Imagine we don’t live miles away from each other, and you came to our home to visit the baby today.
We sit down on the couch and start chatting over a nice warm cup of black chai tea.
You asked me how I was doing and, as usual, I got completely honest with you. Because you know me by now. I am sensible, intense and I love to talk.
Before we get to the good stuff, you would have to know that my last weeks of pregnancy were nerve-wracking. I had to constantly remind myself to relax and to just enjoy the moment.
What happened was that the baby kept getting and bigger and my doctor started getting concerned. He ordered a pelvis scan to determine if labor was still possible. And while almost everything came out okay, my pelvis was discovered to be convergent, instead of divergent (a more favorable shape for labor). That meant that the ligaments around my pelvis are sort of triangular which usually prevents the baby to fully engage by causing him distress. The good news was this particular situation can be corrected with pitocin. Therefore, we scheduled an induction.
Monday March 6th was the date I would try to get induced.
But if we’re still being honest here, I was losing my mind. Was it my fault the baby was getting so big? Was an induction really that necessary? Were the baby’s measurements correct?
I kept reading stories online about moms who were induced because of their baby’s size and it turned out that the baby was not that big in the end.
In our case, while he was getting bigger, the cause of concern was that the longer we waited, the harder it would be for him to go out. We wanted to prevent something worse from happening.
At some point, I decided to stop reading things online because I couldn’t find any one who shared the same medical situation as me. But I did talk with family members and friends in the medical field and they all agreed, an induction was the safest way our baby could come into the world.
I had to be brave.
We arrived at the maternity ward at 9 pm, and began the process of induction at around 10:30 pm. Everything from then on happened like it was supposed to. My water broke, the contractions kept coming and I was getting dilated throughout the night. It was painful despite the fact that I did got an epidural. But daydreaming of him and all the places we would take him really helped me get through it all.
Then, at some point, the contractions were not helping me dilate and the baby started showing signs of distress. I got really scared when the doctor and nurses all came in at the same time once some signals in his monitor turned on. So after more than 13 hours of labor, the doctor and his team prepared me for a c-section.
I didn’t know what to think. I was in panic, nauseous, and exhausted.
I was so quiet when I came into the surgery room. The team kept trying to make small talk but I just kept answering with yes or no. I was petrified to say the least. Miha sat next to me, they covered me and started the procedure right away. Fifteen minutes later, our baby boy joined us into this (sunny) side of the world.
I started crying and shouting in Spanish “esta precioso, esta hermoso” (he is precious, he is beautiful). But between all the commotion of the situation, Miha couldn’t tell what I was saying. Then I pointed at our baby and when Miha finally turned around, he jumped right out of his chair from joy!
Then he followed the team into another room where they tested the baby.
Everything came back exceptional. We had a beautiful, healthy baby boy in our arms.
And Maximilian is how we decided to name him. Remember the trip we did for our babymoon to Trieste?
We visited Miramare Castle, the former residence of Emperor Maximilian l of Mexico from the Hapsburg family. This castle was his residence right before he left for Mexico to become its emperor, and back then, Trieste used to belong to Slovenia. And guess what? His wife and empress was Charlotte, princess of Belgium.
And back when we visited, we still hadn’t decide on a name. And Mr. M had just been interviewed for the position he has now here in Brussels. We felt it was a sign that Miha would get the job.
So we promised that if it happened, we would use this name in order to connect his mixed heritage, Slovenia, Mexico, and now, Belgium together. Truly a sign of how things were going to work out.
So back to our birth story…
I still hadn’t had enough time with our son. During his first three hours in this world, I stayed in the recovery room trying so hard to make my legs feel something and reunite with them as soon as possible. In the meantime, M had him in his arms this whole time. Our baby was safe and so so loved from the very beginning.
The moment I joined them, my husband told me “he has your eyes and your lips!!”. But I couldn’t see it then, I was too drugged and tired. We chatted for a couple of minutes and then he left to pick up my mom.
I was left alone with Max for the very first time. He was so delicate and tiny and sweet and lovely. His little baby noises won me over in a matter of seconds.
The next five days at the hospital were excruciating. Every day we would stumble upon something new, a new challenge, a new lesson in disguise. Luckily, our little fella kept thriving on. One main issue was with his latching. For now, it is really hard for him to nurse properly but we are slowly getting there. Right now, I am pumping and supplementing when needed. So we are making bottles the whole day, two at the same time even, and it is a little bit crazy but now is not the time to give up.
I learned pretty quickly that every child has its own timeline and we should respect our little one’s. He will get there when he gets there. We will get through this together.
But despite that, he is a thriving, loving, healthy baby boy!
His first day at home was very intense but also very peaceful and beautiful. We have discovered that he likes to be wide awake during the afternoons and loves to play close attention to everything around him.
He makes all these cute gestures like lifting up his eyebrows, giving us the side eye, lifting up his chin, practicing some early eye rolling, smiling, and taking out his tongue as well as moving his neck around. He is so strong, we will start tummy time soon.
I am also already able to recognize his peculiar cry, he shakes his lips in the most funny and cute way possible. It makes the loveliest sound.
He loves to be cuddle in the afternoon and at midnight. Actually, the only three reasons of why cries is to eat, to be held or to have his nappy changed.
We successfully managed to take him to the pediatrician for his first week appointment and he reassured us he is on the right track, getting healthier and stronger every day. Max was a champ,and barely cried despite the fact that they were drilling something inside the pediatric ward. Some other babies were not as thrilled, as you would imagine.
I love experiencing his reactions every time we try something new, like when we got home or when we went to the pediatrician. He makes me feel like a proud mommy by the way he curiously examines everything. A trait that his abuelita (grandma) says he got from me.
Overall, we are all smiles and laughters all day with every little thing that he does. He has our hearts forever.
Now, just for fun, who does Maximilian look more like? Mr. M or me?
From the VERY sunny & loving side of this,
Isabel and the happy family
PS: I will be taking an indefinite blogging break. I won’t quit all together but I won’t be posting as frequently as I have. There is just so much going on now with the baby here, as you can understand. Every day we learn something new about ourselves and him, and it is a process we are excited to fully immerse in. I need to catch up on some sleep and soak in these precious little moments as much as I can. In the meantime, we can catch up on Instagram.
THANK YOU ALL FOR YOUR SWEET MESSAGES and words. I felt you right there with me this whole time, you are the kindest!
Read about more the pregnancy journey here:
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