So, as you know, I was really apprehensive about this labor. It was a combination of knowing too much, and not being too thrilled with my last labor which, by all accounts, was not bad- just not the way I wished it could have been. Long story short: I went two weeks overdue and ended up having to be induced, which went very smoothly for that. It was very intense though, and definitely more painful than the other two. The problem with it was that I had lost faith in my body to do what it’s supposed to do, and was battling that the whole time I was pregnant this go round. I also had a lot of fears about things going wrong with my pregnancy and with the baby, which is normal, but it felt a little more heightened for me this time around, because I had so desperately wanted a girl. I was definitely having some trust issues with God too. (And that is really a whole other post.) So to combat all of this, I spent a lot of time in prayer, and reading a few well chosen verses, and of course, talking to my mom.
So with all that in mind, fast forward to Friday, July 20th, my due date. I had a routine check up with my midwife that day. When I was there I had her go ahead and “strip my membranes” (if you don’t know what that means, look it up.) I wasn’t really expecting anything to happen, and went to Wal-Mart to pick up a few things. On my way back out to my car, I had a contraction, an honest to goodness, ouch that hurts, contraction. About an hour later, I had another one. And it kind of went that way for the rest of the day. I just kind of went on with things, trying not to get too excited. Then they started to get a little closer together, but nothing to call in about yet. About nine-ish, I decided to give my folks and my sister in town a call and give them a little bit of a heads up, just in case this evolved into the full blown thing. So with that… I watched Charlie’s Angels with my SIL and hubby, the contractions kind of slowed down a bit, and I went to bed. About 1 am, I had a contraction that woke me up, and decided to start timing them. Sure enough, they started coming about ten minutes apart. I hung out in bed for a while, and then decided to walk around the house thinking I might be able to better deal with the pain that way. I was so tired, I ended up on one of our chairs, trying to sleep between the contractions. At around 5 am, I was finally convinced this was the real thing (ha ha ha) and decided to wake up Kevin. So I went and nudged him awake, and he kind of woke up with a little bit of a start, and I told him, “Babe, I’ve been in labor since 1 am, and I’m tired of doing this by myself.” So he got right up, and started helping me out excitedly. At that point my contractions started getting closer, about 5 to 7 minutes apart. They were starting to get even more intense, so Kev got our tub ready to help out with the pain that way. While I was in the tub, I started to feel a little nauseous, (a sign you may be going into transition) so I had Kev call my midwife. He told her all the stats, and she said to go ahead and go up to the hospital. I called my mom on the way to the hospital and she answered the phone right away. I broke into tears as I told her we were in labor, and asked her if she would call my two sisters. We got to the hospital just a little after six, and I knew my best friend, Melissa, who works as a c-section scrub tech, would just be getting off. We were shown to our room, and they checked me and I was at a 5 almost a 6. I was so tired I decided to just stay in the bed for a bit instead of going in the jacuzzi (which was my previous routine.) Melissa came in a little bit later and Kev and I were glad she was there and wanted her to stay, so she did. My midwife went and got some Japanese garden music, we turned the lights down in the room, and proceeded with the labor. Everything was very relaxed and comfortable. I was checked another time and at a 7, so I had them go ahead and break my water at this point. Then of course, the contractions got a little more intense, and at this point, I got on my hands and knees to labor. Melissa and Kevin were massaging my back, and holding hot pads on my low back, which really helped out. As I went into transition, my contractions actually got farther apart, which was really great, because I needed that rest in between. Somewhere in there, my sister Ariel, arrived with Hannah on the cell-phone. They started preparing the room for the baby, and I knew things were getting closer. I remember thinking the whole time that this labor seemed to be taking forever, but at the same time, worrying that my parents, who live an hour away, weren’t going to make it in time. So the time to push came, and just as I was giving my first push, my parents came rushing in the door. I had kind of forgotten how to push, and then half-way through my second push, it clicked and I brought her head right down. Third push, we started to get somewhere, and the very end of the contraction with one more heave, her head was out. The umbilical cord was wrapped around her neck twice, so we had to wait a bit for my midwife to get it unwrapped. Then we had that last easy push, and my midwife had me reach down and pull her up to me. She started crying right away, and it was definitely a high pitched girly scream, I didn’t even think to look and make sure she was a girl! I breathed a huge sigh of relief, and someone commented that the hard part was over and I said my token, “THANK GOD!!!” and every body laughed. The baby nurses came in and started trying to check her out, and one actually asked if I wanted them to take her now, or hold her for awhile. Well, duh! of course I wanted to hold her. So I had her, and she was ready to nurse and she latched right on. The nurses left us alone, and it was just me and my family, Melissa (who is family too!) and my midwife, marveling at the whole thing. I was in awe of how well the whole thing went, and how well God had taken care of me and my family. It was beyond my expectation and beyond what I had even asked Him for. To go into labor on my own, the day after I was due, to have my best friend, parents and sisters there, to have her be completely healthy and be a nursing pro right off the bat, to have the nurses not interfere with this sacred event too much; it was just awesome. And I once again, have faith that my body is able to do what it needs to on its own. Selah was born at 8:01 in the morning on July 21st, exactly two days after Kevin’s birthday and two days before mine. She’s a major answer to prayer and the desire of my heart. Her name comes from the Psalms, and is a musical term meaning “pause.” To Kevin and I, it means “pause and behold the glory of God.” And for her, and on her birthday, that is just what we will do. Thank you to all of you who had us in your prayers as well! Glory be to God! Thank you Lord for your faithfulness, for showing me just how much you love me, and for Selah.
Here’s a few pictures from the birth:
Right after she was born, and a genuine look of relief! (Never mind the double chin! Gah!)
Ready to eat, already!
Melissa and Kevin getting her footprints. (Consequently, I would have more pics of Melissa, but they are on the “not for internet” side…)
Right after the footprint taking…hence the black feet.
Look at those lips!
Proud Papa and Daddy.
My grandma, Selah and me. Selah is her 24th (might be 25th, I lost count) great-grandchild!
Curious big brothers. I love how Beau has his whole hand in his mouth… he has been doing that lately when he is embarrassed or doesn’t quite know how to respond to a situation.