Hadley’s Birth Story

On Monday, November 6 I was still very pregnant – and very over it. My OB and I had discussed induction once I hit 39 weeks because I was so uncomfortable, but she warned me that other pregnant women past forty weeks had priority for induction. My official and “final” due date was 11/11, so even though I was still a week to go, I wanted that baby OUT. I decided to send my doctor an email asking her to let me know if we could set a date, knowing it had to be scheduled a few days out. Initially I didn’t want a baby to be born via induction on Holly’s birthday (11/9), so that Holly could have her own day, but I knew baby could very well come on her own if she wanted to on that day. So, imagine my surprise on Wednesday morning when I got a call from the hospital labor and deliver department, letting me know I was scheduled for induction at 6:00 a.m. on Thursday, November 9. After talking it over with Matt, we decided we should move forward, as I was swelling like crazy, sick of having fake contractions, and I was getting restless (After all, there’s only so much Netflix binging and Oreo eating one can do.) They’d be birthday twins, and that was that! I didn’t sleep much that night with excited anticipation, and woke up at 5:30 the next morning to shower. While I was in the shower I got a voicemail that I should wait a few hours and go back to sleep, since L&D was packed. I went back to bed, and we got the call at 8:30 that we could come in around 10.

Right before we headed to the hospital! 39 weeks and six days.

I checked in, donned my hideous hospital gown, and met my first two nurses, Harley and Nicole. I felt relieved because I gave them the “Full Alyssa” personality and we all jived well, which was important to me as these women would be getting up close and personal. I got hooked up to the IV and belly monitors, and once it was confirmed that Hadley was doing great, they checked me for dilation. Happily, the amount of contractions I was showing confirmed that I was already in early labor, which I had suspected the night before, but wasn’t getting my hopes up due to the days of false starts I’d been having. At first check I was dilated to a four, so we agreed to use Pitocin to get things moving, with me having naïve hopes that Pitocin would mean I’d be snuggling a newborn in the early afternoon. I call Pitocin the Pit Viper, because it amplified the contractions with Holly from bearable to massive pain very quickly – but maybe that wasn’t the Pitocin and was just labor. Basically, they slowly increased my Pitocin every couple hours, and at this point, I was waiting to get the epidural as the pain wasn’t that bad. This part of labor was pretty boring, and I chitchatted with Matt, texted friends, browsed Facebook, and even shopped on my Groupon app at one point.

One great difference between this labor and Holly’s was that I was allowed to have “clears” this time. It helped so much to have a full belly.

At 2:00, they started cranking the Pitocin faster, and I was bummed that I hadn’t had the baby yet. I had hoped that since this was my second rodeo, I’d basically lift my legs and shoot out a baby. Once the Pitocin was cranked, the contractions started intensifying. At 3:45 I requested my epidural, and I didn’t receive it until 5:00 p.m., and by then, I was ready. They made Matt leave the room which I wasn’t thrilled about, and my anxiety soared as the anesthesiologist fiddled with my back and laced me up. It showed in my blood pressure, which rose to about 160/90, but as soon as the anesthesiologist was done, I instantly felt giddy and calm. I asked if it kicked in that fast, and the anesthesiologist explained it was actually my dopamine levels returning to normal since I had been so nervous. Whew! They gave me a quick hit button to dose myself with more epidural drug, and I didn’t end up using it much until later on.

The next few hours were slow and relaxed, with my birth playlist in the background (lots of Fleet Foxes, Smoke Fairies, Father John Misty, and the occasional electropop song by peeps like St. Vincent.). At 7:00, we had a shift change, and my new nurse, Tiffany, came in. At 9:30, I decided to try to nap, since I had only progressed to a six. I dozed on and off, and at 11:40, I was finally ready to try some “test” pushes. I had accepted at this point that Hadley wanted her own birthday, as we were 20 minutes away from the 10th. The contractions were certainly more intense, but my nurse had warned me to start laying off the quick hit button as that could delay my progress. I wasn’t happy to hear that but agreed to reduce my reliance on the joy juice, and I was impressed how much easier pushing was than with Holly – my body knew what to do, and Tiffany was an excellent coach in guiding me how to breathe.

After a few test pushes, Tiffany gave me a choice – they could call the doctor in now (about midnight) and have me start pushing, but she warned because baby wasn’t exactly in “station” (the lowest position in pelvis), I would probably have to push longer – or, I could try and nap for a bit and baby would likely descend lower into the pelvis, and it would be less pushing.  I always prefer to embrace the lazy way when it comes to physical activity, so I agreed to try and nap, and miraculously, I did. At 12:45, the nurse told me the doctor was on her way, and at that point, I went from calm to “IT’S GO TIME!”. I was having a very hard time holding the baby in at this point – and it sounds weird to type it like that, but they actually had to take my legs out of the stirrups and tell me not to push because she was ready to come out.

Honestly, this was the hardest part of labor – feeling more than anything that I needed to push, but not being able to, and being told not to. At one point I told Matt he better get a glove on and get down there because the baby was coming whether my doctor was there or not. It was actually only 20 minutes between this point and when the doctor arrived, but it felt like eternity as the pressure on my lower back and legs was making me tremble all over.

Finally, my awesome doctor rushed in, threw on her scrubs and booties, and got into position. I took a deep breath, and PUSHED. Lord almighty, did I push – and I pushed HARD and with gusto, and boom – just like that, I felt the baby’s head come out, and summoned all my strength, breathed through the pressure … and felt Hadley descend through me, arriving at 1:14 am, after just one push.

