Monday, July 16, 2012

Ethan's Birth Story


I finally got Ethan's birth story together.  I decided to keep this all in one post, so sorry for the length, but of course I want to remember all of these details!


The last time we talked pregnancy, I left you all on Monday, June 25th with my 40 week update.  Baby was five days overdue and the induction cloud was looming.  I was to be induced that coming Wednesday, the 27th, which was not ideal.  I really hoped to experience certain aspects of labor, like feeling my first pang of labor, timing contractions at home with my husband and allowing baby to come on his own accord.  However, I had not felt one Braxton Hick and had shown no progress at my 40 week appointment...still about 1 cm dilated, so I had become pretty defeated.

Some time during Sunday night, I had a hard time falling asleep and started feeling some cramping...similar to menstrual cramps.  When I woke up Monday morning, they were still there, but nothing to write home about.  I had an acupuncture appointment that morning, ate lunch at my favorite lunch spot, Freshies, and then got a pedicure...stressing that I wanted a nice long foot rub!  ;)  Ryan got home from work around 6 and we went on our usual walk around the neighborhood.  I told him about the cramping and as we were walking it seemed to get stronger and come in waves.  Even though I was sure that these were not labor pains, I thought they were coming regularly enough to at least time...for fun if nothing else!  So we got home and we started timing them as I bounced on the birthing ball...and low and behold, they were actually quite regular!  Coming about every 5-10 minutes and getting stronger.  I'm telling you...they felt like a super strong menstrual cramp...nothing like the tightening I thought they would be.  I still wasn't sure if this was really it...they came on so quickly that it seemed impossible I was actually going into labor.  Plus I've heard women experience "pre-labor" pains many days in advance.  

However, I found that the "bloody show" had also come along, which scared me enough to give the hospital a call and see if we should head on in.  They told us that it wasn't a bad idea to have me checked out, so on we went to the hospital at about 10 pm that Monday night.  We got checked in and sure enough, those cramps were contractions after all!  Yipee!!  I was SOO excited that my body decided to go into labor on its own and that we would get to meet our son soon.  But, I was shocked to learn that I was still only about 1 cm dilated and 75% effaced!  So after walking the halls to no avail, we decided to go home and labor through the night as opposed to staying at the hospital.  

We got home around 1am and the contractions got WAY stronger and WAY faster...I took some hot showers and tried to stay distracted, but it was pretty miserable.  When those contractions hit, there was literally no mercy!!  So by 5:30 am on Tuesday, June 26th, I cried Uncle and back we went.  Luckily, I had progressed to about 2 cm dilated and we were told we could stay!  I couldn't believe we would get to meet our son that day!


I opted for the epidural around 9:30 am and it was pure heaven on earth!  I could actually relax and get some rest, which was nice since I got none the night before.  However, it did slow my contractions down and once they started administrating the pitocin, the baby's heart rate would drop every time a contraction would come around.  By 1pm, I was only 4 cm dilated and baby's heart rate wasn't doing any better.  The nurse {who I absolutely loved, by the way!} told me that I should dilate about 1 cm an hour and would hope to push by 7pm that night, but it was all dependent on how the baby's heart rate was, and unfortunately, they couldn't hurry things along due to the fragile balance of pitocin to baby's heart rate.  The nurse believed that the umbilical cord was probably wrapped around baby's neck which was causing the drop in heart rate.  A c-section was mentioned a couple times, but there was no push for it yet.  I prayed that his little heart beat would stabilize so that we could avoid the c-section.  I think the most frustrating aspect was knowing that I couldn't do anything to help things along, since the epidural prevented me from walking.  I will say, that the epidural was nice though because I could still feel my legs, wiggle my toes, and move from side to side.  At some point, the doctor broke my water, but not much fluid came out.  They then decided to insert the heart monitor to the baby's head to get a better read on his heart rate.  An amnio infusion was also administered to help with my fluid level.  I had shifted sides all day long to see if one side would help more than the other.  Ironically, around 5pm, I finally laid flat on my back and that's when the magic happened.

Suddenly baby's heart rate stabilized and my contractions became regular!  The nurse checked me and said I was about 6 cm dilated...progress!  And this is where is gets crazy.  I started really feeling the contractions again, which was actually kind of comforting because all was going well again.  I asked the nurse to adjust the epidural because it was starting to hurt and another hour went by.  Well, I still felt them but wasn't too worried, I mean, I had the epidural going after all.  Oh man, how wrong I was.  

