Miles is three weeks old today (which is incredibly hard to believe), so I thought it was about time to write out his birth story to share with you all!
Miles was due August 3rd and, for the most part, the day passed without anything out of the ordinary. I had been having prodromal labor for several weeks, so any contractions I had seemed completely ordinary. That night we went out for pizza with our friends (who are expecting their first baby in November), and then came back and watched a movie while drinking root beer floats. Everything seemed totally normal.
We went to bed about eleven, and my stomach was a little upset. I thought I may have just been over tired. I was finally able to fall asleep, but woke up again about 12:30 still feeling a little crampy in my stomach. I started to realize that the cramps (which I honestly thought were indigestion), came and went. After a while I decided to start timing them. They were consistently 3-4 minutes apart for over an hour, and getting intense enough to make me think they were actually contractions. I was still skeptical, though, that this was the real thing. After all, shouldn’t they have started farther apart? My doctor had told me to come in if I had contractions that were 5 minutes apart for over an hour, and we were already well past that.
I got up and walked around a bit, drank a glass of apple juice, and kept timing. The contractions just kept coming, except they were getting a lot closer together and getting more-and-more intense. I woke Andy up (who had been sleeping this whole time), and told him I thought it was time to go to the hospital. By this time, my contractions were only 2-3 minutes apart. We left the house about 2:30 and got to the hospital around 3:15. Once there, they checked me and I was 4-5 centimeters dilated…Baby Baker was definitely on his way!
|I forgot to take a "due date" picture...so here's 40 weeks and 1 day. :)|
This is the point that I have to laugh about, because all my pre-conceived notions totally went out the window. I fully intended to have a natural birth, and to spend my labor walking around, bouncing on the birthing ball, getting in the tub…whatever I needed. By the time I was admitted to the hospital, however, my contractions were so intense and close together that all I wanted to do was lay in the bed. No joke. So lay in the bed I did!
|Definitely didn't know he was taking this picture!|
The next few hours passed pretty quickly, as I focused on my breathing to not only help labor progress but make it through the contractions. I’m going to be honest with you…they were a lot more intense than I was expecting. I could make it through them, but each one was definitely tough. It seemed like I was constantly having Andy put counter-pressure on my back. The contractions were incredibly strong and close together.
Let me insert a note here that this was still during the time that my ob was out of town. Because it was on the weekend, I got whatever doctor was on call. Honestly, though, I didn’t care at this point…I just wanted the baby out.
At 7 am the doctor on call, Dr. Melton, came in to check on me. I had never met him, but Andy and I had prayed fervently that God would have Miles come in His timing, and that He would send the perfect doctor. We ended up liking Dr. Melton a lot. He was the perfect mix of letting me have my own way, while also seeming genuinely interested in me and my baby. He checked me, said I was 7 cm, and decided to break my water.
At this point the contractions got even more intense. I genuinely felt like I couldn’t make it through them, and I was definitely starting to get loopy. From this point on, everything seems very surreal. I remember what happened vividly, but it definitely felt like an out-of-body experience at the time. I finally decided to let the nurse put a small amount of pain medicine in my IV. It didn’t help the pain any, but it did take the edge off slightly, allowing me to relax between the contractions. Honestly, I think this really helped me stand firm in my decision to not get an epidural.
My loopiness got even worse. At one point I started singing “Nobody Knows the Trouble I’ve Seen”, in a very low voice, no less. Thankfully, Andy was the only one in the room to witness this craziness on my part, but I don’t think he’ll ever let me live that down. I had tried very hard to relax and avoid any pain, but I was definitely in a lot of it. There was just no way around it! I think my loopiness must have been my body’s way of coping.
About 8 a.m. I was in intense pain, and I could just tell it was getting time to push. It was like I could feel his little head wedged in there ready to come out. I told Andy he needed to get the nurse. She checked me and, sure enough, I was fully dilated and effaced! She went and got Dr. Melton, and they quickly got everything ready. Dr. Melton had me put my legs in those infernal stirrups (which are not things to push against…you just rest your legs on them). He thought they would help because my legs were so long, and he placed them up quite high. Honestly, I hated them. I wished I could just have something to brace against. Really, though, I would have probably hated any position at this point.
The nurse told me I could push with the next contraction. I knew I needed to, but I really didn’t want to. Part of me just wanted them to take the baby out…I didn’t think I could do it. Thanks to Dr. Melton (who kept calling me a “pioneer woman” for not getting an epidural), our nurse, and my sweet Andy, I got up the gumption and began to push. And push. And push. And push.
In the back of my mind, I knew I needed to slow down so I wouldn’t tear. It was like this animal side just took over my body, though, I don’t know what happened. I pushed like a mad woman! The doctor and nurse kept telling me I needed to breathe or point my rear down more to make it easier for the baby to come out or something. I couldn’t even hear them…I was too busy pushing. All I knew was that if I could get his head out, this pain would go away and it would all be over.
I did take a few breaks to say I couldn’t do it, but I was encouraged on. Dr. Melton told me he could see the head, and that Miles had dark hair. Dark hair! And then he told me I could reach down and feel my baby coming out. I touched my baby’s head, and it definitely didn’t feel like a head. However, I knew that I was so close to my goal…getting that head out!
A few pushes later and out came his head, and then, in one tiny push, the rest of his body. I didn’t realize this at the time, but it had literally only taken me 15 minutes to push my little boy out!
Miles Patrick Baker arrived at 8:31 a.m. and was instantly placed on my chest…a wide-eyed screaming little boy. And so very beautiful! I was expecting some shriveled, discolored little thing, but my boy didn’t seem to have anything wrong with him. He showed no signs of the tight journey he’d just made!
Before Miles was born, I always scoffed at moms who said their child was perfect. No child could be perfect, right? But as I looked at my newborn son, that was the only word I had to describe him. I couldn’t believe my eyes…Andy and I had been so very blessed. We didn’t feel like there could be a cuter, more beautiful child in all the earth. And the love we had for him! It was absolutely amazing. And breathtaking.
|Andy got to cut the cord!|
So, anyway, I could go on-and-on about the rest of the experience, but I’ll save you the monotony. Labor was definitely a lot more intense than I could ever have dreamed (but maybe that’s just because mine came so very fast). However, it was so worth it in the end. I’d do it a million times over (and again and again), just to have our sweet boy in my arms. We were so blessed to not have any complications. I did get a small episiotomy as he came out, and I tore a little bit, but nothing major. Three weeks later and I’m healing quite nicely.
Hopefully soon I’ll be able to get back into blogging regularly. These past three weeks have been absolutely incredible. Exhausting, sometimes frustrating, but always wonderfully blessed. Motherhood had taught me so much about God and life…so much that I can’t wait to share with you!
Until then, I hope all is well with you! Leave me a comment and let me know what’s new in your lives.