As I sit here (in tears) on the eve of my firstborn’s birthday, I can not help but be astounded by the depth of love I have learned in the past year. Through my precious son, my Lord has taught me just a small measure of the love He feels for me. To have been blessed with this amazing child who makes me want to be a better person every day.
I’m not going to include every detail, just the basics of how his birth progressed, just to remember, to celebrate him.
We were overdue by nearly a week, but I honestly wasn’t that uncomfortable. However very anxious, excited, and ready to meet him? YES. Daddy was simply mourning the loss of the tax-deduction in 2009, haha!
We went in for an induction at 7am on the morning of January 5th. Soon-to-be Daddy and I got up, showered, and got all ready to go. I even did my hair and make-up; ha! As if it was that easy J. I was blessed to have my hubby and parents there throughout the entire labor and birth. Since the limit was 2 guests in the room, the three of them rotated throughout the 30 hours, keeping me entertained and well-taken care of. When we arrived, I was hooked up the machines which showed I was having small contractions relatively close together; close enough they wouldn’t start inducing me. A couple of hours of walking the tiny halls of the maternity ward, the contractions had slowed. So they started me on pitocin. Shortly later they broke my water. Due to the nature of this hospital, since I had an IV for fluids and pitocin, I was not allowed to walk the halls, but had to stay hooked to the fetal monitor. Babies under induction must be monitored constantly. It was mid-day when they started the pitocin… skip to the evening and I had finally begun to feel the contractions. The only way I found to manage the pain was standing. Keep in mind that I had been walking or standing since 7am at this point in time.
Every time I was checked (around every 4 hours) I had progressed some, but slowly. Sometime around midnight, I received a small dose of narcotics, which only served to make me very, very sleepy, but did not help the pain at all. Around 2am, at 7cm, I decided to go ahead with the epidural. By this point in time I was in the last stage of labor, however my chances of a c-section had increased dramatically. In this particular hospital, there was only one ER for emergency c-sections (un-scheduled ones) and it was very small, husbands were not even allowed in for the birth. But biggest of all, if I had to have an emergency c-section (which it looked like I might be headed for), and had not already received an epidural, there would not be time for an epidural and they would put me under general anesthesia, meaning I would be asleep for the entire c-section. So much goes through your mind at this moment. The pros, the cons, your goals, your hopes, the pain, the baby’s safety, the payoff. The fact that at the rate I was going, I was looking at close to 6+ more hours of labor. So much. I made the decision, against my original goal, to go ahead with the epidural. Ultimately, I wanted to remember his birth, to at least experience it some, even if not completely. Will I do it that way again, probably not. Do I know now what to prepare for, what to expect, yes, will this help me? I’m not sure. We will see.
Immediately, the pain faded, amazing, but shortly after the epidural, Jarvis started experiencing some stress. I spent the next several hours on my side, with oxygen after they shut off the pitocin. Suddenly, my chance of c-section grew even larger. The doctor wanted to go ahead with a c-section, but the amazing nurses fought for me, and were able to extend him. We started back up on pitocin and around 8am we were ready to start pushing. With my mom and hubby coaching me, 3 and a half hours of pushing later, our baby was finally born. Apparently, as they laid him on me, the doctor said he was boy, but I didn’t hear. I kept asking, what is it?? J They took him over to be cleaned and my amazing hubby stayed to kiss my forehead and tell me what an amazing job I did as I tried to push him to go over to the baby! I couldn’t hear him cry and I was terrified. Finally, his little cry rang out and I have never felt a joy like that. My mom and hubby went with the baby to be cleaned, bathed, measured, and apparently, only after that did my mom remember to go tell my dad. Unfortunately, without going into detail, the delivery was not easy on me and I had quite a bit of healing to do. But every minute was worth it.
We treasured learning to breastfeed, changing poopy diapers, counting wet diapers, and even watching Texas play in the National Championship long past visiting hours ended. One set of my in-laws arrived just minutes after the birth and were able to hold a brand-new Jarvis. In fact, seeing my father-in-law cry as he held my child was the first moment it really hit me. I was a mother. This child was mine. He was my responsibility and my blessing. The other set of in-laws arrived the day after we took him home. What a blessing for Jarvis to be surrounded by all his grandparents so closely after his birth.
We have truly enjoyed every minute of the past year, of every lesson and failure, of every cry and laugh. Thank you, sweet Jarvis, for being the amazing child you are. We love you forever and are so thankful the Lord blessed us with you.
And if you aren’t crying as hard as I am now… then you aren’t normal J