After months and months of waiting, we finally got to meet our son. William Jackson Arentson came into the world on May 14th, 2018. 8lbs 1oz. 21.5 in.
My birth story actually started around 39 weeks when I was told they wanted to induce me a week early due to my gestational diabetes. With GD it is commonly recommended to be induced early due to risks such as a bigger baby getting stuck, aging placenta, and stillbirth. I was hoping to let my body go into labor naturally so I declined the early induction. This was okay as long as the baby still looked good, which was confirmed through multiple nonstress tests. However, going past 40 weeks with GD has even more risks, and we didn't feel comfortable to wait much longer. We knew that if he didn't come on his own by 40 weeks then an induction was going to happen.
After a failed membrane sweep and all the walking, bouncing, and other recommended natural ways to start labor didn't work, it was clear that this baby wasn't going to come on his own and we scheduled my induction.
I was pretty disappointed because I had wanted to experience a spontaneous and more natural labor (plus I scared myself with all the induction horror stories out there), but I have to say as far as labor can get, it was a GOOD experience!
Before we left for to the hospital, we spent May 13th (Mother's Day/due date) doing our final preparations, relaxing, spending time together, and going out to eat one last time of just the two of us.
Though we were both pretty nervous so it was hard to eat and focus on much of anything that day!
But once we got checked in the nerves started to go away and got replaced with excitement!
After getting settled in they started me with the first of two rounds of Cytotec. This is meant to soften you up and help you dilate. I had been hovering over a "loose fingertip" and 1 centimeter dilated for weeks so I was going into this settling in for the long haul. This step alone can cause some people to go into labor. It didn't for me, but it did start to cause more contractions. They weren't anything too bad. I just found myself needing to breathe through them a bit more.
At 6 am the next morning (May 14th), they started the Pitocin off very slowly and continued to increase it throughout the day.
I spent a lot of the morning moving around. My nurse would unplug my Pitocin machine and unhook the monitors for me so I could get up and walk the halls. She suspected baby's position to be posterior so she had me do different things to help get the baby to turn.
Up until this point, my mood was pretty good. I was laughing and talking and my doctor told me to keep up all the smiling.
Yeah, that all changed pretty fast.
Around 12:15 pm they broke my water. I was 2 cm dilated. It was such a weird feeling but I was happy that they were able to do this because this just meant we were getting closer! But after my water was broken the contractions came on fast and strong. It seemed like they came almost out of nowhere. That mixed with the Pitocin meant I wasn't getting a break from the contractions. They were very intense and back to back. 2 hours later and at 4 cm I got the epidural. This was an amazing relief and I actually started talking and smiling again.
My contractions started evening out and just two hours later I was 10cm!! This was awesome to hear because it was pretty slow progress leading up to this point.
Even with the epidural, I was still able to move my legs and I felt this intense butt pressure that kept getting stronger and stronger. At that point I didn't care what was going to come out, I just knew I needed to push something huge out of me haha.
Around 4:45 pm my amazing nurse was coaching me through pushing. It started off really casually with me just lying on the bed. She was great with telling me what to do and how to do it. You really can't be self-conscious during this time haha. We found that if I grunted through it all the baby would come out faster (my throat still hurts by the way). But Titus assured me I sounded more like a woman warrior than constipated 😉
I was pretty surprised by how tiring the pushing was though. That's not something I hear about a lot, but I was so sweaty and felt like I was running a marathon. I didn't think I was someone that wanted to see or feel what was going on down there, but when the nurse asked if I wanted a mirror I accepted and took a quick peek. What a weird and super cool thing to see the head starting to come out. That mixed with her saying "I see dark hair!" and "There's a curly cue sticking out!" was giving me the motivation I needed to keep going.
Once the head was out enough the room and bed quickly changed into baby coming out mode. The doctor started the actual delivery process and then finally our sweet Will was born.
The pushing could have been a bit harder because even though Will did turn quite a bit from before, he still wasn't in the "optimal" position and he came out with his hand right next to his face... even now that's where he loves putting them!
But none of that mattered anymore because tears instantly started flowing as soon as our son was placed on my chest and I got to look at his face for the first time. What a crazy mix of emotions. Love. Joy. Relief.
Even though my life technically changed forever at my first positive pregnancy test, life definitely seems changed now. But in a good way. Everything is so new and we're figuring a lot of things out. I know this will be going on probably his entire life, but somehow I can't imagine him not being here with us.
We love you little Will.
Thank you for being on this journey with me <3
P.S- There's a part two coming! Stay tuned for the birth story from the man's perspective! *Update- here's part 2*
P.P.S- I guess you can call this my last pregnancy update. Here's where it finishes, but it all started here.
P.P.P.S- Expecting your own little one on the way? Check out all my maternity fashion posts!