Monday, March 3, 2014

Anders' Birth Pictures

I never thought I would have anyone in the hospital room besides Jonathan when I had a baby, but my sister-in-law Robin was taking pictures and everything happened so quickly that she ended up staying in for the birth! And I'm SO glad she did! I've teared up plenty of times looking at these pictures and remembering those few moments. (And luckily a sheet on my lap kept things modest so I didn't have to worry about that either :))

Mid-contraction, grinning and bearing it. (Maybe not grinning, but not yelling at people either. We'll call that a win.) I've actually decided I'm a pretty big wimp since I was in labor a whole 2 1/2 hours and thought I was going to die. Props to girls who go for hours on end.

Does everyone make a duck face when they're pushing a baby out? I wish I had a picture of my shocked face when I realized what actual pushing was and that I was not going to have this baby out in one push like Easton.

Immediately after birth when they laid him on my chest. I think I was in a bit of shock because they didn't do that with Easton so I wasn't expecting it, but I definitely didn't mind. :) Another unexpected thing: Jonathan got to cut the cord for the first time!

He screamed for a long time, which is ironic since he is the calmest baby I've ever seen. I guess he got it all out of him at birth.

Still screaming, but on the plus side he clocked in at 6 lbs 8.9 oz and beat out Easton by 3 oz to be our biggest baby yet!

Finally not screaming and meeting his brothers for the first time.

I was a little worried about how Miles would adjust to not being the baby, but he's surprisingly in love with Anders. He always tries to grab him out of my arms and hold him and will worriedly yell, "Baby Anders crying!" whenever he makes a peep.

Anders' birth was so wonderful. There were so many things I loved about it. I loved how quick it went. I loved that I got to do a VBAC. I loved being able to feel everything like I've always wanted to. I loved how nice the anesthesiologist was. I loved my doctor. And the specialist(he may be the best doctor ever). I loved having our family come visit so soon after I had him. I loved being in the same state as our family when I had a baby, which hasn't happened since Easton. I loved having Robin taking pictures that I knew I would treasure forever. I loved having my best friend and love next to me. I loved that I got to hold and feed him right away. It went so perfectly and I'm so grateful! Mostly I loved you, Anders.

Anders' Birth (the long story)

Here's the long story: Anders' birth story really starts months before. I started having braxton-hicks around 8 weeks and by 14 weeks they had switched to real contractions. Pre-term labor is weird, it's not BH, but it's also not the real, strong, I'm-having-a-baby type of contractions, it's just kind of in between, but after Miles' pregnancy, I was pretty good at telling the difference. Luckily I had an awesome doctor and perinatologist so they kept a close eye on things. I started taking it easy as soon as I knew I was pregnant, hoping it would keep me off bedrest a little longer. We also stayed with my parents so I would have some extra help and apparently it worked because things stayed fine until I hit 30 weeks! 8 weeks longer than with Miles! I went in Dec 23 and found I was dilated to a 2 and so I went in the next day and had progressed to a 3. My doctor said it's normal for women to dilate early when they have had a few kids, but not that early. So I started full-time bedrest and medicine. The treatment seemed to help for a while, and by 34 weeks I was at a 4. At that point they let me stop taking the meds since the risks of taking them were greater than just having the baby. Before that, my contractions were pretty sporadic, but after I quit taking the medicine they were every 5-8 minutes for the next two weeks, sometimes pretty intense but mostly just uncomfortable. I went in at 35 weeks and was between a 4.5 and a 5 and about 75% effaced. My doctor was sure I wasn't going to make it to the next week and I completely agreed. I was planning to go off bedrest Sunday Feb 2 when I hit 36 weeks, but since that was Miles' birthday and he had been born 4 hours after I went off bedrest, I decided to go off on Saturday, the day before, in hopes that the baby would come that day and they wouldn't have the same birthday. I made it through the week and Saturday morning I woke up early, showered, got all ready and got the boys dressed in cute outfits so they'd look nice at the hospital and then pulled all of the baby clothes out of storage and got them folded and put in drawers. And waited.... and waited.... and nothing happened. The next morning I went to church and was having contractions every 2 minutes for a while but I didn't feel like it was real yet, and it wasn't. Eventually they went back to every 5 minutes. That night I was in a lot of pain and was sure that I would be a lot more dilated at my appointment the next day. Monday morning I went in and was waiting for the doctor and thought about how crazy it would be if I hadn't dilated at all. I actually got teary-eyed thinking about how disappointed I would be just because I had been in so much pain for so long I was ready to be done. The doctor came in and sure enough, I was still a 4.5-5. Luckily I didn't cry in front of her, but as soon as I got in the car I did. It's not that I like having my babies early, but it's hard being in pain all-day-every-day for months, and more so the last few weeks, especially when I knew he would be okay if he were born at 36 weeks. But by the time I got home I was over it and had decided I would make the most of whatever time I had left and would do all the things that would be hard to do with a newborn. I planned out my week with temple trips, dates with Jonathan, all that good stuff, and went to bed feeling excited. I woke up around 6 with what felt like a pinched nerve in my hip. I told Jonathan I thought I slept on it wrong and went to lay on the couch. After a while I decided I couldn't sleep still so I took a bath to try to help it feel better. Around 7 I noticed that the pain in my hip was coming every 4 minutes and I was starting to have contractions at the same time. Having almost delivered a baby in the car before, I decided to hustle over to the hospital before things got too crazy. It had snowed the night before so we inched our way along with the rest of the morning traffic and finally got to the hospital around 8. They checked me and I was still only at a 5 but 100% effaced. About 20 minutes later I asked the nurse if she would check again and I was at a 6. She called my doctor to hurry over. Since I was doing a VBAC I had to have an epidural in case anything went wrong and they needed to do a c-section, so they called up the anesthesiologist. I've always wanted to experience a natural birth and haven't been able to with my complicated uterus and 2 c-sections, so I asked him to give me as little medicine as possible. He did so I had a little bit of relief but was still in a lot of pain. The nurse checked me again a little after 9 and I was between a 7 and an 8. My doctor walked in ten minutes later and checked me and I was complete so she broke my water and I started pushing. I'll be honest, I only had to push once with Easton and he popped out so I was really surprised after a few pushes when he wasn't out yet. It only took ten minutes, but it felt like forever! Finally he popped out and we got to meet our sweet little Anders! Our first baby that didn't have to be on oxygen! :)  I didn't know that I had the option of doing a VBAC since I'd had 2 c-sections, but the specialist said if you've had a successful delivery without a c-section then you still can. I was a little nervous, but Jonathan and I both felt like everything would be fine, and it was. I couldn't believe how much better I felt after I had Anders and didn't have pain in my stomach every time I moved. In fact, after having a baby in there it felt awesome to be able to move all over just fine! The recovery was much easier too and I've been amazed at how good I feel. And of course I'm just so grateful to have our sweet little one here at last.