Thursday, March 17, 2011

Karis' Birth Story

As many of you know, our sweet little girl arrived on Saturday, February 26th at 11:35 pm. We love her so much already - how does that happen?!!

I'm so amazed by how perfectly she was created in my womb from a tiny egg and sperm - so intricate, so "wonder"ful, so beautiful. I'm in awe at God's creative power when I look at her.

As my friend Lauren said when writing ou her baby's birth story, while many of you many not be interested in all the details of the birth, some might, and I want to document the memory.

So my official due date per the midwives was February 19th. (we used registered midwives in lieu of doctors, and LOVED the experience. I highly recommend them). Like many first time moms, the due date came and went with no baby. In Alberta, inductions are done at 41 weeks and 3 days, so I had a ultrasound scheduled for the Monday (February 28th) before my 41 weeks and 3 days to see how babe was doing and decide if I wanted to induce. However, the Friday before (February 25th) as I was putting in a load of laundry, my water broke apparently. I say apparently because I didn't recognize it at first because it wasn't the gush that you hear people talking about when they talk about their water breaking. I thought I had just peed on myself - how embarrassing I thought to myself. Providentially, just before this happened, one of my midwives was on her way to my house to check my blood pressure. I had called her earlier to tell her I had a headache all day, so she wanted to come check my blood pressure out. I'm glad she was coming over for that because she was able to confirm that my water had indeed broken. This was very critical to know because I (like 17-30% of pregnant women) was a carrier for group B strep which if passed on to the baby can be very very harmful. When you are positive for group B strep and your water breaks the recommendation is that you are induced right away because the baby is not longer protected by the unbroken sac. Therefore, we had a decision to make: Wait a bit to see if I would go into labour naturally or go get induced. It was about 8:30 in the evening and we were in no shape to start labour, so we decided to get some rest over night and if I didn't go into labour, get induced in the morning. I didn't go into labour that night, but we did get some nice rest, so in the morning we were off to the hospital for the induction and to start pumping some antibiotics to reduce the risk of baby getting group b strep.

We arrived at the hospital close to 9 in the morning, had a walk around and got comfortable (as comfortable as could be with IV's on me and monitors around me). I wasn't feeling nervous, but mostly just ready to have the baby. As they were preparing everything, they let me know that 99% of the women that have inductions at that hospital get epidurals (apparently labour comes on faster and stronger with an induction), I guess they wanted me to have realistic expectation since they knew I wanted an unmedicated birth. I wasn't feeling very encouraged at this point.

So the contractions started slowly, but surely. I would look at the little monitor that kept track of the contractions and it was only in the 20's. They told me it would get to the 90's, and I gasped because I thought there was no way I could handle that - they were already hurting pretty good. Around 4 pm (Shawn tells me) active labour started. It was hard - it hurt lots, but by this time my sweet friend Megan had joined us and she and Shawn did a TREMENDOUS job helping me relax and handle each contraction. So grateful for them! I did at one point ask for laughing gas, but then decided against it for fear that I would get nauseated. I didn't think I could handle the pain and the nausea together. So on we go, transition starts (maybe around 8ish), so I knew we were close to the end. (By this time I think I forgot about epidurals or maybe thought it was too late). This was by far the hardest thing I've every done, but when it was time to push, I felt relief because there was actually somewhere to channel the pain. I pushed for about and hour and a half, and had my baby girl on my chest. What relief! She didn't cry at all, but just laid there content.

We then waited for my placenta, but it wouldn't come, so they decided to take me to the operating room to remove it manually to reduce the chance of me hemorrhaging. Baby and I stayed in the hospital overnight to make sure all was well with the placenta business, and the next day around noon, we were getting ready to go home with our new baby.

So now Karis is almost one month old and doing very well. She is nursing well and gaining weight. She's so adorable! We thank God for his wonderful provision of wonderful health care and loving friends and family who have supported us through the pregnancy and arrival of Karis. We love you all!


The Campbell Clan said...

Thank you for sharing you sweet story! Glad things went well for you all! Glad sweet baby Karis is doing well! I know you guys are awesome parents!

Brandy said...

Thank you for sharing your beautiful story. It is nice to read others experiences in this beautiful miracle. I was so fascinated by the process and a friend got me the neatest book that showed live pictures from week one until the end for every week and explained the process, I loved it. I thank God every day for letting me experience the miracle and love of raising Madison. I keep you all in my thoughts and appreciate reading your story. :) she is so so very beautiful sweetie!
Brandy L. Harvey