In honor of a friend welcoming her baby boy into the world last night and feeling incredibly nostalgic because my husband and I are done procreating I’m going to share my birthing stories. Baby one and baby two were incredibly different experiences, both were beautiful, profound, and life changing.
When I was pregnant with Hudson we lived in Kansas and he was born at the end of July. To say that I was miserably hot in the humidity is an understatement. I was an extremely enormous (gained 70 pounds) and happy pregnant woman. I was also so swollen my husband tells people I looked like the michelin man (you know that fat marshmallow that sells you tires). My water broke at 38 weeks when my husband was rubbing my ankles- he calls it the hippie spot, look it up I swear by this I truly believe this is what ruptured my waters. Anyways, I went to dinner right after he was rubbing my ankles. As I got home and was getting my enormous body of the car I peed my pants, well it turns out my water broke but I was convinced I just peed my pants. Well I am screaming at my husband while I am stripping my clothes off to get in the shower that I peed in the car and he needed to clean it. He comes into the bathroom after looking at the car with the color drained from his face saying that he was pretty sure my water broke. I was in complete shock and denial. I wasn’t going to the hospital for peeing my pants! I wasn’t having a single contract there was no way my water broke, oh how wrong I was… This whole thing started at 7pm by 10pm my husband and best friend (via text) had convinced me that I needed to go to the hospital. This entire time I was still leaking fluid… We arrive at the hospital and I am so mad at my husband that he’s making me go that I don’t even let him bring our hospital bag inside. The maternity nurse meets us down stairs and I keep telling her I just peed my pants and she just keeps saying well lets just check. I get upstairs and they make me change into a hospital gown (despite the fact I keep reassuring her I just peed myself) and she does the litmus test. She looks at me and says well that is amniotic fluid. I can’t even imagine the face I made after that but I am sure it was shock and disbelief. I look at the nurse and say verbatim, “great so I just come back when I start having contractions right?”. She laughs and says, “no you aren’t leaving without having this baby”. I look my at my husband and say, “well you better call my mom”.
At this point they start me on pitocin and start trying to progress my labor. So here I am bouncing on the yoga ball continually leaking fluid, walking around still leaking fluid, not feeling a single contraction in my giant underwear and enormous pad still leaking fluid. Childbirth is the least attractive situation ever. They keep increasing my pitocin and I don’t progress at all or feel my contractions even though the monitor said I was having them. I don’t get the epidural because I wasn’t even going to let it wear off before the painful labor started. I finally fall asleep around 2 am and wake up for my hourly checks. Around 7:30am after shift change a super experienced nurse comes in to check my dilations and progression and looks at me and says, “well this baby is breach”. My husband looks at my totally panicked and asks what that means. I tell him in a super annoyed sarcastic voice that it means I’m having a c-section. So they wheel me into the OR give me a spinal and lay me down completely immobile, nude, and freezing on the operating table. They bring in my husband and the fun began. Let me tell you, having a c-section may seem like the easy way to have a baby. It fucking is not. You can feel every tug, pull, and push, all while missing seeing the birth of your baby. Hudson was incredibly far up by my ribs. So the doctor and midwife were pushing hard on my ribs while pulling the poor guy out. Hudson was born butt first screaming for me. The first second I saw him was one of the greatest moments of my life. He was perfect. And then I immediately felt like throwing and passing out from the anesthesia. I willed myself to stay awake to hold him and didn’t let him go once they gave him back to me until my first uterine massage (I will write an entire post about this because it is the worst pain of having a baby). Will Hudson I was so focused on “the golden hour” and getting that bonding time, I was also adamant that I would breast feed and he would do it. Lets all laugh together. The golden hour is a joke. Your baby will bond with you no matter what. Seriously. Hudson and I both would have been better off if I didn’t have all these expectations after he was born. Seriously. The three days we were in the hospital I watched him breath and didn’t sleep or relax at all. He would happily sleep and I would just stare at him convinced I would miss some moment or bonding time.
Baby number two was completely different. With Knox I gained 25 pounds and didn’t even look pregnant from the back. I was all belly and super bitchy. I hated everyone but my son. I was snappy and mean and didn’t sleep. Because Hudson was a c-section we opted for a second instead of a VBAC. I didn’t want to have another surprise c-section if the VBAC didn’t go well. So we picked the day and knew what we were walking into. I didn’t eat (Knox and I were both starving) went in and had a nice serene c-section. I knew I didn’t want morphine and told them how sick I was from my first c-section so they gave me a ton of anti nausea medication. When Knox was born and they handed her to me she instantly started rooting and would pout and cry every time they took her away from me. I happily let the nurses and my husband hold her while they finished sewing me up, I even took a little nap while they were doing it instead of clinging to her like I did with Hudson. She latched as soon as we were reunited. When we were in the hospital and she would sleep we would sleep instead of watching her. Everything was so smooth and exactly how I expected having a baby would go.
Having a baby is unique to every person. All I suggest is don’t have too many expectations going into it because you never know how it will turn out. For those of you that didn’t know this is apparently how swollen I was with my first: