I can't believe that almost three weeks ago we were taking the last belly shot at 39 weeks (at 4:30am) and getting ready to head to the hospital to have our baby!
As we drove to the hospital that morning, it was hard to not feel anxious for what the day would bring and excited at the same time that we were finally going to meet this little person who already felt like part of our family, but whom we had never met!
I also realized, of the 4 times we were pregnant (including Miss Olivia):
this was the 2nd time we had gone to the hospital together to have a baby, the first time I had packed my own bag, and would end up being the longest we waited for any of our children!
We arrived at 5am and I hardly slept the 2 nights prior as I was anxious and excited!
After getting my IV placed, antibiotics going (I was Group B Strep positive), they checked me and I was still only 1.5cm dilated!
My Dr wanted to start some pitocin, a very low dose due to my history of quick labor/delivery, and she would come break my water between 9 and 10 when she came for her morning rounds.
Many people have asked me if it is awkward to deliver in the same area that you work, and have your coworkers see you in labor.
I have to say I think the experience is much better knowing who my nurse is and having my friends and coworkers caring for me and my baby.
Plus, it was sure fun to visit with them while we were waiting ALL day long!
My friend Rachel (who also happened to be our nurse when we were in labor with Isaac) and Christina admitted us that morning, my friend Becky happened to be working the night before and stopped in to say hello...
Plus, when you know the staff, you get special treatment...
like notes of encouragement for your baby to come out...
By the time my Dr came around I was already 3.5cm and I remember thinking we could have a baby by the end of the school day...or supper.
My Dr broke my water and we increased the pitocin a little more and I was feeling the contractions and they were slightly uncomfortable, but nothing crazy or painful.
It was hard to tell if they were "effective" since I had been having some pretty decent contractions since 18 weeks. I made it all the way to 4 for my pitocin before Miss Olivia and my uterus got into a small disagreement.
I had a 6 minute long contraction and poor Olivia didn't care for it and dropped her heart rate pretty low.
It was scary to be laying there while it was happening because I knew everything they were doing was because her heart rate was too low.
I remember mentally preparing myself for a c-section, which would have been the result had the contraction not resolved or her heart rate not improved.
More fabulous co-workers rushed in to help our nurse, Kerry (who was AMAZING by the way) and tried to keep me calm as we waited for the contraction to end and Olivia to respond.
When it kept going I was given some medication to stop the contraction, which in turn stopped my contractions completely and the pitocin was turned off during this time was well.
Olivia's heart rate finally came back up, but due to that we had to wait for a few hours before doing anything again. They also placed an internal monitor in her scalp in order to get a more accurate reading...so I was restricted to being close to the bed and on monitors.
So we waited, and waited, and waited...
My friend Amy was working that day and stopped in to say hello too...
Richard's mom was home with our boys and I am so grateful for that. It was such a relief to not have to worry about them all day. They had a blast with her too and I don't think they wore her out too much ;0)
My friend Mollie (who is also a nurse in labor and delivery) brought Richard some lunch and visited for awhile too.
Richard and my mom spent the day waiting with me and my sister Nikki and Dad came up much later in the day to hang out and do more waiting...
I don't remember lots of specifics about time and how things progressed, but I do know it was so SLOW and hard to be patient. Fortunately I wasn't really even that uncomfortable for the most part during the day. For whatever reason I just wasn't dilating very quickly, yet was having contractions regularly.
Our nurse Kerry did such a great job during the day and I knew my friend Mollie was working that night so I was hoping this baby would come at shift change in order for them both to experience her birth.
Miss Olivia had something else in mind.
Mollie ended up being my nurse at 7pm and I was starting to worry this little one was holding off until the 29th of October to be born!
Eventually we ended up turning the pitocin up again and finally my contractions were becoming uncomfortable and requiring me to breathe through them. I think this was sometime between 8:30pm and 9:30pm...Richard, my mom, sister Nikki and Dad were all in the room keeping me entertained and we watched baseball while we continued to wait...
This picture is bittersweet for me.
