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Friday, April 16, 2021

Theo :: One + Two Month Update

 Baby Theo,

When your oldest sister, Hazel, was born I started writing her letters documenting what she was doing and how she was growing. I did it every month for her first year. Then I did the same thing for your other sisters, Eleanor and Sybil. Now it’s your turn! :) 

Over the years, the letters became less about them growing—their height/weight/clothing size (although most of that it very detailed with Hazel because I was a true first-time-mom and all of that NEEDED to be documented!)—and more about our everyday life and sweet moments I want to remember. I’m going to do my best, but these letters may come in bundles (like this letter—happy one & two months!)

The past 7 weeks have felt like a blur. People ask me what was the most challenging transition (1-2, 2-3, 3-4 kids) and I always say 1-2. It truly rocked my world. 2-3 had it’s challenges, but compared to 1-2 it was smooth. 3-4 has been different in so many ways. We also moved from NYC to NC less than a year ago so that transition on top of adding you to our family has thrown me for a bit of a loop.

We had two days to pack up our entire NYC apartment and halfway through packing I had your dad run out to pick up a pregnancy test. I felt like I might be pregnant and if I was I wanted to find out in NYC so part of your story would be linked to my favorite place and the birthplace of your siblings. (I think it’s sweet that like me, your sisters were born in New York and like your Dad, you were born in North Carolina).

We laughed and cried when we saw “Pregnant” on the stick. Then it was back to packing!

You were born during a global pandemic. This will always be part of your story. Your dad wasn’t able to go to any of my doctors appts with me or see any ultra sounds of you moving around and doing flips in my belly. The ultra sound techs always gave me extra pictures to take home and show him though. We video taped us finding out if you were a boy or girl—it’s one of my favorite videos and I’m sure we’ll show it to you hundreds of times as we’ve already watched it hundreds of times ourselves. A small part of me knew you would be a boy and I remember sitting on our couch in our chaotic living room (did I mention we also bought a fixer-upper and completely gutted and re-did our kitchen and living room in my first trimester? We’re a little nuts in this family!) thinking, “I really like the name Theo for a boy. Maybe we’ll have a boy.”

Close to your due date, we found you were laying sideways instead of head down. I went into the hospital for them to try to turn you. They got me all set up—hospital gown, an IV, a shot—and then they checked your position one last time and you had flipped all of your own! You were head down! Your dad was able to come to this with me and he started dancing which made us all laugh. I cried too.

With each pregnancy I always tell myself to NOT expect the baby to come early, but I secretly always think you guys will come early (and I’ve always been wrong). You were three days late—my longest pregnancy. I was pretty miserable towards the end and SO ready for you to come out! You were born on a Sunday (your Paw Paw’s birthday!)—the day before, on Saturday around 4pm I started feeling contractions. Eleanor and Sybil were very fast labors so I was prepared for yours to be super fast too. I started timing the contractions and by 7pm they were stronger and closer together. Your grandparents took your sisters and your dad and I waited, expecting to go to the hospital soon. Around 9pm the contractions slowed and by 11pm they were gone.

I went to bed feeling frustrated and sad. I woke up around 6:30am to contractions and knew you'd be born soon. The night before the midwife said to do something relaxing like a bath, a nap, or some red wine. I don't like baths, or naps, or wine so I thought about what would be relaxing for me. Doing a craft sounded relaxing so I decided to dye a kitchen towel with tea bags. I boiled about 40 tea bags and clothes pinned a tea towel together while your dad went and filled up the SUV with gas. I stated this around 8:30/8:45am and when your dad got back I couldn’t talk through contractions. I’m always hesitant to go to the hospital—I’m nervous it isn’t time yet, but I trusted your dad and off we went around 9:30am.

Because of COVID-19 I had to go back to admissions on my own. My contractions were about 2 minutes apart and couldn’t really answer the questions, but I did my best. She had me sit in a small waiting room until the nurse came down. When I’m in labor I’m not super loud so I don’t know if she didn’t think I was serious about being so close, but when I couldn’t sit in the chair in the waiting room she sent a nurse right away and got Dad back there with me.

Oh yeah, the security officer tried to get Dad to wait in the car saying admissions usually takes a little while and because of COVID it would be a bit before he could go back. I’m sure you’ll hear Dad tell this part of the story as you get older (he’s a great story teller), but he basically said he wasn’t going anywhere because his wife has super fast deliveries and that the security officer could call back to see if I was getting admitted right away. To the officer’s surprise, the nurses told your dad to come on back and that we’d have a baby soon.

Your labor was painful. Like top two out of my four. I had a COVID test during a break in contractions and after it came back negative I was able to labor without my mask on. It felt like I labored forever and pushing was the hardest I remember with all my children. I remember thinking, “I have reached my limit. How can I do this?” And it was if the Lord gave me this moment to hold onto because there have been many times over the past two months where I’ve thought, “I’ve reached my limit. How can I do this?” And just like in the last two minutes before you were born, I pray, “Lord, I need you. Please give me strength.”

Pushing you out was hard. Going from three to four kiddos has been hard. I feel like I’m fumbling trying to figure it out—dropping a ball here, there, but we’re doing it by the grace of God.

I cried when they placed you on me. It felt like a moment I had waited forever for. You are such a gift to our family and we’re all so, so glad you’re here!

Born at 12:48pm

8 lbs 1 oz


Your sisters were beyond excited when we brought you home. They still are. Every morning they’re still just as excited to see you 7 weeks later. I’ve taken so many pictures of you guys. Sibling love is one of the sweetest things I’ve ever seen. You kiddos are the biggest gift—your dad and I love you so much.

You’re still teeny-tiny so you’ve been doing a lot of sleeping, eating, pooping. The normal jazz of a newborn and we’re thrilled. The first few weeks were a little tricky with you and we figured out you have acid reflux. Once we figured that out things have been much better! You’re sleeping a lot more which I’m extremely grateful for. You still wake up 2-3 times a night so I’m looking forward to when that drops down to 1 (or zero ;).

A summary of the past few weeks: I love you so stinkin’ much. We all lose our mind when you smile or coo at us. You are the cutest baby boy we’ve ever seen. We love holding you, snuggling you, and your hair will forever be greasy because we all love to touch it so much.

Welcome to the Pursley crew little guy, we are beyond thrilled you’re here!!

I love you so much, sweet Theodore Matthew.