Saturday, May 15, 2010

so ... labor (part 2)

We met our first nurse, a smiley brunette who welcomed us to the first day of the rest of our lives. (OK, that's a lie. She said nothing of the sort.) She was nearing the end of her shift, but she decided to start my IV before our assigned nurse arrived. 

Have you ever had an IV? 

Ouch. That is all. 

But then along came Paula. The nurse of all nurses. The miracle to our birth. The peanut butter to our M&M.

Translation: We love her.

And with that lovely lady in scrubs, we got the party started. 

Pitocin? Check.

Epidural? Check, sweet check. 

Water broken? Weirdest check ever.

The waiting game had officially begun. For the next four hours, Adam and I shifted our eyes from each other to the computer screen, which charted the baby's heartbeat and my contractions.

Everything was looking great, until our little Margaret decided to make things interesting.

I'd have a contraction ... her heart rate would fall. I'd have another contraction ... her heart rate would fall. Contraction ... fall. Contraction ... fall. And so on and scary forth.

I hated it.

Thankfully, Paula and my doctor were on the case. They were attentive and cautious — but not alarming. Our baby either had the umbilical cord wrapped around her neck, they said, or the placenta had stopped working as effectively as it should. Whatever it was, Adam and I proceeded to whisper short prayers for Maggie to catch her breath. 

When the clock ticked 3:30 p.m., it was time to push. Armed with Adam and Paula on either side of me, I felt like the mother of all women (pun perfection intended). I was calm and peaceful (thank you, prayer) and mostly just felt excited to meet the little soul who would come to call me mom.

For the next hour, Paula continually counted to 10 while I pushed and Adam smiled words of encouragement.

"This is so fun!" I remember saying to Adam. And it really, really was.

Maggie's heart rate had been holding up pretty well under the pressure, but at circa 4:31 p.m., her heart rate fell too far for the doctor's liking, and it was time for Maggie to travel from womb to world — and fast.

So at 4:33 p.m., we officially met Margaret Diane Stewart, a 7-pound-15 oz. bluish-purple beauty. The cord was indeed wrapped snugly around her neck. But with swift work, the doctor had her crying and on my chest while Adam cut the cord.

Maggie's crying was the sweetest thing I've ever heard. It meant we were all breathing, she was here and Adam and I were finally parents.

And as I held her in my arms, I swear I heard her crying, "Welcome to the first day of the rest of your lives, folks."

True story.


Erin said...

This made me tear up. Oh how I love you all! Maggie is simply a gift from God to you (and me.)

Juli said...

So so so glad she's safely here and that it was such a sweet experience for you!
I hope you're recovering well and getting the occasional nap!! We love you!

Jill said...

Beautiful! There is no doubt that the birthing process is the adventure of all adventures. I am so glad you are all healthy and happy. Love and hugs to you all!

Kristina P. said...

Amanda told me that you thought labor was fun. I'm pretty sure women everywhere will hate you. :)

Kara said...

I love any story that ends in Maggie!

Amander said...

So sweet. I can't wait to see her again. I'm sure she's changed so much in a week!

Craig and Carol said...

Dad and I just read your sweet story and shed a few tears of gratitude for Maggie's safe arrival and perhaps a few in remembrance of our own sacred experiences as we helped to usher our 7 beautiful children into the world. It is indeed an experience not to be equaled. We love you all so much and are so happy for your beautiful little family.

Heidelweiss said...

Adorable! You are the cutest (and so, now, is Maggie)!

ali said...

Oh I love that moment when you get to meet your baby for the first time!! *swoon*

Almost makes me want to have another.


Kelly said...

You make it look and sound so easy. Love you Bri. I am so glad she has arrived and that she is thriving. Way to go super-dooper Mom and Dad.

Shara Parker Park said...

You are such a champ! And the fact that you thought labor was fun makes me think that I might be able to do it. Thanks for sharing! Can't wait to meet her this week.

Breanna said...

This gave me tears. So, so happy for your little family.

Sammy said...

had an IV? Yes. We sneak into the closets and start them on each other at the hospital. Water broken with a crochet hook? Nope. But do I love being a new aunt to little maggie the third? absolutely. Can't wait to see you guys again.

Diane said...

What a storyteller you are! You, Adam and Maggie make the perfect little family! Thanks for part two!

Kate Lehnhof said...

I just need to know why are you looking so fabulous after giving birth in that photo? Who does that? Bri does haha.