You arrived without pomp and circumstance a full two days after your due date. Your delivery was so significantly different from your brothers that I almost doubt I'm the one who gave birth to both of you--and had I not been present, I wouldn't be sure.
When you failed to arrive on your due date, my doctor scheduled an induction to begin Saturday evening. They went through the usual steps and finally started Pitocin after noon on Sunday. Frankly, I didn't expect much to happen, but I was clearly mistaken because you made your grand entrance at 6:08 pm. Less than five hours of labor and I was holding you; that's a surreal experience for someone who spent three days in labor previously.
When my nurse was asking about previous labor, Daddy and I mentioned that I never would dilate, but when I finally did, I went from a 4 to a 10 in about an hour. So when Dr. Schneider came in to discuss labor with us and the nurse, she confirmed that when I got to a 4, my nurse really needed to be on her toes. She walked out of the room and that sweet girl looked at me and said, "So, as soon as you feel pressure, I need to know. OK?"
Not long after that, I felt pressure. I told Daddy and he said I should wait for a couple more contractions just to make sure I was feeling what I thought I was feeling. After two more contractions, I was pretty sure. We called the nurse who immediately confirmed I was at a 9. She called Dr. Schneider who said, "I'm on my way."
She walked into my room 30 seconds later and automatically began "suiting up." My nurse looked at her a bit panicked and said, "She hasn't dilated fully. The baby nurse is next door. They're doing practice pushes." Dr. Schneider responded, "Call her. We aren't practicing; we're actually having a baby."
Five minutes and one push later, they laid you on my chest. The baby nurse hadn't made it in time.
You are beautiful, little Eli. You are everything we've anticipated, and the sweetest blessing since we met your brother just over a year ago. Your name means "Yahweh is my God," and there's no better acknowledgement of how you came to be in our lives. Some people anticipate one blessing. Few people can embrace the overwhelming surprise of two, but that's exactly where Daddy and I are: two blessings, two boys.
I'll love you forever; I'll like you for always,