Hi there! Happy Monday to ya. A few things before I get into the details of today’s story..
First, I promise this is not becoming a “mommy blog” – ha! It’s just that with her recent birth, there have been a lot of things to share, such as her birth announcement, the story behind her name, her one month pics, and such.
Second, for today’s topic, I debated sharing this story, as it is, by nature, quite personal. But I do want to record the details for my own memory and to share with her one day. Plus, hopefully it will make some of you smile and laugh. Yes, I said laugh. There are parts of the story that are funny in retrospect.
Importantly, I promise not to veer into TMI territory anymore than I have to do so, considering that it’s a birth story. I don’t want to share the gory details, and I am confident you don’t want to read those. 😉
Without further delay…
The Story of Elle’s Birth
If you’ve been reading here for a while, you might recall that Elle was due on Friday, July 7, 2017. But she chose to make her appearance on Monday, June 12, 2017 – almost a month early. So, this is the story of Monday, June 12 and all the tears and laughter and pain and joy that ensued.
The First Part of the Morning of June 12
As was common during late pregnancy, I had a night of insomnia. I hadn’t fallen asleep until almost 3 am that morning.
But I had a full day planned, so I woke up ready to start my day when my alarm went off at 8 am. I noticed that the sheets were a little wet that morning (sorry – the one bit of TMI that I have to include, as it’s critical to the story). I thought to myself, “Gee I must not be able to control my bladder these days.” Throughout the pregnancy, the baby had been positioned right on my bladder. So, going to the bathroom frequently was a way of life. So, I just thought that maybe with her getting bigger, the bladder issues were getting worse.
The agenda for the day included the following:
- 8 am : wake up
- 9 am : work meeting with Julie at Starbucks
- 10:30 am : regularly scheduled weekly doctor’s appointment
- Then I planned to workout and spend the rest of the day working on my computer
So, I hopped up, showered, put on my Lululemon workout clothes, and headed over to Starbucks to meet Julie. We needed to talk through the upcoming editorial calendar, some pending collaboration deadlines, and such. (Side note: major props to Julie for keeping things running around here during my pregnancy and now! She’s a life saver.)
Well, as I ordered at Starbucks, I felt a little more fluid leakage. Ugh so annoying! But I went to the bathroom, then grabbed my coffee, and proceeded to sit down with Julie.
I remember telling Julie, “If I didn’t know better, I would think my water broke! I just cannot control my bladder today.” Then the two of us (both having never given birth at this point) agreed that surely water breaking would be more drastic and dramatic. So we proceeded to sit there and work for an hour or so, at which point it was time for me to head to the medical center…
Later in the Morning
After meeting with Julie, I left Starbucks at 10 am to head to my 10:30 am doctor’s appointment. Then, right as I signed in at the doctor’s office, I felt that fluid again. Except this time, there was more of it! In fact, you could see it through my yoga pants. (Remember I had on workout clothes because I was going to workout after this. Ha!) At this point, I’m thinking this bladder control issue is getting embarrassing.
Nevertheless, I proceeded to sit down in the waiting room and patiently waited to be called back. When the nurse calls my name, I calmly walk to the hallway area where she checks my weight, blood pressure, and such. As we are heading to the examination room, we pass my doctor who is sitting in the hallway entering information on the computer.
Side note: I got lucky to find the absolute best doctor! She was such a huge support during the pregnancy. She helped me to not freak out when I didn’t need to, and she held my hand through the entire process, so to speak.
Anyway, as we walked by her, I asked her, “Alicia, am I next to see you?” She responded, “I’m not sure, but it’ll be soon.” Then I told her, “Well, I’m having this issue” and pointed to my wet workout pants. She calmly replied by saying, “Let’s take a look now.”
After examining me, she explained that my water had broken and I was 3 cm dilated. So, they were going to put me in a wheelchair and take me over to the hospital, where they could hook me up to the monitors and see what’s going on.
And then she added, “And then you’re going to have a baby soon!”
I replied, “What do you mean by soon? Like this week?”
I laugh just thinking back to all this. I swear it’s not that I was that clueless. It’s just that I was in such shock about it all.
When she told me it would be today, I told her that wasn’t a good idea because no one was in town! Elle’s dad was across the country for business, my sister was in Austin, my parents were in Oklahoma, etc. Needless to say, I was freaking out a little bit.
The Afternoon of Monday, June 12
If you’ve read this far, kudos to you. I’ll keep this next part as short as possible.
We arrived to the hospital around noon. Basically, they hooked me up to the monitors and found I was already having contractions – though I wasn’t feeling them.
In order to keep the baby safe (i.e., get her out of there before too much time elapsed after my water broke), we started the meds to speed up the process. I continued to converse with my friends for a while before the I felt the pain of the contractions. At that point (about 8 cm dilated), I got the epidural – which was horribly painful in its own right, but worth it.
Long story short, Elle made her debut at 6:05 pm – a mere six hours after checking into the hospital.
Eternal Gratitude Expressed
Now, I would be completely remiss in telling this story if I didn’t express some major gratitude.
First, I am eternally grateful to my friends and family for being there. No doubt – it was a chaotic day. While Elle’s dad wasn’t able to make it back in time, I was by no means alone. My sister Kelli drove from Austin to Houston right away and made it in time for the birth. My mom Mindy flew from Oklahoma to Houston and made it in time for the birth. It meant so much to have them there with me as Elle was born.
And a dear set of friends surrounded me the entire time. These ladies dropped whatever plans they had on that fateful Monday to be there for me. They went above and beyond to tend to my every need. And I am eternally grateful to them. Ashley, Brandi, Mari, Mindy: thank you from the depths of my heart.
Finally, a big thank you to my doctor and the nurse. Both of them went above and beyond the call of duty. They knew just what I needed and lovingly cared for me.
A Lesson Learned
In fact, this illustrates one beautiful aspect of motherhood which I have already learned. Women supporting women. Moms helping moms. It’s a beautiful thing. And I appreciate it so much.
You know, I’ve never really been one to ask for help. I’ve always been pretty self-sufficient and never wanted to impose on another.
But I’m learning to accept help when offered. Whether it’s my friend Ashley who rushed to my house to pack a bag for me for the hospital or whether it’s my friend Traci who stopped by with dinner or whether it’s my neighbor Alli who dropped off coffee and pastries. I could go on and on with examples. Really, I could. So many simple acts of kindness have been extended to me. And I am truly grateful.
The best part of the story? By nightfall on Monday, June 12th, I held the most precious, beautiful being I’ve ever seen. And each day I wonder what I did to deserve to be her mom. Truly, I’m in awe.
Thanks for reading and allowing me to share this personal story. I don’t get too personal or vulnerable too often here. And this is like sharing a piece of my heart. This motherhood thing is at once the most beautiful and most difficult thing ever.
Now, I hear Elle starting to wake and make some noise, so I’m off to feed her. Have a great Monday!
And thanks for your loyal reading and commenting here. We have a full week of great content lined up for you!
Photos by Maritere Rice
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