I started feeling some strong tail bone pain and had a strong urge to bear down...like no joke, I wanted to run to the bathroom!  Ryan called the nurse back in and told her what I was feeling.  When she went in to check my progress I literally screamed in pain.  I.felt.everything!  And guess what, I was 9cm going on 10 and the nurse said it was time to push!  WHAATT?!  I wasn't ready and I was sure I wasn't supposed to feel pain!!  She tried to up the epidural again, but told Ryan to grab a leg...it was pushing time!

I pushed for about an hour and 15 minutes...I felt every contraction, felt the head with my hand as he started to come out and literally cried in sheer terror because I was so scared.  It was just Ryan on my left leg, the nurse on my right leg and the doctor.  Even though it wasn't what I expected...it was truly a surreal experience feeling my body push this little being out and getting amazing encouragement and support from my husband, nurse, and doctor.  My regular doctor wasn't on call that night, but the doctor who was, ended up being my hero...she was so patient and encouraging.  I am so grateful that she ended up being the one to deliver me.

Little Ethan Grant finally arrived at 7:19pm on June 26th, weighing in at 6 pounds 3 ounces and 19.5" long.  As suspected, the umbilical cord was wrapped around his neck and shoulder, which was immediately cut to relieve him.  The second they placed him on my chest I started bawling {I am just crying right now thinking about it}.  I got to see his sweet face for the first time and I stared at my husband who was also sobbing tears of joy.  We did it!  We finally got to meet our son and he was the most perfect little thing that I had ever seen.  My heart swelled up a million times over...I've never known love like this before.

  
The next moments are all a blur.  Due to the umbilical cord being tied around his neck, the doctor had to cut the cord immediately upon his arrival.  Because of this, he did not get the blood flow and oxygen that babies normally get as they transition from the womb to the real world.  As a result, his lungs struggled and he was grunting, instead of crying.  The nurses checked him out...gave me some more skin to skin time, hoping this would help him regulate, but unfortunately, he had to be whisked to the nursery for help.  Ryan went with him but it was such a vulnerable moment to meet my son and then watch him leave so soon after.  We didn't get the bonding time to breast feed like I had hoped and then I was so scared that something was terribly wrong with him.  I've never felt more scared in my whole life.  

Here he is with his little IV in his hand.

Ryan came back in, with tears in his eyes, to tell me that everything was going to be ok, but the baby would be staying then night in the nursery, which just broke both our hearts.  Luckily, Ethan latched on like a champ the very next morning and his vitals improved drastically over night.  It was very scary and humbled me in many ways...but I am so thankful he is happy and healthy.


It's definitely been a whirlwind these last couple of weeks, but I wouldn't change a thing.  We have a healthy baby boy in our arms and we love him like nothing we've ever known before.

xo natasha

70 comments:

  1. I just shed a few tears reading this...what a story! So happy to hear everyone is home and doing well.

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  2. what a story! he is SO beautiful.... so gorgeous!
    when emmy was born the cord was around her neck twice. all through labor there was no sign of distress, but when her head came out, my mom who was with me made a horrific face and i knew something was wrong. i thought i had delivered a dead baby and i was terrified. my dr stayed calm though.... she tried to get the cord off over her head, but that is when she saw it was around twice and she had to cut it. emmy started crying at that moment thank god! but she was so blue.... it was scary! we don't have any pics of her right away like we do of sawyer because i didn't want to remember how awful she looked. so many things can go wrong, but it's always ALWAYS worth the chance!

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  3. Loved reading Eathan's birth story! What an exciting and scary moment that day must have been for you. I am so happy that he is healthy! He is so stinking cute!!

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  4. What a beautiful story Natasha. Thanks so much for sharing. What a darling little love you have:) Keep up the good work.

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  5. Beautiful story! I can so relate. It took me forever to diliate as well! Loved hearing every detail and I am so glad Ethan is healthy and happy. That is so scary about the umblicial cord. You amaze me how gorgeous you look in all your hospital pictures, I looked like a tired hot mess!

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  6. Loved reading your story! What a trooper, both of you!

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  7. I am crying--haha. Beautiful story and so so glad he is okay. That is so so scary about the umbilical cord!! But--you do look beautiful in these photos! :)

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  8. Great story. Another slow dialater her and I also got pitocin. Oh and my epidural made my legs go numb but later not anything from the thighs up. I felt everything!

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  9. What a beautiful story! So glad Baby Ethan is here and well :)

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  10. crazy how your best laid plans change when labor time comes, huh?? it's funny how that happens, but definitely lets us know someone else is in control and will take care of us ;)

    such a wonderful birth story friend!!! and you'll have this written so you can share with ethan one day, too!!

