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River Alexander Pratt Shaw was born at 11:50 a.m. today, November 8, 2007. He has the preferred number of toes and fingers, and no unnecessary extras (tail, bat wings, etc.). He also has a perfect little nose and a dimple! (Along with other facial charactertistics.) He weighs in at 7 lbs 15 oz and is 21.5 inches long. He's beauty personified. All the clichés are true. It's love, y'all.

His mother was a champion. Four days of back labor, with a bladder infection complicating things nastily, culminating in a marathon session of serious pushing: four hours, and that was after a long long night of steady contractions and rapidly escalating dilation. Alas, in the end, little River's head was just too big to come out, so we had to have a C Section. -- which is no reflection, everyone said, on Heather's efforts, which all medical personnel present pronounced nothing less than heroic. I've never been more proud of my wife. She's so strong. I always knew it, but to have it so powerfully demonstrated is nonetheless breathtaking. To do so much good work, denied food and water, fueled by nothing but ice chips... well, I couldn't have done it. My role was mostly doling out ice chips and generally being supportive. That, I can do.

Anyway, Heather's dozing in our postpartum room and little River is dozing mightily (he did just as much work as she did, pretty much, after all). His little twitches and her sleeping breath are all the sight and sound I need.

I think this was coherent. That means I can write passably after being awake for 34 hours straight. That's good to know. It will surely come in handy with a newborn in the house.

Photos will follow when we all get back home, in a few days.

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