it was friday. our family had all flown and driven hundreds of miles to be this sweet baby bean and we were anxious. they had already been here a week.
i had tried it all. castor oil, walks, bouncing on yoga balls, eating a whole pineapple, spicy foods, labor inducing cookies, and…nada.
later that day, we walked around the adorable downtown franklin, looked in the world’s most expensive baby boutique, and then decided what i needed was a massage. off we went to the mall where you know those guys that give massages in the middle of the mall on those chair things? ya. we did that at 3:30 on that friday. then we went home and group texted our small group to PRAY!!! you see, the fam was all scheduled to leave on Sunday…and that was TWO days away! and this family girl couldn’t bear the thought of baby bean being born without them.
then about 6, i sat down to eat some spaghetti. i stood up and…um, excuse me, grabbed myself because i thought…hmm, that doesn’t feel right. surely i haven’t lost the ability to “hold it”. i casually walked to the bathroom in our bedroom, and yelled in the house full of anxious-to-be-grandparents for j.
“i think my water broke?”
“THE WATER IS BROKEN!!!!!!” j shouted into the room filled with the anxious-t0-be-grandparents. they all scurried to get ready while i just sat on the toilet with the trickle of the broken water. we decided i’d wait to go in until contractions began. my dad immediately freaked out as my answer didn’t match up with his latest google search. oh gotta love him 🙂
i laid down. at 8:30 they started. they were almost immediately around 5 minutes apart. eek. this is really freaking happening. they were getting more intense so i got in the shower until the hot water ran out. my midwife told me i could come into the hospital whenever i wanted, and the absence of the hot water was my cue. we arrived at vanderbilt around 11ish, and i was in the labor tub before 12.
the tub, though, wasn’t able to be hotter than 100 degrees and that was not doing it. if i was going to have this baby naturally, i was going to need something more intense to curb the intense sensations. ah, the shower. unlimited hot water. that i could control…that was my thought and that’s where i went.
i sat on the bench in the shower, and j stood next to me. i don’t even know how long i sat there. i kept my head out of the water at first because i wanted to look pretty for pictures ::ha:: that didn’t last long. it felt even more amazing for the gush of the water to completely overcome me. j kept telling me to give into the contraction. embrace it. and ya know, it helped. if i just let it be and force my body to relax, because as you may know your body does NOT want to relax, the contraction would be easier to take on.
i prayed so much during those moments. GOD TAKE THIS PAIN AWAY! i never wanted to think of it as pain…but in that moment, i cried out. i apparently also asked for a candy bar. either way, neither happened 🙂
vandy is one of the few hospitals in the nation that uses nitrous oxide. it doesn’t take pain away, but takes off the “edge”. i wanted it. i had researched it and knew it was the only thing that you could do that wouldn’t pass to the baby.
“breathe it in, baby ” he said. i did that. and it made me feel a little tipsy. it didn’t take any pain away, but it almost forced my body to relax. it was amazing. i’m so glad i did it.
it was almost time for a shift change. meaning it was almost 7 am saturday morning. they checked me again and said i was at 9.5 cm. i told her i had the urge to push, and so push i did.
holy wwwwwhoa. i didn’t know that part would be so hard.
“umm, i think i’m pushing from the wrong part”
they assured my i wasn’t. so, on i went. i laid on my side for awhile and pushed. it was after 7 and i had been up since 6am the day before, so tired doesn’t describe it. at some point they had given me an iv of sugar water bc the baby bean wasn’t moving a ton and said it would help my energy. but it apparently was wearing off on me and i was struggling to be awake. i would drift to a semi-nap state between my urges to push.
i never thought i’d push on my back, but i was so tired i couldn’t even think of moving. they had this upside down shaped U bar that connected to my bed. i could hike my legs up and push against that. well, that certainly helped.
“ok, now deep breath. hold it for 10 seconds and push”
“ok, i’m ready. ugggggggghhhhhhhh” i did my best to push for 10 full seconds but would run out of breath almost every time. i put the nitrous aside. it was time for business. and after 2 hours of pushing, she said “ok, reach down and pull your baby”
i did, and directly on my chest he went.
i can’t even explain what i felt. the moment was here. i just stared. and gawked.
Oliver Henry, at 6 pounds 14 ounces and 20 inches was officially here.
love, as i thought i had known, doesn’t begin to define the emotions felt.
this love was so incredibly different.
i must say, i was proud of myself. i sometimes make goals i don’t keep, but between jesus, j’s belief in me, and determination…a natural birth was had.
time to snuggle the little one.