Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Emma's Birth Story

This is going to be a really long and graphic post - but I never want to forget any details. So, you've been warned.

The last week or so of pregnancy I was in so.much.pain. Dan even called my parents a few times to 'get ready' because he thought I was in labor by the way I was walking. I reassured him that I would know exactly what labor felt like.

On Monday I had the ultrasound to see if Emma was 9 pounds (haha!) to talk induction. I woke up that morning unable to walk. Talk about pregnancy waddle. My legs couldn't close - I could mosey sort of. I rearranged work meetings to do as little walking as possible and draw as little attention to myself. I texted Dan "10 minute back massage I'm in labor in 24 hours." You owe me a back massage.

After the ultrasound guessed an 8 pound baby, I went in to see my doctor. He said she's definitely not too large, but my fluid levels were low, which usually means a problem with the placenta, and he wanted to go ahead and induce me the following morning at 7am. I was already 4 cm and she was "SO" low. I called my parents and told them to head our way. 

Then things got serious. I knew we were being induced the following morning, but I just had this fear that I wouldn't make it that long. Dan had picked Olivia up from school so after we put her down for her nap, we were rushing around to get the last minute things finished.

I was exhausted and we went to bed around 9pm. At 1130pm I woke up to one contraction that was kind of painful. I woke Dan up "we should probably head to the hospital now." He jumped out of bed, hopped in the shower and was ready to go in record time. I got out of bed and the contractions got further apart and shorter. I told Dan "I don't want them to send me home for just a few hours - let's go back to bed." After laying down a few minutes, contractions picked back up and at 12 I said "maybee we should go to the hospital." Dan jumped up all ready to go and made the bed AGAIN. I got up and everything slowed down. I googled and it said if your contractions slow down when you get up and moving, its false labor. I knew the feeling, and I knew that this wasn't false - but I still didn't want to be turned away. Or be the girl who went to the hospital after only 3 contractions.

At 1230 Dan said 'get in the car, we're leaving.' He could tell I was in pain and wasn't going to screw around.

I called to let them know I was coming in. I couldn't talk during contractions, so I kept passing the phone between Dan and myself to answer her questions. Dan looked at me "should we take Randolph or Providence? What's traffic like at this time?" Hysterical. 

The nurse said nothing to eat past dinner. Played this game before, honey. I scarfed down a protein bar in the car.

We checked in around 1:30am and since I was their 7am induction, they skipped triage and sent me straight into the labor and delivery room - the same room Olivia was born in! The place was empty, though, so very different than our experience with Olivia.

As we are walking into our room Dan goes "she wants an epidural." I was all, 'slow down, buddy, I still have street clothes on.' But then told the nurse "yes, epidural is the birth plan." The nurse said that I'd have to have a bag of fluids and a blood test. She checked me and I was 7 cm, and after hearing how fast Olivia came, she did her best to hurry through everything. She kind of effed up the blood test and the IV so I was stuck a few times, but I appreciated her speed.

The anesthesiologist was just hanging out waiting for the blood work to come back from the lab. I don't know what the lab was doing, but it took forever. Eventually I said "please - epidural - I'm begggging." The nurse hurried and in just a few minutes the anesthesiologist came in. He had me sit on the edge of the bed while he sterilized my back. 

All of a sudden my water broke and I could immediately feel Emma coming out of me. I said "I'm pushing!" I couldn't stop. My body was pushing her out. (I can see why people say laying on your back is the worst for labor - that if you let gravity do the work, they come right out.) 

They paged the OB immediately to come in and my nurse said "lay back." I said "oh no, I've made it this far, give me the drugs." She said "you are sitting on her head!" I then use both arms to push myself up off the table, curled over like you are supposed to when getting and epidural and said, "put in the epidural!" The anesthesiologist was great and got it in immediately. They flipped me on my back and little miss Emma sure was on her way out. 

(I think the pain would have been more manageable if they told me I couldn't have an epidural. But since I was always so close to getting one, and the anesthesiology was waiting around - I was getting impatient).

On my back, my body was no longer pushing her out and I had to actually work to push. Also, it was pretty painful. When I'm in pain, I hold my breath. So I was running out of energy / air to push. Her head half way out in a few minutes and then she just got stuck. Her heart rate was fine, and I could feel her wiggling around, but she wouldn't go much further.

