Katie Katie Parsons is the creator of Mumbling Mommy and is a freelance writer, editor and communications specialist. She works from her home office on the east coast of Florida. Most often she writes about life in a combined family of five children and what it's like being a full time work-from-home parent. Feel free to pitch guest post ideas or just drop her a line at katie@mumblingmommy.com.

Having my first baby had its share of surprises along the way. My son’s birth was two months ago, it seems like yesterday and a lifetime ago all at the same time. I enjoyed my pregnancy but strangely, I can hardly remember what it felt like to be pregnant! Now I understand why people say you should write things down as they happen, and I am glad that I did.

As some of you may have previously read, I had a pre termlabor scare at 23 weeks. Thankfully the medical staff was able to stop my contractions, and even my bed rest ended up being very short term. My little guy stayed put, much to my joy and surprise, until 40 weeks. At around 36 weeks my baby boy was in the breech position and I had a C-section scheduled.  The thought of having the surgery did make me nervous, but I was also looking forward to removing the element of the unknown with respect to what contractions would feel like, and how difficult pushing might be.  The day before the scheduled surgery my little one took charge of the situation, and he flipped. Back to playing the “normal” delivery waiting game…

My 40 week doctor’s appointment was on March 20th, one day before I was officially “due” to have my first baby. I was having contractions, but they certainly didn’t meet the imminent labor criteria, so I fully expected nothing to come of my visit. I arrived for  what I thought was a 10:30 appointment, turns out I was about 4 hours early, but thankfully the doctor was able to see me. She confirmed I had dilated slightly but the bigger issue was my blood pressure. I was sent to the hospital’s labor triage next door to be checked out for preeclampsia. I was quickly given a bed and once again had my blood pressure taken, at this point it had risen to a much higher level and I was told I would be admitted. My thoughts were torn between excitement and fear- looks like we were having a baby! Eek!

I was going to be admitted and induced, and I confirmed about ten times that I was absolutely going to get my epidural before having my first baby. Unfortunately it would come after the induction as I quickly found out. Before my husband could wrap up work for the day, I was hooked up to a magnesium drip for seizure prevention, given Pitocin and had my water broken. My husband popped in briefly and I sent him to get my carefully packed hospital bag from home (which quite honestly I could have done without for nearly the entire experience-but that’s a blog post for another day). While he was gone I experienced what I thought were terrible contractions, I threw up and I got my epidural. Aaahhhh…he definitely returned to a much happier wife.

Within a few short hours I had dilated to the necessary ten centimeters and (yikes!), it was time to push. That was the part that sucked. Really. I like to blame my energy level, or lack of, on the fact that I hadn’t eaten since early that morning. Plenty of mothers before me had advised that I make a food pit stop on my way to the hospital, but it all happened so fast that I didn’t think to do it. And pushing is NOT EASY! I took the usual position and tried my hardest to push with my bottom and not with my face (huh?), for ten second counts, three times every contraction. You mothers know the drill. By the third push each time I am confident I wasn’t pushing at all, I couldn’t even figure out how to do it. I was begging for ice chips between each one, trying to rally to just get this over with, and was given an oxygen mask.

My little babe did not like the situation any more than I did and his heart rate kept dipping. I continued like this for four and half hours and eventually baby boy Benson was brought into this world with the aid of a vacuum. Prior to that final push I was given additional numbing medication and told that due to baby doing his first number two in my belly (only an innocent little baby can get away with that!), I would not hear him cry right away and hubby would not be cutting the cord. Despite this knowledge, it only took me about 30 seconds to start panicking when I did not hear that storybook whimper after having my first baby. After a few minutes and seeing some photos from my husband, the bundle of joy was brought to me- tiny as can be and adorable even with his cone head! Thanks mom for 4.5 hours in the birth canal, how about you eat first next time and just push harder just like the doctor kept repeating, over and over (and over) again??

We had a beautiful and healthy 6 pound 9 ounce little guy who grows so fast and amazes me every day. But I will say out of all the books I read to fulfill my obsession of figuring out what it ‘feels” like, I don’t recall anyone mentioning the muscle soreness. My entire body felt like I had been at the gym doing boot camp training all week. Ouch! Too bad it didn’t actually tone any of my muscles. Day one post baby I was never doing that again! Now at day 60-ish I can’t wait to have another baby — funny how nature keeps our species alive.

I do love hearing my husband tell the story of having our first baby and ending with, “it was really easy.” Yes honey, it was so easy in fact that I think you should get to push out the next one while I hold your ankle and delay in getting you those desperately needed ice chips. But again, that’s a post for another \ day. For now, the memory of having my first baby is still fresh, but already engrained in my mind forever.

Category: Pregnancy

Tags: birth story