Baby Max is here! He arrived June 29th at 4:10am. He weighed 7 pounds 9 ounces and measured 20.25 inches long. And he is absolutely precious and we love him so dearly!
Many people have suggested that I write out Max’s birth story. It is true that you begin to forget the labor/delivery part of being pregnant. It’s only been a few weeks and there are a few things that I’m even starting to get a little fuzzy on. I guess it’s the Lord’s way of ensuring procriation. Because if you didn’t know, labor is a little painful guys… (you know I hate to say that, because I know some people claim that it doesn’t have to be. And I believe them, really I do… But in my experience this time around, there was ummm… some pain 😉 )
So I think I should start with Wednesday evening. Danny and I ate a great dinner, went for a nice walk, and ended the night by sitting on the couch listening to a record of Bon Iver. I just remember taking in the moment and getting a little teary eyed. I told him how special he was to me and how blessed I am to have him by my side. I realized that this could be one of the last nights that we have, just the two of us.
So, on Thursday morning, Danny and I woke up as usual. We both had the morning off so it was such a sweet time. We both were in a cleaning mode, I should have known something was on the horizon… We cleaned, organized… nested, if you will, all morning long. I got out of the house around 2 to run some errands. Danny was up at the gym training, so I decided to bring him a Jimmy John’s Unwich (a sandwich wrapped in lettuce). I also decided to get myself one too. As we were just hanging out a the gym, I was nibbling on my unwich. I only ate about 1/3 of it and gave the rest to Danny. It just tasted a little funny. Around 3:30pm I felt a sharp pain in my abdomen. Because I have never had a contraction. I thought to myself, “oh geez I think this is it!”. The only thing about this particular pain, is that it didn’t subside. I left the gym, trying to time whatever it was, but it wasn’t going away. It lasted a good 15 minutes. I called my friend Kirby to see what she thought it was and of course I called my mid-wife. My mid-wife said that this pain was not a constructive part of labor. Contractions aim to get the baby down and something lasting this long was not apart of labor. So, needless to say I claimed it a gas bubble (attractive, right?). With telling you this, it turns out that it may have been the “start” of my labor. I’ll explain later.
The pain stopped after a while and Kirby came over to bring me some dinner. She said she had been thinking about me all day and was pretty certain we would see Max soon. I didn’t want to get my hopes up, so I tried not to think too much about it. So, I did what all my training in Bradley classes told me to do: I ate some good food and laid down to rest. Danny went out to eat with some friends and came home around 9… My contractions started around 9:15. Or at least that’s when I remember telling Danny to start timing them.
Now I don’t know how detailed I should go here, but I’ll just say what I remember the most. I moved from the bed to the bathroom quite a few times. The contractions were most bearable on my side or when I was on all fours, the worst was when I was in the squatting position (those were pretty awful). Between contractions I would try to sleep/rest, there was a point around midnight when I asked Danny “What’s the point in us trying to sleep, I mean the goal is to get this baby out right? Danny I need you to tell me what our goal is here!”. At that point I should have known I was progressing… I think my contractions were about 5 minutes apart and lasting for about 45 seconds to a minute each time.
Around 1 am I threw up EVERYTHING I had (throwing up, is sometimes a sign of transition). Danny texted our midwife and she said she would be there in an hour. Her assitant Andrea arrived around 1:45am and began to set up the bed (she took off our sheets, added a shower curtain to the bed and put some sterial ones on). Toni, our midwife, arrived around 2 am. Danny likes to call them our little fairies, because as soon as they came they were off to work.
Toni checked me for the first time (sorry I don’t remember the time) and I was at 9cm. She looked at me and said “Okay, honey, if you start to feel the overwhelming sense to push, you can start pushing”. I looked at her, a little in disbelief “so I can just push?”… Once she said this, I think it took me a while to wrap my head around the idea of pushing a baby out of my body (maybe I should have been meditating on this part of labor before hand… who knows). There was a big part of me that, honestly, didn’t think it could happen. I just didn’t believe it could be possible that I could get baby Max out of me by pushing really hard. I remember, vividly, thinking “Okay, how else can we get this baby out of here?”.
Meanwhile, Toni and Andrea would take my heart rate and the baby’s intermittently, just to check to make sure everything was going well. There was one part during the night, when my blood pressure got a little high so they gave me some magnesium. But I ended up throwing that up pretty quickly. Also, one things I didn’t mention earlier is that I tested positive for strep B at 38 weeks gestation. This just means that if my water broke, I would have to take oral antibiotics during labor. I was a little worried about how the antibiotics would affect Max, but my water never broke. When I started pushing Andrea and Toni asked if they could break my water to help aid in the pushing. Apparently, when I would push the water bag was preventing Max from descending. So, I said yes. Anyway, with that said, I didn’t have to take any antibiotics (and me and baby are doing just fine!)
It’s interesting, most people have told me that the pushing part is easiest, that it’s even relieving. But man oh man… that ring of fire was awful. The pushing was probably the hardest part of labor, just, because of that. As Max was beginning to come out that, I could feel every stretching pain down in the business area. That, folks, is/was the hardest part of labor for me. It lasted, I think, only 30 minutes, but it was the most gnarly 30 minutes that I’ve ever experienced. On the last push I could have sworn I blacked out a bit (but maybe I was just in the zone) that I didn’t realize Max was out! Danny says that once Max’s head was out the rest just slipped on out too! It happened so fast that Toni was loudly verbalizing to Danny, “Catch your baby, catch your baby, catch your baby!” HA! I think we were all in a little state of shock.
He came out at 4:10am. I nursed him a little and we loved on him and then once Max was calm the ladies weighed, measured, and did new born assessments on him. They let me take a shower, they stripped off the bed and put on new sheets. They went to work cleaning up. Toni stayed until around 8am. She monitored Max and me, completed some paper work and then went home. Once it was just our little family, Danny and looked at each other and laughed. And then went to sleep. Or at least we tried too.
Danny ended up throwing up around 9am. He got food poisoning from the Jimmy John’s unwhich that I let him eat the rest of.
So, there are a few things to say about that here. 1. My sweet husband was sick the day our son was born… Like throw up everything sick all day long. He was so sad about it too. All he wanted to do was help with the baby, but his sweet body was not having it. And 2. after talking with Toni about what happened with Danny, she suggested that the Jimmy John’s unwhich may have been the cause of my labor. She was saying that when your colon is irritated it can trigger labor to begin (very similar to taking caster oil to start labor). Anyway, we think it was the unwhich, which started the labor… hence the gas pain contraction thing that lasted 15 min.
I hate to leave it on that note, but I think that’s it really. I mean there is always more I could talk about, but I think that’s probably enough info… maybe even TMI.
With all that said, Max is here and we love him so much!
I think next time I’ll write about how the healing process has been. Anyway, thanks for listening!!