Hi friends, how are you?
So if you have been following along with me for a while now, you probably know that I posted a YouTube video on Lily’s birth and my labour story a while back. but I thought it would be really beneficial for me to write it down in words so I can look back and read over it. I feel like as much as a sit down talking YouTube video is good; It can put you a tad on the spot. For me, writing in actual words has always given me a greater sense of clarity.
So I guess I’ll jump in.
To start; I’m going to say this: even though I am young and my circumstances aren’t what others may perceive as ideal, Lily was in no way a mistake. I am an educated adult woman and I understand the consequences of having sex without birth-control. I have always always always wanted to be a mom, and when I found out I was expecting I didn’t feel hindered, I felt empowered. I was scared of course, but I knew that this was going to be the most beautiful thing that has ever ever happened to me. There were times throughout my pregnancy where I had self-doubt in my ability, but it was never about being a mother: it was about staying true to myself.
I found out I was pregnant at three weeks. I’m very in tune with my body and one day I was at work and I decided to stop at the gas station on my lunch break and pick up a pregnancy test. My period had not even been late yet, The reason I knew I was pregnant was because I was so out of breath going up and down the stairs at work, and my finger nails were growing like crazy.
I peed on the test at work, and I remember sitting on the stairs looking down and seeing the faintest second pink line. It was faint enough that when I sent a picture to Sam, he thought it was a negative. I knew it wasn’t. I always pee like a crazy amount while not pregnant – so when I got home I took about five more tests – i peed so much that two of them came up negative because they didn’t have enough hormone concentrated in the urine anymore to even detect it. We went to the walk in clinic the following day , did a urine test and it came up negative as well. Sam was sure it was a mistake but I was convinced that I was pregnant. I got the order for blood work and went to the clinic. I remember texting my dad from the clinic telling him I was pregnant but that’s a whole other story….
Once we got the blood work back it was confirmed a little bean was on the way.
My whole life I have felt a little bit empty inside and I never understood why. That feeling went away the instant I found out I was carrying lily. Almost as if my family wasn’t complete until then. Like the past 21 years had been spent with me missing a piece and life decided to finally fill it.
I had one of the hardest pregnancies. Worse than I could have imagined. I Suffered with severe HG and for those of you who know what that is yikes right? For those of you who don’t let’s just say this; I pretty much lived in the hospital,had to take sick leave from work, and my middle name was bedrest.
I carried rounder anyone else I have ever seen. This Isn’t an exaggeration; looked like I swallowed a bowling ball.
Picture for reference:
Despite being five feet tall and 100 pounds, I managed to grow a big Buddha belly!
Towards the end of my pregnancy I was ready to have this baby OUT. It was so hot last summer and I was a literal watermelon. I can’t tell you how many times I got asked if I was having multiples… at one point by OB sent me for an extra ultrasound just to make sure I wasn’t because I was carrying 8 weeks AHEAD of schedule …
Every body is different, mamas….
I always thought I would be shit scared of birth, but once I got there I was just ready. Something so instinctual just kicks in. Your body knows what to do and you just have to allow your mind to follow.
I spent hours envisioning what my story would be, but I now realize you can’t plan out these things at all. You don’t need to. You’ve been built for this your whole life.
Because of my HG, I had multiple scares for pre term labour, and got admitted to the hospital maaannny times. When I finally reached full term, I felt SO relieved. I knew she was ready to meet me, and I was sure has hell ready to meet her!
When I got checked on the Tuesday of my 38 week appointment, I was already fully enfaced and 2cm dilated. I had been having cramps and feeling like crap so this made me super happy.
I knew the pain was progressive! It had meaning. My body wasn’t just being a lil biaatchh, but it was really truly working with me to get me my baby!
It made me feel really content. I went home and spent the next two days drinking my read leaf tea and bouncing on my exercise ball.
Fast forward to Thursday night: I felt exhausted all day. I was so tired I knew. Contractions for me in early labor were the exact same as period cramps ( I get bad periods ouch). It was uncomfortable but not unbearable. I remember trying to time them on an app but it was too iffy and I got annoyed and gave up. I read a book, I ate some fruit, and I *attempted* to go to bed.
