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Sunday, September 7, 2014

Addie's Birth

Every time I look at her I can’t believe she once contorted herself enough to be able to fit into my body.

Four days after her due date, on August 20th at 11:30pm Adelyn Rena Lee (aka Addie) made it into the world!

Right after Instagramming at 40w3d that we were still waiting for her and taking guesses on when she’d actually come, whaddya know? I started feeling regular low level contractions that resembled mild menstrual cramps. But since I’d felt them once before and didn’t go into labor I was slow to make anything of these. Plus the contractions hadn’t progressed over 5 hours. Our doula and friend Jenny came over to check things out, but since the contractions hadn’t progressed for 5 hours she went home saying if the contractions kept me up at night then we’d know we were in labor!

WELL, Benson and I slept through the night and woke up as usual. Womp womp. Another false alarm, I thought. But then! All of a sudden at 6:30am contractions came and were in a regular rhythm of 6 minutes apart! Jenny joined us a couple of hours later, and we spent the morning laboring at home for as long as I could take it. We took walks, watched episodes of Arrow, and Benson and Jenny massaged my back through increasingly intense back labor. (The worst!) When I couldn’t concentrate through anymore episodes of Arrow and contractions were 1.5 min long and 2 min apart we finally headed to the hospital.


The 10 minute car ride felt like FOR-EHH-VER (Sandlot style) since sitting or lying down intensified the back labor. On the way to check-in I stopped every 2 minutes to breathe through a contraction. A pregnant girl in the waiting room asked me very concernedly if I was okay, and I was more concerned for her than me because HELLO, obviously I was having a contraction and her being a couple weeks away from delivery herself I hoped she would have been able to recognize that! Thank God I was busy breathing through a contraction and no snarky sarcastic comment could fly out of my mouth!

Since I’d been 4cm dilated for a few weeks I wasn’t worried about being dilated enough to be admitted into labor and delivery. They checked me, and I had reached 7cm dilated while laboring at home!

(As a side note, I was completely silent through every contraction. Just totally focused on breathing, not making a peep!)



Once in the delivery room the big kicker was whether or not I was going to get an epidural. Most of my friends are pretty pro natural births. My mentality, however, was to get to about 7 or 8 cm and see how I felt after that. Most people who go in with that mentality usually end up getting epidurals, but I knew that I might be the opposite and be super stubborn. Like, “I made it this far, let’s just stick it out!” The thing is, though, I didn’t really care about going natural or not for this labor. (Maybe for future labors.) It wouldn’t have been out of a value to have a natural birth—it would have been for sheer stubbornness. Not a great reason!

An hour passed and I was now at a 7.5 or 8. My biggest fear was feeling the pain of tearing down there and the getting sewn up part. Contractions I could make through, but tearing is what I did NOT want to feel. I had to fight my stubbornness and remind myself that I wanted this birth experience to be peaceful and for me to be able to be present to it all. Breathing through contraction by contraction, while I think I could have made it through the pain, wasn’t allowing me to be present to the overall experience. It only allowed me to be present to each contraction.

Finally, Benson and Jenny talked me out of being stubborn and I got the epidural. NO REGRETS AT ALL. Magical!


My doctor came and broke my water to speed things up. After an hour or two (can’t really remember) I was dilated to 10 and ready to push! The doctor came back and I geared myself up for the final stretch. But then—oh wait! The baby’s heart rate dropped every time I pushed. They suspected she had an umbilical cord wrapped around her, and to my disappointment they asked me to stop pushing. The doctor wanted to wait until Addie dropped even more on her own since pushing was causing her distress. The doctor would come back in an hour to check.

And that’s when I was SO GLAD I got an epidural. Because one hour turned into 2.5 hours since every other woman in San Diego was delivering a baby that night. Women were even laboring in the check-in room because there weren’t enough labor and delivery rooms for us all! Getting the epidural allowed me to not have to push when Addie wasn’t ready, and I didn’t have to feel waves of contractions and fight the desire to push while 10 cm dilated for 2.5 hours.


Finally, the nurse came back along with good news! Addie’s heart rate looked good, the doctor was finally free from the other deliveries, and we were ready to push for real. We had to take some breaks between contractions to let Addie recover when her heart rate dipped for too long. But other than that, things were going well, and I finally got to see her head poking through!

The doctor came, and Addie began to crown. I pushed and pushed for nearly 1 hr 15 min (because of having to take those breaks for Addie’s heart), and we all felt like we’d meet the little munchkin by the 3rd push of the next contraction. To our surprise, on the 1st push of that next contraction Addie slipped right out of me! We were lucky the doctor had quick reflexes and caught her! I guess she came out sideways as well, but I couldn’t even tell. I was just shocked that she fell out of me like that! Her and her full head of hair.

