I absolutely love reading birth stories- I find them so fascinating. Every labor is so different and unique, and I love hearing all the different variations. Is that just me? Is that weird?
Anyways, onto Faye’s birth story, which luckily was nothing like her brother’s.
I had been having contractions on and off for about 4 weeks. I had Braxton-Hicks contractions since about 20 weeks, but I could tell the last 4 weeks before having Faye, the contractions were a different ballgame.
At around 36 weeks I was 1cm dilated, at 37 weeks I was 2 cm dilated, and by 37.5 weeks, I was already 3 cm dilated. I was actually having regular back contractions all night, so I went to the labor and delivery triage at my hospital thinking I was in labor in the middle of the night. I didn’t know back labor was a thing, but the pain was so radiant in my lower back that it would take my breath away. While at the hospital, they had me walk around thinking that it would help break my water. Unfortunately nothing happened, so they sent me home. I had absolutely no idea you could go around and live your life 3cm dilated. I thought for sure that once you are that far along, you were in labor and having a baby would happen in the next day. The bright side was that I was not ready at all and had more time to prepare.
Within the next 10 days, my sister and mom helped me prepare everything from Faye’s nursery to gifts for the hospital staff. I worked from home since I was still in constant pain and so freaking tired. Aryan would complain about something and I would quickly remind him that I was currently in labor so he had no room to complain about anything- poor guy.
I had already been scheduled for a C-section at 39 weeks. My doctor had recommended it for many reasons. I was hesitant at first, since I wanted to go into labor naturally, but after having such severe pain for so long from early labor contractions and SPD (symphysis pubis dysfunction), I quickly realized I would be happy to get induced.
On May 22nd, I was scheduled to go into the hospital at 7am, so after being up with Noah all night (as if he knew what was about to happen), Aryan and I made our way to The Women’s Hospital of Texas. We checked in & I was able to do my makeup (important!) as they got me all set up. It took about an hour to get my papers filled out, get set up in the room, and get my IV started.
At the point when I had come in, I was already 4cm dilated. By 9am they started my Pitocin (labor inducing medicine) and the doctor came in to break my water. She said she would come check on me at lunchtime to see how I was doing. With Noah, I was in labor for 22 hours so I was starting to settle in. The nurses told me to let them know when I needed my epidural. I asked them when people normally got it, and they said right before the pain starts getting a bit strong since it takes about 30-45 minutes to get it set up. I said OK thinking I could probably last a few hours. I VERY QUICKLY realized that was not the case and things were happening fast.
By 10am, I asked for the epidural and by the time the anesthesiologist came in, I was cussing my brains out and unable to talk through the contractions. Thankfully they got it set up and checked me again- I was already 8cm dilated an hour after they broke my water and were able to set up the epidural. This was the part I was so nervous about even though I had one before- but the nurse talked me through all the steps and the epidural was in my back within minutes. In hindsight, I probably could have gone the extra 2cm and just had Faye naturally, but that pain was unbearable. I don’t know how women do it. Only 10 minutes later I was telling the nurse that I was pretty sure I was ready. She checked me and she confirmed I was 10cm dilated.
By the time my epidural was put in, my sister, mom, and in-laws had arrived, but I had planned to have my friend who is a photographer capture the birth. We quickly texted her that we needed her to make her way ASAP and let the nurses know that I would be holding the baby in until she arrived. They got everything ready while we waited. Once my friend arrived, the doctor had to go into an emergency C-section, so I had to continue to wait. It wasn’t bad though since I had the epidural. However, the fear starting creeping in and my whole body was shaking. I wanted to constantly throw up, but thankfully everyone kept me occupied enough to forget about the nausea.
At 11am, the doctor came and was ready for me to push. She told me to push and I pulled my legs and pushed, which feels like absolutely nothing when you have an epidural. I had no idea if I was doing anything at all. She told me to push again and all of a sudden, I hear everyone saying her head is out and that she has a full head of hair. I was shocked. The doctor said to push again and next thing I know, my precious baby came flying out. I was so surprised because with Noah I had pushed for an hour. However, this little lady was ready to make her debut around 11am. They put her on my chest for skin-to-skin, and I was so emotional. I never got to do that with Noah who was quickly taken by a team of doctors, so it seemed so crazy and natural having her given right to me.
It was so beautiful. I was so present for the entire birth and I felt so much more comfortable holding her since I had done it all before. Everything was much smoother and quicker, and I am so grateful to God and my little girl for making it so easy on me.
Below are the photos that my friend, Nancy Aidee, captured. I went back and forth on having this birth photographed and I am SO SO SO glad I did, especially with someone I was very comfortable with. They may seem graphic to some, but I truly think there is so much beauty to childbirth and as hard as it is, I am so grateful to God to be a woman and be able to experience it.