Ryker's Birth Story

6.21.2016

 
 
I love reading other people's birth stories because each one is unique and there is always such an amazing end to each one, a sweet baby that made its way into this world! Since Ryker is officially one week old (time slow down!) I've decided to share his birth story with you all finally! Be prepared though, this is a loooonggg one...

My due date with Ryker was June 5th, and I honestly thought that he would have made his appearance before then but as the days inched closer to my due date it became clear he did not plan on making his arrival anytime soon. I had an appointment 3 days after my due date had passed to see my midwife and determine if I had made any progress since my last appointment. At my appointment, my midwife listened to his heartbeat and checked my cervix, all the usual things. Unfortunately, she determined I was still not dilated at all and my cervix was only maybe 50% effaced. I was so bummed because it became apparent that I may have to be induced which can increase the risk for a C-section. I felt very defeated by my body. I set the date with my midwife for my induction to be June 15th. Since I had established an induction date or end point, I had all but given up on the idea that my body would go into labor on its own especially since my induction date was only one week from my last appointment. I decided to push all the thoughts of going into labor out of my mind and instead focus on my last week before baby. On Saturday the 11th, Michael had school that day so I decided to go to the grocery store to stock up on some non perishable items to have before the baby came. That night I spent most of the evening just relaxing and watching TV with Michael, neither of us had any clue what the following day would bring us!

I finally went to bed, much too late, around 11. Apparently I had been snoring so around 1 in the morning Michael got up and migrated to the couch. He woke me up when he got up and that was when I felt my first contraction. I didn't jump to any conclusions right away but I knew even with that very first one that it was something different than Braxton Hicks or false labor. I kept feeling them come and go pretty consistently for about a half hour so I decided to begin timing them. I downloaded an app on my phone that times the intervals between contractions and how long the contractions last. My very first few that I timed were already only 7 minutes apart, I couldn't believe it! I tried to fall back to sleep for a bit but really couldn't so I just stayed up looking at Pinterest on my phone while the contractions got closer and closer together. By about 4 in the morning I decided that this was most likely the beginning of labor so I jumped in the shower to shave and wash my hair, plus the contractions were getting more intense at this point so I thought the warm water would help. After I got out of the shower, I decided to finally wake Michael up and tell him what was going on. Once I had told him I called the number for labor & delivery at my hospital and spoke with the nurse about what I was feeling. By this point my contractions were consistently at 5 minutes apart. She told me to wait it out a little longer until they got closer, about 3 minutes apart, and try taking a bath. Michael got the bath together for me and I hopped in. Only a few minutes into the bath, my contractions jumped in pain and intensity and I began vomiting. TMI? Sorry, guys it's the truth unfortunately. I camped out on the bathroom floor for another hour or so but with each contraction coming every 2-3 minutes and continuing to vomit with each one, I told Michael to call L&D and notify them of my symptoms, the nurse instructed us to make our way in!

By the time we got everything together and we made it to the hospital it was about 8 in the morning. We checked in, they put us in a room and I changed into the gown and got into the hospital bed. Michael had already begun calling the family to let them know that I was in labor and that we would call them and let them know more information when we had the chance. My aunt & cousin (who took these lovely photos for me!) got there about 8:30 when my contractions were coming really hard and very fast. I had very strong and painful back labor which was the most excruciating part. The nurse and midwife finally checked me around 9 and I was dilated to 3 cm! The midwife was still unconvinced that I was in active labor and since Ryker was slightly sunny-side up, she didn't allow me to get the epidural yet. We needed to flip Ryker so he was facing down in order for my labor to progress more quickly and not be drawn out. In order to accomplish this, my midwife rolled up a towel and placed it under my bum so to open my pelvis and allow for Ryker to roll into birthing position. She warned me, and I quote, "your contractions will be almost unbearable". Yikes. And boy was she right... I was in so much pain, it enhanced the back labor x1000. She checked me about 45 minutes labor (which felt like an eternity) and I thankfully had progressed all the way to 6 cm!

It was epidural time, hallelujah! To you ladies out there that labor naturally without an epidural, I commend you! The anesthesiologist came in about 20 minutes later and luckily I was first on his list of patients, thanks to my awesome nurse who totally was my advocate. He came in and swiftly gave me my epidural. If you know me, you know that I am not afraid of shots and needles or anything but for some reason I was terrified of getting the epidural. However, the anesthesiologist was so calming and made me feel at ease the entire procedure, He was making jokes the entire time so I felt totally comfortable. Once the epidural was in I felt immediate relief! My nausea which was probably the worst part drifted away and the pain started to fade right along with it.

Once I had the epidural and started to feel more myself, our families began trickling in one by one to see us and give us their well wishes! We managed to practically fill up the waiting room there were so many people there! Hours began to tick by pretty quickly since we had so many visitors and before we knew it, they checked me and I was 9 cm! It all happened so quickly after that, the nurses began coming in and preparing the room for when the baby came and we let our families know and updated social media one last time that our boy was on his way!

By 3 o'clock in the afternoon, my nurse checked me and I had hit the big 10 cm! She said I was ready to begin pushing to work him down the birth canal before the midwife showed up to deliver him. So around 3:15 or so, I began pushing. To be honest, this was somehow the easiest part of labor in my opinion. Granted I did receive an epidural but they had shut it off at this point so I could begin feeling more of my contractions. I just had this wave of calm & excitement that washed over me while I was pushing. I wasn't scared or in pain, I was just ready to meet my little man. After pushing for a little while my nurse could see his head and asked me if I wanted to see it too, of course I said yes! She then wheeled in this big stand up mirror (pictured) so I could watch as he made his way into the world. It was incredible for me to see it and know that I was doing that, the female body is a work of art everyone! About 10 minutes before 4 o'clock they told me to stop pushing because his head was right there and they called for the midwife. While they got the midwife gowned and all the other nurses made there way in with all the necessary tools, I was able to touch his head just as I was crowning, it was so insane guys, honestly something I'll never forget! After a few more minutes of pushing really hard, there he was, Ryker was born at 4:02 pm on June 12th!

They put him on me right away and Michael was able to cut the cord shortly after. He was big, pink and wrinkly! The nurses all kept saying how he was such a chunky baby already and they sure were right when he weighed in at 8 pounds 7 ounces! He was also pretty long too at 20 and a half inches long. He was perfect in every way. They cleaned him up, diapered him and gave him his Vitamin K shot which he didn't even cry for, such a champ! They placed him back on my chest right after and I was able to try breastfeeding right away, to my shock he latched on right away and the rest was history! Michael actually got to go and tell our family that he was born and how he was perfectly healthy and plump! After some family time with just us and the baby, our family was able to come in to meet him. He was spoiled with all sorts of love and attention right from the very beginning!

And there you have it, now he is already one whole week old and I can't believe how fast the time is flying by!
Ryker James, we love you so much and look forward to watching you grow!

"For this child I prayed; and the Lord hath given me my petition which I asked of him."
1 Samuel 1:27

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