This article was originally published on shelbysaywhat.com
Before I went into labor I loved reading other bloggers birth stories. Our labor and delivery was quite outstanding and I’m so excited to share it with the world.
I went into early labor 24 hours before we went into the hospital. Jarrett and I tracked all of my contractions from the notes section on his iPhone. They started roughly at 5pm the day before Maisey was born. Although they weren’t intense or frequent enough for me to worry about.
The contractions became more consistent overnight from 1am to 5am.I woke up that morning and the feeling of the contractions had actually subsided significantly and I became super discouraged. I thought for sure I was going to be ready to go in for labor that morning. (If only I knew.. lol)
Maisey was born on her grandma Kim’s (Jarrett’s mom) bday, so Jarrett left that morning to go visit with his mom. I was still feeling contractions so I stayed back. While Jarrett was out visiting with his folks, the contractions picked back up again. At this point I was texting Jarrett the exact hour and minute of each contraction I was having. (Of course as soon as my husband leaves the house my contractions were happening every 5 mins or so.) The contractions weren’t lasting a full minute so I still didn’t feel any rush to go to the hospital.
My sister in-law had taught me to hum through my contractions. This literally saved my life! And if you get as far along as I did through the labor it will sound like you are trying out for tone deaf musical. The louder the hum, the better! spending most of my labor at home was very peaceful. I had my candles lit, music playing, and my kitties were near me. I would roll and bounce on my yoga ball up until we left for the hospital.
Jarrett and I decided early on that we didn’t want to take any birthing classes. There were a few reasons I didn’t want to take a birthing class:1) it’s an 8 hour class (usually held on weekends and I don’t have weekends off) so who has time for that? especially when you are pregnant and feeling awful, that’s legit the last thing I wanted to do with my time off.2) Every mom I’ve ever talked to said “biggest waste of time” and I took their word for it.3) This 3rd reason holds the most truth as to why I didn’t seek birthing advice, as I wanted a complete open mind to the experience. I wanted to trust my body and just listen to my inner voice. Women have been having babies since the beginning of time. I trusted I would know what I needed to do in that moment and that was enough for me. If I didn’t know, I knew the nurses and my midwife would guide me. Which they totally did btw.
I tried to last as long as I could at home. I liked being in the comfort of my own home vs. a hospital room. The pain eventually got to the point it was so intense it was hard for me to even stand. The “pain” I experienced was a tightening sensation in my lower back, which is actually how I experience cramps when I’m on my period. So the best way I can describe contractions is a more intense period cramp. At this point I called for Jarrett and told him it was time to head to the hospital. He already had the car all packed up with our hospital bags. luckily for us we only live 2 minutes from our hospital.
Once we arrived at the hospital I was already 6 cm dilated. វ៉ោវ! I think this took my midwife and nurses by surprise. I can remember how relieved I was when they told me I was 6 cm dilated. My greatest fear was being sent home and told I hadn’t even started labor. Everyone always tell’s you, “you’ll know when you are in labor”. I think that holds some truth, but in my case my water didn’t break, there was no blood, and my contractions only lasted 30 seconds (not the standard 1 minute they tell you to wait for) so I wasn’t crystal clear if what I was feeling were labor pains.
By the time they admitted us into our birthing suite I was very ready for the epidural. My contractions seemed to be about 1-2 minutes apart and lasting well over a minute. By the time I got the epidural I was 8 cm dilated. The one thing I had stressed in my birthing plan was to get this damn epidural! As Jarrett would say “the second [I] got an epidural I was a changed woman.” សើចឮខ្លាំង! I wish he was wrong but it was so true. I felt so relaxed and I was ready to have this baby. any worry I had going into labor completely vanished. Basically my epidural was life changing.
My midwife predicted the baby would come around midnight. I was getting pretty relaxed at this point knowing we had a few hours to kill before baby would come (it was around 8pm at this time). I can remember the nurse describing to me what it would feel like when I was ready to push. She said “lots of pressure on my butt” and it would feel like “I need to go to the bathroom”. I looked at her and said “yeah.. I’m ready to push if that’s the case.” She almost doubted my certainty. She checked to see how far dilated I was. sure enough I was about 9cm. She called in for the midwife but she was on her lunch break. The poor nurse, I think she was just praying I could hold on another 15 mins for the midwife to return.
Once my midwife came back (around 830pm) she broke my water for me and it was time to start pushing.
I had one nurse holding up my left leg and Jarrett was holding up my right. much to my surprise you hold your breath when you push (talk about a workout). At this point I wasn’t in any pain, I was just ready to have this baby. It was about 45 mins of pushing and Maisey would arrive at 9:23pm. No, the push that brought Maisey into the world wasn’t any different then all the pushes that came before. I only knew I must be close by watching Jarrett’s face. He was cheering me on the entire time and when Maisey made her debut his eyes lit up. His face when she was born is forever ingrained in my memory. He was over come with joy and so was I.BAM! There she was. little Maisey June was placed on my chest. two nurses worked to clean her up pretty quickly. She was wide awake and looked at me with her big, beautiful eyes. I was a sobbing hot mess. Originally, I had planned what my first words would be to her, but that all went out the window the second I met her. I just cried and told her over and over again how pretty she was. I didn’t mean to sound so superficial, but it was true. She was absolutely perfect. I couldn’t believe for 10 months I carried this sweet girl. Instantly our family grew and it was the strongest sensation of love I’d ever felt.
As for our families – Jarrett was coordinating with both my family and his all day long. Bless his heart. Our families arrived at the hospital around 8pm. They brought the card game Apples to Apples to kill time. shortly after 10pm our families all piled in to meet Maisey. She was greeted with so much love!!
There were a lot of memorable moments from this special day. Jarrett helped create a list with me of some of the things that were taking place while I was in labor.
Smell: Candle was Coastal MorningWeather: Cloudy with on and off sun breaks. 57 degrees. The night before labor was a huge rainstorm!What was I doing: Rolling / Bouncing on a yoga ball between contractions. APlaces you visited: Two days before labor we drove out to Bellevue and went to the mall.Food: Wendys chicken Sandwich was the last meal I had before going to the hospital. This was my biggest craving of my entire pregnancy.Music: Kacey Musgraves, golden hour AlbumTV Show: Stranger ThingsMovie: How to be single (oh the irony).What I wore into Hospital: Orange Boho Maxi Dress
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