29 June 2010

an all-star lineup

We've got our core labor and delivery team assembled!! I've spoken about each of our team members separately, but I was just thinking about what an awesome and cohesive whole we have here. It struck me powerfully just last night just how amazingly blessed we are: we have a supportive, compassionate, and highly skilled core team assembled for the arrival of this baby.

Chris & Loren are the midwives who have been with us from the beginning. They will continue to be a central part of the team caring for us prenatally, and supporting us in transition to obstetrical care. They have been so available to us and incredibly compassionate, they have listed to and understood our fears and concerns. I look forward to our continued relationship, and already cannot wait to work with them again.

Annie is our doula, referred to us by our midwives. She is the only one we interviewed with, and that's all it took for us to be sold. Our first interview with her was the night before the first ultrasound where we initially found out about Ewan's heart. In the upheaval that followed, it took me two weeks to call her back and let her know what was going on. I don't even know how to describe how supportive, compassionate, and understanding she was. We were in limbo, and she instantly offered to aid us through that transition in any way she could. She called us to check in on us, and offered to be there for appointments, for tests, or in any other way she could be. She has supported not just me, but James and I as a couple. We're so thrilled to know her and have her be a part of our team. I can't imagine doing this without her.

When I last spoke to Annie on the phone, she said how much better and positive I sounded. I told her while we might still have our moments (though at this point, they are fewer and further between), we realize that we have cause to be hopeful, and that we are surrounded by the best possible team. No one would choose this, I said, but given the circumstances, I'm confident that we're in the best possible place.

Darra is (or will be!) our OB. Both the midwives and our doula have worked with her and have nothing but amazing and kind things to say about her. When I initially called to make the appointment, the receptionist instantly started raving about her. I was told about how kind, personable, and humorous she was. I was told about how straightforward and no-nonsense she is, but compassionate and tactful. When I called Annie to tell her that we'd be working with Darra, she let out a sigh of relief and joy for us. She's attended deliveries with her, and affirms that this is a doctor who trusts women, trust women's bodies, and is good at balancing the desires of the family to have the type of birth they want with the need to keep everyone safe and healthy. I haven't even met her yet, but three people I already trust and love are so confident she will be the right fit to round out our team, and this instills confidence in me.

The Heart Center @ Seattle Children's Hospital will be managing Ewan's care primarily after his birth, but they are also taking care of us now -- we've relied on the genetic counselor to answer questions that have popped up since our first scan with them. Additionally, we will have at least one more scan (most likely when I'm about 36 weeks) before Ewan's birth so their surgical team is able to anticipate as much as possible what they will need to do once he is born. Anyone we talk to who has had experience with Seattle Children's Hospital has nothing but positive things to say about them. Their team of specialists and surgeons are skilled and compassionate, and they really go the extra mile to make families as comfortable as possible. Parents have 24/7 visiting hours, and there are even family facilities on-site (including laundry, showers, and sleeping quarters).

You!! Just because you won't be at the birth doesn't mean you're not an integral part of our support team. I cannot under-emphasize just how important your support has been to us. Many of you have been able to empathize with your own NICU experiences. Many have offered to step in and support practically in ways we could not have known to anticipate. When I told Annie just about how many people are already loving on this baby and cheering him on, she expressed gratitude that this baby will come into the world being as loved as he is. And we know that he is. And we know that we are.

I am truly confident that given the circumstances, we could not possibly be in a better place.

So with that, I guess all there is to say is:

Go, Team Ewan!!


Nadine said...

That's really great news! Happy everything seems to be going well!

Unknown said...

Great news! Your strength is inspiring.

christianne said...

It's so wonderful you have such a supportive, loving, and experienced team. God is good to have provided these gifts for you!