Sidney’s Birth Story
Today is Sidney’s official due date! She decided to come 10 days early (August 6th) and is a happy and healthy baby! I wanted to share our baby girl birth story in case anyone can relate. And although every birth story is different, I’m hoping I can help prepare you first time mamas with a glimpse of what a birth experience is really like! Here’s the story…
The 3 Mile Walk That Induced Labor
Our baby girl birth story all started on Sunday evening. Dan really wanted to go to the Amazon bookstore to pick out a book for our nephew’s birthday. So he bribed me with Jenis ice cream. Even though it is about a 3 mile round trip, we decided to walk. I was 38 weeks +2 days pregnant, but I felt good enough to walk slowly and get some exercise and fresh air.
That evening, I started having light cramps, but thought they were those fake Braxton Hicks contractions that prepare your body for labor. Monday morning, the cramps were still happening, and I saw a little bleeding when I went to the toilet. Dan decided to work from home, so we used the opportunity to get an oil change. We dropped the car off, headed to to nearby Starbucks, all the while I was in labor and didn’t even realize it.
Throughout the day the cramps kept getting stronger. Eventually getting to the point that I called my mom. And she said to start timing how far apart the contractions were, just in case I was really in labor. When the cramps were so painful that they woke me up at midnight, I sat in the living room while watching The Great British Baking Show (my recent Netflix obsession). Timing my contractions until they were 1 minute long and 5 minutes apart for about an hour. By that point, I woke Dan up at 2am and told him it was time to go to the hospital!
Labor, The Epidural, And Pushing
We got to triage around 2:30am where Dan had to help me check in because I couldn’t speak through the contractions. Then went up to labor and delivery at 3:30 am. I got my epidural at 5am, which was such a lifesaver because by that point I was 5 cm dilated and the contractions were strong! I progressed about centimeter an hour until about 11 am when my doctor arrived and I started pushing!
Pushing wasn’t so bad. I’ve heard horror stories about women who were in labor for 30 hours and pushed for 5 hours. Thankfully, I didn’t have that experience at all. My mom gave me the advice to really really push every single time, which I took to heart and pushed with all my energy! Even though the epidural gets rid of the pain, you can still feel a lot of pressure – kind of like you have to take a really big poop. My doctor instructed me to push when I felt the strong urge, which was sometimes once every minute, and sometimes I had a 5 minute break between contractions/pushes. It was super exhausting, but I knew that they more I kept going the sooner I’d get to meet the baby!
The epidural also numbs your legs to the point that you can’t really feel them or move them properly. Dan held my left leg up, while the nurse held my right leg so that my pelvis would open enough to allow the baby to pass through. Dan had a nice playlist playing, and I was allowed to drink some ice water too.
Sidney Eileen Arrived at 12:09 pm!
After 1 hour of pushing, out came Sidney at 12:09pm! I was so surprised that it went so quickly. She was totally covered in goo, but when they put her on my chest I was so happy and relieved. I couldn’t even believe that this little being who had been in my belly for so long was now in my arms! After a bit of cuddling, they took her to weigh and measure her and clean up a little while my OB delivered the placenta and fixed whatever needed to be fixed down there. Dan and I both did some skin to skin bonding. Then anesthesia came to take out the epidural. By 2 PM we were already in the postpartum recovery room!
My little Sidney peanut weighs 6lb 7 oz, is 19 inches long. She has a shock of dark hair, and is simply perfect. I was really scared of the whole labor and delivery experience. But looking back, it was very natural and such an interesting and intuitive process. My doctor and the nurses at the hospital took such good care of us and answered all our questions about breastfeeding, perineal care, swaddling, diapering, bathing, etc.
How I’m Feeling 10 Days After Giving Birth
I won’t lie, the first couple days after delivering Sidney felt like I got hit by a bus and then sat on some dynamite. But I feel exponentially better every day. Now that I’m 10 days out, I’m able to walk for longer periods and I noticed my uterus is contracting and shrinking a bit more every day. I still look slightly pregnant. But I can tie my shoes, see my toes, and can eat spicy food without getting crazy heartburn. I sometimes thought that I would miss the baby bump, but having her in my arms is SO much better. AND I have the most beautiful baby in the world! When I look at her, hold her, think of her, all the pain goes away. I’d do it again 100 times over.
Dan is helping me heal by making sure I don’t do too much housework, lift anything heavy other than the baby (although she’s not heavy haha), and that I get enough sleep. He is already such a natural at fatherhood with all the diapers, singing, rocking, holding, and making sure Sidney has all her needs taken care of.
I’ve always loved him, but this whole experience has made me love him even more! Who knew that was even possible. When we met (at 15 years old) I never imagined that 16 years later we would be announcing I was pregnant, and now, welcoming Sidney into our lives. It has been a whirlwind of emotions and certainly a high that has kept me going when Sidney keeps us up at night. It’s a fairytale I’m living and breathing, and I know I’m so lucky. Thank you for allowing me to share our baby girl birth story with you!
Do you have any questions about labor and delivery? I’m happy to answer them!