I’ve never been a good sleeper, but yikes this night was rough. I remember laying there trying to embrace my contractions as they happened, but it’s in our nature to curl from pain. I remember telling myself; tonight’s the night lily: we CAN do this. You need to let mommy get some rest before we start.
I literally said that, not figuratively.
I always talked to lily in my belly. She’s been a mommas girl from the very beginning; always kicking me in the ribs when I call 😉.
I told her out loud I needed to rest; and for some odd miracle: SHE LISTENED.
She selttled into her place deep down in my pubic bone; and this mama slept till 4am. I remember waking up twice with some bad pains, but I was so exhausted I let them come and go and just tried to fall back asleep.
When I woke up at four; I knew knew it was time. I remember going pee, and there was blood.
I know this is common for some woman throughout the course of their pregnancy; but not me. I hadn’t spotted once. I knew it was lily telling me she was ready to get out!
Sam drove me to the hospital, and we checked in right after 5.
When the OB checked my cervix, I was fully enfaced and dilated to a 5. The pain was starting to become intense. I wanted to hold off on an epidural, so I opted for laughing gas. I did not enjoy. It made me feel high not pain free. I continued through contractions in the hospital bed, walking around the room, and waiting to be checked again.
When the OB came back in an re assessed me, I was in a lot of pain. I was exhausted. He recommended I get a light doses epidural, and I agreed on the basis that I have a very high drug tolerance and wasn’t scared to be numb. At this point my cervix was dilated to just over a 7, and they administered the epidural.
I was numb for a bit, but within 20 minutes I could feel myself again. The epidural allowed me to finish dilating without over working myself, but by the time it was pushing time, I could feel all my contractions.
I am super grateful to have been able to guide myself through labour. My OB tried to tell me when to push and I told her, ” I got this, we know what we’re doing” and by we, I mean lily and I.
Lily lead the way and I followed. My internal instinct took over as my legs were pulled tucked up and in full birthing mode.
Primary care literally left the room in between my pushes because it was going so smoothly. Within two pushes I got her head out, and I remember when sam told me he could see her hair, I got annoyed because I thought he was bullshitting me!
“You’re not just saying that!! She’s comming?!”
That gave me all the endorphins I needed. Screw drugs. There’s NO better high than taking control over your body and embracing this process.
I could feel her coming out, but not in a painful way, in a way that was like “GET THE F OUT OF ME YOU’RE TOO BIG OUCH”
All of a sudden, this little five pound baby was put on my chest.
I remember feeling like we had did it. We worked together, me and my daughter, to get here. This very moment. Like everything I’ve ever done finally made sense.
There is no greater clarity than seeing yourself in someone else’s eyes.
The birth had gone so well. I had two internal tears that healed within a few weeks, and I had never felt more empowered with myself
I have to be honest with you guys, I didn’t connect with lily the way I expected to right off the bat. I was overwhelmed, I was exhausted, and apart of me felt super lost. I was sad at myself for not feeling this instant connection. It wasn’t until we got home and made ourselves into a family that I felt a shift.
I actually remember the exact moment: it was one of the first times I had really been alone alone with lily, and I was not sure how I was going to feel in response. I remember staring into her little eyes while she nursed from me, and crying onto her perfect little head thinking “it’s me and you forever”
I never could have imagined the love to follow. The love that grows everyday. It’s astonishing to me how much your heart can feel for one individual. Everyday I spend with lily, my heart grows bigger and bigger.
I thought she was made for me to guide and teach,
But really, she was put into this world to teach me. In 8 months of being a mom, i never could have imagined the transformations that have taken place.
When I think back on my birth, I feel exhilarated. It makes me want to relive that moment again and again because it really was the beginning of two new lives.
To any moms scared of giving birth or carrying a baby, I can promise you this:
no one else was designed to carry your baby except for you. You’re not in this alone (even if you have a partner or spouse) because your baby CHOOSE YOU. they will lead you. You don’t need to be anxious, you don’t need to stress yourself out because regardless of the circumstances of any birthing story; it’s YOURS. Own it. Embrace it. Celebrate it. Not a single person can experience YOUR experience – make it the best one possible for yourself.
If you’ve made it this far, thanks so much for taking the time to read my birth story!
Talk soon friends,