Now that Riley is almost one month old, it is time to write down her birth story while it is still fresh in my mind. It’s crazy how fast the details start to slip away and this post is mainly so that I can look back on these details. This is a long one, so I apologize ahead of time!
My doctors diagnosed me with gestational diabetes (which I had never had before) and because of my severe asthma decided I was a high-risk patient. This meant weekly appointments and ultrasounds with the high-risk doctor. They started measuring the baby regularly and decided that I was going to have a really large baby, measuring around nine and a half pounds. I have never had a big baby before, so I wasn’t sure this was accurate, but the doctors were adamant. She was also breech and not flipping pretty late in the game.
After weeks of wondering whether or not she would turn, the baby FINALLY flipped at 38 weeks to head down. The doctors were still trying to get me mentally prepared for a c-section due to her expected size and had discussed scheduling one prior when she was still breech. My high-risk doctors were saying that I had to deliver by 40 weeks, so my OB schedule my induction for 39 weeks and five days, bless her heart. However, I wasn’t dilating at all and I was still being mentally prepared for a large baby, possible c-section and long induction. Needless to say, I had a LOT of anxiety going into this.
Induction day was scheduled for Tuesday, September 5th. We spent the entire day waiting for a call from the hospital to come in and never heard a word. We decided to give up waiting and called it a day around 11. After falling asleep for 45 minutes or so, we got a call at 12:15 a.m. to come in as soon as possible. We stumbled out of bed, got my parents up to watch the kids and got to the hospital as fast as we could. When they started to check me, I was already contracting regularly, but was still not dilated even a centimeter. I got checked in and set up with Cervidil for at least eight hours.
I ended up on the Cervidil for twelve hours and didn’t dilate at all. I could feel the contractions regularly, but they weren’t doing anything yet. The doctor gave me an hour to relax and be off any IV hookup’s before they started Pitocin. My parents came by during this time and hung out for a little bit and was able to walk around and eat my last meal. They got me set up on that at 1:00 in the afternoon.
I spent the entire day on Pitocin, progressing so slowly. After five hours, I was only two centimeters dilated. The entire time I was feeling lots of contractions and pressure, but nothing was coming of it. Around 5:30, my doctor decided she was going to try to break my water and see if that helped. It definitely sped things up and was SUPER painful. That calls for an all caps, because even that is not enough to describe how bad it was, especially when you are barely dilated.
Since they thought I was having a nine plus pound baby, they were preparing me to push but possibly need a c-section. They were debating calling in a team for larger babies, but I was persistent in telling them that Avery and Greyson were six and seven pounds respectively and I didn’t feel different with this one. I love so much that my doctor trusted my instincts and listened to me.
I wanted to hold off on getting my epidural as long as possible because my last experience had not been a good one. I made it until 6:30 and had the fastest and most painless epidural experience of my three births. Seriously, I wanted to jump out of bed and hug the anesthesiologist. While my pain subsided, the pressure began to get really intense around 8 pm. My doctor checked me again, and I was eight centimeters. She didn’t think I would progress too quickly, so she went to do a c-section and said she would check me again at 10 pm. By 9, I was in misery and doing everything I could to not push. The nurse called the checked me. I was at 10 and ready to go, so she paged the doctor to get back as quickly as possible. The doctor was back by 9:25 and I started pushing at 9:30. I pushed through three contractions and she was out!
Riley James was born at 9:40 p.m. on September 6th, two hours before her due date. She was 20 inches long and weighed 7 pounds 14 ounces.
The umbilical cord was around Riley’s neck when she came out and she would not cry, which made the first few minutes pretty stressful. Luckily, the nursers were able to get a special team down within a couple of minutes to work on her and get her lungs clear. After she was good to go, we got to spend an hour doing skin to skin before she was weighed, cleaned and given medicine. This was the first time I was able to do this before the baby was taken away and it is such a game changer. That first hour of her life was spent with just me and Josh and we didn’t even know her birth weight or care that she hadn’t been cleaned off. Possibly, the best hour of my life.
It really shocks me just how amazing you feel the second you give birth. Your heart is immediately exploding with love for this new little person you have just met. At the same time, your body feels an instant sense of release and adrenaline, like you could conquer the world. It is one of those feelings I wish I could bottle up and soak up over and over.
We did not have any names picked out ahead of time and did not have anything that we loved. Avery suggested the name Riley when she was visiting us in the hospital and we both kind of fell in love with it. James is my dad’s name, so that is where her middle name comes from. I have always loved girls with that name but didn’t know if I could commit to it as a first name, so it worked out perfectly.
Life is definitely different with three and we are adjusting, but we are getting there. We are all so in love with this little peanut and can’t wait to watch her grow!
Thank you for reading and letting me share! -XO