Friday, July 13, 2018

evangeline's birth story

A little back story--
At almost 32 weeks pregnant my doctor put me on bedrest. I was having regular contractions and because Harper was born at 37 weeks, she did not feel it was safe for me to continue working. At that point we were terrified that the baby would be born premature. We started preparing ourselves for a NICU stay and possible complications. We were also given steroid shots to mature the baby's lungs incase of an early arrival to give the baby the best chance to thrive. We spent the next 6 weeks doing very little to try to prevent our sweet baby from being born. The day we made it to 37 weeks was such a celebration! We were so excited to keep that sweet baby cooking for long enough to be able to be considered full term!

On the morning of May 26th, I woke up ready to have a baby! LOL! I had a feeling that things would be happening that day! I started scrubbing bathrooms, mopping floors, and walking laps around the house. We had a family dance party in the living room and I bounced on the yoga ball to try to get things going. After that we spent the rest of the day together enjoying our family of four, knowing that soon enough we would add another member. That afternoon my in-laws called and asked if we were up for a visit and going to dinner (fun fact- the day before Harper was born we had lunch with them and I was in labor by that night). We visited for a while and then headed to Texas Roadhouse for dinner. Around 5pm the contractions started to get regular. At that point they were about every 5 minutes apart. We kept track of them at dinner, but I refused to leave. I was determined to have a yummy dinner! After dinner we headed home to keep timing them and see if they stayed consistent enough to be real labor.
last bump pic before heading to the hospital

At 8pm we put the big kids to bed and they were less than 2 minutes apart. I knew it was time and called the on call doctor to see what she thought. She told me to head to the hospital and she would meet me there. My mom came to watch the kids until our friends could get to the house.
When we got to the hospital I was brought to triage to monitor my contractions. At 9pm after getting settled into triage the nurse told me I was only 3 centimeters. I was pretty shocked after such strong contractions, I really thought I was further along than that. She said they would monitor me for an hour and then recheck to make sure I was progressing before admitting me.

After an hour she came back and told me that from what they could see from monitoring my contractions, they thought the baby was sunny-side up(head facing up instead of towards my butt) and to expect a long labor! She rechecked and confirmed her thinking because I hadn't progressed AT ALL.  They decided to have me get on all 4's to hopefully flip the baby into the right position. I stayed in that lovely position for an hour and then went walk around the halls for 20-30 minutes. She came back and rechecked and I still hadn't progressed. As we were talking about what to do next and how I had to progress to be admitted, my water broke!!! And let me tell you it was like they opened the Hoover Dam! Apparently I had an excessive amount of water! It was going everywhere in this tiny little curtained off triage room. The poor nurse was shocked and trying to contain it, but it wouldn't stop! As soon as my water broke the baby's heart rate dropped. They immediately put oxygen on me and flipped me on my side to try to bring it back up. After what felt like eternity it finally came back up and settled down. So at that point there was no going back and we were brought into labor and delivery.

After getting settled into our room(around 12 am on May 27th), the on call doc came in and checked and I was at 5 centimeters. So in less that 20 minutes I had progressed 2 more centimeters. They assumed that meant the baby had flipped and started running around very quickly to prepare everything, they figured we were going to have a baby very soon.
I was hoping to have an unmedicated birth again and at that point the contractions started getting stronger. I focused on my breathing. At about 1 am the nurse came in to check me again. I hadn't progressed at all and my contraction pattern was the same (meaning baby hadn't flipped). We were so discouraged, but I was still determined to deliver naturally. These contractions were so intense though. Not only did they feel like the normal labor contractions, I was in an immense amount of back pain. At 3 am the nurse came to check me and I was 6 cm. She decided to have me flip to my side and put one leg in a stirrup. She said that a lot of times that position will help the baby to flip. She said she would have me stay in that position for an hour and then recheck. That hour was the hardest hour of my life. It was the absolute worst pain I had ever been in (keep in mind- I had a completely unmedicated birth for Harper) and I questioned everything! I was praying in between every contractions for God to hurry my labor up and for the strength to keep going. The worst part was that because of the position my legs were in, I didn't get relief between contractions because I was in so much pain from the way I was laying. At what seemed like the perfect time, James put on praise and worship music and it immediately changed the mood in the room. I felt an overwhelming peace at that moment.

At 4am the nurse came in and checked me. I was still 6 centimeters and in so much pain. I didn't know if I could continue. James looked at me and said "this is your chance if you want the epidural we need to do it now." I told the nurse to give me a few minutes and I would decide. Well in those few minutes I immediately felt the urge to push. I knew it was time. I started screaming and honestly kind of freaking out! It went from 6 centimeters to trying not to push in such a short amount of time. James took off to get the nurse (poor thing had just sat down for her "lunch" break) and my mom was by my side. She was trying to stay cool and keep me breathing. The nurse came in and confirmed that I was 9 centimeters and they called the doctor. At that point the room surrounded with so many people and things were crazy. (fun fact #2- I was the only person laboring in labor and delivery that night. Since we didn't know the gender, all of the nurses were so excited they all came in to watch the birth and find out what sweet baby gautreaux was with us.) Everyone was telling me not to push and my body was naturally just pushing the baby out. Luckily the doctor ran in and told me to push when I needed. I think I might have pushed through 2 contractions and then she said to take a deep breath and with 2 more pushes our sweet baby was out. Also so grateful for James who remembered at the last moment to tell my grandma to snap a few iPhone pictures, poor 3rd child almost didn't have a single picture.

She handed the baby to James and after triple checking he announced our sweet baby was a GIRL and laid her on me!!! We were shocked! I kind of had a feeling it was a girl from the beginning, but didn't totally trust my instincts. James on the other hand was determined this baby was a boy! Evangeline Rose Gautreaux was born at 4:28am on May 27th, 2018.
From the second she was born, Evie was a calm baby. She didn't cry and just laid on me for a long time looking around. When she did start crying it sounded like a little puppy whimpering. She was so sweet and relaxed. We immediately did skin to skin. After skin to skin for a while, they took our sweet girl and weighed her and got all of her stats. She weighed 7lbs. 12oz. and was 19 1/2 in. long. After they weighed her they put her back on me and she immediately latched. Everyone was shocked that she had a perfect latch first try and she nursed for over 30 minutes!
Evie's birth was so hard, but just like the other two kids, it was so perfect in its own way.

 Random things I don't want to forget:
-Evie was born at 38 weeks exactly
-Dr. Stute's delivered her
-My mom and grandma were in the room with us when she was born
-When the big kids came to meet her Harper's response was "I told you it was a girl" and poor Cooper cried because he wanted a brother
-We only stayed in the hospital one night, but had to be re-admitted 3 days later for 2 more nights because of her jaundice levels

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