Let’s start at the beginning sweet girl. Everything about your pregnancy has been different from the start. I promise I knew I was pregnant with you within days of conception when I got a horrible headache and started throwing up but it took so long to test positive that I convinced myself it wasn’t true. I was so sick for the first half of your pregnancy that it made taking care of your sister pretty difficult and the second half I started having pain from a separated pubic bone that made it difficult to walk at times. Then I started having contractions and trouble with a racing pulse. So for most of your pregnancy I couldn’t do much but sit around let you cook!
I had so many contractions from about 28 weeks on that I had to take a supplement (that smelled and tasted horrible and is made from cow uterus!) to slow them down. Then out of no where, once we were in the safe time to deliver you, they stopped! I felt so confused and went a few days with no contractions at all. It started to feel like you would never come. Then last Friday they started again and immediately I knew they were different. They were coming regularly and getting stronger all afternoon but fizzled at bed time. Saturday I woke up to more of the same and it continued all. day. long. but again, I was able to go to bed and sleep through them. By Sunday morning I was starting to get exhausted from them so my midwife suggested taking a dose of castor oil to see if that would push them over into full labor. By afternoon they were still coming regularly and had suddenly got much stronger. I threw up a bunch and we made plans to maybe head into the birth center soon so I hopped in the shower. And that was it. They stopped again. This continued most of the time until you finally made your appearance!
Tuesday evening my contractions were regular and 10 minutes apart but then I had a half hour break with nothing and almost didn’t send big sister with grandma and grandpa for the night because I thought it would be another night of nothing. They decided to take her anyways and it was a good thing! I woke up around 2 am and decided to start timing contractions again. They were starting to feel much stronger but were so sporadic. I worked hard all night at relaxing through them. I remembered from my labor with Emmy that fighting them only made them worse so I laid there for hours just letting them wash over me. With Emmy I envisioned I was swimming in warm deep water when they got really bad but with you, that only sometimes helped me relax. Instead I kept imagining I was swimming in paint and all the colors swirling around me. It was totally strange but absolutely worked so I went with it. Around 4:30am I woke daddy up and told him that I was getting pretty hungry but was afraid if I didn’t eat now that I might get to the point where I was too focused to do it so I sent him for a breakfast sandwich. At 6:30am he came in and asked if he should go to work or not because he knew my contractions were still 8-10 minutes apart. I almost sent him but right at that moment I had an extra strong contraction and told him to just stay home for now.
After laboring all night my contractions were just not getting any closer. Occasionally there would be some five minutes apart but usually they were still closer to ten and sometimes I’d miss one completely. They were getting stronger though and I had one that made me think sometime I could almost feel ready to push. Around 8am I decided to call the birth center. I got our midwife Lois and told her what was going on and she had me call Angel. I told Angel that my contractions just weren’t getting closer and she said that sometimes they never do but because they were getting so strong I should probably come in and at least get checked. We said we’d be there around 9:15am. On the way there I started to think that we might get sent home. I went 15 minutes without a contraction which made the ride down much more bearable. Lois ended up being the one to meet us there and checked me right away because I had several contractions walking into the building. She then told us that we would be having a baby that day because I was already 6, almost 7cm!
We got settled into a room and Kendra got there to take pictures. Contractions were still all over the place. Because it was cool and rainy outside the heat was on in the center and I was desperate for some fresh air so I hung out in the backyard for 15 minutes while Jason filled out paper work. When I came inside I decided to get in the tub. I still hadn’t decided for sure whether I was going to have you in the tub and wanted to see how it felt. After about an hour Lois had me get out so we could switch out the water and she could check me again. I hadn’t progressed more but you were much lower and Lois told me to push just a little bit to see if having you push again my cervix would dilate me further. Suddenly my water burst and you were full engaged!
It was decision time and I asked to get back in the tub. I was only in there for a few minutes before I felt ready to start pushing but I was suddenly filled with dread. When your sister Emmy was born I didn’t know what to expect and wasn’t afraid to start pushing but then it took 3 hours to get her to come out. There was part of me that was suddenly terrified this would happen again but I knew that fear is what makes pain escalate and told myself to not fight it. I decided to just let it happen. I wasn’t going to push until it felt right. And then it happened. One or two good pushes and your head was out and as painful as it was, it didn’t feel like I was even trying. I remember hearing Kendra be surprised to see your head and both midwives and daddy saying good job over and over. One more and you were here and you slipped out covered in vernix. I was so excited to see you so white and creamy and here! Everyone was talking about how easy I had made it look but all I could think about was how surprised I was to be holding you already.
At first I thought that you looked exactly like your big sister. You had the same crease at the top of your nose. But we quickly realized how much rounder you looked. You had chubby cheeks, a double chin and the most adorable pouty bottom lip ever. We waited for my placenta to come so that we could make sure you got every ounce of cord blood possible and to see you next to the wonderful organ that helped grow you for the past nine months. We talked about how even though our midwife Lois has helped mamas deliver over 3,300 babies, you were only maybe the third she has helped out in the water! Then we headed into bed to snuggle.
We got your measurements and everyone was so surprised that you were 8lbs 11oz and 21.5″ because you were 4 days early and just didn’t feel that big. Everything checked out great as the midwives monitored us for the next hour and you latched on to nurse almost immediately. You knew exactly what you wanted and it was food! After a couple of hours we took a bath together and got dressed and ready to head home.
Once we got home and settled it was time for big sister Emerson to come meet you. She walked in and saw your car seat right away and then saw daddy holding you. She pointed and said baby Eowyn but didn’t want to get very close to you. She said “two babies” because she thought there was still a baby in mommy’s tummy and now you too. Eventually she let us hold you near her but only for a second. I held you against my chest and Emmy climbed up an laid next to you. She kept looking at you trying to figure out who you were. We were now a family of four with two beautiful girls.