Monday, October 24, 2011

Mckenna's Birth Story

Welp...I'm back. Sorry I haven't contributed to any posts this last week. I'd love to say it's because I'm so exhausted and resting. But it's actually that I refuse to take Mckenna out of my arms long enough to type a blog :) I think we're getting far enough out that if I don't type our birth story now, I'll forget parts. So here it goes...

On Saturday night (the night leading into my birthday) I woke up to a slight "trickle" feeling at 3:30AM. I laid there for a second analyzing the trickle. "Could it be my water?!" I didn't want to move before checking out what it was so I decided to wake Ronnie. "Uhhh Ronnie," I said, shaking his shoulder. "Ronnie, I think my water maybe broke?!" He woke up, confused, and humored me by getting out of bed and looking at the wet spot I was talking about. "Yeah it's wet" he said with a "glad we confirmed it was fluid of some sort but we really know nothing else" look. I jumped up with excitement and we began waiting. Waiting for more fluid to leak. Waiting for contractions to start. Waiting... When we concluded that it was my water leaking, based on the fact that it wouldn't let up, we called the midwife to let her know that my water broke and get instructions. She told us to hang out around the house until my contractions got unbearable or until 12PM, whatever came first.

That's when the real excitement hit me. Today was the day!! I knew I should go back to bed because it would be a long day, but seriously, who could go to bed?! So we got up and started killing time. We went to Walmart to get last minute baby things. We went to Dunkin Donuts for breakfast. We tidied up the house. We went for a long walk. Josh and Chrissy even came over to help us hurry up and wait. The morning felt like an eternity. We tried to keep busy, but time crawled. All the while, I was just waiting to feel my first contraction. But nothing. I had some cramping, but nothing that doubled me over in pain like I was told I should when having real contractions.

12PM came and we headed to the hospital. When we got there, they checked to confirm that I was, in fact, leaking fluid and they began to monitor my contractions. They were few and far between...we had work to do. That's when the midwife told me to get some lunch downstairs and get moving. We ate and made our first lap around the hospital (the first of what feels like hundreds). The afternoon was filled with bouncing on a birthing ball, walking, and intermittent monitoring of contractions. I'll tell you what it wasn't filled with...contractions. Still I had cramping, but nothing painful.

As of 9:30PM I was having some more painful contractions, but nothing intolerable, and my contractions were still 4-5 minutes a part. They decided to check me for the first time to see what kind of progress we were making. I prayed that I would be super dilated and just one of those lucky ladies that didn't feel contractions, but the midwife checked me and I was only 3 cm dilated, 90% effaced and the baby's head was at a -1 station. The midwife suggested that we apply a gel to my cervix to help speed things along a bit, since they really like to see you have your baby within 24 hours of your water breaking. So they applied the gel, and it was back to work. We went back to walking around the hospital, climbing stairs, doing jumpin' jacks.

This is when my contractions really started to pick up. I was excited. As I said to Ronnie, "Pain is progress." So I knew if it was getting painful, I'd be getting closer to meeting my sweet baby girl. I could manage my contractions best if I was up walking in between them, and then hunched over leaning on something with Ronnie rubbing my back during each contraction. It was not comfortable, and I had to focus on just getting through each contraction, but truthfully, they weren't horrible. Then from 11:30-12:25ish it's a bit of a blur. We were walking some and I was being monitored for 20 minutes of every hour. While in the room Ronnie got our fake candles "lit" and put on music. I must have been in the zone because I don't really remember this span of time much.

And at 12:25AM I was awakened from my daze while in bed being monitored. I had a strong contraction and felt something I had not felt before. This intense urge to bear down. My whole body was throwing itself down into my pelvis. "Ronnie call the nurse, I feel like I have to bear down. I know it's dumb, it's too soon, but I need to bear down." I said through the waves of my body taking over. The midwife came in and checked me. I was 8cm dilated, 100% effaced, and the baby was VERY low she said. "I need to bear down." I told her. "You have to wait, we don't want you bearing down at 8cm, so you'll need to breath through the urge. In the meantime, I'll go get the nursery team to start setting up." The next contraction my whole body was thrusting itself into my pelvis and the "breath through" direction was simply not going to happen. It would be like someone telling you to stop sneezing, mid-sneeze. It was simply impossible. Panicked that I was going to hurt myself or Peanut, I looked at Ronnie mid-contraction with sheer terror on my face and told him they needed to be in there now, I wouldn't be able to breath through. The nurse rushed in while I was still in the midst of the contraction and checked me again. I was 10 cm dilated, 100% and the baby's head was so low that she could practically fall out (or so I thought...HA!)

That's when the midwife rushed in, the nursery team was set up and we were ready to rock (all within 3 minutes). The midwife gave me the green light to go ahead and let my body do what it felt like it wanted to do. So with the next contraction, I tried not to fight it. I let my body do whatever it felt like it needed to do. It sure is incredible how God created us. My body totally took over. I simply had to let my mind not fight my body to stop doing what it was doing. Ronnie was a rockstar during the pushing. He was so supportive and SO excited. I fed off of his enthusiasm. "You're doing great." "That one really changed things." "You're making really great progress when you do that." He would say over and over.

5-6 contractions, 15 minutes, a few pushes and 2 shrieks later (thanks to the head and the shoulders), Mckenna Day Sharpe was born. I cannot tell you what it felt like the first time I heard her cry, saw her face, and felt her skin on my skin. She was perfect. She was here. She was MINE!! Ronnie and I couldn't take our eyes off of her. We were holding each other and her about as tight as we could. Finally, after 9 months, we went from a family of 2 to a family of 3.

So there you have it. That is how our little love made her entrance into this world. It's only been a week, but we are already so in love. I can't imagine life without her in it now. We love you sweet baby girl!!