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  11. Your birth story brought me to tears-having a baby in 7 weeks and reading as many birth stories as I have I have never teared up but yours did it! :) he is beautiful and so happy everything turned out okay

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  12. I loved reading this! You make me feel much more confident especially because it is totally worth all the pain in the end! Thanks for sharing your story!

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  13. Beautiful story! It brought tears to my eyes. So happy for you and your little family!

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  14. what a great story!!! I love thinking back to that day as well but mine was the opposite my epidural was so strong I couldn't feel any pressure or pushing. Cannot believe you felt it all ahhhhh so crazy but I'm sure it was incredible!!! So glad he is happy and healthy, praise God!

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  15. Omg crying! What a beautiful story, and you are a champ! I too wanted to go into labor on my own, but a week later they had to induce (I wasn't too surprised since I was so late as a baby). I did go through labor and pushing ... but my Max had to come out c-section. He has quite a melon head, so I'm wondering if that is the reason. :) I feel your pain on not getting time with baby that night. Max had to go to the NICU for the night.

    Loved your story!
    Tara
    http://madmaxandfamily.blogspot.com
    http://blog.chron.com/madabouttown/

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  16. Oh my goodness Natasha, I am tearing up just reading this! I am so happy for you guys, and I show enjoyed reading your birth story! Can't wait to meet him :)

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  17. What a great birth story, lil Ethan is so lucky to have a mama like you!!! Thanks for sharing, I love reading these:)

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  18. This is beautiful :) I can't believe you felt it all! wow!! you are a warrior!

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  19. Love your birthing story!! Congratulations, it sounds like you did an amazing job!!

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  20. I can't believe you still felt everything with an epidural!! Great birth story, congratulations!

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  21. Oh my gosh Natasha. What an incredible birth story! I am so proud of you and how you handled it! I knew you could do it! And although it must have been hard to spend that first night without him, I am glad he's okay...and now you're home with him and everything is wonderful! :) Thanks so much for sharing with us! xoxo

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  22. Beautiful story, Natasha! Congratulations on the new baby boy!

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  23. I loved reading this and thanks for letting me know what a real contraction feels like--a menstral cramp--because I had no idea. I'm sure I will be emailing you with more q's as my concern rises as the weeks progress.

    But oh my gosh, I'm so so happy for you and your little family. Ethan is just so darn cute and I love all the pictures of him on this post. :)

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  24. Such a beautiful baby! Sure does bring back memories, especially of our oldest's birth.

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  25. What a story!!!! ENjoy your little Ethan (love the name BTW!!!)

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  26. I found your blog about a month ago and just love it! Such a great story (although I'm sure it's not how you imagined it). Congratulations!!!

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  27. I loved reading your ethan's birth story - so happy for your little family! did they ever figure out what was wrong with your epidural? Poor thing - but way to get through it!!

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  28. I just teared up.. that was beautiful. I'm sorry it didn't go as you had planned but thankful everything is ok. I remember being uncertain of my contractions when they first started also. Thankfully, they slowly grow over time. I can't imagine delivering without an epidural though. I tried to go natural but after twelve hours of labor and no sleep I gave in. So the delivery for me was painless.

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  29. He's absolutely perfect...and so handsome! (PS - you look FANTASTIC after giving birth!) Enjoy it doll! They grow way too fast!

    Chelsea
    www.hautechildinthecity.com

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  30. Such a sweet story!! I'm so grateful everyone is healthy and happy!

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  31. Wow Natasha, what a journey. You are so truly blessed to be able to share your life with that darling little boy. I am so happy that he is happy and healthy now. How lucky he is to have you both! What a sweet story that you'll never forget.

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  32. Oh Natasha! What a beautiful story. You made me tear up, I am so happy for you--way to go!!!! So happy Ethan is doing well:)

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  33. Oh Natasha! What a beautiful story. You made me tear up, I am so happy for you--way to go!!!! So happy Ethan is doing well:)

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  34. Beautiful story, Natasha! So glad he got here safe even w the cord around his neck -scary! Love the photos, can't wait to watch that peanut grow!

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  35. What a beautiful story!!! And what a beautiful little guy! Congratulations Momma!

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  36. Ethans birth story is so beautifully written! I def teared up during your scary moment, I know exactly how you felt! Thats great that the next day he could bf!! :)

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  37. What a sweet story, made me tear up! That picture with his tiny IV breaks my heart, so thankful that he is healthy and well. Congratulations again, Natasha, he is so so sweet and perfect!

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  38. I loved reading this, so interesting how the epidural didn't work/worked at the same time, but thats awesome that you got to feel the push & everything. I have a weird feeling i'm going to back labor & feel menstraul cramps rather than contractions! but we will see :) So glad you didn't have to do a c-section...scary!!