The doctor lifted her up and I had two instant thoughts “Look at all that hair!” and “She’s big!” They put her on my chest, and the medical team noted she wasn’t crying – just looking around, calm and pink. Her tiny hand joined mine and I looked into her eyes for the first time, hers full of wonder, mine full of joy. I was overcome with relief and happiness, and we spent the next 30 minutes snuggling as my doctor delivered my placenta and checked me out. Hadley was 9.2 pounds and 21 inches of rosy-cheeked perfection, delightful little leg rolls, velvety feet, and wispy dark hair.

Happy birthday, Hadley Joy – we’re so happy you’re here.

 

Week 29 Bump Date

Hold the phone… see that? 29 weeks?! I’m one away from 30! *dance* Can’t believe I’m already a few weeks into my third trimester!

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How far along? 29.5 weeks. Holla!
Baby’s Size: A Barbie Car (ha!) or a Pineapple – one of my favorite fruits!
Weight Gain: 0. My appetite is slowly coming back to normal as the nausea calms down (praise the lord), but I’m learning I need to eat small amounts often to keep the gag reflex away.
Maternity clothes? All day every day. I’m pretty sure I’ve “popped”. What do you think?
Best moment this week:  I went up to Northern California where my sister, mom, and best friend threw me an amazing, intimate baby shower! It felt nice to have a change of scenery and celebrate Baby Curran with family, and my sis, mom, and bestie really put their heart and soul into planning an affair I’d love. So grateful!

We also got to check on our gal at the perinatologist last week, and she’s measuring perfectly and we even got a 3D shot of her cute little face. It’s always a relief to “see” the baby and know all is well.

Miss anything?

  • Sleeping on my stomach
  • Being able to eat a lot. I know this sounds dumb, but I ate a whole Chipotle veggie burrito bowl last week and regretted it for many moons as I just don’t have “room” in my belly anymore, so it was an uncomfortable few hours as I digested and felt like a python that had eaten an antelope.
  • Not being achy! The lower back pain has intensified as I pop out.
  • My pre-pregnancy brain. I’m definitely more forgetful and have to write tons of lists.

Movement: All the time!
Food cravings:  I haven’t indulged in this one yet, but pop tarts. I always love cereal, fruit, and greek yogurt. I haven’t craved anything super weird though, yet.
Anything making you queasy or sick: Strong smells, and I’m most susceptible to the yuckiness immediately after I wake up. Grocery shopping and walking past the fish section was not pleasant last week. The heat continues to be a challenge here in the valley as I can’t be outside for long before I start feeling gross.
Gender:  Girl!
Labor signs: None. Please stay that way.
Symptoms: Nausea, lower back aches, heartburn, insomnia, super tired, reduced appetite, feeling like a turtle on its back
Happy or moody most of the time: Not barfing daily means I’m perking up! I’d still like more energy but I’ll take what I can get 🙂
Looking forward to: hitting 30 weeks (holy crap) and starting to sift through all the stuff we’ve acquired for baby. It’s time to start setting up the nursery! We also start our baby care classes this week. It will be fun to be diapering dolls and stuff with the hubby, knowing that in just a little while we’ll be diapering on a real, live baby. Wow!

That’s all, folks. Catch ya next time!

 

 

Week 26 bump date!

26 weeks!

26 weeks!

How far along? I’ve been slackin’ on my updates due to feeling crummy, and am now officially 26 weeks even. What?! When did that happen?!
Baby’s Size: An eggplant
Weight Gain: 0. I’ve lost the weight I’ve put on due to some major nausea and vomiting. Bah. More about that in a bit. Still no cause for concern given that I’m making sure to keep eating enough for baby, and I started the pregnancy overweight. (Don’t worry: OB is monitoring me well and making sure the baby is growing on track. Lots of overweight women lose weight during pregnancy.) Who’da thunk my weight during pregnancy would be a non-issue?! (Knock wood)
Maternity clothes? Heck yes. Leggings FTW.
Best moment this week:  Got to celebrate a friend’s baby shower and a wedding! Lots of exciting life changes. ALSO! I do not have gestational diabetes! Woohoo.
Miss anything?

  • Sleeping on my tummy, forever and always. Once the bump goes down post-baby, I feel like I’ll mark the first time sleeping on my stomach with champagne. We went to the beach last weekend and I legit dug a hole in the sand to lay my belly in. It was genius.

-Not feeling barfy.

Movement: Heck yes! Baby girl as her prime time hour from 7 pm to 9 pm, and lately, she’s been into early mornings as well. I love feeling her kick.
Food cravings:  Fruit (particularly strawberries and grapes), anything not super scented or strong.
Anything making you queasy or sick: Unfortunately yes. The past few weeks have been ripe with sickness. I don’t know why and it’s an on-going discussion with my doctor. It’s usually first thing in the morning after I wake up but this weekend I had a really hard bout after going to the grocery store. It’s been consistently in the mid 90s here, and I think maybe I was overheated, because I ran into the bathroom, threw up, and then laid on the cold tile of the floor as I broke into a sweat. My sweet husband brought me a glass of water and a wet towel for my head. That guy is seriously amazing. It’s kind of an every day thing now…
Gender:  Girl!
Labor signs: None. Please stay that way.
Symptoms: N&V (naus and vom), lower back aches, heartburn, insomnia, super tired, less appetite thanks to the nausea and vom.
Happy or moody most of the time: I’ve admittedly been not my usual sunny self as I’m just not feeling good. I know that this too shall pass, which helps, and I find some relief with ice cold water and things like that. Please send happy thoughts that this weird patch goes away. I’ll be in my third trimester in just one week (two weeks if you go by the What to Expect app) (WHAT?!) and I’m actually really excited to be there. I’ve talked to a few women who’ve had difficult second trimesters (and easy firsts) and they’ve told me they felt great in their third, so that gives me hope! Little miss is healthy and happy, and that’s great 🙂
Looking forward to: hopefully some relief in sickness, and hitting the third tri milestone!