Introducing Owen Astra Lee Batten. 6 pounds 8 ounces and 20.5 inches of pure love.
Brock and I can’t believe he’s real. And he’s ours! And we get to keep him!!
6 8 12 16 weeks since I gave birth to Owen and I wanted to share his birth story while it’s still fresh(ish) in my mind. I hope you enjoy it. If you’re a mother-to-be, I hope it provides a little insight and comfort.
I was 38 weeks and 2 days along with no signs of labor, so we were taking our time with baby preparations. We had painters working on the nursery that morning, our hospital bags weren’t packed, and we hadn’t even installed the car seat yet. I figured this babe would go over my due date, so I even had my maternity photo shoot scheduled for the end of the week and client work the next week.
Babies are on their own schedules though, so that afternoon my water broke around 4 pm. After it happened, I tapped Brock on the shoulder and said, “Umm, something different happened!” As he scrambled to pack, I called my doctor, who wanted me to come into the office to confirm that my water had indeed broken, which it indeed had.
By about 7 pm, we were checked in at the hospital, a whopping 1 cm dilated with no noticeable contractions; the monitor they strapped around my belly was picking up contractions every few minutes but I didn’t feel a thing. I was stupidly hopeful the rest of labor would be that painless. (HAHAHAHAHA!)
I wanted my labor to progress naturally and quickly, so walking the baby out seemed to be the best option. Since my water had broken, they needed to monitor me/baby a little more closely, so they let me alternate walking with bed monitoring in 45 minute increments. By about 10 pm, I was really starting to feel the contractions, enough that I’d need to brace myself against a wall if I was walking or really breath through it if I was in bed. Again, I was hopeful I was progressing well, even though my contractions were still 6-7 minutes apart.
Around midnight, the doctor brought up Pitocin and inducing me since my contractions were still far apart. I really wanted to give my body a chance to labor naturally, and I had watched the Business of Being Born on Netflix which put the fear in me, so I compromised with my doctor that we’d wait until 6 am–about 14 hours after my water had broken. Waiting longer, according to the doc, would put me at risk of infection.
At 6 am, I was only a whopping 3 cm dilated, so they started the Vitamin P (as the nurses endearingly call it) drip. I felt so defeated. With the contractions getting progressively stronger and more painful throughout the night, I was exhausted and emotionally drained. So even though it wasn’t in my birth plan to get an epidural (having my water break and getting induced weren’t either), I got one. Whenever people would ask me if I was going to get one I’d say, “I’d like to try it it drug-free. My mom was able to do it four times, but then again I’d never think to get my wisdom teeth out drug-free, so I’m just going to take the wait an see approach.” Since I was always open to the idea of one so I didn’t feel bad about it. I was able to sleep afterward. I threw up in my hair and I didn’t even care. Sorry maybe TMI, but since we were talking about birth I felt like that was OK.
Over the next 8 hours, the nurses slowly bumped up the amount of Vitamin P. I just rested and Brock fed me ice chips. I was STARVING after not eating so so many hours and throwing up what little there was in my stomach.
Around 1 pm I felt the urge to push and the nurse checked me and said I was close and wouldn’t have to push long. Pffft… little did she know, little mister was ‘sunny side up’ which is great if we’re talking about eggs, but not so much for childbirth since that’s the wrong way. It took 1 hour of pushing (thank goodness for the amazing nurses and hubby for cheering me on), an episiotomy (I hate to even think the word… shudder), and a few tries with the vacuum to get Owen out. And I cannot even begin to describe the moment they finally laid him on my chest. Motherhood is sacred.
Owen’s birth was nothing what I had imagined, visualized, manifested, but in the end we got a healthy baby and that’s all that really matters. Relishing every moment–even this four month sleep regression. Zzz.