On Saturday, May 18, at 8:40 pm, this little girl came into our lives.
We are overwhelmed.
That seems like such an everyday word to represent this feeling. And yet every time I try to articulate exactly how I’m feeling, the words come up short.
So instead, I’ll share a few snippets from our first days with our newborn little Bailey.
Our friend Amanda came to visit us in the hospital on the evening of our first full day with Bailey. Family had gone home for the night, so when Amanda walked into the room (bearing freshly baked cookies!), she found just the three of us sitting on the hospital bed – Bailey, me, and her papa Ty.
Amanda was the first to hear the story of Bailey’s birth, from beginning to end. The 26 hours leading up to her birth were harder than anything either of us have ever done before. And for the 12 hours after when Bailey was in NICU and couldn’t be with us, we were near frantic.
But when we finally got Bailey in our arms, that all washed away. Our hearts were full.
Later, Amanda told us the night she saw us, we were glowing.
So just imagine how we must have looked on that baby-induced emotional high after we polished off those dozen warm cookies.
The First Separation
On the Monday morning after Bailey was born, Ty left the hospital to stop by home and then to pick Abby up early from school. Abby would be meeting her baby sister for the first time, and we couldn’t wait.
But it was the first time Ty and I had been separated for any significant amount of time since Bailey’s birth. As soon as he walked out the door, the emotions swirling around inside me whipped themselves into a frenzy.
I chalked it up to postpartum hormones, but then I got this text from Ty:
I’ve cried all the way home just overcome with happiness. I’ve never had an experience like this before. Wow. Kelly, I’m happier than ever!
I might have been crying an eensy bit too.
The Big Sister
I usually pick Abby up from school, so she knew that if Ty showed up alone, it would mean something happened.
When he got to her school, he opened the gate to the outdoor play area and walked in. Abby looked up from what she was doing, saw him, and jetted inside to grab her lunchbox and backpack.
She zoomed back past Ty and to the gate, waiting for him to open it. When he got to the gate, she gave him a big hug.
In the car, he said, “We have a surprise. Do you have any idea what it is?”
A big grin. “Bailey’s here.”
“Why do you think that?”
“Because Mommy’s not here, and you’re picking me up.”
He just smiled.
When they got to the hospital, they stopped in the gift shop where Abby picked out a plush musical rocking horse for Bailey and a little something for me – a bouquet of flowers that will last forever.
Oh, do I wish I had a picture of that girl’s face when the hospital door opened and she saw me holding her baby sister. Ten months is an awfully long time for a little girl to wait.
Typically, Abby asks questions when something new happens.
Lots and lots of questions.
But this time, she didn’t know what to say. I think she was even holding her breath.
I will never forget the purity of that girl’s smile.
Ah, those damn postpartum hormones…
For more posts like this one, follow my Pinterest board The World’s Okayest Parents.
What was life like for you in those newborn days? Share your story in a comment below.