Feb 25, 2013

Baby Makes 4



Sweet little Violet Jude has entered our lives and our hearts.  And in quite a dramatic manner. It was love before first sight. There was no doubt in my mind about that. But my heart definitely melted a little bit more when I saw her beautiful, perfect face.

My due date was January 18.  I would have bet money that I wouldn't have made it to my due date this time around. It's not that I wanted to have the baby early, it's just a feeling that I had. As early as January 8 (jeff's bday) I started having contractions and bloody show. 
None of the contractions were "real", as I was able to move and talk through them. But the days came and went and no baby. Good thing I didn't bet anyone or I'd be broke. I had been drinking red raspberry tea, chamomile tea, taking Evening Primrose Oil, doing nipple stimulation, walking, sex...to no avail.
with help from Jeff & my mom
Lilly having much needed Daddy time


using a Rebozo during contractions



My due date: It came. It went. The afternoon of January 22 I had the midwife do a membrane sweep in hopes of moving things along. I was dilated to 3 but not effaced, so we were really hoping this would do the trick.  Later that night I woke around 345am, went to the bathroom and tried to go back to sleep. But the contractions were kicking my ass!  Finally! :)  I walked around the house and waited about 30 minutes to see if they were going to ease up, as they had in the past. When I realized this was the real deal, I woke up Jeff and told him it was baby time. We waited maybe an hour/hour & half before calling the Birth Center where we were given the OK to come in. We live about an hour away & didn't want to wait too long to go in. Then we called everyone who was planning on being at the Birth Center with us; my mom, Launie (who took pics), Rochelle & Natalie (who helped out with Lilly).


big sister Lilly, Rochelle & Natalie checking out Violet
 It was very important to us that Lilly be a part of the birth.  We weren't sure how she was going to react to seeing me in pain and bleeding but we hoped for the best. She was her normal, rambunctious self. She was great and randomly came into the room to give me sweet kisses, to hang out with Daddy and to investigate what was going on. She mimicked my breathing and when it was time for me to push, she was very curious and watched intently for a portion of it. She wasn't in the room when Violet made her grand entrance, but she was there with us, as one big family and we were happy that she was. Thanks so much to my mom and our friends Natalie and Rochelle for helping out with her, keeping her occupied and calm. It meant the world to us that Lilly was able to be a part of this experience. Also, a huge thanks to Launie for taking all of the lovely photos so that we can share and remember the day.
















such a sweet photo! Lilly & Grandma (&us in the background). She was mimicking my breathing.





















We made it to the birth center sometime after 7am. I was 6cm. We got settled in to the room which happened to be the same room we used when we had Lilly. There to assist was RN Judy and CNM Judy--the same midwife that delivered Lilly. How cool!!  We were very excited about this. All of the midwives at the birth center are absolutely wonderful but it was so meaningful that Judy was by our side with both of our babies, offering her calming, kind words and gentle touch. 

patience



letting me hang & my back stretch










getting some Lilly kisses between contractions
We turned on the music playlist, which consisted of Jack Johnson (again) and Norah Jones. I was having wicked back labor and changed positions constantly.  We went from the birthing tub to the edge of the bed, to the birthing ball, to wandering the halls, to the shower, to laying on my side in bed to rest my swollen and puffy legs and feet. The positions that seemed to help most though, were leaning on the foot end of the bed while standing (gave me something to grip while contracting) and standing in the shower while Jeff sprayed me with the hot water.

CNM Judy talking to me about the option of breaking my water.
Jeffrey stayed by my side. My rock. He was there rubbing my head, pushing on my lower back, squeezing my hips together, letting me lean against him, holding my heavy body up and encouraging me the whole way. I couldn't have done it without him.

Seconds turned into minutes. Minutes turned into hours.  There was constant rotation of loving hands rubbing my head, legs, belly; placing a cold rag on my neck when I got hot, placing a blanket over my chilled body when I fluctuated between hot and cold. Everyone--Jeffrey, my mom, Judy (& I think even Launie at one point) was there to make me as comfortable as possible. I think it was sometime after 2pm and Judy asked if I would like her to break my water. I thought about it for a while and after more contractions I decided to let her.  It was a pretty intense gush, but nothing in comparison to last time. I then decided to go into the shower again. The instance the water touched my skin I felt the urge to push.  My body said "let's do this" but my head was thinking "wait a second!  What if your cervix isn't ready. It wasn't ready a minute ago! What if you damage something by pushing too soon?!" Silly brain. Jeff ran to get the midwife and tell her I was feeling the urge.  She joined us in the bathroom and said if I want to push then I can and I can have this baby in the bathroom if I needed to! I had a few more contractions and then decided to waddle back to our room so I could NOT have the baby in the bathroom. LOL.

