Brittany's Two, Very Different, Labors - #1

I have two beautiful boys now ages 1 and 4, almost 2 and 5. They are so alike and so very different at the same time and I love them more than anything else in this world. I love them differently as much as I love them the same... if you're a mom you understand. When I was pregnant with my second I couldn't imagine loving him as much as I loved my first. But, as friends reassured me, your heart grows and so does your love. Just as my boys are different, my pregnancies were just as different. Here is the story of my first born.

First Labor

I want to preface this by saying this is 100% my story and it is HIGHLY unlikely that this will happen to you. Every woman, body and baby are totally different. I am sharing my experiences for information and entertainment purposes only.

Grayson, my first born, was 2.5 weeks late, 9.4 pounds and 22 1/4 inches long. He basically came out a toddler 😂 and yes, I had him vaginally. It was my first pregnancy and although I've always eaten pretty healthy and exercised (at times more than others).. leading up to this pregnancy I had fallen off the exercise bandwagon and wasn't eating as clean as I normally would. Then I found out I was pregnant and thought... woo-hoo I get to eat what I want and I have an excuse to not workout! I gave in to most of my horrible food cravings and, although I did workout some, not near as much as I should have. I gained 42 pounds.

And 42.5 weeks later when I finally went into labor I started to regret all my choices. Of course, in that moment you're not thinking about anything other than your labor. But in hindsight, I definitely wished I had done things a little differently. I went into labor at home, in the middle of the afternoon and labored there until about 2 am. I took a shower, ate what I could, walked, sat on my exercise ball, tried to rest/sleep... my contractions were hard and very close together, although my water never broke. When I got to the hospital I was only dilated to a 1!! You can imagine my disappointment! My mid-wife kept coming to check on me and my husband was great and putting pressure on my back to take away some of the labor pain. Around 11 am they broke my water to try to speed things up, which only kind of worked... I was only dilated to a 2 or 3 at this point. But my contractions had NOT slowed down at all. I was doing everything possible... the exercise ball, walking around my room, sitting in the shower with the jets that hit me in the back.. praying, talking to my belly - PLEASE COME OUT!!! I finally decided to get an epidural around 4 that afternoon after being in active labor for 26 hours and only being dilated to a 4 or 5. The epidural slowed everything down, but I was finally able to get some relief and rest. Finally around 7 that night I was fully dilated and ready to push... I started pushing.. and breathing.. and pushing.. and breathing. Then they started to lose my babies heart rate, they were turning me trying to find it. Before I knew it we were rushed to the operating room. My midwife was a rock-star... she knew I really did NOT want a cesarean and every doctor that came into the OR to help her looked at me and said, 'Nope, she needs a c-section, not helping!' while my midwife was yelling 'WE ARE NOT HAVING A C-SECTION TODAY!' At that point, I honestly just wanted him out and to know he was ok. But I was grateful she fought for me. She tried forceps and every other gadget in that room, then finally pulled him out with the vacuum after a full episiotomy. And like I mentioned earlier, he was huge.. even she was shocked at how big he was. She was even more impressed with how huge my placenta was!

He was rushed to the NICU, which we knew was going to happen, because there was meconium in my water when they broke it. But the NICU team was freaking out and rushing around... my husband's face was blue and his eyes huge. I was laying there totally helpless with no idea what was going on with my baby. My husband went to be with our son as I got stitched up and taken back to my room, by myself. For about thirty minutes I was in the room by myself with no idea what was happening... my midwife came back to tell me they were having trouble locating my babies heartbeat and thought his heart may be on the opposite, wrong, side of his chest and he may be care-flown to a children's hospital soon. Obviously, I was freaking out and panicking... I had planned to do skin to skin with him and nurse him immediately, I had visions of being the first person to get to hold him. All of that was taken from me in an instant and now I wasn't sure if he was even going to be ok or if/when I was even going to get to touch him. Finally, a NICU doctor came in to tell me everything was ok, thank God! He had air pockets all around his heart from swallowing so much fluid, which caused his heart beat to radiate off the bubbles leading to all kinds of confusion. And I was going to get to see him soon.

After mid-night we were able to go get him from the NICU and go to our normal room where I was able to hold him and attempt to nurse.

Talk about the longest 32 hours of labor and 35 hours of my entire life. When they laid him on me for the first time he stretched from my shoulder to below my hip - HA.. I asked.. where is my tiny little baby?!

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