Claire's Birth Story

We went to my scheduled appointment on Tuesday, the 25th to check my amniotic fluid level. I was 40 weeks and 4 days pregnant and I knew an induction was pending, though the exact date was unknown. While sitting in the waiting room, my midwife popped out to see me. She asked how I was doing and told me that she was probably going to induce me the following night, Wednesday.

Wow! I couldn't believe it. I mean, the moment I've been waiting for was finally here and I was incredibly excited, anxious, and nervous at the same time. Anxious and excited to finally meet my baby girl and nervous because I REALLY did not want to be induced. With all the research I've done, it seemed that women who had to be induced experienced such hard labor that they usually ended up with an epidural. The fact that I was already going to have one medication pumping through my body made me crazy, but the idea of plugging another one into my little girl put me over the edge.

My midwife went on her way and we waited a few more minutes until the ultrasound tech came and retrieved us for our check-up. We got to the back and she got right to work. She measured the baby's legs and a couple of other things before trying to measure her head. She was so far down that she couldn't really get an accurate reading, but estimated Claire's size to be 8 pounds 6 ounces. Next, she moved onto her heart. Come to find out, Claire's little heartbeat was really really fast. It kept jumping from the 160 range up into the high 180/low 190's. She immediately excused herself and went to get my midwife. I started crying and praying that my little girl was safe. She came back shortly and measured the fluid level. It was low. Dangerously low. My midwife finished up with her patient and popped in to check things out with baby girl.

Verdict was in, I was going to be induced that afternoon. I was going to have my baby. I was finally going to meet the precious little being that I've been growing in my body for past nine plus months. I was feeling more nervous and anxious than ever. Thankfully, Claire's heart rate went back down. The tech cleaned up my belly and we headed into an exam room to check my blood pressure and cervix position. Blood pressure was slightly elevated and I was 3-4 cm. Thank God. I was only 1-2 cms on Friday so my cervix was opening nicely.

I got dressed and headed up to maternity to be induced.


can you tell i was a little nervous??
We had to wait until more nurses arrived to get the pitocin rolling. In the meantime, my dad, aunt, and father/mother-in-law arrived. At 3:35 my nurse, Christy, came in and got the pitocin hooked up to my hep-lock. This was it, no turning back. I was going into labor. Real labor. No more Braxton-hicks contractions, real contractions. It only took about 10 minutes for them to start and when they did, they were already 5-6 minutes apart. 

I labored on the ball for about 2 hours. My midwife came in at 5:30 and I was 5 cms. I decided to get into the tub because I was becoming more and more uncomfortable as each contraction passed. I was experiencing back labor and I was desperate for some relief. The tub felt incredible. The nurse put a towel across my stomach and told Matt to pour water over the towel during each contraction.

Speaking of Matt. Wow. What an awesome, amazing, incredible coach he was. He was by my side the.entire.time. He sat on the edge of the tub for about 2 hours. He would tell me jokes between contractions and poured water during them. Contractions were getting super strong at this point and I remember saying to him. 'It hurts so bad. It hurts so bad." He would look at me with the most reassuring eyes and tell me how amazing I was doing and how each one was bringing us closer to meeting our little girl. He was my rock and the reason I did such an awesome job bringing our baby girl into the world.

I got out of the tub because I had to go to the bathroom. I peed and pooped (sorry if TMI) and decided to get back on the ball. At 9:30 my midwife checked me again. This time, during a contraction. OMG it hurt like hell. Pure hell. This is where everything goes a little foggy for me... details are hard the remember.

Time stopped and I focused solely on birthing my baby. I got back in the tub. I remember getting out to get on the toilet. It felt slightly better sitting on the toilet. That's when I started to feel the urge to push. It came and went. Some contractions, the urge was there, and other times, there wasn't a single ounce of desire. They moved me to the bed and checked me again. I think I was only 8 cms. I can remember being so disappointed with my progress and everyone telling me how great I was doing. Shortly after, my water broke. At one point, I remember hearing my mother-in-law handling her rosary beads. 

They had me lay on my side and that, my friends, was an awful position to be in. I had them sit the back of my bed waaay up and I can remember pushing my fists into the bed and lifting my butt up from the bed each time I had a contraction. It was around this time that I had them turn my ipod on. It was just what I needed to focus on my body.

The urge to push was so strong so my midwife checked my and I was 10 cms BUT there was still a small lip of cervix left. I got through a few more contractions when I started to hyperventilate. I was so exhausted and I was having a hard time breathing. They had to administer a small amount of morphine to help me relax. I can remember the room getting a little quieter. The pain was still immense but I felt a bit more calm. Soon after, around 10:30 pm, I started pushing. 

For the next 2 hours I would push with every ounce of everything I had in my body. My mom, mother-in-law, Matt, and Christy {on of my AMAZING nurses} held my legs, gave me water and apple juice, and applied icy cold wash cloths to my head, neck, and chest. I was so incredibly hot. I pushed on my back, leaning over the back of the bed, while 'playing tug-of-war' with a nurse, and using handle bars. I pushed so hard and for so long that I managed to break every single blood vessel in my face.

I was pushing and I can remember a burning and screaming at the top of my lungs. At 12:32 I opened my eyes for the first time in 2 hours eyes and it was then that I was staring down at my baby. My beautiful baby girl. I was so overwhelmed that I couldn't even muster a tear. I just kept repeating 'my baby, my baby'. I looked at Matt, who was still by by side, and the amazement that I saw in his eyes was/is indescribable. 
welcome to the world Claire Marie
 letting out her first cry

the perfect size
They left her on my stomach for a while and Matt cut the cord once the it stopped pulsating. I nursed her immediately and she did amazing. They took her away so the placenta could be delivered, which was not a good time at all. The cord ended up breaking and she had to manually extract the placenta. Yes. She had to stick her hand up inside and retrieve it. It was treacherous. My midwife apologized the entire time she was doing it. Five minutes later she was stitching me up and Claire was placed back into my arms. She nursed again. I was so in love.

God blessed me so immensely that night and I couldn't be more thankful for this gift he gave us.  

I have had a beautiful recovery and Claire's already back up to her original birth weight. She is as healthy as a baby can be and she loves loves loves to eat! She wakes up so bright eyed and bushy tailed that morning has officially went from my least favorite part of the day to my favorite.

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