Caroline’s birth story

We were all so ready to meet Coco.  We had been ready for weeks.  Looking back I probably set myself up for disappointment focusing on the fact that William was three weeks early and this was our fourth baby, so you do the math…she was obviously going to come out early.  Right?

Sort of.

I’ll admit that the last few weeks of my pregnancy with Caroline were humbling.  Of course my doctor {who I think the world of} also convinced me that baby would come early.  So for weeks I walked around ready to go, 4 cm dilated with baby at a +2 station.  {+4 = baby’s head is out.}  With each appointment my doctor would remind me not to stay at home once labor had started because this was going to go fast.  I felt like a ticking time bomb.  So yes, I had my game face on.  Contractions came and went.  So did days and weeks.  All of the signs and symptoms were there.  And yes, we even went to the hospital once.  It was a false alarm.  With our fourth baby.  Cue the walk of shame.

two days before baby…photo credit, Henry

No matter, I perservered and kept all my ducks in a row, day after day after day. But really, a girl can only shave her legs for so many days in a row before the novelty wears off.  And it was getting to be exhausting making sure that everyday my house was in order, the laundry was done and my hair was somewhat presentable.  So it was tempting when at my last appointment my doctor discussed inducing me.  But I had a plan, and it involved doing things going naturally, without any interventions or meds.  Amazingly enough even the hormones couldn’t sway me.  So I said no.

Wednesday evening, ready for bed I went for one more potty break.  Low and behold I was bleeding and was pretty sure that my water had broken.  I was officially in labor despite the fact I had yet to feel any contractions.  {I never seem to have regular contractions until transition.  Hate me.}  Shortly after giving Alex a head’s up and calling my mom I realized that I not only had three-day hair, but greasy massage hair from my prenatal massage earlier that day.  Ack!  I let myself go for a couple of days and wouldn’t you know it…

At 3:30 am I woke Alex up, called the sitter and told my mom that we would meet her at the hospital.  We arrived at the triage room by 4:00 am where they checked me and found that I was a good 6.  Whew.  I’ll admit I was slightly worried that they would send us back home – again.

By 4:30 we were settled into our labor and delivery room and my doctor {who bless his heart was already there} checked me and said I was at 7.  He asked me one last time if I wanted any pain relief before he broke my water.  Nope.  You’ll be relieved to know that once my water was officially broken the contractions came on strong and before I knew it I was ready to push.

Looking back pushing was pretty funny.  The contractions weren’t nearly as intense as the transition contractions.  No more deep breathing and low-moaning.  My OB was great about telling me where the baby was and what I needed to do during each contraction.  Now there is pushing and there is PUSHING.  And while I know that a lot of women say they have the urge to push, I didn’t.  Nope.  I even sat through a few contractions.  But once I had my glasses back on {seriously, I was so focused that I just thought things were that fuzzy} I PUSHED.  I may have been relatively quiet through this last stage but on the last push when baby came out Alex claims that it’s very possible I woke up the entire fourth floor.

No matter, at 5:36 am, baby girl was here.

Immediately they placed Caroline on my chest and we just stared at one another.  Sizing each other up.  Falling in love.  Memorizing faces.  Of course Alex and I both nervously asked the questions neither one of us wanted to ask but must.  Does she look ok?  Is she ok?

She was and is perfect.

Baby girl.  6 pounds 6 ounces.  With the longest fingers and slender feet.  The most delicate features.  The sweetest little cry.

Alex was and continues to be amazing.  I know that the baby stage is not his favorite but he is such a good dad and husband.  And I love that we both love this family we are growing together and the adventures that we share together.

We were both so thankful that my mom was there.

I couldn’t have dreamt up a better labor and delivery.  It was a beautiful ending to the pregnancy/labor and delivery phase of this mama’s life.  It was amazing.

The rest of the day was a flurry of visitors coming to meet our sweet baby.

But the obvious highlight was when the boys met their sister for the first time.

Already it’s been three weeks and we can’t imagine our lives without sweet baby Caroline.  Sure we’re exhausted.  There have been meltdowns.  Some of us are more weepy than others, but we’re doing it.

It’s official, we’re all smitten.


One thought on “Caroline’s birth story

  1. I laughed, I cried, I too was humbled. Good reminder that no birth goes as expected (as in assuming she’d be early – I have fallen into that trap!). I totally relate to that twinge of fear right after the birth, hoping everything is “okay.” Ah, God bless you guys. She’s a beauty and a nice balance to your boys!

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