Sunday, May 15, 2011

Berkley Grace Turner

The header of my blog, I think, says it all; a turn of events it has been! Berkley Grace Turner was born 10 days early on April 13th, 2011. She is the sweetest, most beautiful baby in the whole world! I am so thankful she is healthy and that labor and delivery went as smoothly as possible (more on that later).

Geoffrey and I are extremely proud parents and the grandparents, on both sides...well, let's just say they are all on cloud nine! Having a baby sure does change the dynamics of your family; in a good way. The only way I know how to describe it is that having a baby brings both sides of the family closer together. Her Lolli and Pops (Geoffrey's parents) adore her and so do her Gigi and Papa (my parents). Aunt K, Aunt Juju, Aunt Emily, Aunt Sarah and Uncle Fatty all love her to pieces too. Geoffrey and I are overwhelmed with thanksgiving that B has such an amazing family/support system. Berkley will grow up surrounded by family who will always love her, who will want to spend time with her and invest in her life! She is one lucky little lady.

I can honestly say the moment her daddy and I laid eyes on her we fell in love! I'm not going to lie, the first thought I had was "Why is she purple?" But my first emotion was pure JOY! Geoffrey actually voiced his first thought, which echoed mine. The nurses assured us that her color was normal and would subside momentarily. Which it did. As I laid there, watching the nurses measure Berkley, I was captivated...overwhelmed...mesmerized! I also couldn't believe I had given birth. That was a crazy thought; that it was all over, yet it was just beginning.

The first time I held her was just beautiful! I couldn't believe she was actually here and I was holding her, my precious gift from God, in my arms...finally! And Geoffrey and I couldn't wait to show her to our friends and family! So, before too long, the grandparents came in to meet their first granddaughter. Then the aunts and uncles came in, along with my grandmother. And before we knew it, the labor and delivery room was full of friends as well, on their lunch breaks, who came to see baby Berkley. It was wonderful introducing her to all the people I love so much!

B was born on a Wednesday morning and we didn't leave the hospital until Saturday morning because I had a fever (which meant B also had a fever for a little while) and had to stay on antibiotics for 48 hours. Which meant we had A LOT of visitors who came to meet Berkley. I can't even count the number of people who came up to the hospital to see us. Geoffrey and I were so blessed by everyone and we loved visiting with each one of them!

Bringing B home was weird. Getting in the car with her was weird; I just kept watching all the cars around us. Geoffrey and I talked about how much more we noticed careless drivers around us. And of course, we drove much more timidly too, I mean, we were carrying precious cargo! Once we got home, I just wept. Not because I was sad. The word I have to describe it is overwhelmed. I was overwhelmed with love, excitement, joy...I just felt blessed. I just kept looking at Berkley and thinking, "Oh my goodness, she's MY daughter. I am her mom...I love her so much!" That's the summery of my emotions that first week. My doctor told me I would cry randomly. She warned me that sometimes I would cry because I knew the reason, and sometimes I would cry not knowing the reason. I'd cry due to happiness, I'd cry due to just being tired...But she assured me it was normal. Well, crying isn't exactly normal for me. I am a pretty even keel kind of gal. So, when these emotions just came flooding in, it was so weird for me. Geoffrey would ask me what was wrong and wanted me to explain how I felt; sometimes there were just no words. But there was a song..."God I look to You" by Bethel Live:

God I look to You

I won't be overwhelmed

Give me vision to see things like You do

God I look to You

You're where my help comes from

Give me wisdom, You know just what to do

I will love You Lord my strength

I will love you Lord my shield

I will love You Lord my rock

Forever all my days, I will love you God

Hallelujah our God reigns

Hallelujah our God reigns

Hallelujah our God reigns

Forfever all my days Hallelujah

So, I listened to that song a lot that first week. In fact, Geoffrey made me a playlist on my iPhone that included these songs as well:

"Everlasting God"-Chris Tomlin

"Where I Belong"-Cory Asbury

"From the Inside Out"-Hillsong

"Forever Reign"-Hillsong Live

"Love is Here"-Tenth Avenue North

Every time I got up in the middle of the night to nurse B, I would put on my ear phones and listen to my worship playlist. Peace and joy would flood B's nursery and I just felt the presence of God..even in the middle of the night, when I wasn't always the most coherent (more like sleep deprived haha). It just reminded me that I could be confident in the promise that the Lord would never leave me nor forsake me; that He would guide me as I parent Berkley. The Lord would remind me that He had not given Geoffrey and I more than we could handle. He had equipped us for parenthood, and I had no reason to doubt or have any fear!

I love nursing B too. It was hard the first two weeks, but it has gotten easier and easier. It's my time with my baby girl. I pray over her, sing over her and love holding her each time I nurse. It's true what they say about nursing, it really does help form a really strong bond between mom and baby. I have to say, the pain at the beginning was worth it! (more on my nursing experience/expectations later).

Berkley is now one month old. Time has truly flown by. These last four weeks have just been a blur. Each week has been better than the last. My crying stopped sometime during week 2. But the overwhelming feelings of joy and love have not! I love being home with my daughter!!!