Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Jack's birth story!

So I'm just now getting around to writing out the birth story.
I've been wanting to write it for a while
but have had no time to actually sit at the computer.
Getting used to how to "live life" with a newborn is definitely harder than 
it looks (but totally worth it).

So, here we go!
(the post before this one "Hospital Story" has the story about my 
preterm labor).

After being on bed rest for 3 weeks
still having semi-regular contractions the whole time,
I started to feel a bit different.
I didn't know what it was, but the contractions just felt a little "off" but not enough to feel like I needed to go in to the hospital or anything, I had a doc appt the next morning so I was just going to mention how I felt and see what they said.

I went to bed and woke up at 3:45 a.m. to a popping feeling. 
I was so confused because it felt much stronger than baby's usual kicks.
Then, I felt a gush and had a little panic attack in my head thinking "Oh my gosh! My water just broke! I'm having this baby today and I'm not ready to go through labor."

I woke John up (it was 5 minutes before his alarm would have gone off and he would have left for work over an hour away) and told him my water broke. He was like... "um... what?" He seemed a bit tired and confused, hehe.
I told him, "I'm taking a shower, then you should take one and we should head out, I'm having this baby today."

Then it seemed to hit him and we both felt excitedly nervous.

We left the house around 4:30 after showering, gathering our things and I called my family so they could come pick up my dog.

When I got to the hospital at 5 I was 4cm and 90% effaced (preterm labor got me to 2cm 80% effaced and I stayed there at each appt while on bed rest).

I was in triage for a while getting checked out and answering questions and the contractions started to get a lot more intense. They eventually got me over to a room and settled in. I was having contractions every minute, and each one lasted about 30 seconds. 
They were shocked that they were so close together and short, instead of the usual contractions that are 3-5 minutes apart and last 45 seconds - a minute.
By the time I was settled in the room I was already 7cm and 100% effaced.
I really wanted to get into the jetted tub to help with some of the pain and was able to get in,
but only for about 15-20 minutes before I started to feel more pressure and decided to get out.
Once I was out I was about 9cm and close to ready.

I was 10cm by 8:30 am (everything moved very quickly for a first labor). The nurses were shocked it was moving so fast, but also said it was because the contractions were so constant with very little breaks.

At 8:45 my doctor came in and I was ready to start pushing.
I was so happy that my doctor was on call and was able to be there for the birth (she was there with me for a while, then had to leave for an emergency c-section and came back in time for the end of my pushing, in the meantime a hospital midwife came in and helped).
I pushed for about an hour and was having a lot of trouble and running 
out of energy 
(being on bed rest sucked because it made me a lot weaker for labor).
I felt like I was about to pass out and they told me to take a short break and 
gave me oxygen.

I started pushing again for another 30 minutes. Jack was posterior (upside down) and to my left side and they had to have me change up positions while pushing to try and get him to turn and move over.

After the hour and a half of pushing trying to get him to re-adjust, he finally started changing positions, but the doc realized that because of the angle he was coming from when I would push his head was pushing my cervix back down in front of him (blocking him from coming down).
The doctor then had to push that back while I pushed to get him around it.
At this point I was in so much pain and getting really exhausted.
I remember thinking, 
"I have nothing left, what if I literally can't push any more, what will they do?" 
I decided ahead of time that I didn't want any pain medication because of possible side effects on the baby, 
but once he decided to come early I was even more set on having him naturally.
We didn't know what problems we could be facing with him
being 4 weeks early, and I didn't want to add any additional possible problems.

At this point the doctors decided to put me on pitocin to attempt to lengthen my contractions. They were saying that the shortness of my contractions was making it harder because they would come and go before I could get the pushes in so they would go away before they could help me with the pushing.

I pushed for another 30 minutes before he finally came.
In the end the doctor ended up using a vacuum to help at the end. 
Baby was ready to come out, but after each push he would go back up.
After my second to last push the doc used the vacuum to hold him down and told me right away to push again and give it my all.
I pushed my hardest and he, finally, came into the world.

It was so surreal. I loved hearing him cry.
Because he was born so early they had to take him over to the warmer and check him out and make sure everything was ok.
They'd brought everything into the room though so I could still see and hear him.

During this time, the doc had to stitch me up (I had 3rd degree tears... nooo fun. The stitching was horrible! They gave me a low dose of morphine for the stitching, which I was fine with since the baby was out).

About 5 minutes (at the most) later, I had my little boy on my chest and it was the most incredible moment ever! 
He was perfect, he was tiny, and he was MY son... crazy!!

Even though Jack was born 4 weeks early, he was still a good 6lb 10 oz. and 19.5 inches long(he would have been huge if he was full term!!). 

I was so surprised that he was so big and filled out!

While in the hospital he passed every test with flying colors. I was SOO happy to know he didn't need any time in the NICU.

Because he was early he did, however, have trouble sucking. That reflex wasn't quite developed yet for him.
It was hard to know that he couldn't really eat much from me.
He would get a few sucks in and that was all.
I then would pump and get as much as I could and we would add that to some formula and cup feed him (we avoided using a bottle to avoid confusion as he learned how to breastfeed).

We're still working on getting him to eat well, but he's come so far! Once I was able to pump enough we didn't need to supplement with formula, we just used the pumped breast milk. 
We've gone through many different steps to get closer and closer and now he eats full meals (however I still have to use a breast shield to help) and we don't need to supplement with anything.

I'm starting to try to get him to eat without the breast shield and he's starting to catch on, which makes me so happy!

At this point Jack is 4 days old and my heart is full.
He has the most AMAZING daddy in the world, who loves him so much I can't take the cuteness sometimes.
Night's are definitely a struggle. We've been feeding every two hours and Jack has been having gas and just struggling with sleeping so I've only been getting 10-30 minutes of sleep in between each feeding/diaper change.
I'm not usually very good with little sleep, so this has been very challenging for me, but definitely worth it.
I know this stage won't last forever (though sometimes in the middle of the night it feels like forever) and I really want to enjoy it as much as I can, even with the sleepless nights (any advice for how to get through this period easier would be VERY appreciated).

I'm shocked by my extreme hormone levels (which I always knew about but never thought would be bad for me, of course). I will be fine and then suddenly crying about sometime a minute later. 
I never really knew how strong the hormones would really be at this time, 
but everyone has re-assured me that it will go away soon!

I'm really excited to start getting into a routine with my boy
and to not feel so overwhelmed with all the changes and figuring everything out.

This has been one of the most incredible times in my life.
My son is a perfect gift and I just love spending my days with him.
I wish John could be home with us all the time and wouldn't have to be back at work, (especially since it's a 1.5 hr commute so he's gone for long hours)
but I'm hoping that soon he'll be able to work from home one or two days a week (just having him around makes me feel so much better).

That's where we're at now! :)
Jack is 4 days old, and I'm so in love with him and his cute face!

1 day old

 1 day old with daddy! (I LOVE this picture)


  1. Excited for you guys!


  2. That was exactly my experience with my first, right up to the vacuum and tears and stiches and hormones! But I just remember falling absolutely in love and thinking he was the most beautiful baby every to be born ever!!! Make sure you sleep whenever baby is sleeping. Don't worry about laundry or cooking. Ask for help if you need it and seek help if the hormones don't settle in in a few weeks. So happy for you guys! He is a cutie!!

  3. Thank you! (Who is this though, lol)

  4. Congrats, Hayley!!!!!!! He is adorable!