A Birth Story

The only place to start with the story of Lucy's birth is by explaining that about a month prior to her birthday, I found out that while our midwife was covered by our insurance plan, the only hospitals she delivered at were not.  I had come to a place where I felt so confident in the plan that I had created for our little girl's arrival that I felt extreme anxiety over the idea of delivering anywhere else with anyone else.  After exploring all of the options, I had my midwife recommend an OB within her practice that is contracted to be able to deliver at one of our in-network hospitals.

God truly humbled me when Eric and I met Dr. Stroud - he was kind, easy going, patient and was not only willing to accommodate my birth plan but was truly excited to be a part of it.  As he would be on vacation during my 39th and 40th week of pregnancy, Dr. Stroud recommended that I continue to see my midwife, but said that as long as he was available, whether on call or not, he would be present to deliver our baby.

After the next solid two weeks of tons of pressure and regular unprogressive contractions, I was more than eager to see my midwife last Tuesday, June 5th.  When she checked me, I was 4 centimeters and 90% effaced.  When I explained to her how uncomfortable I was and how little I had been sleeping with the steady contractions I was having, she asked me if I would like her to get things started by having her strip my membranes. 

By 1:30, I was timing contractions at work - every three minutes and lasting over a minute each.  Eric came to the Y and we called Dr. Stroud, who suggested we head up to have him check me again in the office.  He checked me at 5 centimeters, encouraged us to go walk around for a while and then head up to the hospital to check in.  Two hours at the mall with steady contractions, and we checked in at the hospital, optimistic, only to find I was still just 5 centimeters.  The hospital staff would have checked me in, but I didn't feel right about being there, so we checked out and headed home.

At 3:30 am, I woke up and immediately knew that this time was different - there is no mistaking active labor.  I allowed myself three contractions to make sure it was the real deal before calling our doula to ask her at what point we should head up to the hospital.  After suggesting we go ahead and make our way, Eric fed the dogs, I packed up a few things and we were on our way.  Around 4:30, we checked in at the hospital and made our way to a triage room only to have my water break as soon as I got into a gown.  Our family friend and doula, Cindy, showed up a couple minutes later, and after checking me at 5 centimeters still, the nurses checked me into a labor and delivery room. 

It's amazing how time can fly by when you're in pain, but the next couple of hours were a blur.  I remember sitting up in bed for quite a while, with relief coming at the hands of my wonderful husband pushing on the small of my back with each contraction.  Cindy encouraged me to lay on my left side to bring on stronger contractions, and bring them on it did.  After a few of those, I decided that was enough.  At one point, the nurse and Cindy were out of the room and I felt a strong urge to push; Eric ran out of the room to get someone and when they got back, the nurse checked me again and I was 8 centimeters - not ready to push, just in transition.  At some point shortly after that, my mom arrived.  I was on my side and contractions were hard, but with Eric holding one hand and Cindy holding my other, coaching me into relaxing my body, I was able to close my eyes and breathe my way through them.

At this point, Dr. Stroud, who had not been on call, arrived at the hospital and checked me.  With a little surprise in his voice, he announced that it was time to push.  With lights dimmed, Josh Garrels playing on my laptop in the background, and with the calm, gentle persuasion of Dr. Stroud, Eric and Cindy, Lucy Rae made her way into the world about 5 minutes later at 7:48 am.  They immediately placed her on my chest and I just felt so incredibly overwhelmed with love for this little one; a love that has only continued to grow over the last several days.  She is the most beautiful thing I have ever laid my eyes on and is absolutely perfect.

I feel so incredibly blessed that God gave my body the ability to bring our little girl into this world in such a calm, beautiful, natural way.  It is through this experience that I fully understand how Eve was the crowning jewel of God's creation - the way he designed us as women and the physical abilities he has given us just amaze me.  Our wedding day was a wonderful day, but giving birth to our daughter was the most incredible, empowering thing I have ever done and made for a day that I will absolutely never forget.

This entry was posted on Sunday, June 10, 2012. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response.

2 Responses to “A Birth Story”

  1. Congratulations, Lauren! You are so right, having a baby the way Eve did is the most miraculous and empowering experience you will every have. The births of my three children are my most precious memories. Enjoy your perfect little girl, and give her a welcome to the world kiss from her cousin Sue!.

  2. This is a beautiful story, thank you for sharing. And congrats on your darling baby girl!! I wish you and your little family the best!