Monday, August 29, 2011

Welcoming Allie Joelle pt 1

Our precious daughter arrived 6 weeks ago and all the free time that I had as a mommy to a toddler got put on hold and of course for a wonderfully good reason. I'm not sure how all you moms find the time to blog. I don't want to give this up (and maybe it will just be for a season where my posts are short, sweet and to the point) but it's sure tough to squeeze time in when all you do is feed, burp, change diapers, read books, make breakfast, lunch and dinner and then finally get two minutes to use the bathroom yourself. The other day (or maybe it's been every day) I realized that from the moment I got out of bed I hadn't stopped doing something for either Reese or Allie until about 11:30am. I hadn't even had the chance to look at myself in the mirror. I guess that's "Welcome to the world of mothering two, Ashley!" the real reason for this post. Here is Allie's birth story. This is mostly for me to look back on and remember all the details. I haven't yet done this on paper and I think typing it would prove to save me a lot of time that I don't have. I'm sorry if it seems bold, extreme or maybe even raw. Birth is intense but I feel that by leaving out some of the emotions, I'll forget how God met me in this birth.

The story really begins on Monday 4 days after my due date. I was discouraged by the days passing without any signs of going into labor. None at all. I'd have the occasional braxton hick but nothing really painful and definitely no series of contractions my midwife Judi said I needed to have. Another point to make here is that Judi was planning to go out of town to see her family exactly one week from my due date. My whole purpose for being in Alaska was to deliver with her so this news put me on edge. Back to Monday. I decided that if I hadn't gone into labor by then I would have a massage where the gal could work on pressure points specifically for starting labor. This proved to be a good decision. Once the massage was done she encouraged me to stay active and even to take a walk to try and aid contractions. My mom and I went on a walk at 3pm. Within that hour I noticed contractions happening regularly. They were good and strong but I still was working to keep my hopes at bay. I've learned from reading MANY stories and being around birth in general that things can stop as quickly as it starts.

Contractions continued to come and I kept on with life. By evening I knew I wanted to get out of the house and enjoy one more time with Matt just in case this was the real thing. My mom offered to put Reese to bed and we took off for an all un-eventful trip to Sports Authority. :) Matt needed a new watch and the Lord knew we would need a stop clock that night to time contractions. Matt took his time looking at ALL the watches they had while I paced around in lots more discomfort than I had been up to this point. I just wanted to sit down in the middle of the store. But that would have been weird and I'm sure would have had a lot of people worried. Plus I knew that to keep moving was the best thing to keep things progressing. He found a watch and then we headed to Cold Stone. Ice cream is a great comfort food!

Arriving home, I got a lot of questions from my cute siblings who are 13, 11 and 6. They kept staring at me out of the corner of their eye and I think were in some disbelief that I was actually finally in early labor. They didn't want to go to bed and miss the action. We assured them that it would be awhile still and that of course we'd let them know when Allie was about to arrive. I remember my dad giving me a kiss on the head before he went to bed and said he'd be praying for me. It was so special to be around my family and to have all their care and support.

Matt went to bed at 11pm at I tried to lay down too. However, I was up almost immediately and let him know that I just couldn't sleep through these contractions and for him to go ahead and get as much rest as he could. I told him I'd get him when he was needed. For 3 hours I labored/worked by myself. The house was quiet and having that time really prepared me for what was ahead. Part of me was really wanting to sleep not knowing how long the journey ahead would be but the other part was really excited that this could be it. We would finally get to meet our girl! By 2am I knew I couldn't go on by myself. I wish I knew how far along I was by this point. If I had to guess I'd say 4 cm. It got to be more intense, I had to breathe/moan through contractions, and they were much more painful/longer. At the time I wasn't laughing or smiling but it's funny how you can tell an experienced dad from a new one. Matt wasn't thrilled when I came to get him and took awhile to get out of bed. So different from that night that I went into labor with Reese. :) But he came with me and we labored for 2 1/2 more hours before calling Judi. Her instructions were to get in the bath and see what happened from there. Things would either intensify more or ease up to allow me to sleep. The former happened but slowly enough that we didn't see the need to call her.

SIDE NOTE: Our motto going into labor was that we wanted to remain at my parents house as long as we could until I couldn't stand it anymore and HAD to get to the birth center. For Reese, our inexperience had us leaving our apartment 7 hours after what I thought was "real" labor. Too many hours (32) were spent at the birth center that should have been at home laboring and going on about our day. Fast forward to Allie: we weren't in any hurry to go anywhere!

From there I got out of the bath and continued laboring. It was about 6am or so. I remember telling Matt that at this point I really wanted my mom to be with me. He said no and that it would be better to let her sleep because we would need her later on. Ha! It's so funny to look back on all this. What I didn't know was that I was progressing a lot quicker than I realized and things were harder much sooner. But for good reason! If I had to guess I'd say I was dilated about a 5 here and had no idea that Allie would arrive in only 6 more hours. Going back to Matt being a second time father: he was super relaxed about my pain and intensity of the contractions. Almost to a fault. Example: A contraction would start. {Ashley} begins breathing, moaning, focusing on making all her muscles relaxed and limp. {Matt} s-l-o-w-l-y gets off the floor from having just fallen asleep, reaches over, starts to rub Ashley's back but then has to resist falling asleep, rubs his eyes, mumbles something about doing a good job and "you can do this", realizes the contraction is over and then collapses back on the floor to fall asleep and repeat said cycle. Haha! Second time dad for sure! This would be the reason why I was requesting my mom. Later on at the birth center Matt is incredible and all I wanted was him but at this point there was much to be desired. :)

1 comment:

  1. Okay, I can't wait for the next post!!! It's amazing how much you see God's grace not only in labor and delivery, but in pouring out your life as a mom.