We have truly felt the love and concern that others have had for our family during this pregnancy. We know that there have been many prayers, thoughts, and well wishes that things would go smoothly for us. Thank you. For most of my pregnancy with Margo I was able to feel peace and comfort that she was healthy. Remembering what the past has taught but not being afraid of things to come in the future, was something I always tried to keep in mind. I know that God is not behind anxiety and worry, so whenever those feelings started to sneak in I was able to recognize them and cope with them. It also helped that I had an amazing doctor who was very compassionate. A little Italian lady with lots of spunk, she made sure that I felt like I could tell her my concerns and worries and be heard.
My past 2 birth experiences were pretty stressful and negative... With Finn, we were nervous first time parents. Finn had IUGR, and because of that my doctor took a lot of precautions during my labor and I wasn't able to have a natural childbirth like I had planned (come to find out, a lot of IUGR babies can be stillborn. We are very lucky to have Finn).
Obviously, my labor with Rowan was not at all what I had planned for. A lot of people probably don't know how a baby who has passed away is delivered. They told me that I could wait for about 2 weeks until my body went in to labor on its own, or be induced. I chose induction because I couldn't bare the thought of going another day without her moving inside me. I also chose to have an epidural with her because I didn't want to add physical pain to the immense emotional pain I was already going through. I am so grateful I was able to have an epidural with Rowan.
With Margo I didn't try to have any expectations with my labor. Obviously, from prior experiences, I realized that things don't always go as planned. But in the back of my mind I still wanted to have a natural childbirth. I read through a book called Hypnobirthing when I was about 36 weeks, practiced the relaxation methods a little bit (not near as much as I should have) and left it at that.
During my 37th week and beginning of my 38th week I had a few times that I definitely thought I was going to go in to active labor. I would have contractions for about 6 hours or so, and then they would stop. We even dropped Finn off at some friends because we thought we would be headed to the hospital soon.
I started to get kind of bummed because if my body didn't go into labor soon, my doctor thought it best that I be induced by my 39th week (October 1st). I trusted my doctor and could understand her reasoning considering my past history. But at the same time, being induced brought back memories of the night I was induced with Rowan.
My mother-in-law, Gundi, surprised us by getting on a standby flight and showing up on the 27th. As I went to go pick her up I drove by a place that does acupuncture and seriously considered making an appointment (acupuncture is supposed to help induce labor).
That night, which was near the end of my 38th week, I woke up at around 2:30 AM with really strong contractions. I woke Dennen and told him that I'd probably need his help soon (he would massage my back while I sat on an exercise ball for relaxation). At 3 AM he started to try and help me relax through contractions. They came really quickly and were very intense. I told him I was having second thoughts and that I thought I might want to head to the hospital soon and get an epidural. Dennen reminded me that I had said that I wanted to do a natural childbirth and asked how he could help more. I made it until about 3:30 and then told Dennen that we needed to get going.
When we got to the hospital it was a little before 4 AM. They were doing construction at Eastern Maine Med, so Dennen had a difficult time finding where to park (at that point in time, I was not in a relaxed state of mind). I'm also a puker during labor and when we were going down the mile-long hallway to get to registration I puked all over the floor (oops).
Once we were in the labor and delivery delivery room, a nurse checked me to see how dilated I was. I was at 9 cm (too late for an epidural). I looked at the nurses and said, "help me do this, I've never done a natural childbirth before." They helped me as best they could, but I think because it was such a fast labor and I hadn't practiced the relaxation stuff very much, that it was a lot more intense and difficult than I had anticipated...The on call doctor came in and after pushing for about 10 minutes Margo was born safe and sound at 5 AM on the 28th of September. About a 2 hour labor. She weighed 6 1/2 pounds, and was 19 1/2 inches long.
I started crying and told the doctor and nurses that our daughter before was stillborn (of course they knew). I have never had more of a grateful heart and thanked them from the very depths of it. The doctor looked at me with eyes that told me he had delivered stillborn babies before, and gave us his most heart felt congratulations.
When I held Margo for the first time I felt complete love. After the heartbreak of loosing and delivering Rowan, I was finally able to feel absolute peace and love from God. I think that when a person suffers the loss of a baby, and then a new baby blesses their home, there is a gratitude that runs so deep it is hard to describe. That is how I felt that morning when I held Margo for the first time.