Gabriel Michelle Harden born on April 27, 2014 at 8lbs and 10ozs., with a head full of dark glowing hair is the beautiful baby girl of proud parents Jessica Combest-Harden and Ryan Harden. This Mother’s Day will be a special one for the new parents especially Jessica as it will be the beginning of her first and many to come.
“I told Ryan that he has two gifts to get this Mother’s Day one for his mom and one for me,” Jessica said with a smile. Ryan replied, “I’ll get Jessica a little something-something, she doesn’t have to worry.”
The most exciting moment for the couple during the birth of their daughter was when they heard baby Gabriel’s welcome cry into the world.
“It was a real beautiful experience to hear her voice,” said Ryan. Jessica’s sentiments were much the same, “To know that she was finally here and that she was on the outside and healthy was a relief and a blessing,” said Jessica.
The arrival day at the hospital for the Hardens was one of nervous anticipation and some unexpected circumstances. Ryan said he found himself pacing back and forth for the most part.
“I didn’t know it would take all day. I thought she would be in labor for several hours and the baby would pop out. But Jessica was in labor most of the day and finally that said they were just going to perform a C-Section,” Ryan said.
“I got up that morning around at 9 a.m.,” said Jessica. “I thought I was going to the restroom on myself but my water had ruptured. I was having contractions and everything was fine. Then by 5 p.m., the doctor told me I was five centimeters. And by 7 p.m., I was still five centimeters and then at 8 p.m., the doctor was like ‘were are going ahead and do a C-Section. That was nerve-racking because I know you have to be woke and still,” Jessica said.
“She was freaking out at first and I had to calm her down, but she got through it,” said Ryan. He continued,” I was in the room during the C-Section; a curtain was up, so I couldn’t see anything but I could hear everything. You could hear a couple of tugs and pulls with them trying to get Gabriel out. And then we heard some crying, and we started to cry,” said the proud father.
After the birth, the exuberant parents saw their baby and Jessica fell fast asleep. “We were in the hospital for three days,” said Jessica. “Just spending time with our baby and bonding with her at the hospital, it was a rewarding experience. From the time they moved us into a room, Gabriel has been with us the whole time. Just holding her and having my baby and the fact that she is finally here just made me cry some more. I just wished everybody could have been there to see her but looking back that was our special time.” Jessica said.
“This is something like I never felt before,” said Ryan. “It’s magical, every time I hold her or when she is sleeping on my chest; and when she makes a cute little noise. It just something that grows on you. It’s beautiful.”
The only time that Ryan left his girls during the three days was to go home and feed their beloved pet, Tricia who is also a special part of the family. “It was so funny when we brought Gabriel home, Tricia came down and looked in the car and had this puzzled looked on her face, ‘like what is this?’ But we let Tricia sniff one of Gabriel’s blankets and they have been best buddies since,” said Ryan.
“Tricia is so protected of the baby. She has really adjusted.” said Jessica. When she hears Gabriel cries, Tricia will hop on the bed to make sure that the baby is okay. It’s really funny to watch, but I guess they bonded the whole time I was carrying her. Even Tricia’s barking doesn’t frighten Gabriel. I guess she’s just use to it,” Jessica said.
“Just being a family and having our baby girl is so special. I am a momma now, and I would not trade anything for it. Gabriel is here and we love her,” Jessica said.
The number of new mothers who gave birth in the United States within the past 12 months is 4.0 million according to www.census.gov/fertility. Mother’s Day has been observed in the United States since May of 1908 and became a national observance day for mothers in 1914 when Anna Jarvis of Grafton, WV asked Congress to set aside a day to honor mothers which is always the second Sunday in May.