Saturday, January 7, 2012

Jonah's Birth Story

Ok...let's see how much of this I remember. It has been nearly 7 weeks already ;)

I woke up Monday morning, four days past his due date, feeling rather depressed. For the past several nights I would go to bed feeling strong contractions, but they would fizzle out during the night. I would also have strong contractions whenever I took a walk or climbed the stairs, but they never kept going. I decided to call Amy (my amazing midwife) and just get some advice from her. She told me to go ahead and come in and she would check me and see what might be going on. I had a feeling that we would somehow get labor started, so I wanted my kids and Jon with me. We drove 45 minutes to the birth center from my parents' house. Amy checked my cervix, and found that I was already 5 cm dilated! We talked, and she said we could get things going pretty fast and have the baby today. I was totally on board with that, so she swept the membranes, and then had me take drops of herbs to help get things going. Now, this whole pregnancy I had been saying that I was not going to induce in any way, and that I was going to let Jonah come when he was good and ready. The reason being, was that I took castor oil to get labor started on Simon's due date, and really regretted the experience. This time was different. The methods we used were much gentler, and most importantly, I had peace. I prayed, and felt like God was leading in this, and I was following. Anyway, I called my mom who was on her way back home with Jamie and Cameron (they had been visiting a friend), and asked if they could just come straight to the birth center to take care of the kids. They came, and Jon brought our stuff in from the van and set it up in the blue and brown birthing room (incidentally, the color combinations of blue and brown had been following me around the entire pregnancy, and I love those colors together so I felt very comfortable in there. It was also the room Lacey was born in nearly 6 years previously). Mom and Jamie took the kids to chickfila to get them out of the way while I labored. The contractions had picked up ever since Amy swept the membranes, and were getting pretty intense. Amy checked me again and I was dilated to 7, I think? She had me push on a contraction, and that broke my water. I continued to walk laps through the birth center to keep things moving. It got to the point where I had to stop walking and squat so I could get through the contraction, then continue walking. It got pretty intense soon after that, so Amy helped me get situated on the birthing ball. At one point I remember feeling so helpless and in pain, and thinking I just couldn't do it (transition, I know ;). I had this sudden need to see Marianne, and have her look in my eyes to encourage me, but she wasn't able to make it there in time (she has little ones, but was on the way to the birth center), so I looked at Amy. She looked straight into my eyes and smiled. I don't know how, but I felt like she transferred some strength into me, and I knew I could get through this. Jon was also there, constantly encouraging me, and making sure all my needs were met, and reminding me to keep my facial muscles loose (open mouth, open cervix). He was awesome! Not too long after that I told Amy I was ready to push. She let me get into the tub (ahhh, I love the water) and I began pushing with the contractions. At first I would keep my head back while pushing, fully knowing that I needed to put my chin down, but somehow not being able to. Jon kept reminding me to put my chin down, but for some reason it was impossible to do until Amy told me to listen to Jon, and do it. Then suddenly I was able. The whole world was tuned out, and things seemed hazy, but I could hear Amy's voice clearly. I followed her directions, and somehow managed to stop pushing while Jonah was crowning (ow!) and then just push very slowly. If you have never had a baby, you have no idea how hard that is to do! Jonah's head eased out, and then one more push and suddenly Amy was laying him on my chest. Such a miracle! I was so in love once again, and so amazed and this sweet little darling. We just met, and yet I had known him all my life. My darling Jonah River. He weighed 8lbs 11oz, same as Lacey when she was born! I think labor lasted approximately 3 1/2 hours. This had been the hardest pregnancy yet, with me being sick so much. I knew that everything would be fine though, and that he would be born a healthy baby boy. Near the beginning of the pregnancy I had been sick with a fairly high fever, and I was so worried that it would hurt my baby as he was developing. I had picked up my bible, and was reading John chapter 4. When I got to the end of the chapter I read verse 50.

“Go,” Jesus replied, “your son will live.”

Your son will live. From then on, I knew that Jonah would be fine, and whenver I had worries, I would return to that verse and remember that God is in control. Not me.