By Madison Loethen
I think every mother has the first time seeing their baby imprinted in their brain. You stare at this beautiful little baby laying on your chest, in awe that you somehow grew a human inside of you. I remember feeling so exhausted but also so in awe of my little girl.
Back up to nine months earlier, I was feeling pretty in awe then too. My husband Kyle and I had been talking about having a baby. I had even made an appointment with my obstetrician, Jennifer Roelands, MD, from Women’s Health Associates (WHA) to talk about having a baby. She said I seemed healthy and to go for it whenever we were ready.
About two months later, around 7 a.m., I was staring at one of those early results pregnancy tests trying to decide if there was actually really a second line or not. It was a full six days before my missed period, so I was testing ridiculously early. I took a second test and saw a second faint line again, and that’s when I knew I was pregnant. I felt excited, nervous and in shock. I told my husband when he woke up and then I promptly had to leave to go to work, so he had to let it soak in without me. But we talked later in the day, and he was excited, nervous and in shock too. That day I called and made an appointment with Dr. Roelands.
When I was about six weeks along, I had my first prenatal appointment and talked to the doctor about the extreme nausea I was already having. She gave me a prescription for something to help and, thank goodness, because I ended up having extreme morning sickness for all nine months.
After that first appointment, I had my labs done at the Boone Hospital Lab in Broadway Medical Plaza 2, which is in the building connecting to WHA. It was super nice to just walk right over after my appointment and get the labs done without having to wait at all.
The next week, I had my first ultrasound, and it was so special to see our tiny baby wiggling around. I always looked forward to my appointments at WHA. The ultrasounds were so special and Dr. Roelands always listened very nicely while I listed out every ache and pain.
During my third trimester, Kyle and I decided to take the Prepared Childbirth Class through the Boone Family Birthplace. We did one of the Childbirth in a Day classes, which combined all four prepared childbirth sessions on the same day. We received lots of helpful information about what to expect and tips on how to prepare for the birth. The nurse who taught the class answered all of our questions and gave the group a tour of Boone Family Birthplace’s birthing and postpartum rooms.
When I was about 37 weeks along, it looked like the baby may come early. I was pretty far dilated and effaced, but she hung in there, and I scheduled an induction for my due date.
When I came in to be induced, I was actually already having contractions five minutes apart on my own. I came in at 5 p.m. and gave birth at 9:36 a.m. the next day, so I had a long night with not much sleep. Through it all, the doctors and nurses were great about explaining to me what was going on and what needed to be done.
When our little Reese Renee arrived, we were instantly in love! I was also so tired I felt like I had been hit by a bus. Thank goodness for the sweet postpartum nurses who took such good care of us. I was visited several times by the lactation consultants on staff and found them incredibly helpful in navigating breastfeeding.
Reese had high jaundice levels while she was at the hospital, and we followed up with our pediatrician, John Wilson, MD at COMO Cubs. We had to bring her in to get blood drawn a couple of times to watch her levels, but thankfully, the jaundice went away on its own, and we didn’t have to use a light blanket.
Reese and I have been going together to the monthly Bringing Up Boone Babies meetings. These meetings are a support group for parents of Boone babies. At the meetings, I can ask the lactation consultant who leads the meeting questions, and I talk to the other moms there about our babies – our favorite topic!
There’s also always a baby scale at the meetings, which is super helpful. I weigh Reese before and after I breastfeed her, and then I know how much milk she is getting.
Reese is now five months old as I’m writing this – and we can’t imagine our life without her. We are so grateful to all of the wonderful medical professionals who have helped us in our Boone baby journey!
Madison is a marketing consultant at Boone Hospital and in her spare time has a mommy and lifestyle blog (MadisonLoethen.com) and YouTube channel (youtube.com/c/MadisonLoethen).