It’s a girl!!

She’s here!! Our little darling is finally here! 🙂 Katheryn Anne Smith was born Friday, August 15th at 7:09 AM, weighing exactly 8 pounds and measuring 20.75 inches. She is just perfect! 🙂

What a wonderful week it’s been! I just love being her mama. It has been tiring and hard at times learning to take care of her, but every bit of the pain and lack of sleep has been completely worth it. It is so amazing how much I love this little one and how happy and content I am now that she’s here. I am so thankful for her and for the fact that she is healthy and I am healing rapidly. God is so good to us!

I want to write about labor and her birth while it’s still somewhat fresh in my mind. I think I have probably forgotten some parts already, but I’ll ask Bryan about it and will try to remember everything. I want to have a record of it, and this is the easiest place I have to write.

I had another similar morning on Thursday that I described on Tuesday with contractions that had woken me up that night and continued through the morning and other symptoms of early labor. I had my appointment with the midwife, and she told me I had progressed a little bit since the previous appointment, but not much and that I should keep her updated if anything changed. The contractions slowed down in the afternoon, but by dinner had picked up again. I was very uncomfortable and felt somewhat sick, so I decided to lie down and rest and watch the Olympics to distract myself.

in labor

Dinner while in early labor, final pregnant picture!

I started timing the contractions around 8 so I could tell if it was really labor. They were coming about every 15 minutes, and by 9:30 they were all under 10 minutes apart. Around midnight I was having to concentrate on them and started to work on relaxation. By 12:30 they started being less than 5 minutes apart regularly, and so we called my midwife Kelsey around 1:30. One of her other patients was also in labor and acting like she would give birth sooner than I would, but didn’t want anyone to come to her house yet. Kelsey wasn’t sure what to do; she told me later that she had prayed for wisdom to know where to go since she felt more emotionally attached to me but the other patient didn’t know the other midwives like I do and she didn’t want her to be uncomfortable. Just after we told her we didn’t know if we needed someone here yet, I had a much stronger contraction and decided that yes, I did want someone here soon. I wanted someone who knew what was going on, who could tell me if I was progressing at all, and who could answer my questions. That solved the problem for Kelsey since she had decided to go to the person who asked for her first, and she arrived a little while later.

I had been dilated to 2 cm at my previous appointment, and by 4 AM I was about 5 cm. Labor had gotten quite intense by that time, and I was so afraid that I wouldn’t have made any progress and would still be at 2 cm. I spent most of the time laboring in our rocking chair with it reclining slightly. When that position got old, I would get on the bed and try something different. I tried lying on my side, but that was just too painful. Kelsey brought in a large ball (like the exercise ones you see, but a bit less inflated) and I used it to support my head and shoulders so I could rock back and forth on my knees. This helped the pain I was feeling in my hips and the front of my legs during contractions.  Sometime during all of this, my friend Amanda arrived to help.  I was so focused on what was going on that it took me a long time before I was ready for her to come back to see me, but it was good to have her here.

As the morning went on, that pain in my hips and legs grew so strong and was not going away between contractions. I told Bryan and Kelsey that I didn’t think I could handle any more and that I’d never be able to make it through transition if it was already so hard. Kelsey laughed and said, “Meg, you ARE in transition.” 🙂 I was quite happy to hear that! Kelsey suggested getting in the bathtub to help me relax between contractions in hopes that the leg and hip pain would go away, and so once she had gotten it ready, Bryan helped me up and toward the bathroom. As soon as we got into the bathroom, I asked Kelsey what it feels like when it’s time to push. She said that maybe we should go back into the bedroom pretty quickly!

I started pushing in a squatting position, and with the first contraction, my water broke.  Bryan was supporting me from behind, and between contractions he would help me stand to give my legs a break.  After a few contractions, I yelled for Amanda to come back in ’cause I knew she’d want to be there.  The contractions got very close at the end, and I was confused as to how hard I should be pushing.  Since there was another lady in labor at the same time, the two other midwives who were supposed to be there weren’t there, and another midwife got there to help just after I had started pushing.  I think Kelsey was very surprised at the rapidity of this stage of my labor, and so she didn’t end up coaching me as much as I would have preferred at this point.  She was telling me to push, and I was thinking about not wanting to tear, but then the pain and urge to push got so strong that I just pushed and didn’t think about anything else.  Suddenly I heard Kelsey say, “The head’s delivered!” and I pushed again, and they were suddenly setting my sweet baby up on my stomach.  She was a bit blue and didn’t cry immediately, and I just barely had time to ask if the baby was ok before she let out a strong cry and Kelsey said she was perfect.  Somehow I got back up on the bed with Bryan’s help, and Kelsey asked if we’d seen if it was a girl or a boy.  I hadn’t since I was just so amazed that Baby was finally here and was so beautiful.  I tried to lift the umbilical cord to see, but couldn’t quite get it, and Kelsey did and I announced, “It’s a girl!  It’s our little Kate!  Katheryn Anne!”  I was crying, Kate was crying, Bryan was crying…I’m guessing Amanda probably was too, but I’m not sure.  I remember hearing her gasp or exclaim something when I said Kate’s name since we’d been keeping it a secret.  What an amazing moment that was!  I felt so close to Bryan, so amazed at the little life that the Lord had given us, and so thankful that she was finally in my arms!

She's here!

She

Lots of what happened after her birth is very fuzzy in my mind.  I was very exhausted, and I remember being frustrated that the midwives had to keep doing things to me.  Of course I knew they were just taking care of me and making sure everything was ok, but I was ready to snuggle with my sweet baby and be quiet with just her and Bryan.  I was bleeding more than they wanted, so they gave me a shot of Pitocin.  We called family, they stitched me up a little bit, and we got ready for me and Kate to take a bath.  Unfortunately, I was too dizzy to be able to take the bath, but that ended up being fine and not bothering me too much.

What an amazing morning!  I called Daddy first – Mama was on the plane on the way here – and then I called Laura and Hallie.  Mama called Amanda’s cell phone as soon as she landed since Amanda’s husband Adam was picking her up at the airport, and so I got to tell her about Kate myself which I was SO excited about.  Mama was so surprised that Kate was already here and that she’d actually been born almost three hours earlier!  It was such a blessing to have Mama here within four hours of her birth!

Once everyone but Amanda left, we had some quiet time before Mama arrived.  Well, it was supposed to be quiet time. 🙂  We unwrapped Kate from the towel she’d been in, and somehow the diaper that someone had put on her hadn’t been put on completely.  She had gotten meconium ALL over the bottom half of her body, and she did NOT like it when we tried to clean her off.  Kate’s first diaper change was quite noisy and long.  Mama got here soon after that, and for some reason I’m having a hard time remembering that.  (I started writing this post a week after Kate was born, but now it’s been another week and a few days and more things are fading in my memory.)  We ended up giving Kate to Mama to snuggle while Bryan and I slept.  However, while Bryan was able to sleep just fine, I kept waking up as soon as I started to drift off because of the pain, and then after a while I just started to miss Kate so much that I wanted her to come back in.  I couldn’t get up, so I finally got Bryan to get up & get Mama, and he fell asleep again on the sofa while Mama and I talked and watched Kate.

I could keep writing and tell you all about her first two weeks, but I should probably stop here. 🙂  It was such an amazing time, and I’m so thankful for the many blessings the Lord gave to us that day and in the following week!  We love Kate SO much and we’re so glad she’s part of our family!

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Published in: on September 1, 2008 at 6:08 pm  Comments (1)  

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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. Thank you so much for sharing your story! So beautiful! What joy.


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