August 10, 2018

Personal | Easton’s Birth Story

I wasn’t sure I was going to share this story because it has been 8 months. However, I know I will want to look back and relive this, so, here we go! Let me preface this by saying, yes, I am a planner by nature. Yes, I had a birth plan but I also understood that my birth plan may go out the window if the situation deemed that necessary. My ideal birth was for contractions to start at home, labor for as long as I could at home, and attempt a natural birth. Now let’s talk about what really happened…

I believe it was Friday, November 17th. Mitch was working and I called him to ask how work was going since a detective had been shot and killed the night before in the City. I asked about him being able to leave in case I went into labor. His response “only if you called me and told me your water broke”. Guys, no joke, a few hours later I was texting my friends asking what it was like when your water broke. I had felt something but it wasn’t the big gush I expected. Everyone told me to change my undies and if I was still wet to go in and get checked. I was fine and dry. I wrote it off as just peeing myself (pregnancy is so glamorous, right?!) The next few days I would have some fluid but I told myself I had a check-up coming up and I would mention it to my doctor.

Wednesday, November 22nd (the day before Thanksgiving): Mitch gets off of work in the AM and asks me if he needs to come to this doctors appointment since he was exhausted. “Nah, it should just be a quick check-up. However, when I get home I want to go out for a huge breakfast since I just had a bowl of oatmeal and that’s not cutting it”. Off to the doctor’s I went for my weekly check-up. The medical assistant asks me about any fluids and I told her I was pretty sure I was peeing myself but thought I should mention it, just in case. My doctor walks in and asks about the fluids again. She literally typed my response in my file “she is 78% sure she is peeing herself” and was chuckling as she did the test to see what kind of fluid it was. Well, once the paper test revealed it was amniotic fluid she quickly changed from laughing to serious. (CRAP) She asked me how long it had been going on and then told me to put my clothes back on while she makes some phone calls over to the hospital (wait, what?)….she tells me my first stop is over to ultrasound to have my fluid levels checked.

Y’all this is where a seasoned mom would say “you’re going to have a baby, you better carb load” but noooooo my naive first time Mom self was all “I am just getting checked” (insert eye roll). I called Mitch letting him know to “not freak out but…” and explained what was going on. I went to ultrasound, fluids looked good. GREAT–can I go home now? I’m hungry. Nope, they sent me to L&D for monitoring. They hook me up and the nurse keeps asking me if I have had high blood pressure my entire pregnancy. Uh, nope. But I have a strong inkling it might have to do with the situation I am currently in. After laying there for a while the midwife on call takes me to an exam room. Apparently the test my doctor performed is only around 50% accurate so they wanted to perform another test to confirm it was amniotic fluid. Test was done and I walk back across the hall to my monitoring room. No sooner had I laid back on the bed a small army of people enter my room. Laptops are rolled in, wristbands are being checked, and finally I asked “what was going on?”. “Oh, sweetie that was definitely amniotic fluid. You are having this baby, today”. I very calmly turned to the nurse who had been monitoring my blood pressure and asked her to not look at it right now because I knew it was going to be elevated after that news…

Fun fact: as all of this was going on I had been texting some friends and family. It was calming my mind to keep everyone up to date. However, when I got to the monitoring room I no longer had service. Everyone was trying to get a hold of me and I had no idea. Whoops! My poor husband went about an hour wondering what was going on with his pregnant wife, should he be packing his bags or would I be home soon, should he let the family know? Anyway….I get wheeled over to my room and my phone is blowing up, nurses are coming in, IVs are started, and everyone is asking me a million questions (and all I kept thinking about was “I had this written out in a birth plan and now I can barely remember my name but sure, Vitamin K sounds great”). After some of the chaos dies down, Mitch realizes I have been admitted and we are having this baby; it is just my nurse and I in the room. She is staring at the strips and asks me “do you feel that?”. Nope. She was about to start my Pitocin and realizes that I am contracting on my own and I couldn’t feel it. They still push the Pitocin since it has been a few days with slowly leaking water and they didn’t want to risk an infection to the baby. I honestly couldn’t even tell they had started the Pitocin. Truly. A male doctor came in to check my progress and right after he left I turned to my nurse and said “my god, that doctor’s fingers are much larger than my tiny Asian doctor”. We both crack up and all I kept thinking was “blah, labor is no big deal, I got this!”. I am so cute and naive.

Mitch arrives. Exhausted. Frantic. He didn’t sleep the night before at work. He didn’t expect me to have this baby for another 2 weeks. We hadn’t finished all the projects on the house we said we were going to finish before Easton arrived. My mother in law was 3/4 of the way through her drive down to FL to have Thanksgiving with some family members (bless her heart, she literally spent 14 hours in the car driving down there, pulled in their driveway, said hello, got back in the car, drove to the airport, and landed in Baltimore 1 hour before Easton made his arrival. She is the true MVP.) and my parents were hosting Thanksgiving for 20+ people at their house. None of this was the way we had anticipated his birth to go!

After awhile that same male doctor came back and said my doctor wanted my water broken. Ok, cool. Let’s do this. Weirdest sensation ever but it was done. And then bless the Lord above that is when LABOR started. My water was acting as a barrier so I couldn’t feel any contractions. Without that barrier the whole situation went from zero to 60. It was the most painful thing I have ever felt. I was annoyed that they were pushing fluids so I had to pee every 12 seconds and it was a royal pain to walk to the bathroom with my IV pole & all the other monitoring equipment and maneuver all that in a tiny space.  I was also BEGGING for food. These contractions were no joke and I had burned off that one bowl of oatmeal just sitting in the waiting room at my OB’s office. I was starving. I needed fuel. I didn’t have much more to give and these contractions were totally kicking my ass. I held on until 7cm. That’s when I waved the white flag and asked for the epidural. There was no more gas in the tank and I couldn’t imagine pushing if I had to make it through 3 more centimeters.

Epidural happened and it wasn’t as bad as I imagined. It gave me a chance to relax, I was able to talk to Mitch about who he had told and what our families game plans were, I felt more in control of my body again, I answered all my texts and, yes, even sent an email or two; I tried to nap. I was unsuccessful but I did try (that peanut ball is the devil and made sleep impossible). A few hours rolled by and I was at 10cm. The doctor was called and it was time to push.

I pushed for about an hour. (Note: I was so against using a mirror but it was SO helpful and I think he would have been out even faster if I used it right away) At 11pm on the dot, Easton Miles Reynolds cried for the very first time. He was placed on my chest and I think I was just dumbfounded that this was truly happening. After years of trying, nights of crying and praying, he was here. Our baby was finally here. If I can be honest, the majority of the time he was on my chest all I could do was stare at his eyebrows. I have no idea why but I was fixated on them! I couldn’t focus on anything else. When the nurse took him to get examined I shouted over to Mitch “does he have 10 fingers and 10 toes? I totally forgot to check” (Best Mom award goes to me!)

I feel like I blinked and he is 8 months old. Everything I just explained feels like it happened yesterday and 12 years ago all at the same time. Life is a little bit crazier, more unpredictable but filled with so much more love. It is pure joy watching Easton discover new things every day and watching my husband become a Dad has been truly one of the best blessing I have ever experienced. We love you Easton and you were worth every single extra step we had to take to have you! <3 (Many thanks to my friend, Brittany Thomas Photography, for his newborn photos and for loading my house with delicious food and great company!)

Easton Miles Reynolds
November 22, 2017 at 11pm
7 lbs, 5 oz, 21 inches

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