One of the best parts about having a new daughter is that we now have a big sister and a little sister. Granted, I don’t know what it’s like to be a sister of any kind but I do love my siblings. I know each of my brothers and sister have played a role in who I am today (mostly in a positive way) and I pray that Cora and Nella are just as close if not closer. Kate has very similar feelings to me so we were very excited to see them meet for the first time.
When we went to the hospital on early Wednesday morning we thought the first time the two sisters would meet each other would be 3-4 days after the delivery because there was a ban at the hospital for anyone under 18 who was not a patient. Obviously we understand why it’s done (there’s a lot of flu going around in Charlotte right now) but that doesn’t mean we weren’t a little bummed by it. Then, shortly after Cora was born we heard from a nurse that the ban might be lifted. We didn’t want to get our hopes up but we did let GG and KT know there was a possibility Nella would be able to come to the hospital on Thursday (Feb 5th). Later in the evening the official word came through and we got really excited that Nella would be able to meet Cora the next day.
Around the same time we heard about the ban being lifted, Cora had to put under the Bilirubin lights. She had some high levels and was at risks for spikes so the doctors recommended we start getting treatment early (really before it became a big issue) because of the risk involved. In order to make sure we could get home in time we kept Cora under the lights at all times, unless she was being fed. This meant Nella would be able to meet her but would not be able to “rock her” immediately. That would have to wait until we get home but didn’t dampen our excitement one bit.
Then it came. Thursday morning we got a call from GG, KT and Nella because they were in the building and getting ready to come up. My mom and dad (Grammy Gram and Pop-Pop) were visiting as well so it would be a grand old time. We heard a knock at the door and told Nella to come in. She came around the corner and in the sweetest half whisper said “Cora?” as she looked around the room wide-eyed. It’s hard to describe it but if you know Nella she runs full throttle when she is awake. Kate and I hadn’t seen her be excited in this manner before and it was a joy to watch. After the first moments Nella gathered herself and went into full blown excitement. She pretty much repeated:
- “Cora came out!!!”
- “She’s not in Mommy’s belly!!!”
After a little bit of visitation time Nella had to head home to get her nap in and she was not happy about that. She asked more than few times to take Cora home and threw a pretty good sob story as she left because mommy and Cora couldn’t go home. I guess she learned about delayed gratification but it was a little heart breaking to see.
Luckily, when we were sent home the next day (Friday the 6th) she was just as excited to see Cora again. She pretty much overdosed on excitement and was frantically trying to give her everything Cora “needed” all at once (blanket, hugs, pacis, rocking, etc). It was pretty endearing and also a little crazy as we ensured Nella didn’t literally crush Cora with love. Since that day Nella has done a great job of being a big sister and wanting to help, there has been very little (if any) jealousy.
After all the build up for Nella it has been nice to see her truly excited about being a big sister and I think she is going to really enjoy that role. I’m sure there will be fights and the typical disagreements that any two sisters have but I can only hope they realize how important a sibling relationship is as they grow up, I know I certainly do.