Juniper wasn’t supposed to be joining us until July 30, so we were more than a little surprised when she made it clear that she was on her way early Monday morning. Sarah headed over to CPH while I stayed at the house until Otis woke up. We met Sarah at the hospital where the OBGYN on call made the decision to to ship us out to Burlington. Juniper was early enough that there was a good chance we’d need a NICU nearby when she came out.
Because she’d already been admitted, Sarah was transported to UVM Medical in an ambulance. They drove at speeds up to 90mph with the siren blaring and the lights flashing (even though Sarah was still a long time away from active labor). Otis and I went back to the house to gather some clothes and toiletries, then drove over at a more reasonable pace to meet her there. Sarah’s parents, Chris and Larry showed up soon after to take care of Otis. (They passed the torch on Wednesday to my dad, who had embarked on a harrowing impromptu journey across the country as soon as he heard the news.)
Sarah pushed for less than twenty minutes and Juniper was born at 11:31pm.
The nursing staff quickly found out that her blood sugar was pretty low and rushed her to the NICU. They gave her dextrose through an IV in her hand. Over the next two days and nights, Sarah and the NICU nurses worked on feeding Juniper and getting her blood sugar levels to stabilize.
Sarah was discharged from the hospital pretty quickly, but the wonderful staff in the mother-baby unit made arrangements so that we could stay with Juniper until she was ready to go, too. Juniper’s condition was soon stable enough that she could sleep in the mother-baby unit with us. Her blood sugar was fine, but the pediatrician was still a little concerned about her bilirubin levels. Otis got to meet his baby sister in person and was very sweet. He brought her a little blanket because she “looked cold.”
We spent two more nights in the hospital and on Friday morning it was decided that Juniper was fit to go home. We rushed to Canton for a last-minute appointment with our pediatrician, then headed back to Potsdam for a relaxing evening settling in at home. Juniper still needs pretty close attention, but so far is looking better and better every day. Pops is bringing Otis back to Potsdam tomorrow.
I am so thankful for everyone involved—all the parents, the nurses and doctors, Juniper’s loving older brother—but mostly I am in awe of this fearless little baby and her fearless mother.