I know Dave has already posted our wonderful, wonderful news on his blog (and has been very touched by all the lovely comments) but here it is from me:
Tobias Matthew (Toby) - 7 lb 9.5oz
Born at 11.37am, 19th January 2010
***Warning: Entirely self indulgent bit of blogging to follow. Toby's birth story and lots of gratuitous shots of the little man.***
I wanted to write out Toby's birth story as soon as possible. I was pretty cranky a few posts back about his imminent arrival by c-section. I think I went a bit loopy from the pregnancy hormones and anxiety for a couple of weeks back there. This is where I eat humble pie and say that Toby's arrival in the world was beautiful and I want to honour it and remember it. Dave and I agree that, of the four births we have experienced, Toby's - despite taking place in a brightly lit, surgical environment - was the calmest and most gentle. I worried I'd never fully feel at peace about the way he needed to come earthside. I was wrong - I already do.
So here is our journey to meeting our second son:
Jurgen's last night in utero (38+2):
We arrived at the hospital on Tuesday morning at 8am to be booked in. We were met by the midwife, A, assigned to be our main carer and we warmed to her immediately. Because we were booked for surgery, her role was primarily to support us emotionally and help to advocate for us. Ordinarily, only one midwife would accompany us to theatre but we were asked if a student could come too - and our midwife's manager - as A. had just transferred to our hospital from a trust with different procedures. Our baby was certainly going to have quite an entourage!
We filled in forms. We met LOTS of different staff - who had all read our notes (not always a foregone conclusion) and were respectful and sympathetic about Emma's birth and death.
... and then we waited. An emergency had occurred. Of course it took precedence. The waiting was probably the hardest part of the whole day - we felt so close. And the fear of something going wrong again was palpable.
Finally, at 11, we set off to theatre and I said goodbye to Dave as he went off to make like George Clooney in his surgical scrubs. The atmosphere in the OR was really amazing. I could tell everyone in there was rooting for us (Dave said he heard one of the midwives in the seconds before Toby arrived say, "Please be okay baby.") It was SO very different from my experiences of birthing in an emergency. The pace was measured and everyone's professionalism really reassuring. It took quite a while to site my spinal but finally Dave was by my side and we were informed that our baby's birth was imminent. They lowered the screen and our very cross, pink, SCREAMING baby appeared over the top. A boy we discovered - I actually guessed right this time!! The next few minutes are - quite literally - a blur. They had taken my glasses away and I was crying so hard I couldn't see anything for quite a while. I did hear lots though - I heard the wonderful, wonderful midwives chatting away to our son, cooing over him and telling him how gorgeous he was - which I think are pretty good things to hear when you're minutes old! ... and then he was in Dave's arms. We had waited a lifetime for that moment and it was hard to believe that he was healthy and whole.
Emma - we miss you every single day. This week more than ever. So many mixed emotions, our sweet forever baby. We love you.
Toby - welcome. We are so grateful for your presence in our lives, our precious rainbow son.