Thursday, June 20, 2013

Nolan's Birth Story

When I first found out I was pregnant with "Flubber" I knew that I wanted to go about labor and delivery differently then I did with Everett.  (Read his birth story here.)  I wanted to go the natural route but I wasn't sure if I would be able to really handle it or not.  I looked into having a doula who could help me to manage the pain and get through the contractions.  

So without further ado, here is Nolan's birth story...

On Friday (May 17th) afternoon around 4:30 pm I noticed that I was having some tightening  in the lower part of my belly and that it was happening about every 30 minutes or so.  I thought that it was interesting but I didn't get too excited because I knew that it could be false labor.  We went to my parents house for my dad's famous fried chicken (it is so good) and the tightening started moving up my belly and getting closer together.  I wasn't sure that it was "the real thing" because I have heard that women have false labor all the time. 

We left my parent's house around 9:00 pm to head home and get Everett ready for bed.  After E was in bed, I decided that I didn't want to go to sleep just yet because I had heard that the more you walk around and move the more it encourages the contractions to keep coming.  So Tyler and I stayed up and caught up on some of our DVR'd shows.  Around midnight I had figured out that this probably really was labor and that I should get some sleep.  We got in bed and I attempted to sleep for about an hour but every ten minutes the contractions would wake me up.  The contractions were bearable so I told Tyler to stay in bed with Everett so that they could both keep sleeping.

I decided that since I had the time I might as well get ready by making sure the hospital bag was packed with all of our stuff and I even straightened my hair.  (Hey, just cause you're having a baby doesn't mean you have to look like you're having a baby!)  After that was done (around 2 am) I went out to see what I could do around the house.  The dishwasher was clean so I went ahead and emptied that and then folded a load of laundry.  I would have run the vacuum but I didn't want to wake up the boys!  After I had done just about all the chores I could think of around the house I settled down in the living room and caught up on Once Upon a Time (love that show.)  

While I was watching the tv I would periodically stand up and move around, walk laps around the house, do squats, etc. if the contractions seemed like they were slowing down.  I kept a note on my phone and typed in each time I had a contraction.  When they started getting closer together (5:30 am) I decided to call Megan, my doula, and ask her to head over. 

When Megan got to my house (6:00 am) we decided to take a couple of walks around the neighborhood to help inspire the contractions.  That definitely worked because as soon as we started walking, the contractions became much more intense.  When we got back to the house I woke Tyler up (note: I had been filling him in on what was going on throughout the evening/morning) and he made us breakfast.  

Megan had been timing my contractions and said they were about five to six minutes apart and were lasting about one minute each (7:45 am).  I decided I should call my obstetrician's office and see what she wanted me to do.  Since my doctor was on call but not in the office she directed me to go to the hospital and be evaluated at Labor and Delivery (L&D) to make sure I really was in labor. So I called my parents and asked them to come over to watch Everett so Tyler, Megan, and I could head to the hospital. 
My last belly photo (in between contractions)
When my parents got there (8:45 am), the contractions were starting to be much more painful and intense.  After we loaded up the hospital bag and said goodbye to Everett (so sad) we headed out to the hospital (9:00 am).  On the way to the hospital I had three back to back contractions that made me want to throw my birth plan out the window.  After we got there and were on the way into L&D I had to stop in the lobby in order to work through a contraction (you should have seen the faces of the people waiting there!)  Once we got back to L&D they put me in a triage room so that they could check to see if I was "actually in labor."  

I started having a contraction so I got into the bed and immediately my water broke (9:45 am).  I mean it wasn't a little leak or trickle... it was full blown, movie style, water breaking!  That is definitely a weird feeling and is almost hard to describe.  The best way I can think to explain it is rather than jumping into the pool, the pool was jumping out of me! (If that was too much information for you, then you might want to stop reading!) My water breaking was like a rush of positive energy! I felt like it renewed my urge for a natural birth and renewed my mental strength.    

