Day 3: Ready to leave and name our new treasure!

Our time at the hospital was up. I had passed all of the medical hurdles for my recovery and Sir Sweetness had passed all of his.

Usually I’m still beyond exhausted and not ready to leave emotionally or physically, so I ask to stay another day and my OB approves it. But this time around, my bed at home was calling my name.

It was a new bed with an adjustable base that catered perfectly to my chronic joint pain and intense acid reflux. For the first time ever, I could sleep through my whole pregnancy and wasn’t already exhausted going into the hospital! (Oh, how I dreaded those endless nights of pain at the end of my pregnancy with Princess Shoo-Shee.)

In comparison, I just couldn’t sleep in the hospital bed this time, even with eight pillows tucked all around me. And a searing fire of pain ripped through my incision every time I struggled to get out. Or in. Or out again. I knew I’d heal so much better with my new bed at home.

The other thing that usually kept me at the hospital was the comfort of room service at my fingertips. But this time I knew I’d be fine at home with the weekly meal service we purchased for our family that I deeply appreciated and enjoyed.

So for the first time in Heidi C-section History, I didn’t pray to stay an extra day.

[Moment of stunned silence.]

Instead, I prayed that we could finally name our dear child. And amazingly, Charming suddenly thought of a great name!!

We held our breath, worried that it would lose its appeal. But. It. Didn’t! So I whipped out our last hospital form and filled it out!!

(Well, OK. Maybe I chickened out and wrote it on scratch paper first… You know, just to see how it felt. And how it looked. And you know what? I loved it!!)

“We did it!!!”

After that, we loaded up and headed out! Charming pushed me in my wheelchair. And the nurse pushed our son in his car seat, our bags and my walker. :) (She was impressive!)

I felt a tug at my heart when we passed the waiting area outside the maternity ward. I looked at the spot where I waited to meet my child and knew it would forever be special to me.

Before I knew it, Sir Sweetness was settled in for his first car ride ever! Although, he really had no idea. But at least he was burrowed in the same knitted hat and blanket that every one of our newborn sons have worn at the hospital.

Hi, hat!! We’re almost home!!

… to be continued.

Our first house guests since COVID!

The arrival of Sir Sweetness meant we needed reinforcements. Because the only way Prince Charming could spend three days in the hospital with me was if our five cute monkeys still at home had good care.

In other words, it was time to break our COVID streak of no house guests and fly in the experts.

“Why do we need experts, Mama?”

Why? Because you all are the wiggliest and most precious treasures we have on Earth.

“OK. Dat makes sense.”

Expert #1: Aunt Elise

As you can see, my dear younger sister is the perfect snuggle and reading companion. Princess Shoo-Shee Pants Rapunzel tested these waters the first night Aunt Elise arrived and sure enough! Expert #1 passed with flying colors.

Expert #2: Grandma

Grandma raised eight wigglers of her own and Sir Sweetness was her 39th grandchild. So when it comes to experts, she’s it! She even came prepared with two fresh decks of cards to play the kids’ favorite card games and teach them a new one. (She also taught them Yahtzee!)

And when we played a game of Simon Says before our family scripture study of the Book of Mormon…

Grandma took a turn and had to be extra tricky to catch Sir Potatoes off guard. (He was such a good sport!)

Then the directions kept coming!

“Simon says fold your arms.”

“Simon says lay down.”

“Simon says sit up.”

“Simon says give me a hug.”

Awwww…

We were definitely leaving our little saplings in the hands of loving experts. And what a blessing! It allowed us to really focus on meeting our newest…

… Baby Boy!

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Day 2: What’s his name?

We got that question a lot in the hospital. My mom asked me. My friends asked me. Every doctor and nurse who walked in my room asked me.

But every time I gave the same answer: “We don’t know.”

Because there aren’t a lot of names left for a fifth son that fit all of my rules and all of Charming’s rules.

You see, I wanted boy names that hadn’t been used for girls, couldn’t be shortened into a nickname and weren’t really common.

