Kaleah's Birth Story
Wednesday, June 13, 2012 12:57 PM
"By then, my contractions were back-to-back and so painful. This
time, I was definitely in labor."
An early trip to the
On Saturday, February 12, when I
was 40 weeks pregnant, my husband, Michael, cut his finger badly and needed
stitches. We went to the emergency room, and I waited while he got stitched up.
As I sat there, it occurred to me that my baby didn’t seem to be as active as
she’d usually been. Since I wanted to play it safe—and thankfully, our hospital
is so small—I walked over to Labor and Delivery to check in with the nurses
there. They assured me that everything was probably fine, but said they’d
examine me just in case. Before I knew it, I was hooked up to the fetal monitor
and my cervix was examined. The nurse determined that I was having Braxton-Hicks
contractions every five minutes, and I was 100 percent effaced and dilated 5
centimeters. “You’re not going anywhere tonight,” she said. Sure enough, I was quickly
moved from the temporary monitoring room into a birthing suite where I would
spend the night.
A little too early
I waited and waited the whole
night. But by 8 a.m. the next day, my contractions were still four minutes
apart and I wasn’t in any pain, so my OB agreed to let me go home while I
waited for things to progress. As I left, the nurses warned me that when I
finally started active labor, my baby would come very quickly.
It’s time—for real!
At 4:30 a.m. on February 14, I woke
up to my first real contraction. They
were 11 minutes apart at first, but soon started coming closer together. I woke
up Michael and told him it was time. He woke up our older daughter, Destiny, and
we got in the car—by then, my contractions were back-to-back and so painful. This
time, I was definitely in labor. When
we arrived at the hospital, the clerk at the admitting desk was adamant that I
fill out and sign all the paperwork. I remember rushing because I was so
worried that my baby would come any minute! Finally, at 5:50 a.m., I was
admitted into Labor and Delivery.
Welcome, baby Kaleah!
Before long, it was time to push! I
was committed to having a med-free birth, and Michael did an amazing job
helping me stay relaxed. I found that if I paced my breaths to the beat of our
baby’s heartbeat on the fetal monitor, I stayed calm and distracted from the
pain. There were a few moments when I questioned my decision to go without pain
medication, but Michael helped me stay focused. At 7:19 a.m., I gave one last
push, and my sweet daughter was born. She weighed 8 pounds, 11 ounces, and was
21 inches long. Kaleah was placed directly on my chest, and she looked at me
with her beautiful big eyes, almost as if to say, “I love you!” I was amazed at
how perfect our sweet little valentine was.
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