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I have a few moments to let you know the story of my sweet Savannah Rose’s entrance into the world.

Everything went well except for the fact that my DH was unable to be present.

I went to my regularly scheduled 38th week doctor’s appointment Tuesday morning. I learned that I had begun to dilate, my cervix had begun to efface, the baby was in position, and unfortunately, I had signs of preeclampsia. In addition to my swelling and a headache, my blood pressure was high and I had protein in my urine. I was immediately admitted to the hospital to strict bedrest. I was so excited to know that my delivery was getting closer, and I spent the day resting, reading, and visiting with friends. My blood pressure came down soon, and the baby’s vitals were healthy, as measured by the baby monitor I was belted to most of the day. I had to collect my urine over a period of 24 hours.

The physician’s recommendation the next day was that we proceed with trying to initiate labor due to the preeclampsia, even though it was pretty well under control. They didn’t want to take risks with my blood pressure—it was fluctuating a lot, I had slightly blurred vision as well, and the midwife felt the baby was ready!

So, the next step was taken on Wednesday evening. I was given Cervidil, which is inserted vaginally to touch the cervix in an attempt to thin it to prepare for labor, and in some cases, to naturally begin labor. It worked, and that night my cramping turned into relatively strong contractions. I labored for a while in a dimmed room with a whirlpool tub and lovely, soothing music. Soon thereafter my contractions became stronger and the nurse suggested I call my labor coach (my best friend) to spend the night just in case my labor progressed. My labor coach was eager to come, and she helped me relax with her famous massage, including a foot massage and a long overdue toenail painting session. I was able to sleep through the contractions with my friend sleeping in a reclining chair.

The following morning, as the contractions continued at a less intense level, I was completely effaced, but dilation was about the same—at a 2. So I agreed to have Pitocin administered. My family was so excited. The midwife, my mom, and my sister came to join me in the labor room. The Pitocin was injected around 6 am. The midwife broke my water at 8 am, and it flooded out. As the warmth poured over me I became emotional and cried because I knew there was no turning back and my baby was coming! I was also sad that my DH was not there. It was kind of a cool release of emotions that I didn’t expect. After that I did not cry anymore in the entire experience. It’s almost like I released the emotions to prepare myself for what was ahead.

Labor got really going strong at 9 am. My labor coach kicked it into high gear helping to comfort me using our hypno-birthing techniques, which were soooo very helpful. You allow yourself to enter a relaxed state of mind, which took weeks of practice to achieve. It helps you replace painful thoughts with positive thoughts. She massaged me, and she worked so hard to help me focus on staying in a calm state of mind, breathing slowly as you would when you sleep. It went extremely well, and those hours were ones for which all of the hypno-birthing practice really paid off. I was able to change positions a lot, bending over the bed, sitting on a birthing ball, etc. I was so blessed to have such a caring coach!

The nurses at the hospital are also trained in hypno-birthing, and they are committed to providing a quiet environment with dimmed lights, gentle voices, etc. They were great. I was able to get through without any narcotics.

I lasted until about 2 pm when I just had to ask for an epidural. At 2:15, the sight of the anesthesiologist was so welcomed. I told him that he saved the day! I was able to relax and sleep for a couple of hours while I dilated slowly.

The effects of the epidural wore off and I felt powerful contractions again. My sister and my mom stepped out to wait with my dad in the waiting room as things got intense. I felt all sensation for the next two hours, which required all my energy and strength. My back labor was pretty severe. This was absolutely the most difficult part of the experience. The support of the nurses and my labor coach was so wonderful, and they gave me courage to persevere. At one point I felt it was impossible to keep going, but my friend helped me use all of my emotions to push as hard as I could. A prayer was answered in having the baby turn her head the way she needed to in that time. At one point the midwife said, “Her hair is born!” Savannah has a beautiful head of dark hair. It motivated me to push harder! I did have to have an episiotomy, but I was glad to have it. I needed it. Finally, at 7:28 pm, my friend caught Savannah as she was born! She was perfect. She looked right at me with the sweetest, brightest eyes and recognized my voice. She was able to nurse soon after, and my family joined us to welcome her.

I am so enjoying every detail of these first days of motherhood. My little girl is such a joy! I hope you all have successful, safe experiences and wonderful babies!

Celebrating new life!

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