Well. This Happened.

Imagine our surprise to welcome this little one to the world on Sunday.

Setting a family record among her siblings and arriving a full 5 weeks early, she weighed 6 lb 13 oz and is 19 inches. And quite cute.

She will stay here at Martha Jefferson Hospital for another week or so for monitoring. Maybe she will be home for Thanksgiving!

I was sad to think of her here and all of us at home (they kicked us parents out after our two-day stay). But then I talked to our doctor and heard some of the things they are watching here- her oxygen levels, sugar/insulin levels, and temperature, to name a few- and felt better knowing she will get care around the clock. Also, he explained how she should still be in a quiet, calm environment. Where sounds are muffled and lights are dim. The only sound she hears constantly is a heartbeat. You know, a womb.

Now, if he said she really needs to be poked and held and passed around and smooched and startled– we can deliver that sort of environment at home. But the whole womb-like thing? That only exists here at the hospital, for now. So we’ll let her get a little more reserves built up before bringing her into the chaos. And I am content with that.

Besides, there is something to be said for being here with her and getting to hold her for long stretches without interruption. And without thoughts of what else I might need to attend to.


She is doing well. We have lots of help from friends and neighbors and neighbors-who-are-friends. The nurses at Martha Jeff are wonderful. It is all well with my soul.


We thought we had a few more weeks to get things in order at home, but that time has been cut short. I need help. The one-formerly-known-as-the-baby-of-the-family has adopted an unpleasant habit of getting out of his bed during the 5:00 hour and coming into the hall to flip lights on and off. We gently (ha) and lovingly (haha) rebuke him for this transgression and send him back to his bed. Over and over. It does not appear to be “taking”. And we hope to put him in the room with his brother and put the girls together. But I don’t want to have two kids up at 5:00.

Stay in your bed, you turkey

Any tips for teaching him to stay in bed until a decent hour? We have an “Okay to Wake” owl that turns green when he can get up, but he pretty much comes out anyway, then comes out with particular excitement when the owl is actually green. Help wanted.


12 thoughts on “Well. This Happened.

  1. So glad that you are both OK. She is quite cute–and so is the one formerly known as the baby. 🙂 Wish I had some great tips on that whole get out of bed light thing, but I don’t. And I know that funky feeling of leaving the hospital without the baby. Glad that you are able to be there and get that quiet alone time together.

  2. Your mom used to leave Cheerios in the crib….other than that, I have nothing! Iris Ruth is beautiful!

  3. Oh my dear Katherine. What a wonderful disruption to your family plan. Congratulations!!! (on a perfect and healthy early baby I mean – not a 5AM rising turkey.)
    Early Turkey advice?
    I love this “OK to Wake” owl idea. It sounds great but probably wont work right off the bat. The solution (whatever it is) will take a little time.
    Just try hard to eliminate anything reinforcing for that Turkey about being up that early. (Ie. no eye contact, no snuggles, very little words, walk him back to is room point to the owl and give him a consistent reminder. “Nope not yet. It is not green. Come see me when it is green”

    Might want to ask your aunt Sara too. I was terrible as a toddler about getting up. Cheerios was one of their many strategies. : ) RUth must of gotten that idea from her big sister.

  4. Love this post Katherine. I can imagine the mixed emotions of leaving her at the hospital! The pictures are adorable. I have no tips for the 5am wake up coming from a Mom of a 3.5 year old still in her crib…yep..

  5. She is just so beautiful and I can’t get over how much hair she has and how visibly euphoric and joyful the turkey is in gazing at his new little toy. I CANNOT WAIT TO MEET HER! We love all of you so much!

  6. Congratulations on your gorgeous new girl. My oldest son is now 7 and we used to have major issues with him getting up and roaming the house at all hours. (He is autistic…so even scarier because they are known for “escaping the house”) We put up a baby gate at the end of the hall and right on the other side of the bathroom, so that the only place he could go if he left his room was the bathroom and right back to his room. (Like a tiny little area of the hall was all that he could get to) If I caught him up really early, I would go in, put him back in bed, and tell him to stay until we came to get him up. Eventually it worked. He would get up before us on weekends, and play happily in his room until we came to get him. Best of luck.

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