Nov. 8th, 2011 HAPPY BIRTHDAY Calvin Markis!
At 3:30am, the exact time I woke up when my water broke before delivering William, I woke up with contractions that wouldn't go away with any position changes. I decided that I wasn't going to be able to lay there any longer and try to sleep so I got up and took a shower. William, hearing the water of the shower run next to his bedroom, woke up and started asking for me. Surprisingly, he was wide awake. I hadn't woken Curtis up at this point and waiting until I could more accurately time how far apart the contractions were (I wasn't used to labor starting this way since with William is was so clearly obvious with my water popping initially!). 5 minutes or less and getting stronger as time progressed.
William asked "Whatcha doin' Mama?"
I replied, "I think we are going to go get baby Calvin today."
He responded (with much enthusiasm), "You going to go get Baby Brudder!?!" He seemed very excited about the whole prospect...
I texted Dr. Savage (sign of the times, huh?) to let her know we'd be heading to the hospital. She informed me that she was already there (and had been for the past two days), that the birth center was busting at the seams and that we might have to deliver in the nursery! Craziness! Got to the hospital at around 6:30a and was admitted to the last available room...
Today's goal: Have a baby!
Donning the hospital booties...with a smile on my face (obviously in between contractions in this pic!)
The nurse checked me and I was already dilated to 6cm with a "bulging water sac ready to pop" as they put it...My thought process at this point was that with any further contraction my water was bound to break and speed the process along.
Not so much...
An occasional check on baby Calvin...He was holding strong while mom made it through each contraction.
I remember telling Dr. Savage (Jeanne) at 10am that we had a 1/2 hr to get this baby out...This was about the time that William was born after starting labor at 3:30am and your second labor isn't supposed to be longer, right?
10:30 came and gone. By 11:30 I was dilated to 9cm and feeling God's curse to women in childbirth: contractions that were definitely pushing me towards that 10...and making me extremely exhausted and tearful in the process. I remember someone telling me that when you've hit that point in labor when you feel like you just can't continue on; like your body has no strength left to push, you're close. I held onto that twinge of hope. I hadn't realized at this point that I had been fighting my way through each contraction; that my body was ready to push and I needed to just go with it.
Curtis, supporting me as I waded through each contraction on the birthing ball.
Finally, around 12:30p...10cm and ready to push. The thought of pushing scared me at this point. I was convinced it would make the pain with each contraction that much worse. But once I worked with the contractions, the strength that re-entered my body at that point was incredible!
At about push #2, the doctor finally broke my Kevlar (as Jeanne called it) bag of waters. Within a 1/2 hr, after some panic on my part and a little tugging help on Jeanne's end to help baby's shoulder through my pelvis, I gave every bit of strength I had left in me for one last push before Calvin Markis Gant entered this world at 1:11pm. Thank you to my incredible husband and sis-in-law Lori (who I credit all of these pictures to!) for being by my side the entire time.
I remember the first thing I thought when they handed him to me was "He's chubby! And he has so much hair!" Later we discovered that he weighed over a lb bigger than his brother William did at 7lb 10 1/2oz (William was 6lb 10oz)!!! He was 20inches long with a 13 1/2in head circumference. It all made sense to me why I was so incredibly uncomfortable towards the end!
Look at those big hands!
Any woman who has been through childbirth knows the incredible relief that follows labor...both physically and emotionally. There truly are no words within our limited scope of language to describe it. It's a kind of euphoric, surreal, out of this world experience. Only God can create a feeling that makes all of the pain and strength it takes to birth a child worth it. I'm in love once again...I have another son.
My first hairwash...
What an incredible birthday present I received today. He came a little early, but now we each have our own special day (o: I remember praying, even before we got pregnant with Calvin and were struggling with infertility, that I had wanted to be pregnant before I turned 30. Well, we serve a God who makes us laugh sometimes. Not only was I pregnant before 30, but I had a new son in my arms just shortly before my birthday...No words could describe how thankful I am. God is good!