Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Bradley's Birth Story

So how about those "gnarly braxton hicks" I wrote about here, were indeed actual contractions?!  After I put Brooke to bed, I started feeling them more and more frequently.  I decided to try to relax and chill out, knowing this could be a long ride to the finish line.  I told Joe at some point, ya you're not going to work tomorrow (on Saturday 17th) because either baby boy was going to come, or I would be laboring all day and knew I wouldn't be able to handle Brooke and my contractions.  I don't think he really believed me…

So I took a bath a little after 8.  I tried to just breathe and enjoy some quiet time, but I will tell you I did not enjoy contracting in our bathtub.  Maybe if it were a whirlpool jet tub or even bigger, I may have, but I was just not feeling it.  So I drank my pineapple juice and inhaled my lavender essential oil and got out.

I laid upstairs in our bedroom, which I find the most tranquil; Joe was playing his video games and I just tried again to relax/listen to sleep meditation on you tube, again hoping to get some rest before going into active labor.  Once he came up to bed, I went down to the couch because I wanted him to get some rest…

Well, my night sort of looked like this.  The hard part about the timer is that when you're having a contraction, it can be tricky to hit the start button---I fumbled with this stupid thing for awhile, trying to see if I had any rhyme or reason to my contractions.

At some point I took a shower, washed my hair, and told Joe I thought we should get ready and go in…it was like 2 in the morning or something and he told me to no! LOL  Since this happened with Brooke and we were sent home, he said just go lay down and see what happens.  As much pain as I was in, and and as worried that this would go on for days again like Brooke's, I obliged.  I blew dry my hair, and tried to sleep in between my contractions.  They did slow down again about 7-8 mins apart.  

What I was noticing, was that my contractions started in the back, wrapped around to my front and ended in nausea.  I always felt like I was going to throw up at the very end of it.  It sounded like the real deal to me!

I did sip on some rehydrate and had one piece of dry toast around 4 am. [still sitting on the counter when I got home from having baby boy…doh!]

By 7 am, I called my Dr. and he said I can always come in, but if I'm not dilated enough, I will be sent home.  I was still getting contractions, but since they were not consistent, I decided to try and hold out awhile longer. I went back upstairs to Joe around 7:30 and I think I slept for about a half an hour.

***NOTE TO EVERYONE---Your contractions may never be text book "5 minutes apart for one hour, one minute long"--mine weren't! I am glad I listened to my gut and got going to the hospital eventually!

By 8:30/8:45, Brooke woke up (randomly slept in that morning!) and Joe was asleep.  I tried to take care of her but I really started feeling terrible and could barely function, so I woke Joe up, kind of teary and said he needed to take care of her, or we could call his mom but I could not give her breakfast or get her dressed.

By 9:35 I called his Mom and was in so much pain, I mumbled through the conversation stating something like, we need to bring Brooke to you, and even if they send me home I just need to know if I've progressed at all because I am in SO much pain and can barely breathe through these contractions! It helped that a few friends on Instagram, as well as my mother, encouraged me to go in just to see…because you really just never know.

My sweet husband took his time, ironing his clothes, taking a shower, and finally getting our toddler dressed.  He even took a silly video, where he's commentating, Brooke is running around, and I am on the yoga ball breathing and eventually yelling up to him, "GET HER DRESSED LET'S GO NOW!"

Why the sudden panic?  I started feeling pressure in my butt.  Now, not to be TMI but when you're in early labor, your body does its thing and really empties out.  There was nothing more in me.  But I had this insane pressure in my bottom, ya know the one that will eventually give ya the urge to push?  So, when I felt that, and I told my mom…she said get to the hospital.

There was no time for me to go with Joe to drop Brooke off at my in-laws, I had him just drop me right off at the hospital!! I just had tunnel vision and breathed through the contractions in the truck, on the way to the hospital.  I looked at the clock and they were coming about every 4 minutes.  I got out of the truck, waddled into the hospital, took the green elevators up to the third floor and checked myself in.  I had a contraction while signing in, that was awesome, especially when some dude interrupted and needed a visitor pass.  HELLO, I am in LABOR people.

I finally walk down to triage, pee in a cup, get undressed and hooked up to the monitors.  There is no sweeter sound than hearing baby boy's heartbeat.  And there I laid from 10:50 until 11:15 when they finally came in and checked me.  It felt like an ETERNITY!! I'm sure it felt longer because I was alone.  Joe had taken Brooke to grab some breakfast bagels and then to his parents house.  I had several contractions while laying there, which excited me because with Brooke, whenever I went to Triage, they completely stopped…and I felt like a fool! These bad boys were still comin and still super painful.

