I have yet to share my birth story, so as I reflect on this day 8 weeks ago, there’s never a better time than now to prepare for you the Reader’s Digest version of how Lily Rose entered this world. I spare you the details – it’s going to feel way too short to me, but I’m sure you don’t want to read through every second of my 14 hour labor!
I was due on Saturday, May 16, but Lily didn’t want to wait that long! Her journey began on Mother’s Day – May 10, 2009. My back had hurt all day long, but I didn’t think anything of it as I had almost certainly expected her to arrive late. Additionally, Cody, our 6 year old Siberian Husky, was acting crazy all day. Our little peanut was extremely active that evening, moving all over the place and for much longer than she ever had. I awoke that night at 11:52 pm to pain, but wasn’t quite sure it was contractions. I made a mental note of the time and went back to sleep only to awake 8 minutes later to the same pain. Justin had fallen asleep on the couch downstairs, so I headed down to tell him what I thought might be happening. I allowed a few more contractions to progress before I decided that this was real. I sent Justin to bed (He’d need all the rest he could get if this was for real!) and spent the next 5 hours working through contractions by laying down, sitting and walking. At 5:00 am, I decided it was time to get things moving, so I got ready to go and called my doctor’s office. They told me to come in, so at around 6:00 am, we left for the hospital!
Upon arrival, we were checked in and placed in a delivery room. The nurse said that because my contractions were further apart when sitting/laying and closer when walking that it might be false labor. Eek! After checking, it was not false labor – I was 3 cm and 100%. I spent the next several hours working through labor by walking the halls, spending time in the jacuzzi tub, sitting on the birthing ball, and stuck in bed (They let me do 1 hour off the monitors and 20 minutes on.). I hated every second of being in bed; my contractions were much worse when sitting and I knew things would progress faster if I could just move.
As a side note, I was 99% sure I’d prefer to make it through this birth without drugs – no epidural, and nothing to “take the edge off.” In my mind, this is a natural process, and something I was meant to experience without intervention. I wanted to be free to move around as I wanted, and didn’t want drugs to slow down/speed up the process.
Somewhere around noon, things started getting bad. I spent an hour or so in serious pain before the midwife checked to see how far I had progressed. Around 1:00 pm, she let me know that if I felt like pushing, I was ready. Shortly after, I began what would be 1 hour of pushing until Lily’s arrival. Time flew, but at the same time, I didn’t think I would make it another minute.
In the end, there was cutting and lots of tearing – ouch – followed by an hour of stitching, unstitching and re-stitching (My favorite comment through the stitching process was made 4 times – “I forgot you didn’t have an epidural.” Um, yeah! Thanks!)! I made it through without drugs and had a completely natural childbirth, as planned. Justin and my mom supported me through my final hours of labor and were able to witness the miracle that happened as we welcomed our baby girl into this world. I couldn’t have done it without them – they were the perfect support team!
The moment when they handed me our little girl was one of the most amazing to date. I asked Justin choose her first name; we had her middle name chosen ahead of time. Lily Rose joined us at 2:00 pm on 5/11/09. It was an awesome experience; one that I know I’ll never forget.
Yep, it feels too short with so many details omitted, but I’m going to stop here as you get the point! I’ve got my detailed version saved, so if you really, really want to know the full story, I’d be happy to share.
Lily, the last 8 weeks have been amazing. You’ve taught me so much already, and I can’t wait to see what the future holds for all of us. I couldn’t have imagined motherhood to be quite like this; it’s way better than I ever expected and I’m loving every second of it! I love you, my little Peanut!