Friday, August 3, 2012

Hannah Rae Johnson: The birth story

It’s been a week, and I’m finally getting around to the official update; I think that’s pretty good all things considered. If you don’t remember how my first birth went, you can read about it here. But I’m sorry to tell you that this story will not be nearly as interesting.

We were planning on inducing on August 6 (I got a call from the Doctor’s secretary yesterday to set everything up), but when I went in for my 38 week appointment on Wednesday, my doctor told me he would see me back the next day to deliver a baby. I was dilated to a 2 and 70% effaced, but that didn’t sound all that imminent—plenty of moms I know walk around for weeks dilated to a 2. But with Miles I went from dilated to a 0 at my 39 week appointment to having him two days later, so there was really no way of knowing.

But my doctor told me he knows these things…something about being an OB for 15 years and delivering over 3000 babies makes him some sort of expert, I guess.

So on Thursday I made sure to get those last minute things checked off my list. Okay, the one thing on my list: get my last mani/pedi. Chris really thought it was strange that I made that my top priority, but anyone with ugly calloused feet like me knows how important it is. We ran some errands in the morning as a family, had lunch at a local burger/ice cream place, I got my pedicure, battled Miles to take a nap, and then ordered some pizza for dinner. A real healthy day, I know. In my defense, the baby dropped so that I could actually eat without heartburn.

And while we were eating dinner, I had my first contraction. So I said, “I think I just had a contraction.” And Chris replied, “Like a real one? or like the ones you’ve been having?”

No, like a real one.

But I totally understand why he asked because I wasn’t real in tune with my contractions last time around.

So I started timing the contractions on my phone (amazing technology…because you know, watches just don’t cut it these days). So Chris started doing last minute things around the house (unpacking the office, etc.) because we were planning on having an Opening Ceremonies/House Warming Party the next night. I called my mom when the contractions were about 20 minutes apart, just in case. She decided to come spend the night so that she would be there if we went to the hospital.

After getting the hospital bag packed with all of the last minute items, putting Miles to bed (and crying because it was the last time he would be my baby), sitting down to watch some Project Runway, and emailing my doctor to tell him he was right, we went to bed because there wasn’t enough progress to go in. But as it turns out, sleep is really hard to achieve with ongoing contractions.

So while Chris slept, I watched a late night episode of NCIS and tracked contractions on my phone. At around midnight, the contractions were about 5-6 minutes apart and getting more painful. And since my Doctor told me to come in when they were painful, I woke Chris up and went to the hospital.

It was such a strange drive—so different than our drive to the hospital last time. For instance, Chris didn’t spend the whole time telling me not to push. And he didn’t have to pack his trauma shears and a shoestring just in case he needed to deliver a baby in the car. We just drove calmly to the hospital.

We checked in just after 1 am, and I was dilated to a 3.5. My doctor admitted me and sent me to a room to wait for my epidural. I wasn’t sure I wanted one until I realized that it was 1 am and that I would be laboring all night, and that without an epidural, I would never get any sleep. I thought that might make the pushing really, really exhausting.


Not a great picture, but feeling pretty good once that epidural was in.

The epidural went in just before 3 (the most terrifying part thanks to a Dateline I watched when I was 13 about women who were paralyzed from botched epidurals), and the doctor broke my water just after 3. I then was able to nap off and on (more off than on until the epidural started working in both legs) while Chris snored on the couch. Just after 6:30, it was time to start pushing which worked out nicely because my doctor and nurse were both off at 7.

But alas, this little girl did not want to come as quickly as her little brother. I pushed for about an hour and 15 minutes before she made her grand entrance with what the doctor referred to as jewelry (i.e. the cord wrapped around her neck twice), but after that was taken care of, she let out her cry and they handed her to me. I won’t include those pictures because babies aren’t really that cute until they are cleaned up.




She looks so much like Miles in this picture—except the dramatic difference in hair color.

We spent Friday trying to catch up on some sleep, which meant sending Hannah to the nursery for a while, and getting settled with our new little one. My parents brought Miles over after dinner to meet his little sister. He loves babies and was excited to see one so close, but lost his interest after only a few minutes.



We went home the next afternoon because it seemed like a good idea at the time. And then we realized just how small babies are when they’re born when we put her in the car seat with that enormous pacifier in her mouth.

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And since then we have just been trying to adjust to being a family of four. But we are truly blessed to have Hannah Rae in our family and look forward to watching Miles and Hannah grow together.


JenRoth said...

Congratulations!! She's seriously adorable! And hooray for making it through the first week as a parent of two!

Emma said...

She is adorable! I love birth stories. It may not be as exciting the last birth you experienced, but it's a great story! Congratulations!

Erin said...

hannah is gorgeous! congratulations!!

jocelyn said...

I love a birth story! I'm glad she's here and you're not still having to deal with being pregnant! I'm also glad it went smoothly. Can't wait to see her.

Erica and Dan Kiefer said...

so happy for you that it was all in all a peaceful, nice delivery! isn't that great thta you have a boy and girl now? congrats!!

~Ali said...

CONGRATULATIONS!!!!! She is beautiful!