Then I hear Dan from behind my head "should this machine be on?" They didn't turn my epidural on. I don't know that I had the energy to respond but mentally I was going ape on everyone in the room. "Oh yep - got it on now" the nurse said. I hate you all.

My OB kept saying "one more push and she's out." At one point I snapped "you said only one more push!" He said "I'll stop making promises" and pulled up a chair.

After about an hour of pushing - and about 15 minutes of a working epidural - Emma came out with her little hand right at her face thanks chicka, could have made that a little easier on me at 3:35am. Exactly 4 hours after the first contraction and 2 hours after arriving at the hospital. 

Dan was told to watch a few youtube videos on catching a baby if we ever have a third. Funny.

After she was born, I had lost a bit of blood - and because of my low iron, they had to run a few tests. Dan got to hold her awhile because I was a little weak. Luckily, we learned from our last baby to pack snacks and Dan was sneaking me those shot blocks that marathon runners eat - which I swear brought me back to life. 

It was a whirlwind. And more painful than I had planned on. But Emma wanted to make sure that no one kicked her out - and she came on her own accord. I am so grateful. I was hesitant for an induction. Not the process itself, but, even though it was the doctor's recommendation, I was worried she wasn't quite ready. But she reassured me she was. 

I'm also so thankful that I wasn't at work (in the mornings, with traffic, work can be 1.5 hours away from the hospital). You guys would have seen Emma on the news as a highway baby.

When my actual OB, Thor, came to see us - he said he walked in at 7 and started getting mad at the nurses that his 7 am induction was not on the calendar - said he had JUST scheduled it the evening prior. They informed him that not only had I had the baby, but we had already been moved off of L&D. 

Once she was in my arms all the memories of the pain (from both the pregnancy and the delivery) disappeared, and I told Dan I wanted to do this a million times over. She's so perfect - and I can't believe it was her sweet little self that caused me all that pain. 

Overall - Emma arrived safely, on her own accord, and I couldn't have asked for a better outcome. 

But, next time, can we preorder the epidural?


  1. I love that she was born in the same room as big sis, how special! Wish there had been a little less drama for you though! She's absolutely darling though, so so worth it! She is just gorgeous, and Olivia looks like she's already a wonderful big sister!

  2. Every time I read a birth story I cry. EVERY. DAMN. TIME. She is so beautiful and looks so much like Olivia it's crazy. I'll have to remember those marathon runner cubes for my next pregnancy. Being in pain and hungry is the worst. I think every mom has that fear if being sent home because she's "not in labor". I remember with Mason telling the nurse "Please don't send me home." and she saud "Honey, your water broke. You aren't going anywhere."

  3. You're a super star!! So glad your parents were in town and you made it to the hospital in time. That epidural story was WILD and I was laughing at all of your sneaking food stories. I remember being SO HUNGRY after I delivered Olive. I think I ate three meals in a matter of just a few hours to catch up. Good to hear you're both doing well and that you didn't have to be induced. I've always heard it's usually best if babies come on their own - maybe better recovery, milk coming in faster, etc. Enjoy those cuddles and thinking of you as Dan heads back to work. Keep these sister pictures coming :)

  4. What a great story! I can't believe how fast she arrived! Girl, I would've went ape on everyone if I learned my epidural wasn't on!! I can't believe you managed to refrain from losing it. Emma is so sweet and I love the sister shot! So cute!

  5. So we live a solid hour and a half from our hospital so I'm a little bit sorry I read this story now!! haha That's nuts how fast she came. Thank goodness for Dan making the hospital call! I denied needing to go to the hospital with Lawter and Anthony insisted, I hope he'll have the same good judgement this time around in case I don't. ha Awesome job mama, enjoy your reward for all that hard work- sweet baby snugs!!

  6. She is so so perfect!!! Not having an epidural when you want one is no joke!! My second was so fast it didn't work and I was so thrilled when KC was an induction baby. I also took pictures of the spot in my back where it worked because I had to have 2 with KC - keeping that picture close if we ever do this again. Dan sounds like a champ! What a great guy to do life with :) And you look waaaay too gorgeous after birth!