WHEW! The past five weeks since our second son, Joshua, was born have been quite the whirlwind! I was hoping to share photos from Josh’s birth a little sooner, but turns out having a two year old and a newborn takes up most of your time!
For those who enjoy hearing birth stories, here goes… All others can skip ahead to the photos. :-)
All summer everyone had been saying, “I bet you won’t make it until August!” Well, I did make it to my due date of August 2. As of that day I had been having contractions off and on for a few days, but nothing too serious and they weren’t close together. I was physically feeling good other than starting to have some serious back pain (thank you scoliosis) and was patiently waiting until it was time. I got adjusted by a chiropractor to help with the back pain, also knowing that the adjustment could potentially bring on labor.
Just a couple hours after getting adjusted I noticed my contractions started getting stronger. Still not close together, but picking up intensity. I woke up a few times throughout the night with some pains, but again, nothing too serious. That next morning I decided to go walking with a friend in an effort to speed things along. I was having regular contractions, but they weren’t consistently getting close together, so I figured I still had a while.
After our walk I decided I would take myself to the doctor just to see if things had progressed at all since my last appointment. Since my mom was going to be flying in from Cincinnati to watch Jack, I wanted to be able to give her an idea of when to head this way. I dropped Jack off at my friend’s house and assumed I’d be back later to pick him up. While driving to the doctor I had 3-4 really strong contractions during the 30 minute trip, which is when I then realized things were picking up. The doctor checked me out right away and told me I was in active labor and needed to walk next door to the hospital and check myself in! Ummm??? I was somewhat surprised, as I had not brought my hospital bag with me and had thought I would at least have had time to go home, grab my things, and get Jack settled in with his sitter.
I called James at work and told him what was going on. Since I hadn’t brought my stuff with me, I had to send him a (long) list of everything he needed to bring. He went home, got all of our things together, got Jack situated, then headed to the hospital. Meanwhile, I found my way to the labor and delivery floor. Nothing like walking up to the desk and saying, “Hi, I’m in labor!” ;-)
One of the reasons I had to head on in to the hospital is because I had tested positive for the Group B Strep test at my last doc appointment. This meant that I needed to get antibiotics going well in advance of having the baby. I got going on the antibiotics right away, and very quickly noticed that my throat was swelling up and I was having trouble swallowing. I then started having severe chest pains. Within a few minutes there were about 8 doctors and nurses in the room, running tests and stopping the antibiotics I was on. It was determined I was having an allergic reaction (I’ve never had one before in my life). They got me going on a different medication, although it did not end up being enough time for me to get a full dosage before baby came.
By the time James arrived at the hospital I was having regular, strong contractions and was doing fine just breathing through them. I had decided to wait as long as I could to get an epidural (if I got one at all) to speed the process along. When I gave birth to Jack I had gotten the epidural early and it turned out to be a very looooong labor and delivery. My hope was to have things go quicker this time. And quicker they did! My doctor came in and broke my water when I hit 6 cm. Not long after that the pain got REAL and the contractions were coming 2 minutes apart. I could barely breathe in between and thought I better go ahead and get the epidural. James went to tell a nurse and found out that the anesthesiologist could not get to me FOR ANOTHER HALF HOUR because he was in surgery. I’m sorry, WHAT?!?!?
Over that next thirty minutes I probably asked James to see if the doctor was coming about a dozen times. I literally thought I was going to die (maybe a little dramatic?)! I decided that the reason so many women didn’t make it through childbirth back in the olden days was because of pure pain!! I went from quietly breathing and squeezing the side of the bed during contractions to straight up screaming like a wild banshee for the whole hospital to hear (and of course my husband had to get that on video). Ughh. It was rough. I really think the government could learn a thing or two about getting confessions out of people if they just inflicted them with legit labor pains! A big ‘ol thanks goes out to Eve for eating that apple! ;-)
By the time the anesthesiologist finally came in I was at 9 cm and I could feel the head coming down. LITERALLY. Looking back, I kind of wish I would have just tried pushing then, but I was not all there mentally and didn’t think I could do it with how bad the pain was. I somehow was able to hold still to get the shot, and then just about 15 minutes later baby Joshua was born! Keep in mind, we did not know the gender beforehand, so this was the big moment we had been waiting for! It was so fun to have him come out and James yell, “IT’S A BOY!!!” (I think my face looks like I was in shock in the photos taken at that moment– it was not shock at the gender, but shock at the fact that I had made it through that ordeal!). From the time I made it to the doctor’s office initially to get checked, to the time we had a baby, a total of only four hours passed! I would say it’s definitely true that your second baby can come quicker than the first.
Well, if you made it through that whole story– congrats. :-) Here are some photos from the hospital and the couple days after. I’m thankful to have a husband who also knows photography and was able to document our time there!
It’s so surreal seeing your baby for the first time… and having a double/triple chin. :-)
Check out those fingernails!
Here’s Jack meeting his little brother for the first time. :-) And for those wondering, Jack also had a full head of hair when he was born. (You can check out his birth photos here).
Our new family of four!
Now, for the rest of the craziness that has gone on this past month… At four weeks old Josh came down with a fever and was admitted to the hospital. :-( After being diagnosed with viral meningitis we were kept in the hospital for a few days while the doctors monitored him and ran tests. It was not a fun experience in the least, but I am so thankful that he is on the mend and it was nothing too serious! We are home now and working to get things back to “normal.” For those that were praying for us during that time– thank you!!! That sure means a lot.