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Saturday, June 7, 2014

Boy or Girl? Our Baby's Birth Story!

   I was over due. I was bigger then my skin felt it could handle. I was hot all of the time, and in pain. All you mamas who have been over due know what I am talking about. Even though we go into pregnancy knowing that the due date is the Doctor's best guess, and not always accurate, something happens mentally when you pass it. It felt a little like the "plan" for this birth already derailed before it started. 

   The day before I had her I had yet another prenatal appointment. Still.No.Dilation. I was only five days "over due" at that point so I know I shouldn't have been so upset. I have had friends go way over that, but when the midwife started making appointments for ultrasounds to make sure the placenta was still working well, and reassures you that it is just procedure at that point, you start trying all of the strange ways your neighbor, mother in law, and the lady at the check out line tell you to get labor going. 

   I won't go into all the silly things I tried that people swore by to get things moving, but at least it was something to do while I waited. That is besides trying to keep up with three other littles! The thing that helped the most was to just pray, and surrender my control to God. Just like I did while I had debilitating morning sickness. 

   I went home from the appointment discouraged, but trying to see the positive. I was going to meet my little one any day, and find out if it would be our fourth girl, or if God would change things up and give us a boy. I had three girls just as excited to be big sisters as we were to be having another baby. All good things to set my mind on.

   The next day was very relaxed. The family just hung out at home, taking things easy. I started having some light, and easy contractions. At that point it was normal for me to have them (I get strong "Braxton Hicks" contractions from about 20 weeks on, thankfully without dilation) so I really didn't think much of it. Even if it was early labor, I am usually in labor for days, so I was not alarmed at the mild pains. I didn't think, "this could be it". I went to take a bath and let things happen, hoping that within the next couple days, it would be "it".

   I was in the tub for about and hour and the contractions got close together very quickly. I casually thought it would be a good idea to start timing them. They went from ten minutes, to seven minutes apart. For some reason I was in denial that it could be the real thing. Even though I wanted it to be, I am used to things taking a long time when it comes to labor, so I figured I had a whole day ahead of laboring. No need to get excited. I hadn't even packed my hospital bag yet! 

  Then they quickly got to five minutes apart. I decided to call the midwife and see what she thought, but I could still talk during the pains. She thought that by the sound of my voice I could wait to come in, so I hung up the phone and got back in the tub. 

  All of a sudden they were three minutes apart!! All within two hours of the first contractions! Then They were taking much more of my energy to work through them. All the while my husband was in the kitchen, giving the kids dinner, unaware that the mild contractions I had felt when I went to take a bath were doing their job very quickly. 

   I realized it was time to go to the hospital. well actually, well...probably past the time to go. I came out and was having some pretty intense contractions, but trying to hide it so that I wouldn't scare the children. I put on the best smile I could muster, and the sweetest, calmest voice I could and said "honey, we need to go to the" He took my calmness as meaning we could take our time, but we ought to think about getting things together. So he was trying to get our three year old to finish her milk. It makes me laugh to think of it now, but through a grit tooth smile I replied "Lets forget the milk and get into the car...right now."

   At this point things were really ramping up, and they were coming quickly. The original plan was to have our pastor and his wife (they have children the same ages as ours) watch the three girls. Joel would drop them off fifteen minutes away, come back, get me, and my husband and I would go to the hospital. The quickest we could have gotten to the hospital at that point would have been forty five minutes. 

   I knew I was progressing fast, so I prayed "Oh Lord....PLEASE don't let me have this baby at home by myself!!" Then he spoke to my heart that I needed to go with Joel, and I knew we needed to change the plan. The hospital is fifteen minutes away, and I told Joel to call our pastor and have him meet us at the hospital to take the kids.  

   By the time we got there I could hardly talk. The contractions were on top of each other. When I got into the emergency room, they asked my name and all I could do was lean over and moan. Then my husband found a wheel chair because he has to get me upstairs to the birthing center. Poor Joel was so flustered he ran the chair into the glass sliding doors that exit the emergency room! 

   By the time we got in our room I was in so much pain I couldn't stand it. I just wanted it to end so badly. Then I remembered how long my other births were (my second labor was 25 hours and my third was 36 hours), and I was horrified at the thought of feeling this amount of pain for that amount of time. Thankfully it wouldn't be much longer!

   I got on the bed and was pushing uncontrollably with each contraction. I was in such a pain induced  daze that I don't even know how many people were in the room, but I remember everyone rushing around because I was completely dilated! I had JUST made it into the room! The midwife had just walked in the room behind us, assessed the situation and the baby's heartbeat was not doing what it should. So she looked me in the eye and calmly but firmly said, "I'm going to need you to push this baby out in one big push." 

   That was all I needed to hear! It was almost over! When the next contraction hit me, I managed to do it all in one push. Then they flopped the baby on my chest and I felt a warm, wet little body on mine. I remember everyone saying "you did it!! Look down, look at your baby". I was so tired and needed a minute to recover before I could even look down. That labor and delivery was so fast and intense, it took everything I had and then some. A friend of mine who has also has a short and intense labor put it best when she said "It feels like someone punched you in the face and then handed you a baby." I honestly felt like I got hit by a truck! After a few minutes I was more coherent, I realized that it was done and I just kept thinking...." It's over? Really? Three hours ago I was pregnant, and now I am not?". It took a little while to process that our baby was really here, in my arms and not in my tummy. I'm so thankful we didn't stick to our original plan, or by the time I did have her, I would have had the baby at home alone.

   Then Joel and I looked down and saw our beautiful gift from God. A girl!! A special, unique creation that He has given us the pleasure of raising. She weighed 7 Lbs. 8 oz. We are so very thankful for our youngest little. I am amazed at how quickly she is growing, and how even though we have only known her a short while, I can't imagine our family without her.







  1. Congratulations! Loved your story. My daughter's second labor surprised her also. Her first labor was 36+ hours. Her second labor was 4 hours.

  2. Thanks Carol! Wow your daughter's labors were completely opposite!! It is always hard work, but for me the faster the labor, the more intense it was.