All I have ever wanted to do was be a mom. My husband and I were extremely lucky, as soon as we decided to start a family, we got pregnant. It was the most amazing experience, the excitement of telling EVERYONE, the first time I heard the heartbeat and saw the image, and the day I found out that she was a girl. My little princess.
My pregnancy was relatively easy, I had a few bouts of spotting that sent me running to the Emergency Room in a frenzy only to be told that all was well. No Problems.
I remember the exact second that our life changed. My husband kissed me goodnight and rolled over to go to sleep. I went to do the same and my water broke. I was 31 weeks pregnant.
Olivia Maeve McIntosh came into this world screaming and kicking after just under 12 hours of labour. She was tiny, 4 lbs 11 oz but healthy. As a precaution they would need to keep her in the hospital until she reached at least 5 lbs. No problems, they said.
It was hard to be discharged and not take home my baby. I hated going home to an empty house that I wanted filled with her cries, looking into her empty nursery ,going through all of her beautiful and frilly clothes that we had purchased, ten times too big for her at this point. I stayed all day and most nights at the hospital, Duncan had went back to work so that he could have the time off when Livy came home.
My baby shower was to be held on Olivia’s Seven Day Birthday, my friends and family figured that the date would have given lots of time before my due date, little did we all know of Liv’s impatience. I went to the shower, showing everyone the hundreds of pictures we had already taken of her in her incubator and toasting to her being home in a few days to enjoy being dressed and cuddled in all of the beautiful gifts that they had just showered her with. I was such a proud Mommy.
I immediately went back to the hospital, Duncan was due home that evening after being away at work all week and I was actually looking forward to spending a night in my own bed beside my husband. All was good at the hospital, I gave Olivia her bath, dressed in her oversized sleeper and held her as she had her last bottle before bed. Olivia was fed by feeding tube from her nose to her stomach as not to arouse her and burn much needed calories. At 11 o’clock she was fast asleep for the night and the nurses ushered me out the door to get some much needed sleep. And I needed it. No problems, they said, see you in the morning.
At 5:40 I was awoken by the worst sound a parent can hear, the ringing telephone. Instinctively, I knew. Olivia’s name escaped my mouth in a scream as I ran down the hallway for the phone, bouncing off each wall as I went. I don’t remember answering the phone or talking, just listening and dying inside.
Problem. Olivia had stopped breathing in the night and we needed to get to the Infant Critical Care Unit immediately. I dropped the phone and fell to the floor.
My husband must have picked me up because next thing I remember we were being buzzed into the ICCU at the hospital. We were greeted at the door by doctors and nurses that led us into a private glass-walled room. I peeked in to the incubator and turned to leave. They had led us into the wrong room. One of the doctors blocked the door and nodded towards the baby. Only then did I realize that this child was mine. I didn’t understand, I had left an almost 5lb baby girl with thick dark curls and pink cheeks less than six hours before. Here lay a whiphit of a newborn, barely 3 and a half pounds, head shaved roughly with an IV sticking out of it.. She had tubes and monitors EVERYWHERE, I could see through her skin she was so tiny. As I sat beside her loving touching her cheek and hands, I thanked God that she was still here and begged him to keep her safe from here on in.
They didn’t know how long Olivia had stopped breathing for or why. They did a plethora of test including a spinal tap and pumped her full of antibiotics to get her back on the right track. Each day she got stronger and gained her weight back slowly but surely. She was in the hospital for 33 days. During those long days and nights I began to observe life in the NICU and started to realize the problems that arose each and everyday with the clothes that the infants were in. I started to plan and design an alternative to the oversized and usually unattractive sleepers that all of the babies were wearing. I didn’t understand why there was a lack of function and fashion, it wasn’t their fault that they were tiny! This is where and when LivyBean began to take form.
Well, five years and another preemie baby later (Mr Taitem Jack, 3 lbs 13 oz.), here I go. I hope to offer cute and fun options for the hospital experience as well as cute photography props and custom keepsakes for even the tiniest of tots. My love for tutus came from just that. I love to make them and I wanted to offer an affordable fairytale dress for the tiny to tall.
Please, enjoy my site, enjoy our clothes but most of all, enjoy the time when they are babies. Believe me, it goes by way too quickly!
XO The McIntosh’s