October 26th. A Monday. Not Friday the 23rd night after Hollie's reception like my secret plans included (that weren't so secret by the way). I thought it would be so perfect to see Hollie and Seth run off from their reception and then a few minutes later run off to the hospital. Our kids would have cousins to stay with and then all the family in town could meet sweet baby boy on Saturday before they all left. Sounds perfect, huh?
Well, the reception ended. We were all SO tired from a long day, not to mention that Blake and I still felt stomach sick. (And to spare details, but let's just say there were some moments at the reception that were not the prettiest for both of us. Ha!) So Saturday we crashed. We all slept until 11. I went to the gym. And we tried to catch up on some little things. We took a walk with Kristin and Blaine before they went home and then went to the Pumpkin walk with Em and Kyle's family. When people asked how I felt, I said, "Too good." I even ate nearly an entire pineapple that day (which my friend had said put her into labor.)
Sunday morning was a beautiful day. We were all ready for church early so we walked the mile both ways. We got lots of ward members stopping and asking what we were doing. Trying to get this baby to come was our reply! We took naps. I had a few contractions, but nothing major. I felt super motivated Sunday night, but decided to go to bed somewhat early for us and hit the ground running monday.
And then Monday morning came. Brandon left about 9 am and as he was leaving, I said, "I'll call you if anything happens." We both chuckled.
Blake and Evelyn were playing perfectly together and I was running from room to room putting things away from the wedding, picking up piles, cleaning up after visitors, etc. It was the day before my "due date" and I was hoping that within at least a few days this baby would come.
I took out the recycle bin and as soon as I came back into the kitchen, pop! I felt my water broke. 9:40 am. I've always wanted my water to break and although it's never happened, I was almost positive that is what had happened.
I called my midwife and she said to get to the hospital within the next hour.
Brandon had only been at work 15 minutes when he got the call from me saying, "Um, I think my water broke!" He said, "Are you serious?" I said, "Yep!" I was having some contractions but feeling okay so I told him to wrap things up and come home as soon as he could.
We hadn't made definite plans for Blake and Evelyn at this point. My neighbor's kids were sick, so she couldn't take them. Brandon's mom was working and my dad was busy that morning. I called my friend Sharla in our ward and asked her if she could take them for a few hours until my dad could pick them up.
While Brandon was en route home, I curled my hair, finished packing the hospital bag, and tried to straighten things up as much as I could. Brandon dropped off the kids with Sharla and then before leaving, I asked him for a blessing.
My contractions were about 4 minutes apart at this time, but they honestly weren't too bad. I was breathing through them, but feeling pretty good.
So before we got to the hospital, we stopped at Crown Burger for lunch. I ate some of Brandon's fries, but honestly wasn't too hungry.
We got to the hospital at 11:40 am ready to welcome this baby! It was a sunny day!
Checking in took a while. I continued to breathe through contractions, but again, they weren't too bad.
I was certain I was only a 4 or so (since my labors with Blake and Evelyn took forevvver). So I asked them if I could stay in my own clothes to labor for a while because I felt much more empowered! The lady who checked us in thought I was crazy and being difficult. The nurse came in and said, "So I hear you won't change?" I assured her I was not being difficult and was sure that I still had a long ways to go. She checked me, but I was a 7!! Total surprise! So at that point I changed, thinking the baby would come soon.
I wasn't quite sure at that point if I was going to get an epidural. I was feeling pretty well and the nurse was totally cheering me on to go natural. So that was my plan. (I've always wanted to have a natural birth, but since Blake and Evelyn were so long to get here, I was too tired to keep going.) Since I was already this far, I figured it might be my best shot at going natural. So I went for it!
I walked around, had Brandon help with pressure points, and got comfy using my Hypnobirthing playlist.
At 1:30, I was an 8. 2:20, a 9. Finally, at 3:20 pm I got to a 10 and it was GO TIME! Hallelejuh because I was starting to feel A LOT of pain.
I started pushing and consequently screaming because it hurt. so. bad. You know on the movies how you see people being totally crazy and screaming so loud that everyone can hear them down the hall? That was me.
What in the world was I thinking trying to go natural? I kept saying over and over how I couldn't do it anymore and my midwife would say, "Yes you can. I can see him. He's getting close."
And then I'd push so hard and I'd hear them saying "She isn't pushing." I yelled back, "Yes I am!" The pain was so bad that pushing made it worse. I tried all sorts of positions but nothing was helping.
Meanwhile. Brandon was being totally supportive and sweet. My nails dug into his arms more than once and he kept assuring me that I could do this. And I would yell and say, "no I can't!"
In desperation, I asked, how much longer? My midwife said, "It could be 5 more pushes or 1/2 hour. You've got to push really hard." I tried so so hard.
But sweet little Oliver was just so content hanging onto heaven as long as possible.
After pushing for one hour, Oliver was still not budging. That hour in the delivery room were not my finest. And note to self, if I ever try to go natural again, please read this.
I honestly felt like I was going to die. I know I screamed all sorts of crazy things and I finally looked up at my midwife and said, "Please, is there anything we can do?" The nurse immediately told me it was too late for an epidural, but my midwife said the most blessed words--"I think we could try a spinal epidural (the kind used for C-sections.) Yes, sign me up!
Well, it took the anesthesiologist a while to get to my room and during that time, I had some very reasonable contractions and pushes. So by the time she got there, I was second guessing my decision to get an epidural. WHAT WAS I THINKING?
So she left to give another one. And as soon as she was gone, I was in tears again. That's when I got very crazy. (And for those reading this, please tell me your laughing because so I am. I can't believe what natural labor will do to people.)
I was yelling, "Go get her right now. I can't do this. Where is she? Please, go get here." And the nurse, midwife and Brandon assured me that she was coming as quick as she could. But I didn't believe them.
Finally at 4:30 she came in and the magic happened. I hated getting the epidural (how easy it is to sit still when your whole body wants to push and you have a giant needle going down your back? Not easy.) Brandon got a few more nail marks in his arms, but then I was finally feeling some relief.
Oliver was still content as ever and doing well, so they let me rest for an hour.
I was so much happier. And I don't regret getting the epidural one bit. As far as I'm concerned, I have experienced natural childbirth and I don't ever need to again! All you who go natural, props to you.
At 5:35, I started pushing. It was a weird sensation because I was so numb I couldn't even feel I was pushing. The thing I remember was hearing my midwife say, "Wow. You have a big baby." Brandon said it looked like she was wrestling him out. At 5:54 pm HE was born. He was perfectly healthy and doing well, so we got to do skin-to-skin for a while and then Brandon cut the cord. He had a sweet little cry, but immediately calmed down. We both savored those first minutes together.
Look at that total cone head! That's what taking 2.5 hours in the birth canal will do to you!
Eventually they cleaned him up just enough to weigh him, get his measurements, and take his footprints. A big baby he was! He weighed 8 lbs. 7 oz (1 1/2 more pounds than the other 2) and was 22 inches long. No wonder it was so hard to get him here. (And I'm so glad I got the epidural because my midwife informed me I probably would have torn quite a bit had I not been relaxed. Thank you epidural!)
Everyone was a lot happier once he was here!
I always love seeing Brandon gaze into our babies eyes for the first time. I'm so lucky to be married to him. Not to mention he always looks extra hot in the delivery room.
Brandon went with Oliver to the nursery while I got cleaned up. We called his parents to bring Blake and Evelyn up. I could hear them screaming down the hall, "Baby!" as they saw Oliver for the first time in the nursery.
And then they got to meet him! They were adorable and so excited to see him!
First family of 5 photo!
More hospital photos to come...