Well she has arrived! Early, actually. Lelia Noelle made her appearance when I was halfway through my 38th week on November 29th, 2010 at 12:47 pm. She came out weighing 7 pounds and 11 ounces and measured 21″ in length. I was able to get the med-free birth I studied and planned for too (using Hypnobabies Home Study Course)..which was fantastic!
(I will have a detailed birth story very soon in an upcoming blog post but you will need to click the “Read More…” link at the bottom of it. Beware though..I will be going into gory detail so if you get squeamish hearing about the entire birthing process don’t click! I wanted to share in detail since I really appreciated reading other women’s blogs about their natural med-free births when I was pregnant and preparing myself. Stay tuned! I am going to try and type it up and post it within the next week or two.)
Anyways, my gut was right and it ended up being a girl! For some reason as soon as I saw that barely there pink line (tilt in every direction squinting in the sunlight coming in the bedroom window, not too positive if it is there but I think it is, a line is a line, faint barely there line) the day before Easter last year I just knew in my heart it was a little girl. Then when I finally pushed her out on November 29th and heard Ryan announce “It’s a girl” my gut feeling was confirmed. She is so beautiful too. I know..I am so very biased and I know it. But she melts my heart completely. She has me completely worn down with exhaustion and the pain of breast feeding but when I look at her little face…Let’s just say she is very lucky she is so cute or there have been a few times in the past 6 weeks where she might’ve ended up outside in the snow (not really).
Like I said before I accomplished what I consider the biggest accomplishment of my life when I managed to go med free when I had Lelia. I planned for over 10 weeks using the Hypnobabies Home Study Course which is a book and stack of CD’s that basically teach you how to completely relax so your body can accomplish what it was created to do. It really helped me lose the fear of giving birth and learn that it is completely natural for a woman to have a baby and you just need to allow your body to do what it was built to do! Every night (well..MOSTLY) I would lay down in bed and listen to one of the Hypnobabies tracks and learn how to put myself into a state of hypnosis (relaxation) and practice scripts and sayings that I would say to myself when actually in labor to help with the pain. Relaxation is supposed to help since if you tense up from the pain and fear the body takes a lot longer to do what it needs to do (which equals more contractions) than if you can make yourself relax and let the body do what it is supposed to.
In the end I was so glad I did it because I made it to 9 centimeters before the pain became really hard to deal with. Each contraction I would just close my eyes, finger drop myself into hypnosis to go limp and repeat to myself to “relax, deeper and deeper with every breath I take” while focusing on my uterus pushing the baby down and my cervix dialating. It really sped up the birthing process because I was 4 cm when I got to the hospital at around 5am. (Thanks to the woman answering the phones at my gynos office at 3:30am on November 29th. You can’t just go to the hospital around here..You need your gyno’s office to give the ok first. We called at 3am and were told they would call right back but they didn’t call back at all! An hour later my husband was on the phone (pretty irritated at this point as one can imagine) while his pregnant wife was moaning loudly through contractions that were 2-5 minutes apart practically begging the hospital to let me come in so he didn’t have to deliver the baby on our futon. They made us call our gyno office again and finally got a call back and the ok to go in like 20 minutes later.) I was 9 centimeters at about 10:30-11am and then we stalled out a bit.
I have to say that I was in pain but it was tolerable up until 9 cm. When I hit transition I could no longer relax or focus through the contractions anymore. They were just so intense I had to just moan it out… In so much pain sometimes that I didn’t even know what to do with myself. I had the urge to just flail every limb about and scream bloody murder through some of those final contractions. Luckily the only scream I ended up letting out was when Lelia emerged in which my scream sounded so pained my brother who was waiting outside said that scream will forever be engraved in his mind. I still wouldn’t change a thing though. I expected it to be painful and it was more painful than words could describe. I was pleasantly surprised though that the first 9 centimeters were definitely more tolerable with my hypnobabies than I’d have thought they’d have been. I let them break my water at 9 centimeters so that may have been what contributing to the increased pain during that last centimeter as well (Something I may not allow them to do if I have another child.) I would definitely go med-free all over again though (with hypnobabies of course!).
You may be wondering why I wanted to go med-free in the first place. I had a few reasons! One being the fact I was on blood thinners so it is a little more risky to get an epidural. The combination is supposed to make the chance of paralysis increase. I don’t know about you but I decided I’d much rather go through a day or two of mind numbing pain than risk spending the rest of my life in a wheel chair. Plus I have heard a lot of stories where the epidurals didn’t work anyways. Which leads me to another reason. Research shows the more intervention you allow in labor the more likely it is to lead to even more medical interventions. This means women who are induced are more likely to need of an epidural and a c-section or women who get an epidural are more likely to get a c-section than those who chose to let nature just take it’s course. So the less intervention for me..the better! Especially when I really wanted to avoid the c-section. Lastly and most importantly I wanted to go med free because it is just healthier for mom and baby. All pain killers cross over to baby when in labor and I wanted my baby to come out unmedicated. Period. It’s the least I could do for her and I’m so glad I did. She was completely alert and took right to breastfeeding like a little champ! (It was mommy who had some issues with alertness after the last hour and a half to two hours of labor!)
Now she is here and we feel completely blessed. Our world has been turned completely upside down though. When people say having a baby changes your life..they couldn’t be more right. When people say the first three months you will be tired…THAT is an understatement. I never imagined I could be so very exhausted and still need to function (Half of the time I am so tired I am slurring my words!). I don’t know how something so tiny could be so exhausting but she is! Sometimes I question what is harder: the med-free labor and delivery (physical pain) or the past 6 weeks of exhaustion and some post-partum depression (mental pain). It doesn’t help I pretty much get 2-4 hours of sleep a day right now and am also dealing with breastfeeding issues (low-supply). My day consists of breastfeeding her every 2-3 hours, then offering her a bottle, then pumping to try and get some milk to give her and stimulate more of a milk supply. By the time all that is done she is ready to get her diaper changed and breast feed again. I barely have a minute to scarf down oatmeal and get a nap let alone have any kind of time to myself. It is craziness..but I keep telling myself it will get better once we get past these early months. It has to!
Well I think I reached the limit of what someone is willing to read in one blog post awhile ago so I will stop here for now. Stay tuned as I plan on posting my detailed birth story and blogging about everything else I have been going through with breastfeeding, etc. very soon! I am transitioning my site away from the whole cam site and really want to focus on having a place to talk about my daily life as a wife, new mommy and home business owner… With everything ahead of me I am going to need somewhere I can voice my opinion, vent about current life things and just have someplace to put it all down “on paper”. It is relaxing for me. My only problem as it stands right now is finding the time! (The little goob is swinging peacefully asleep in her Little Lamb Swing right now which allowed mommy to finally sit and relax for a few minutes.)
PS – I am uber excited because we just booked our return trip to Topsail Beach NC about an hour ago for the end of August. Returning to the Oceanfront home we stayed in for our first anniversary trip in July 2010. SO psyched to return! I will have to blog in the future about our July trip with some photos. I was in absolute heaven there..and got to see my wild dolphins as well!