Literally as I texted him at 11:17, "I am 5cm!! 100%!! We are having a baby" I heard him walk in and ask for me.  The look on his face was priceless, as he really thought I would be sent home.  {He didn't even wear his green sweatshirt he had picked out and had all ready to wear, the same one he wore for Brooke's birth, because he didn't think that was going to be the day.}

After the midwife checked me, she was rather shocked because, and I quote, "Your contractions didn't look like much on the monitor."  So while I'm yelling, whining, breathing, and in excruciating pain, they're out in the front of the room watching my contractions like no big deal.   Thanks ladies.

Either way, when they realized how far I was, and knew I wanted an epidural {I may have been asking for one as soon as I arrived} it was go time. A team of people rushed in, hooked my IVs up, made sure I got my antibiotic for GBS+ because I had to have that for 4 hours before I could deliver.  Once I was all situated, the nurse and Joe walked me to my room.  Gillian was my nurse and she was seriously, hands down the best person I could have gotten!! Absolutely amazing.  She told me if I needed to stop and have a contraction I could, I was like eh I'm ok…yeah well, I probably went from my 5cm to the 7 right there in the hallway because SHEEEWWEEEE that was a doozie!! Holy cow.   I wished I had some better breathing techniques because I never went through this much labor without medicine with Brooke.  I had the morphine and then my very strong epidural…so this pain was all new to me.

Finally around 12:30 or so I got my epidural.  By then I was 7cm, and it only ended up doing me some good because once I got to 9cm, I started really feeling crazy pressure and back labor.  I had heard others talk about back labor, but I had NO clue how terrible it was!  At least for an hour or two I was able to rest a bit, enjoy some lemon ice and a popsicle.  My dad and step mom came and even my sister was able to make it!!  My mother in law stopped up too, but I was in so much pain I was probably not very fun to be around when she came in! Sorry Mama D.

I think it was around 3:30 when my last dose of antibiotics was administered and shortly after that I felt like I had to push.  The Dr came in and said I was at 9.5 cm but after she broke my water (which was nothing like when my water broke with Brooke! No gush or anything) I went back to a 9 so I still had one more cm to go.  

The nurse had me lay on my left side, then right side, and try to get baby boy into the right position because he was still posterior.  That's what was causing the back labor…so I had the nurse pushing/massaging my lower back and Joe was trying to coach me through each contraction/breathing.

By almost 4:30 I was laying on my left side, Joe was right by me and I almost fell asleep.  Then all of a sudden I literally felt the baby drop into position and I screamed, the baby is coming!! I have to push!! The nurse said it's ok, and calmed me down…rang for the Dr and and checked me and said, oh yes, his head is right there…if you need to push it's ok..

My actual active labor was 12 minutes.  It felt like an hour, but 12 minutes really?!  My contractions had been right on top of each other, but when I went to push, they spaced out and it was as if my body gave me a minute and a half to just focus and rest until the next one.

In those 12 minutes I started having self-doubt, I worried I wasn't going to be able to push him out, I wanted to ask for a C-section because it hurt so darn bad…but then I re-focused and made myself think positively.  I knew I could do it, I had done it with Brooke.  I did yell out, "GET THIS BABY OUT OF ME!" at one point, and the Dr. did give me an episiotomy because I was starting to tear. Once she did that, I think I did 2 or 3 pushes and he was OUT.

at 4:46
8 lbs 14 oz
21 inches

Bradley Joseph made his debut.

I was so happy to have the skin to skin this time as it made the after birth experience a lot better.  Joe even cut the cord and baby was on me for a good half hour-45 minutes or so.

Daddy was so proud of me and so proud to hold you baby boy.

I may have made everyone cry when I played, Brad Paisley's "Anything Like Me" song when Daddy held you.

I think you even smiled for your first family photo.

So, with that, we completed our family.  I am so grateful for such an amazing team of nurses, midwives and once again an excellent Dr.  We truly had a wonderful birth experience and it's so cool to compare both Brooke and Bradley's debuts.  Each baby is so different, but most of all I am so thankful for once again such a healthy babe.  I felt so much better not having all that morphine in my system and even though the epidural wasn't strong enough from keeping me from moving my legs, I think it was better since I was able to feel more and push a lot more efficiently this time around. 

Thank you for all the love, support, prayers and positive vibes---they worked!!  

Now to raise a little boy…boy oh boy!!  


  1. YAY FOR BABY BRADLEY! So happy for you guys! xoxo

  2. Omgosh! Joe! Lol you drove yourself?! Ps beautiful birth story! ::tears::

  3. Amazing!!! I LOVED reading this. You are awesome. That photo of Bradley hanging on to your shirt!!! GAH! Beautiful.

    1. Thanks mama! I was pretty proud of myself. That photo is everything to me! :)

  4. I'm a little late to the party, but congrats on sweet baby Bradley! Our baby boy is expected to make his arrival in June. That song definitely makes me cry! I can't wait to see Josh holding our son.

    Congrats again! I hope Brooke is enjoying life as a big sister.


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