curiosity. Lilly's close up view as I pushed.
In the weeks prior to Violet's birth, when I went in for my checkups, we knew that she was head down but that she was posterior facing (facing forward)--not the desired position. She was starting to turn in the week prior and I was doing a few movements to try to get her to turn, but as I was in labor we knew she wasn't turned, hence the back labor.  Judy let us know that I could labor in the birthing tub, but she did not want me to push in the tub because there was some manuevering that was going to have to take place. Once I was 100% sure that I wanted and needed to push I just went with it.  I was on the bed, kneeling over a birthing ball.  It was nice because I had something to hug onto and could rock into it, plus the gravity pulled the weight of my belly off of my aching back. I pushed for around 30 minutes. I heard Jeff say he could see the baby's head.  Then I heard Judy urgently tell Jeff to MOVE!  I felt him fly off the bed, heard another midwife (Fran) at my side. I was told to turn onto my side and in one swift move they quickly moved me, threw my legs up in the air and told me to push with all my might as Fran pushed on my stomach and Jeff and RN Judy pushed up on my knees and CNM Judy pulled on the baby.
This all happened VERY quickly (2minutes and 20 seconds to be exact). But after watching the video I can see that for those watching, it may have seemed like an eternity.  The reason for the urgency was that Violet's head was out, but her shoulders got stuck. And she was turning more and more purple by the nanosecond. Never once did anyone lose their cool. All were nothing but professional. Judy never once took her hands off Violet's head, even when they rotated my body. But you could see the look of seriousness in Judy's face when she motioned for Fran's assistance. You can hear the despair in my mom's voice as she encouraged me to push while simultaneously recorded the birth, choked back tears and tried not to completely freak out!
I had my eyes closed for practically the whole day. It helped me to focus and move through the pain. I wasn't aware of the situation when I was pushing Violet out. And I'm happy for my lack of knowledge. I was able to remain calm and do what I was supposed to do while the professionals did what they had to do. After one final push, at 407pm, 12 hours after my labor started, I was holding our sweetie pie little baby--all 9 lbs 13 ounces and 22 inches! 10 perfect fingers. 10 perfect toes. Time seemed to hault for a moment. As Launie mentioned to me later, the whole day I seemed to be in a different world. I was. As soon as Violet was born, I opened my eyes and I was "me" again.  Present.

Violet & Launie (beloved friend & photog of the day:)











Everyone let out a sigh of relief, tears of joy flowed and smiles drew over everyone's faces. Midwife Fran comforted my mom with a warming hug--which meant the world to me! Now we needed to come up with a name for this sweet bundle of joy! We weren't sure of a name yet, as we didn't know if we were having a boy or a girl.  We had a few names picked out, but nothing was 100% sure. As soon as she was born we knew we were going with Violet as a first name. She was a beautiful little flower (and also purple in color so it was VERY fitting). But we were still up in arms about the middle name.
our new family :)
smitten

Later that evening, Jeff suggested Jude.  It was perfect! Both the nurse and midwife were named Judy, he had heard them call eachother "Jude", the midwife was the same that welcomed Lilly into our world, plus my mom has an obsession with the Beatles that has trickled over into my life.  It just seemed right. Violet became Violet Jude.


love












Violet on Daddy as I got a couple stitches

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After much thought, I decided not to share the "scary" part of the video. It was just too intense and ultra personal.  Everything turned out perfectly and I want to remember it that way. Here is the edited version, though there are still parts of me that those close to me may have never invisioned seeing. Consider yourself warned;)





4 comments:

  1. So beautiful! I felt so honored to be able to be there with you- for you! Love you!

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  2. Your 2nd birth experience siunds just like mine. Baby late. Started out good. Turned into scary, emergency rather quickly while we both focused and remained calm and have the stitches to prove what awesome, powerful women we are. Thanks for sharing. :-D. Sara O'Connor

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  3. Amazing! every word, every feeling, every tear is just amazing! Congrats Amy, Jeff and Lilly! And happy birthday, Violet! ~ Jakii

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  4. Amazing! I loved reading your story:)

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just say it already