So after all of that happened they moved me to a "real" room and started all the paperwork.  My nurse, also named Laura, came in and was super sweet.  She said that she had read over my birth plan and was really excited to be assisting with a natural birth.  We started the five hundred questions that you have to go over and in the process she checked me to see how far dilated I was (10:15 am).  She said I was technically 6 cm but that she could stretch me to 8 cm! WHAT?! That is crazy talk! I was so excited because that was about 3 cm further then I thought I was going to be! That's when things started to get expedited. 
I tested GBS positive so I had to receive antibiotics (Penicillin) through the IV.  Nurse Laura got that started, then continued on with the remaining questions and I had Tyler call Tiphany to come to the hospital. A few minutes later (10:30 am), the pressure I was feeling started to move southward so she checked me again and I was 9 cm! What the what?! I was so excited and really could not believe that my labor was progressing that quickly.  I don't think any of us really expected it!   

The contractions continued to get stronger and stronger and closer and closer.  I tried to work through each contraction as they came and I visualized the baby moving further downward. Tyler, Megan, Tiphany, and the nurses were all excellent at helping me through the contractions.  I am so thankful that I had such great support!  I felt like I had things pretty well controlled until I started going through transition.  During transition I had the "shakes" which were really annoying especially since I really had to pee but couldn't get out of bed to go since I was still hooked up to the antibiotics.  (You can go ahead and guess what happened when I started to push...)
Tyler and my doula Megan. (Tiphany was taking pictures!)
I told Nurse Laura that I had the urge to push and she had my doctor come in and check me (11:30 am).  My doctor said that I was fully dilated but that I was not fully effaced yet but wanted me to do a test push since I was adamant about wanting to push.  After the set of "test" pushes, she said that it would be good if I could wait another thirty minutes or so to start pushing. (You should have seen my face when she said thirty minutes.) About fifteen minutes later I told Nurse Laura that I was really ready to push so she called my doctor back in the room.  They then started transitioning the room from a "labor" room to a "delivery" room.  The lights got brighter, the surgical trays were pulled out, etc. and my doctor was suited up to deliver baby "Flubber."  I started pushing and was making some really good progress.  I pushed for four contractions (three pushes for each contraction) and after the fourth one I was exhausted.  

As I sat back after the fourth contraction I could hear the baby's heartbeat drastically drop.  It went from 170 beats per minute down to about 50 beats per minute.  The doctor and nurses were very calm but I could tell that they were a little bit worried.  They laid me back, had me put on an oxygen mask, and told me that I really really needed to try and push as hard as I could so that I could get him out during the next contraction.  When they laid me back, I literally felt like I was going to pass out.  I was so exhausted and did not think that I was going to be able to push any longer.  

Just before the last contraction came, I gave myself a little pep talk and mustered up as much energy as I could for that last set of pushes.  After the first push I could feel him crowning, after the second push his head was out (and I am pretty sure I screamed "JUST PULL HIM OUT"), and after the third and final push the rest of him was out. I pushed so hard that I broke every blood vessel in my face and one in my eye! The nurse immediately put Nolan on my chest and I was so relieved that he was finally here.  Tyler isn't into the whole blood and hospital thing so while he was laying on my chest I got to cut the cord!  It was a pretty cool experience! 
That's the face of pain and relief all mixed into one...
He was born on Saturday May 18th, 2013 at 12:14pm weighing in at 7 lbs and 5 oz and was 18.5 inches long. 

Overall, I am so happy with the way that his birth turned out! I know that sounds weird, to be happy about going through pain, but it was so worth it! I wish I knew what I know now when I had Everett because I am sure that things would have gone much smoother. The recovery time with Nolan was much faster, I was able to get out of bed sooner, and I didn't have to be as medicated afterward with a natural birth.  All in all, IF I were to ever do it again- I would definitely do another natural birth (or maybe even a home birth!)   


  1. Congrats, Laura! He really is beautiful. I'm so glad you got to have this experience.

  2. You are one brave lady!! I have the smallest pain tolerance I know I would have passed out! But good for you :)Congratulations on another miracle!

  3. What a great birth story! Your little man is so precious, congratulations! I love your blog :)

  4. What a great birth story! Your little man is so precious, congratulations! I love your blog :)