I love having my babies’ birth stories documented. And I am one of the weird ones who enjoys reading them…

I have officially had every birth experience there is, I guess. My first was a C-section, my second birth was a VBAC at home, and Emery was born in a hospital with an epidural. There are pros and cons to each, of course, and when people ask why the home birth, it was mostly to avoid having another C-section. Some women don’t mind them and say “let’s do that again!” but I really didn’t love it, and planned a VBAC before I ever went into surgery. After the home birth, which was great for me, but scared the life out of my husband, we decide a middle road hospital birth would be good for this one. 😉

My home birth showed me what my body does in labor. I was super sick, vomitting a lot at the beginning, I couldn’t eat or drink anything, and by the time it came to push, I was so devoid of energy that it was pretty miserable. I remember the pushing being a relief from the waves of pain though. So I knew that if I was going to do this again, a hospital would be a good medium so I could have an IV, and get some meds for the nausea and have energy and hopefully be present for the pushing. I remember the contractions being painful, but because I knew I was staying home, I got through each one thinking, “just get through this one, just get through the next 5 minutes…etc.” Every hour came and went and though it felt long, it felt doable for most of it.

This time, when labor hit, I recognized the strong labor pain immediately, and it was fierce. I had been in pain for months, icing my back every day, and I was sore everywhere. So when the contractions hit and the nausea set in, I told my husband I was pretty sure I was going to go with meds this time. I really hadn’t decided, nor did I have strong opinions about it one way or the other, until about 11:45 on the night of my due date.

Sunday Aug 6, 2017

10:30 PM

The contractions hit a few hours before, but the were not consistent until now. About 5 minutes apart and good deep painful ones. I tried taking a shower and a bath to speed things up. Husband timed and tracked them on his phone, and we watched funny TV to try and distract us through it…

Monday Aug 7, 2017

2:00 AM

After many episodes of sitcoms and trying to dance and laugh through contractions, we were 2.5-3.5 minutes apart and knew we should call a grandma to get the kids settled. She arrived closer to 3 and we made it to the hospital about 4:00AM.

4-8:00 AM

When we arrived at triage, my midwife was there to meet us and told me I was at a 3, and 90% effaced. I was already in a gown, had a sitter for my kids, and knew I was in labor, but she gave me a look that said, “yeah, I’m not sure you’re ready kid…” So before she could say anything, I told her, “I’m staying here! So what can we do?” Take a walk, she said. So we did. from 5-6, we walked in circles around the L&D ward and stopped every 2 minutes for contractions. By 6am, I was so nauseas and I came back to triage and vomited. Great, this was beginning to feel all too familiar. We checked back in with the nurse and midwife and she said I hadn’t progressed. I told her I wanted an IV and something for the nausea so I can hang out until I got to a 4 {which is when they said they’d admit me and give me an epidural.}

My nurse was cute and said she knew I was in labor too and wanted me to get a room, so she hooked me up with an IV, some Zofran for the nausea and some morphine to relax me through the pain so I wouldn’t tense up. Finally, closer to 8am, she checked and looked a little like things were moving slowly. I asked her why we couldn’t just lie and say I was at a 4 so we could get this going! “Well, you are a 4 in-between contractions…” Good enough for me. And she said the same and hurried off to call my midwife to tell her. 😉

9:30 AM

We got into a room and sat through a handful of contractions while they set everything up and got the epidural approved…etc. I was near tears trying to breathe through these. The pain my back was straight up insane. My water broke as I walked into the bathroom. It wasn’t much, but I was happy for more progress! By 10:30, the doctor came in to give me an epidural finally. Once that set in, I was coasting. I have never slept so great in almost a year! My body relaxed, and though things moved slowly all day, I was so calm and comfortable. 12 hours of hard contractions was plenty. Especially when I knew it COULD last 2 days like my last. She checked me regularly and turned me over every hour so I was on a different side, with a peanut ball between my knees. She came to check a few hours later and I was at about a 5 or 6, so she stayed away and let us sleep for a long time. It was heaven. I kept asking if there was a way to check into the hospital like this sometime in the future. It felt like a spa day. Another perk of the hospital birth.

6:00 PM

My new midwife {who’d been around since 12pm} came to check on me and said I was at an 8-9, but still not quite there. She said initially she was worried cause they weren’t seeing many contractions tracking, but then saw the progress and said, “just kidding! this is going to happen today after all!” At about 7, she checked and saw I was at a 9.5, but there was a membrane in the way of her head. It was the last of my water bag, and it was likely what slowed the process. She got in there and removed that, and was back at 8pm to say let’s do this!

7:50 PM

Just before 8, I started to feel some pressure to push. My nurse had told me to push my button for more meds if I wanted so I don’t feel much. I did once or twice, but as we got closer, I wanted to be able to feel the pressure and stay somewhat connected. I let the epidural wear off just enough, because when she came back at 8, I told her I felt ready to push and she said, “yep, let’s go!” I was able to feel the head and be in control, and the midwife helped to push back the skin and help gently ease her out. I had a 2nd degree tear, instead of the 3rd degree shattering that I had before.

8:10 PM

Emery was born. Her little head popped out and I hurried the rest of her out because I was so eager to hold her! She’s the first of my 3 to come into the world so messy, and yet she was still so calm and sweet. She laid on my chest and I was instantly relieved to not be pregnant and to have her here. We pushed 20 minutes, and it was the perfect amount of pain medication to be present, without having to go through the day full of contractions and nausea that I had before. Definitely my favorite of the three births.

8:15 PM

Just like in YouTube videos I had seen before, that sweet baby who was staring right at me, wiggled herself around, lifted up her own head, and found my breast all on her own and latched on. One of the nurses watched and said she was sad she didn’t film it! She nursed great, from the beginning, and had the sweetest softest cry that sounds more like a little whimper than a high pitched screaming cry.

Family came the next night to meet her and it was perfect. Everyone loved holding the little snuggle bug and talking to her. She loves to be held, and when she’s awake, she is so wide-eyed and very alert.

Reese is obsessed with her and wants to hold her and kiss her and talk to her. The baby flashed her dimples at her, and Reese looked up and asked, “Do you think she’s having good dreams, mama?” I died.

Boss was excited to see her, but more interested in all of the cool gadgets and buttons in the room.

A quick shout out to Mercy Gilbert Medical Center: We loved this hospital and loved our nurses! Every sweet nurse we met was so cute and helpful, and they love babies and caring for women. It shows. My night nurse was up with me through some super bizarre blood clotting I had after, and we bonded. I really had a hard time leaving 2 days later.

We are so in love.