I also wanted a first name with strong sounds in it and a middle name from the Bible like all of our other children. And, of course, all three names needed to fit well together.

And Charming wanted a name that wasn’t a verb or a noun and preferred classic names that fit his tastes.

Since we couldn’t decide before he was born, we decided to wait until we met him. And let me tell you, once we had, it made things even HARDER!

Because there was no Earthly way this amount of squishy cuteness could be contained in a single word.

We wanted a name that fit his beautiful personality. His sweetness, strength and calm. He was so special, he needed a name that conveyed that.

So we did our best and tried calling him different names, but they never felt right for long.

Joseph Hyrum?

Hyrum Joseph?

Isaac Joseph?

Joseph Isaac?

Eric Joseph?

Eric Michael?

Try as we might, it became clear that the only thing we wanted to call him on his second day…

… Was ours. :)

The day you were born…

The day you were born, Daddy drove me to the hospital and when he pushed me through the doors in my wheelchair, I had a huge smile that nobody could see behind my pandemic face mask. Because when Daddy had pushed me through those same doors five times before, I was there to get iron infusions and I didn’t get to leave with a baby in my arms.

But this time was different! This time when the COVID-19 screener looked at the very pregnant woman sitting in a wheelchair and asked with a knowing gleam in her eyes, “Triage?” I got to say, “YES!!”

And when the security guard asked your dad, “Is this your first?” his eyes almost popped out when your dad answered, “No, it’s our sixth.”

I was taken right to my room and they got me all ready for surgery. I was so relieved to make it there, because you were my sixth C-section and it felt like I might not hold together much longer. Between your incredibly strong punches, kicks and turns and all of the contractions I’d had for weeks, my scar hurt really bad. That had never happened before and I was scared and grateful that the doctor wanted to take you out earlier than usual at 38 weeks along.

The moment I heard your voice for the first time, I started crying. You quieted down right away, but I kept on crying.

I knew you would be my last baby and this was the last time I’d ever hear my child’s voice for the first time. And I didn’t want it to be the last time. Because when I heard you cry, it was like an angel from heaven was right there handing you to me as my heart opened up, wrapped around you and held on forever.

And I was so sad that I wouldn’t feel that magic again.

But when your dad brought you over and I looked into your beautiful eyes for the first time, it felt like God said to me, “He needs you. He needs his mother.”

And as I touched you for the first time, I understood what God was telling me.

My uterus had started to tear open with you inside. Thank our Heavenly Father above that you were safe and I was safe. But it was no longer safe for me to have any more children.

So I cried and cried and was so grateful that I got to have one more and I got to have you. And I got to be here to raise you.

Our last dear little munchkin to fill our souls with the joy and love and laughter of a newborn.

When I got light headed, Daddy let the nurse take you away and weigh you. Even at only 38 weeks, you weighed 8 pounds, 1 ounce! And the doctors and nurses said you were so strong!

Then Daddy held you nearby so I could see you while I focused on my breathing. It was hard while I had a mask on and was still crying. :)

But I managed to take a few pictures of you and Daddy. Two of my favorite boys on Earth!

Eventually, we were settled back in our room and I was hooked up to so many wonderful inventions that made sure I was healthy and recovering well.

We introduced you to your siblings, Grandma and Aunt Elise back at home who wished they were allowed to visit the hospital.

“Awww!!! Hi, Baby!!! You’re soooo cute, Baby!!!!”

They asked what your name was but we didn’t know.

Then we held you some more. And marveled at your full head of beautiful hair!

And I happily obliged when the nurses rehearsed all the benefits of skin to skin contact. I’d learned to love it with your older sister and snuggled you close.

I let your dad hold you a little when I got to eat for the first time that day…

… But then I wanted you back right away.

And as the sun set on your birthday and our room grew dark, I held you near and closed my eyes along with you; falling asleep with a smile as I listened to your sweet newborn humming.

“Welcome to our family,” I whispered. “We’re so glad you’re here.”