Seeing as June is now a month old, I thought I better get a move on posting about her birth and add some pics (taken by the amazing Mandy Carroll!). Here it goes…
Sweet baby June decided she wanted to come a little earlier than her due date. Well a lot earlier if you count the 3 weeks we ‘skipped’ when Dr. Later told me at our first appointment I was 12 ½ weeks along instead of 9. June must have been very anxious to get here, and I’m so glad she was!
I went to see Dr. Later for my 38 week appointment on Tuesday, January 9th. Everything looked good and I was dilated to 2.5 cm and 80% effaced. Great progress since there had been no changes from week 36 to 37. He told me to go ahead and make an appointment for next week, but he wouldn’t be surprised if I went into labor before then. I must have just had a feeling that it was coming sooner than planned, because for the few weeks leading up I really kicked all my baby preparations into gear. I restocked all the shelves with updated canned food and made sure my go-bag was pretty much ready to go. I had a weird anxiety Tuesday night, and made sure I took a nice long shower (so glad I did, because I remember distinctly thinking that this could be my last shower before having the babe…) and was so happy to find out that Todd had Wednesday off. I put him right to work with about 3 different lists of things I needed done. It was absolutely wonderful on Wednesday knowing that Todd was home and getting all the last minute things taken care of that I couldn’t do. I was also really relieved that the baby hadn’t decided to come earlier than Monday the 7th because Todd had been in Rhode Island/Connecticut since Thursday for his Rhode Island interview. The lord knew what he was doing with all the timing- that is definitely for sure.
Wednesday morning I was feeling pretty crappy. I got to work at around 9 and was having quite a bit of throbbing in my back. It would come and go every 15 minutes or so, and gave me a bit of a stomachache. I decided to start timing the pains and see if there was any pattern to them. I didn’t want to get my hopes up, so I didn’t really say anything to anyone at work, they all just knew I wasn’t feeling very well. As the day went on the contractions plateaued at 5 minutes apart and lasting for about 1 minute. Now usually they would tell you that you need to head straight to the hospital at that point, but my pain wasn’t getting any more intense, and I could still talk and focus on my work throughout the contractions. I did think it was odd that they were really consistent at 5 min/1 min throughout the whole day. Well I survived work, and decided that I should clean out my desk just in case. By that point I had let on that I was having contractions and thought I was in labor, so I guess Greg and the guys weren’t too surprised when I didn’t show up the next day. I’m just sad I had to miss the baby shower Jeanette had planned for me for Thursday (but had an awesome time at the make-up shower a few weeks later!).
Todd came and got me at 4:45 so we could beat the traffic home. Once I was home, Todd informed me that he had an appointment with the cousins to ‘take care of a skunk’ and left to go about his business. I thought it was pretty funny that he would leave his pregnant wife who was most likely in labor to go kill a skunk with Austin and Alex. I used that alone time to get into my sweats and start cleaning up around the house. I just remember being so worried that I would have to come home to a messy house, and I’m so glad we got it cleaned up before we left. I made sure my go bag was packed and ready, and felt pretty confident that I could pick up and go when the time came.
By this time, Todd was getting back and decided he should try to get the dresser drawer fixed before we had to leave. I humored him for a few minutes, but then realized how hungry I was and sent him straight to Village Baker for a salad. While he was gone, I decided to look up possible reasons for why the contractions were so painful in my back. At this point they were coming every 3 to 5 minutes and had picked up in intensity. Turns out I had a high chance that I was in ‘back labor’ which is when the baby is turned the wrong direction and putting a lot of pressure on the back. I read suggestions that doing squats and lunges can help the baby to turn into the correct position, so I decided to start up my Summer Sanders Pregnancy workout DVD. I was only a few minutes into it when Todd got home with the salad around 6:30. I sat down to eat while Todd used our massage roller to try and rub some of the pain out of my back. Something must have hit in the right place because before I knew it, I felt the strangest ‘pop’ and my water broke! I just stood up crying ‘oh! oh!’. I remember being ticked that my shoes were getting wet and that my Real Salt Lake sweats were totally soaked and I couldn’t wear them to the hospital anymore. Todd was hilarious because this was the point where he started to realize the baby was actually coming and he got really flustered and started running around all over the place trying to get his bag packed. He then asked if it was ok to take a shower. ‘Sure, go right ahead, it’s not like my water just broke and I’m in labor or anything’ was my thought, but I figured the baby probably wasn’t going to come that soon anyway and Todd would feel better if he were clean and not smelling like a skunk.