It was taken right before things started getting "ugly"
or before I started experiencing the most horrendous pain I have ever felt and thought I was going to die.
I was able to deliver the boys all naturally and really wanted to do that again, but was fearful of the pitocin and how much worse it made the contractions.
Looking back, had I known how bad it was going to be I am not sure I would have been able to do it.
The only way I survived the last hour of labor, which proved to be the most painful I had experienced of all 4 children, was by the grace of God, and the encouragement of Richard, my mom, sister and amazing nurse Mollie! I was begging them for something, anything, to stop the pain. I am pretty sure I ridiculously continued to proclaim over and over how I couldn't do it and wanted it to be over.
The hardest part of it all was not knowing how much longer it was going to be, since everything had proven to be completely different than my 3 previous labors.
Somehow I made it through and remember not wanting to know how far dilated I was anymore as it was just too depressing to know I hadn't changed.
I do remember my Dr checking me during the hour of HELL and at some point letting Mollie know it was time to set up for the delivery.
I know at that point I told God I was sure I couldn't handle much more of this and to please help me make it to the end quickly!
The next thing I remember was feeling the intense pressure that comes right before the baby is born and feeling so completely exhausted I couldn't even open my eyes or speak.
Then I remember my Dr telling me I could push with the next contraction if I thought it would help.
She said I still had a little bit of cervix left, but could probably push through it.
So I did.
And her head started coming out before they were ready.
Then I remember hearing Mollie yelling my Dr's name and she told me to stop pushing until they were ready. Then I took a deep breath and in one giant push and
a little lots of screaming...
We finally met our sweet baby girl!
Only the funny part is, due to the craziness at the end of her coming so quick after waiting all day, no one announced if it was a boy or girl. Richard said he saw her face and since she looked so much like her big brothers he thought it was another boy.
Until at almost a minute of life, our nurse said "It's a...." and our Dr turned Olivia (whose legs had been together the whole time) and Richard just happened to be standing right there as she opened her legs and he saw it was NOT a boy!
Then he was in shock for the next few minutes as he processed this.
My dad was standing outside the door and he heard the announcement "It's a GIRL!!!!" and passed the great news along to my fabulous coworkers who were anxiously waiting to find out boy or girl and were standing in the nurses station just a few feet down from our room.
So 17 hours after we arrived at the hospital, Miss Olivia was born at 10:33pm on...
Weighing (7lbs 15.6oz) and 21 inches long...
I was in so much pain after she was born that I didn't cry until I had her in my arms after she was all wrapped up. Couldn't believe she was finally here safe and sound!
And that she really was a girl!!!!! It was one of the best secrets I have ever kept!
Loving her adorableness...
Our amazing Dr with Miss Olivia!
Richard was still digesting the fact that we had a daughter!
She had lots of dark hair
Mollie, Olivia and I
Auntie Nikki, Olivia and I
We just couldn't stop looking at her
Daddy and his little lady
Grandma Teresa (who was so amazing during the whole day and through labor...meant so much to have her there for Olivia's birth and her encouragement)
Grandpa Rod loving his new granddaughter!
Auntie Nikki sneaking in some snuggle time!
My mom headed to our house so Grandma Irene could come meet Miss Olivia too!
Our nurse Sara giving Olivia her first bath
She was super impressed...
Richard was overwhelmed with the fact that we had a girl and I started pulling out pink clothes that I had brought with making him feeling even more overwhelmed I think ;0)
After all was said and done we headed to our new room and were able to catch a few hours of sleep.
Olivia was a super eater and we were exhausted but overwhelmed with joy!
My friend Rachel made Olivia a sweet hat with It's a Girl on it!
Miss Olivia, even though I knew you were a girl, I couldn't believe it until I saw it for myself!
I have loved being the momma of 3 boys, but it sure is fun to have a daughter too!
You have stolen our hearts!
Working on Part 2 of her birth story where her big brothers got to meet her!
Hoping to have it done soon...it makes me cry every time, and it's hard to type when you are teary eyed!