasn’t exactly what I had planned. I got very, very nauseous and ill after surgery and really struggled for a few days. Truth: I actually struggled the first two weeks. I am so grateful my friend Lauren was able to come to the hospital and capture images in her amazing documentary style. I was to sick to pick up my camera in the beginning and am forever grateful for the images she created for me. Our families and friends were excited and so supportive. They came in waves and were great with bring us what we needed and giving us the space we needed to bond as a new family.
Dylan was a trooper. I had a rough pregnancy and was sick the entire time. He has been supportive and beyond helpful from day one. Even today, one month in I am filled with gratitude that he steps up and takes care of what he needs to and all the things I can’t. Watching him with Kallan has been one of the greatest parts of this journey. Kallan is his mini-me!
Becoming a mother is in many ways exactly what I expected. Long nights, cold meals, what feels like endless loads of laundry and bottles to wash. I don’t think the entire experience has even begun to set in. It all seems to be happening so fast and so slow at the same time. My favorite part of this experience is after I feed her she fusses quite a bit. She is the loudest, most talkative, grumbly baby I have ever met. I soothe her with a pacifier and hold it in with one finger while laying my hand on her chest. She immediately grabs on to my hand, hugs it so close and won’t let go while she makes an array of strange noises and I love it. I would wake up every hour to hear those noises and feel that snuggle all night. But let’s be honest, I won’t be upset when she decides to sleep more through the night and I can get those snuggles more during daylight hours!