Right before we left, Todd gave me a blessing. I’m so glad that Todd is a worthy priesthood holder and that we were able to start this amazing journey of parenthood with a blessing. After that we grabbed all our stuff, latched the car seat into the back seat and off we went! My contractions were steadily getting worse and by the time we got to the hospital at 7:30 I was really starting to feel them. I was so happy knowing that the epidural was coming soon, but I still had to wait about an hour and a half before the anesthesiologist was available to give it to me. I was at 4 cm and almost completely effaced! The nurse was excited about that and said she thought I’d be ready to push by 2 am, and that because June was so low I probably wouldn’t have to push for too long.
Once the epidural kicked in I was in laborial (is that a real word?) bliss! I laugh when I think about how many times throughout the long night I told Todd how amazing I felt and how much I loved the epidural. For the first time in months it didn’t hurt to lie down! Nothing hurt and it was fantastic! I could still feel my feet pretty well, and my legs felt really heavy, but the numbness wasn’t as bad as I expected.
By 7 or 8 the next morning nothing had progressed and my contractions were beginning to get farther apart, so Dr. Later put me on the Pitocin. Things picked up after that and by 8:30 I was pushing. About 20 minutes into my pushing Todd got a phone call from what he thought was a Rhode Island phone number. Although we were both extremely anxious to be hearing back from any school, I was pretty sure that was the WORST time to take a call, but I think it’s pretty funny that of all the hours we had been sitting around in the hospital, he’d get that call during the 45 minutes of pushing.
Things went pretty quickly after that, and before I knew it she was here! I wasn’t even bugged by her large and lopsided cone head from being sideways so long. I was just so relieved it was over! I didn’t get to see much of her for the first half hour or so. She had quite a bit of numbness on one side of her face because of her position, but other than that, everything looked to be good. 5 pounds 14 ounces and 19 inches long. Todd was amazing. He helped me so much during the whole process, and was so attentive to both the baby and me once she was born.
The rest of the day was a big blur. I was transferred to our recovery room, which coincidentally was the same room Matt and Sayward were in when they had Ascher. Our parents came and it was so fun to watch them with June for the first time. Everyone just couldn’t believe how tiny she was and how much hair she had!
Throughout the 2 days following June’s birth we had so many visitors, and it was great to feel so well loved by all our friends and family. I will always look back on those first few days as a really special time for our little family. Because I was mostly confined to the bed the whole time, Todd really had to step it up, and he was amazing! I grew to love him more and more every time I saw him taking care of June. I know he must have been absolutely exhausted because unlike mine, his body had no idea what hit it. I loved the quiet times (though rare) that we had to spend with each other and with June. It was nice to be able to send her to the nursery at night so we could at least get a few hours of sleep, but I knew I was really her mom when I started getting anxious to see her after just a few hours. The movie Dan in Real Life was playing over and over again throughout our stay, and I thought it a little ironic that it was filmed in the same area as the school in Rhode Island. Todd finally got a hold of them the next day and found out he was accepted! It was bittersweet news coming so close to June’s birth and having to face the reality of leaving with her, but we’re excited for whatever will happen.
Saturday afternoon was the big day. We got to take her home, which was exciting and completely terrifying at the same time. It was nice to be settled, and mom and Teresa were incredible helps. I can’t believe it’s already been 4 weeks since we had little June. I love being a mom, and feel like this is exactly what I was meant to do. It almost seems to good to be true when I think about being able to stay at home with June. Todd is so incredible; I love knowing that I can depend on him to work hard and provide for our little family.
I am so happy. I am glad that we waited, because now that this phase in our lives is finally here, I can fully enjoy it without any regrets. Todd and I travelled, finished school, saved financially, and experienced so many things we couldn’t have done with a little one. The Lord has definitely had his hand in our lives, and I love feeling his love around me as we raise this sweet little spirit.