Instantly she let out a cry, got cleaned up and had some meconium sucked out, and was placed on me for skin to skin.


Overall Addie has been an incredibly well tempered baby. People wonder how I’m blogging with a newborn and it’s because she slept like a boss for the first two weeks of her life. That, and I figured out how to breastfeed at my desk hands free. Muahaha! When Addie’s not sleeping, she just looks around at stuff. Our friend said their baby did that up until 2 weeks and then baby got crazy. We’re bracing ourselves for possible change, but totally hoping Addie stays this way!


88 comments:

  1. Congratulations! She's really really cute!!

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  2. She's such a little beauty, Congrats!

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  3. Congratulations on your new, beautiful bundle of joy! May God bless you and your family. Enjoy every moment with your baby girl. My own little bundle just turned 9 months and it is an adventure!

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  4. Just beautiful...your sweet Addie. Many blessings for you and your sweet family.

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  5. Your baby is so cute!!! Congrats mama.

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  6. She is too precious! Sounds like a wonderful labor (well, as wonderful as it can be!) and delivery. Congratulations to you and your husband!

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  7. Congratulations to you! Thank you for sharing your birth story with us- you are a blessing!

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  8. Congrats! Loved reading the birth story, and she is so precious!

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  9. What a cutie! No shame about the epidural--I went into labor with the same attitude you had and finally took the epidural. Good thing since I had to push for 3 hours with my sunny-side up baby, and then had retained placenta they had to go back in for! Just as long as our babes are healthy, right? Congrats!

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  10. Wonderful! Love all the pics and birth story! Congratulations!

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  11. Awesome! I got the epidural for the same reason and I don't regret it one bit. It made labor pretty easy and for that I am thankful. I hope your baby stays as calm as she is. But truth be told, my baby was a quiet perfect sleeper the first two weeks and then, bam!, she went nuts! She began to cry ALL night, EVERY night! Yikes! But honestly this lasted about 3 weeks and then as suddenly as it started it stopped and by 2.5 months she was mostly sleeping through the night. As rough as it can be it passes fairly quickly and then, gasp, you begin to miss those sweet newborn days. Enjoy every exhausting and beautiful second.

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  12. Congrats to you and your hubby! She is so precious!

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  13. She is absolutely beautiful! Congratulations to your little family!

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  14. Yay - thanks for sharing - I love birth stories! And Addie is such a gorgeous little thing :) My first birth was with an epidural and it was all sunshine, peace, and the Today show. My second was natural (not by choice) and it was all frustration, pain, and yelling. I'll always go with an epidural. And we are wall wanting to know how your tummy is so flat already - genes or belly bandit?

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  15. Aww she is beautiful! Such an eventful birth story! I have no idea how you survived through contractions without making any noise though - we were told early on in our classes that vocalising through contractions could help with the pain, and I put that into use a lot! Especially when they told me there was no-one else in the birthing suites so I could be as loud as I wanted.....although come time to push they were telling me to shut up haha!


    You must be really happy to have such a beautiful daughter - and such a good sleeper!

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  16. Thanks for sharing your story! Addie is beautiful :) Enjoy these weeks because in a few years you will never believe she was ever so little or so quiet!!

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  17. awww what a beauty. I think she got your eyes and looking as bright as a sunshine <3


    Love,


    Danielle


    http://gocDani.com

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  18. You're a brave mama! Back labor is really rough, I hear! She is adorable :D

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  19. Congratulations on your beautiful baby girl. She's adorable.

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  20. Thanks for sharing your wonderful birth story, Audrey! Down the road you'll be so happy you have this so documented. I was hoping she'd be born on the 15th - my 30th birthday! Addie is beautiful - enjoy every moment.

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  21. Congratulations! She is absolutely beautiful :) You look wonderful!

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  22. Congratulations! Your daughter is precious!

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  23. Oh congrats Audrey! She is beautiful. I'm so glad everything went smoothly.

    -AJ

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  24. She is just precious! Congratulation!

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  25. Congratulations! Your daughter is beautiful! Wish you and yours all the joy with your little one :)

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  26. Oh my goodness, Audrey! I loved reading this! Addie is so lovely, and that picture of the three of you is so adorable! All the pictures of Benson and Addie together? Can't handle the cute. Thank you for sharing Addie's birth story with us!! :)

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  27. She is so freaking gorgeous. Wow. I mean, she's got great genes so no shock but my goodness she is a stunner. Seems like you've slid into motherhood just wonderfully! Oh and we will take posts any day you're able to write them! Yahoo!

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  28. Oh! Also you must describe how you nurse hands-free! Genius!

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  29. She is so adorable :-) Congrats to the both of you!!!

