lyla mae

posted on: Friday, March 21, 2014

i've been a bit of a hot mess this week. the emotional roller coaster i'm riding has not been kind to me, and i'm sure the pregnancy hormones aren't helping. i've had a hard time focusing on the positive. strike that. i've found it impossible to focus on the positive. i know there ARE positives. but the negatives are just so overwhelming. i'll write about the roller coaster at some point. once i can do so without comparing myself to Bosnian refugees or sounding so whiny.

for now, let's talk about my baby girl. Lyla Mae. 

we had picked her name back in December, before we knew she was a she. Mae after Nick's sister. Lyla because we liked it. once we knew she was a girl, we second-guessed ourselves. naming a person seemed like such an overwhelming responsibility, and we decided we'd wait until she was born before committing to a name. so we could get to know her first. make sure it fit. after 8 hours on labor and delivery, listening to our tiny escape artist roll around and evade the heart rate monitor, kicking furiously at the toco monitor, making my abdomen look like something straight out of the movie Alien...we decided that Lyla was perfect for our sassy, spunky babe. and we figured her valiant efforts to vacate the womb should be rewarded with a name; an identity. and we've never looked back. it just feels perfect. 

one silver lining is that i've had a lot of time to lie here and get to know my daughter. little things, that might've gone unnoticed if i were still caught up in the busyness of my every day. like how she likes to curl up in a little tiny ball on one side of my uterus when she's sleeping, making me look lopsided from the outside. and how my entire abdomen moves when she's awake and wiggling around. she has plenty of fluid to swim in, and she's loving it. every now and then, a tiny foot will poke at me on one side or the other, and will keeping poking if i try to poke back. (it's like the early days of Facebook...) 

my uterus is funnel-shaped as it pares down to where it meets my cervix, and on ultrasound, you can see that this funnel is where she likes to stick her tiny hand. as if she's literally trying to claw her way out. when she's not making a break for it, her hands are up by her face, by her ears, in her mouth. ultrasound is truly amazing--and i'm thankful for the glimpse of my baby girl it has given me.

she's feisty, and a fighter. but she's sweet, too. as best i can tell, she's a lot like me. and i've come to a place where i'm happy enough with the person i've become that this makes me proud. 

another silver lining is all of you. i am all too familiar with feeling overwhelmed by the love and kindness of strangers who would seek to bring you comfort in a crisis. once again, thank you all so much for your words and your support. thank you for helping bear our burden, and for your prayers. we've shaken our fists at the sky a lot over the past two weeks, but we were never promised "fair". as unfair as all of this seems, in the wake of the events of the past year, we carry on. we have to. 

thank you for making the journey a little less dark and lonely. 


  1. Pulling for you. I shared your blog with my best friend last night and was gushing about how beautifully you write. So glad you are finding some strength through your internet/stranger friends.

  2. *hugs* I went into labor at 26 weeks with my second baby and at 25 weeks with my third. Both cooked until 38 week and were born at exactly the same size - 6 lbs, 13oz - which isn't huge but when you've steeled yourself for the possibility of a premie, feels like a sumo wrestler! Hang in there!

  3. Hormones are so unkind. And I think it is hard to note cry, "This isn't fair!" even though life isn't fair. You're only human, so it would be weird if you didn't feel that way. But you are doing a great job and we are praying for you and Lyla (love the name!!).

  4. I love both names! I am glad you picked a name.

  5. Stay in there, Lyla Mae! And keep being your cute self, Emily!

  6. P.S. You made me laugh out loud at the Facebook reference.

  7. That is such a beautiful name! Still sending good thoughts your way! :)

  8. I'm praying for you, Nick, and Lyla Mae!

  9. I very nearly caught the fidgets from my bump on video as it was proper kicks and punches today and visible from the outside. It's now 00:49 and he or she is still kicking! One of my top names at the moment if we have a girl is Elsie Mae. Chris wouldn't let me have Zelda so I decided to go traditional lol. Then again I want to meet the baby then decide.

  10. I love that name! Perfect for a little fighter!

    ashley @

  11. Love the name.

    I've given you an award: :-) Something to do while you're laying in bed...

  12. Let me start out first with a lighthearted comment. That photo is of you on bed rest? Wow! I don't want to show you what I looked like post C-section (once the spinal wore off), but damn, you look fabulous!

    It is perfect that you and Nick named your baby girl. We nicknamed our son "Curly" while he was in the womb, like the image of the Emoji Emoticon baby on the phone app (he has a single curl on his forehead), but we always knew that he would be a Noah. It was the only name that we agreed on. Once you name your baby, he/she does become real. They are real the whole time, but it's a mindset.

    The best moments that I had while I was pregnant were the last 30 minutes of the evening, right before I would fall asleep. Being on my feet and running around at work, I could not feel him until week 26. It didn't help that it took forever for me to show. My OB-GYN and sonographer were shocked and said, "Some women just aren't as in tune with their bodies." So it's nice that you have a bump to admire and pat and a very lively and sweet Lyla Mae to kick and dance and show everyone who's boss. It sounds like you are very in tune with you body and your baby, which is great! You're right that without the needed bed rest, so many of those precious moments might have passed you by as you toiled away. It's wonderful that you can feel AND see her bounce around from side to side like a pin ball, stamping her foot here and there! Noah used to kick the heart rate monitor and swim away as well, and my OB told me that he was a feisty one and to expect that outside of the womb. She was right. Looks like Noah and Lyla Mae already have a lot in common, and I can't wait for him to meet her. It is wonderful that you are chronicling your experience, because when she looks back on it, she will say, "I was really like that, Mommy?"!

    I had placenta previa that never went away like they expected it would. But the bonus was that I got more ultrasounds than usual. It has been fun to thumb through the various photos and see how much he grew, from the size of a sesame seed to a head of romaine lettuce to a mini-watermelon. It's like turning the pages of a rudimentary cartoon. Looks like you are having that opportunity, too.

    Time and hormones are very cruel, but I'm so glad to find you and Lyla Mae another week stronger and in great care.


  13. I'm so glad to hear little Lyla is a feisty little muffin, and even in this time of difficulty you have this silver lining, which is getting to know your daughter before she meets the rest of the world. <3


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