Little Emma is now 12 days old and it feels like she’s been a part of the family all the time! She’s adjusting beautifully and I am loving having Julian off work for so long to give us some time as a family before we rush back to our usual routine. We’ve already nicknamed this little girl, “Don’t Rush Me Emma!” because she wants to do ALL things in her time. I’m told girls have a much stronger personality from the get go…boy are we in for a ride! Ha ha!
The birth stories of both my kiddos are pretty different but at the same time similar in that they were both LONG labors. With Luke, my water was leaking but after 14 hours I couldn’t get contractions to start naturally at home so we ended up being induced at Good Samaritan Hospital with pitocin and after 36 hours of hellish contractions I was 6 cm and knew that because it had taken so long to get that far I wasn’t anywhere near transition so opted for the epidural and after 3 hours of eventually pushing the Doc on call (I had the TriHealth Nurse Midwives) used forceps to get his head underneath my pubic bone only to have his shoulders (he was posterior) give me a level 4 tear. Ouch is an understatement and I had a LONG recovery and still had stitches when I went for my 6 week check up! 48 Hours total.
So…this time around when I found out I was pregnant I was so excited to have the opportunity to try this again and have things go very differently for this labor and delivery. I was starting to lose my mind a little waiting for her to decide it was time to come and finally, 10 days after her “due date” I woke at 2am and noticed I lost my mucus plug and started to feel cramps. I went back to bed and was able to easily sleep without much notice of the cramps. Julian took off work the next morning (Thursday) and I was feeling very mild contractions about every 8-10 minutes. Thankfully Luke had already spent the night with my parents so Julian and I enjoyed a very relaxing day, went to lunch, took lots of walks and waited for the contractions to get a little more steady and stronger. Everyone told me that this labor would be much quicker since it was my second and it would start on it’s own so it would be different. I was worried we would wait too long at home and end up going so fast we would be delivering this baby on the way to the hospital! We ended up calling our Doula at 2:00am Friday morning when contractions were about every 3 minutes apart and I couldn’t sleep or get comfortable anywhere and told her we were going to the hospital. I was only 3 cm dilated and even though I asked to go home, the nurse called Dr. Froehlich and suggested I stay because her heart rate was “not responsive”, they like to see their heart rate accelerate after a contraction. Our Doula suggested I eat something which immediately helped her heart rate start accelerating and “wake her up” a bit more. We ended up having to stay and after another 5 hours of strong contractions I was absolutely exhausted and asked to be checked….I was at 5 cm. At this point I was DONE. All I could think about was how long Luke’s labor was and I wasn’t about to do all that again. Everyone, even our fabulous nurse, was trying to talk me out of getting the epidural. They were worried I had come so far and I would regret it. I remember thinking, “you’re all f*cking crazy! GIVE ME THE EPIDURAL!” and probably said about those words. I was spitting nails and pretty ticked off because I found myself in the middle of yet another long labor. The good news was this epidural was completely different than the one I had at Good Sam. I could feel every contraction, feel the baby move, etc. just not the pain associated with it. This made pushing SO much easier because I could feel everything. I didn’t push for too long and again was starting to lose my mind a little wondering if it would take as long as it did with Luke. Dr. F was amazing, did have to turn her from the posterior position and I even made him tell me “how many more contractions I had to push through” to which he said…”umm…4!” It ended up being 5 so that was a great motivation for me! Of course this was right after I announced to everyone that I was “done pushing”. (At this point I was completely delirious!) I remember pushing with a pretty pissed off grunt/scream because this kid just HAD to come out and I wanted to be done hours ago. Dr. F used coconut oil that I brought for perineal massage which made a huge difference because I didn’t tear very much at all and I remember hearing everyone make jokes about how she was going to come out with a pina colada in her hand singing “day ohh…day ohh…”! As you can imagine, I wasn’t laughing which probably added to the pissed off “get her out of me!” delirium that comes with long labors. When she finally did come out the first thing I think I said to Julian was….no more kids. Some people say you’ll forget soon enough and want another in a few years, I say when you know – YOU KNOW. I’m SO done and ready to make the appointment for Julian to get the snip tomorrow. I’ve been on the fence this entire pregnancy about possibly going for a third and now I’m SO relieved to know that we are done having kids. I’ve got my boy and girl and feel so absolutely blessed, overjoyed and thankful for what I’ve got. But, that is another post all together! It was 36 hours from start to finish.
We ended up staying at Bethesda North for 24 hours and couldn’t wait to get out….they wouldn’t leave us alone and none of us got any rest. Just when we would get Emma calmed from the last poking and prodding someone else would come in and need to “check” her for something. I will say after being at both Good Sam and B North hospitals my preference was Bethesda all the way. There was so much more that I liked about B North than Good Sam and loved how supportive they were for my natural child birth wishes.
All in all, I’m so glad we finally have our beautiful little girl and that we only had one deviation from our birth plan…the epidural, and no…I don’t regret it! I honestly think the most important part of giving birth is being educated and knowing your choices. If go into it being a victim and letting interventions happen it’s easier to come out of it feeling regret. If you make an educated choice and are a apart of the decision making process with you birth – BE PROUD! 🙂
This time around I’ve bounced back so quickly like nothing really happened, my milk came in within 24 hours and she latched on like a pro from the beginning thankfully nursing has been a lot easier this time around.
Luke has been pretty un-phased by it all and I find cars he shares with her in her little seat while she sleeps. When he hears her cry he comes running with a toy for her to try and help calm her. I had made him a Big Brother Kit that his lil sister gave him when he came to the hospital for the first time. It was a plain red bag from Hobby Lobby with iron on letters and I had rocket ship ribbon that I sewed on the top of the bag to dress it up a little. I filled it with a Big Brother shirt (she had a matching little sister shirt) and goodies from the dollar bin at Target. He LOVED it.
And we’ve got pictures framed proudly on the mantlepiece…(My time saving trick for this is having them taken at the hospital and having them send you the prints at home! This way you don’t have to get them printed somewhere and all you have to do is put it right in a frame, totally worth it!)
I managed to find this adorable keepsake book at Costco for under $20!
So I’ve already added the details for Miss Emma into her book!
I am feeling absolutely amazing after this birth and have been out and about running errands with the kids already, I can’t wait to get Luke back to his classes and we enjoyed our time at Book Bums yesterday! We also managed to stop by Jo Ann’s and get fleece fabric to make a “Thank You” blanket for Grandma and Grandpa for looking after Luke for a few days while we were having Emma. (Pics to come soon!) Luke has been asking to go back to Gym class for the past two weeks and it will be great to get into a new groove with both the kids!