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  30. She is BEAUTIFUL. Congratulations! Thanks for sharing your story - makes me a little less nervous about my impending birth (due by the 30th of this month)!

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  31. Beautiful family, and I love her name! Congratulations!

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  32. She is beautiful, congratulations!

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  33. HappinessatmidlifeSunday, September 07, 2014

    Awww....so precious!! Glad had a great birth experience!


    Alice
    www.happinessatmidlife.com

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  34. Oh my gosh, she's so beautiful! Although we're done having kids, this totally makes me want to have another one, the newborn stage is my absolutely favorite! But I resort to coming over and holding the newborns so mommies can sleep, that works too! :) Congrats girl, she's beautiful and you have a beautiful family!! So happy for you!

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  35. She's just beautiful! Congratulations!

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  36. Congratulations Audrey xxx SO beautiful!!!

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  37. Oh she is adorable!! Congratulations! Susan

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  38. Great birth story - thanks for sharing! She is divine!

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  39. She is adorable!

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  40. Big huge congratulations! She is absolutely beautiful! Thank you so much for sharing so much about your pregnancy & birth & meeting little Addie over the past six months. It has been so interesting & helpful to hear your story five months ahead of what I'm experiencing! So happy for you!

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  41. Congrats Audrey!!! I'm so happy for you. She is beautiful. Yes enjoy this time because they are constantly changing. I felt like just when I had my son figured out, he was already onto the next stage.

    Agi:)

    vodkainfusedlemonade.com

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  42. I JUST bought this shirt this morning before I started catching up on my blogs! (Hooray for sales and ON Cash!) I've been eyeing this shirt for a few weeks now but couldn't get over the original price. I can't wait to try it on and to pair it with your tips!

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  43. Audrey, you are so good at putting together these one item, many ways posts! It seriously takes so much self control to not run out and buy every piece from these collages!

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  44. She is just precious! Congrats!

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  45. Oh man, 3 hours sunny-side up! That sounds crazy and painful! Epidurals for the win.

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  46. We experienced some fussiness and inability to sleep for the first time around the 2 week mark. We couldn't tell if it was the 2 week timing or if it was because the 4 days before that my mom had spoiled her by holding her to sleep after every single feeding--the timing all lined up together. But after a few days we were able to "undo" whatever happened, and she's back to being able to put herself to sleep so far. WHEW. I hope it lasts! haha

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  47. I know natural births can be peaceful, but I doubt it would be for me. Sounds like it wasn't for you either! Sorry to hear that :(


    And the tummy--haha! Not a belly bandit thing. I'd say maybe genes...and definitely Tim Ferriss' 4 Hour Body Slow Carb Diet! (you can read about it by searching Google)

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  48. Our birthing classes and our doula talked about making noises and how it helps relieve pain and all that, but I just knew that making noises wouldn't actually help me from other times I've been in pain. It actually makes me feel worse. Slow, steady, silent breaths for me!

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  49. Haha, thanks Brynn! I love the pictures with Addie and Benson. Warms my heart!

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  50. I sit at my desk with a BreastFriend or Boppy along with an office chair that I can raise or lower. I adjust the height of the chair so the BreastFriend is level on the desk with baby on top and therefore I don't have to hold her. Works for cross cradle and football--football if the chair has arm rests that you can adjust too. Hands are free to type!

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  51. Ooh, good luck with everything! If you haven't yet and if it's not too late, I'd HIGHLY recommend taking a birthing class. Even if it's only a one or two day one!

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  52. I never understood birth stories until I took a birthing class to prep for our own. Then I went back and reread blogger's birth stories hahaha! Anyway, I'm glad it's interesting and helpful. Not that I really know much more (only been through one birth so far) but if you have any questions let me know!

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  53. I'd say YES! Especially if you have regret for not getting it! And you can always take it home, play with it, and return it if you decide it's not for you after all.

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  54. That Old Navy cash is fantastic! Did you end up getting the shirt? I'm still waiting for mine to come in. I reallyyyyy hope it fits well haha.

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  55. Is there an Old Navy near you that's kind of in the boonies or around old people? Haha. I know it sounds weird, but my Target is often out of stock for a lot of things, but when I visit my friends in "podunk" towns they have the items I'd been eyeing for months! It's like a gold mine!

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  56. I haven't seen that moto jacket in person, sorry! This probably doesn't help at all, but Kendi wore it lately on Old Navy's instagram: http://instagram.com/p/snd1_Gqxry/?modal=true


    Otherwise, SheInside has soft faux leather jackets. People get really hesitant about ordering from SheInside since it's a China based company and their business policies are not as up to par as American or European companies. But I haven't had problems with them. However, if you have to return anything to them I hear (and totally believe) it's completely a pain since you have to deal with international shipping and customs.

