For me, one of the biggest stressors, when I was about to become a first-time mom, was thinking about how the whole birthing experience would go down.
There came a turning point in my pregnancy that I realize "OMG, this baby has to come out of me". That was followed by a bit of fear and anxiety thinking about what this process will look like and thoughts about how much it is going to hurt!
I then started to think— Will I be at work when my water breaks? Will it happen on its own or will I need to be induced? How will I know when contractions have started? What do contractions feel like? Will I end up needing a C-Section?
I tried to do as much reading as possible to feel “prepared”, but looking back, I did not really know what I was in for.
I hope that by sharing my story, if you have kids, you can learn to embrace your birth story because it is uniquely yours or if you are pregnant or planning on having kids, you can prepare for the big day and feel confident and at ease with whatever happens because you will do amazing!
Here we go:
It was thanksgiving day 2016—our little girl’s due date— I began to have some contractions. Were these Braxton Hicks? I wasn’t sure. I was bouncing on the ball in our living trying to get things going because if you have been pregnant you know how long that last month is and how all you want is just meet your baby (and feel like yourself again)!
I had a terrible cough (of course) and I mentioned to my family that every time I coughed, I peed a little and thought it was funny….Spencer said “maybe that is your water breaking and you are in labor, let’s go to the hospital” I refused and said, “naaa, let’s go on a walk”, because I wanted to labor at home as much as I could and did not want to be turned away at the hospital.
well… That was the last walk we took as a family without Marlie!
We arrived at the hospital around 8:30PM and after a few tests they concluded that in fact my water was broken and I was 7 cm’s dilated. I could not believe it—my water didn’t break the way I imagined it (gushing to the floor) instead I had a slow leak (which I think was due to her giant head and how low she was haha).
The contractions, for whatever reason, greatly slowed by midnight. My body got stuck at 8 cm’s dilated and we waited for a few hours but still no progress. They ended up giving me pitocin to speed things up because her heart rate was dropping. OMG was that horrible. I was in such extreme pain from the medicine. I tried to fend off the epidural for as long as possible because my goal had been a natural brith. I was trembling, convulsing, and in so much pain. I ordered an epidural immediately but was so disappointed that it had to come to this—this wasn’t the “plan”.
I got over that really quick because the medicine kicked in and I felt so much better. I used the pump they gave me to give myself the medicine and was actually thankful because I could still feel some contractions and still felt my legs so that helped with me being able to know when to push and that I was making progress. I just wanted to give a shout out to our nurse who was one of the most loving and encouraging people!
I finally hit 10 cm and was allowed to begin to push. 40 minutes later, at 3:52am, our world was forever changed. There she was, all 8 lbs 5oz of her in my arms. There is no greater feeling! I was proud because I didn’t poop myself haha and I only needed one suture!
Birth plan aside, all I cared about in that moment was that I had a healthy baby girl in my arms.
My Take Aways:
Your birth plan can and will change
Take a birthing class
Read about hypnobirthing
Make a good playlist
walk around, use the ball, don’t just lay down.
Eat 4-6 dates a day in the 3rd trimester. (Helps soften the cervix)
**All of this helped be to reach my goal of having a natural drug-free birth the second time around when having Jax!!**
I will share my birth story with Jax later!!
November 25, 2016 — The day our life changed forever — we love you Marlie!