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  39. Thanks for sharing such a beautiful birth story! So glad to hear that Ethan is happy and healthy!

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  40. What an amazing story! I just cried and cried!
    I remember wanting to run to the bathroom too. It was right before I got the epidural, and I just wanted to squat down on the bathroom floor so badly. I'm glad I didn't because my water probably would have broken and I might not have gotten my epidural. : )
    So happy for you!

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  41. Such a great story!!! He is so beautiful (I know I keep saying that) and I am glad everything turned out ok!

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  42. What a beautiful story! Congrats Natasha!

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  43. Thank you for sharing all this hapiness with us! Congrats!

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  44. Great birth story!!! You are a CHAMP!!

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  45. OMG that gave me goosebumps and made me tear up! We are so happy that the little Schue family is intact and thriving! We can't wait to meet you Ethan!!

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  46. Love this story, so happy for you! I was definitely tearing up throughout the whole thing - so many emotions, and I am so happy everything with Baby E is going great! He is simply adorable! Can't believe I only have 6 weeks until I am at this point...crazy to think! Hope all is going well at home!

    xoxo,
    Brooke
    www.decorgreat.blogspot.com

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  47. I am so happy you were able to get all of these details down in this beautiful post. Such an amazing story. So happy all is well. What a sweet family. Love you girl {have fun with Amy!!!}

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  48. Tears of joy streaming down my face. Wow, what a great {and detailed} birth story for sweet Ethan! You will be SO glad you wrote all of this out. I am so glad Ethan is healthy and happy! Congrats again, and again, and again!

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  49. It's so much better to read this story knowing everything worked out and he is fine...I would've been petrified when they took him away! Thank goodness that he is a strong little guy and is just perfect! Such a great story...the labor and delivery never seems to go exactly as planned, but as long as our little ones are okay, it doesn't much matter!

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  50. What a beautiful story! Your little one is so precious!

    Almost makes me wanna have one, almost ;)

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  51. wow, thank you for sharing your beautiful story, Natasha. the entire experience is such a miracle...and what a sweet blessing Ethan is. he is just precious. I bet you are soaking up every minute with your little man.

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  52. Wow! Unbelievable. Such an amazing story Natasha. I had tears when you had tears in the part about looking at your husband and having your baby close to your heart. You are blessed.

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  53. Wow. You had me tears through his entire Birth Story. Congrats again! Your family of 3 is perfect! :)

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  54. Roomie! We've come a long way from sierra madre 12J! This was a beautiful story, what a lucky little man to have you as a mommy!!

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  55. What a wonderful birth story! I am so glad you and your sweet little one are doing great now. I think I would have freaked, like big time if my epidural wore off so MAJOR kuddos to you girl!! I am loving your Mama Posts from all the guest bloggers too!

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  56. Ok... I'm bawling. What a sweet story! I'm so proud of you for being such a strong momma!!!! And I can't believe you felt everything- YOU GO, GIRL! Thank you so much for sharing : )

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  57. I loves reading this! I had no idea you went through such a long labor! I can't believe the Epi wore off!!! You are tough, girl! So glad Ethan is healthy. That must have been scary and hard to deal with. I was bummed B didn't get to nurse right away too. Next time I guess!

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  58. Tears. I had my daughter the same day at 5:52pm. She also had a hard time transitioning, but thankfully didn't have to leave our sides. After a little over an hour, she was breathing perfectly. Congrats to you! Isnt this the most ahhh-mazing thing ever??

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  59. This brought tears to my eyes. Such an amazing story. You guys look so happy :)

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  60. This brought tears to my eyes. Such an amazing story. You guys look so happy :)

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  61. I teared up just reading this! What a wonderful way to remember his entrance into the world! I'm so glad that he was okay the next morning!

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  62. awww so beautiful Natasha! its been so nice following you through this journey!!! Lots of love to you and your family xo

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  63. Gah this story made me cry!!! I'm so incredibly happy for you and Ryan. It's been so awesome to see you transition from meeting to starting dating to married with a happy little family!

    I always wondered if labor pains felt like really bad cramps... so glad you explained it. :)

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  64. I am so glad I got to read your birth story tonight!
    I definitely needed a heartwarming story like this!
    Everything sounded like it went perfectly just for you and baby Ethan! Even with the little scares along the way, it shows you how unconditional your love and bond is with lil Ethan already ;) He is just so adorable! That little face kills me! You look great in these pics too! Still glowing ;)

    Congrats again on a beautiful birthing journey!

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  65. Such a sweet story! It really is such a miracle, isn't it? Ethan is such an adorable baby and I know you must be in heaven every moment! So happy for you!

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