Monday, March 27, 2006
Saturday, March 25, 2006
Thursday, March 23, 2006
I had my first bath on March 1st, the day after I was born. I loved the warm water and I hardly cried at all. The nurses just couldn't get over my blond hair, blue eyes, and long fingers and toes. I felt like a celebrity!
Mommy and I stayed at the hospital for 4 nights. (Usually, Japanese babies and their moms stay at the hospital for a whole week, but Dr. Suzuki agreed to let us go home a few days early.) I enjoyed a relaxing bath every morning and being able to "room-in" with Mommy. But I didn't like sleeping in my bassinet. I was much happier sleeping snuggled right next to her.
The hospital took very good care of us during our stay there. Mommy said the food was actually quite good. She especially enjoyed being served breakfast in bed and afternoon tea.
For those who may be wondering why I wasn't taken into the operating room and "put under the knife" by the end of the first day, Japanese doctors have more of a "watch and wait" philosophy when it comes to childbirth than their American counterparts. I am grateful for this, as a C-section was the last thing I wanted, although I will admit that by the end, I was practically begging for one just so it would be over. (I think I also begged for death at one point!)
I had what the books call a "prodromal labor," characterized by a very long and drawn out early or latent phase. In my case, because my water broke at the very beginning of labor, the baby's head, which was already engaged, started putting pressure on my cervix, causing it to swell and slowing the dialation process. An American doctor would have labeled me "failure to progress" and had me on the operating table after 24 hours. But in Japan, as long as both mother and baby are genki (healthy, strong, energetic) and seem to be tolerating the stress of labor well, nature is allowed to take its course.
My one and only disappointment in my birth experience was that I was not able to deliver at the midwife's house like we had planned on. Because of the lengthy labor and possible risk of infection, we decided on Monday (one day into the ordeal) that the hospital was the safest place for both me and the baby. Kudo-san, the midwife, stayed by my side and acted as my advocate and translator with Dr. Suzuki, the nurses, and the rest of the staff. I could not have done it without her! I was allowed to actively participate in all of the decisions regarding my care -- from taking drugs to stimulate contractions (an oral form of Pitocin) to finally agreeing to an episiotomy and the use of the vacuum extractor.
Finally, on Tuesday evening just before 7:00, Alexander John Campbell made his entrance into the world. Rusty's first words were, "It's a boy, it's a boy!" My first words were, "It's over, it's over!" While Kudo-san attended to the baby and helped Rusty cut the cord, Dr. Suzuki turned photographer and started taking pictures with his polaroid camera (standard equipment in a Japanese delivery room?)! They placed the baby on my stomach and he lay there for a few minutes before he opened his eyes and looked right at me, and then right at his father, as though he knew exactly who we were. Then he was whisked away to be weighed and measured and cleaned up a little bit.
About 45 minutes later, they brought him to me in the room and I got my first really good look at him. Fine blond hair. Scrawny legs and arms. My long fingers. His dad's big feet. Every part so tiny, yet perfectly formed. He was beautiful. I could scarcely wrap my exhausted brain around the fact that he was ours.
Have I forgotten all the pain of those excruciating 64 hours? I wouldn't say that, but holding that little 7 pound bundle in my arms was definitely worth every single minute!
Wednesday, March 22, 2006
Originally uploaded by rustyandlaura.
We joyfully announce
the birth of our son:
Alexander "Alex" John Campbell
born February 28th, 2006
at 6:55 p.m.
in Mito, Japan
3220 grams (7 lbs., 1 oz.)
50 cm. (20 inches) long
Monday, March 20, 2006
We are currently discussing the solution to our problem. Do we purchase a $75 power cord for an old run down computer that makes noises that resemble something between an Apache helicopter and a 1991 Chevy Citation when the hard drive spins down or do we spend $120 upgrading the operating system on the Mac that is perfectly fine but since Mac has a monopoly on all its products they can do what ever they want to do all in the name of consumer driven spending. Either way, we still have to pay around $30 in shipping.
Our other option is to purchase a new computer that has all the bells and whistles that any new parents would want to share their little bundle of joy with the web world. Of course, by the time that we received it here in Japan it would be completely outdated and worth less than a micro-cent of what we paid for it.
We thank all of you for your many prayers and concerns over the last several weeks. We've received several pachages from people back in the states that have really lifted our spirites (A ton of chocolate will do that. Thanks mom!) and brightened our days. We are so blessed to have our precious little boy with us. He has been a real joy. We are looking forward to sharing pictures with you at the earliest possible moment that we can post them to the blog. Untill such time, I'll give you a short description of Alexander. He is soooooooooooooooooo cute!!!!!!!
We love you all (Even those that don't check the blog that often.) Thank you again for your support, encouragement, prayers, and gifts. May God bless you today as you have blessed us.