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  57. You could wear it either with tights or bare legs. I personally wouldn't do knee socks, but short ankle socks if I were to wear socks.


    As to whether or not you could pull them off...I don't know! I know a couple of pretty spunky 60 year olds who could TOTALLY pull off boots like that, while there are plenty of others who maybe couldn't. I'd say it depends less on your age and more on your personality.

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  58. Haha! I know! I feel the same way when I get inspiration from other blogs! I have mixed feelings about posts like these. I want to be helpful, trying to use pieces people might already have or something, but sometimes I find stuff that I'm in love with and can't help but talk about it and I worry about how it may or may not make people want to go out and buy it too. I know I can't really control what other people do, but I constantly have that internal mix of feelings haha!

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  59. Congrats! She's beautiful! Perfect! Enjoy every moment, it goes quickly. We're celebrating my baby's 2nd birthday on Wedensday, it seems like just yesterday I was where you were!

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  60. She is beautiful. Congrats to you and your family.

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  61. Wow! Some of these things sound so similar to my L&D. For me, it was like all of a sudden I was in labor. I didn't feel a single contraction until I was in the hospital ready to deliver the baby! I was also a silent pain taker lol no screaming or anything like that from me! I got my epidural when I was 9 cm. dilated and oh my! That was so amazing. I was really terrified of the needle, but the epidural provided so much relief. I don't regret it at all! They thought my little guy had some meconium so all the "extra" nurses and such were in the room, but he didn't have it so the extra nurses just helped with the "after delivery" stuff. My little guy is such a great baby. He's now 8 months and he's still sleeping well, not fussy, etc. etc. So maybe your little girl will be the same way! :]

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  62. Thanks for sharing your story. I was quiet too! I could hear women all around me screaming their hearts out but not a peep from me. I just concentrated and only squealed when they had to stitch me up! Enjoy your baby cuddles!

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  63. oh you're so lucky - would have conserved your energy, and made you such the perfect patient, haha! :) Such a good story to tell your daughter - as most stories do have the hollywood style levels of screaming. Or that's what they told me to make me feel better between groans haha.

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  64. Congratulations! I don't comment much, but I wanted to say thank you for sharing your story -- I love birth stories! I have so enjoyed your blog and I hope you are doing well.

    Not sure if you've tried babywearing, but wow what a fun way to keep your baby close and be able to carry on with your day. I have seen some moms coordinate their baby carriers with their outfits. It can be pretty amazing.

    xoxo!

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  65. Way to go girl! SO happy for you and your little family :D
    And thanks for sharing your story—as a childless, non-pregnant woman who is excited to be a mommy one day, it's nice to hear someone who is not so dramatic or passionate one way or the other on the whole "natural birth" thing. Glad you're happy with your choice, and that your little miss is here and healthy!
    http://KatrinaCrouch.blogspot.com

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  66. Wow congrats! I love the last family pic ... Did you coordinate outfits!?

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  67. The Serial Hobbyist GirlTuesday, September 09, 2014

    She is such a cutie! Congratulations.

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  68. Oh, we've taken ALL the classes our hospital system offered - birth, baby basics, and breast feeding. Still don't feel ready, but at least we're better informed! ;D

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  69. She's perfect - you did amazing work getting her here!

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  70. Urgh both mine were back to back labour and boy, the pain in my back was worse than all the other pains. I feel for you in that respect! Do they give you gas and air in America? That stuff is great! I was anti-epidural as I wanted to be able to walk around so g&a does wonders (and it's portable!)

    I think generally newborns have a couple of really sleepy weeks from what I've read then it wears off as I too started blogging quite soon when my most recent one was asleep on me. He's 10 weeks now & I just fit it in around his daytime naps.

    Enjoy your beautiful baby girl. They grow up so quickly. My "baby" girl is 3 this weekend and it's just flown by!

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  71. Congratulations! She is so beautiful!! Love the photos. If you need an extra Grandma, I'm just right over here in Texas. :0)

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  72. congrats! she is beautiful! no shame in getting the epidural. I also went to the hospital and was dialated to a seven. thought i was gonna die! <3

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  73. Congratulations! Addie is so beautiful and you make the whole thing sound like fun :)

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  74. She is just precious! Congratulations and enjoy every moment. They grow up so fast!

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  75. Congratulations, she's a beauty!

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  76. What a beautiful family! Thanks for sharing her birth story with us!

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  77. She is beautiful :) I enjoyed reading and am glad you had a fairly pleasant experience.

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  78. Addie is so beautiful. I adore the last picture of her sleeping peacefully.

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  79. What a beautiful family. Congratulations on your professional and family success!

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