August 02, 2012

Hudson's birth story: Part One

If you've read my blog over the past two years, you know that getting pregnant has been a journey this time around. With a year of unexplained infertility, two miscarriages and an unsuccessful shot at IUI...this chapter in my life is one that tested my patience and my happiness. To have this chapter finally close in the most beautiful way is everything I could ever have hoped for.

While the getting pregnant proved to be difficult this time (unlike the first two times where I got pregnant very easily) the staying pregnant part was much more like my other pregnancies. For some unknown reason, my body just doesn't want to carry to term. In this case, I started contracting regularly at 29 weeks along and it never really let up until I delivered at 36 weeks. That's 7 weeks of discomfort - not to mention keeping track of the on and off intervals of rock hard belly and deciding when/if to call my doctor.

I think I ended up in L&D six times from 29 weeks on. Each time I felt kind of stupid for going in only to be monitored and sent home, but my doctor assured me that with my preterm history, it was better to err on the side of caution. I asked one of the nurses who had been working during a few of my visits if she thought I was crazy annoying for coming in so often. She just laughed and said "Honey, we see all kinds of crazy here...and believe me, you aren't one of them." :)

After my 5th trip to L&D around 34 weeks, I called my mom back in KY to let her know I had made yet another trip to the hospital. I had really hoped to have my sister and mom be here when Hudson was born but as I started to look at flights online, the prices were outrageous and I began to lose all hope that we'd be able to 1. coordinate their trip since we had no way of knowing when I would go into labor and 2. afford the flights in the first place, especially any last-minute fares. I cried each time I got off the phone with them knowing I would just have to accept the fact that we wouldn't have family here.

That was a tough pill to swallow for several reasons. I was lucky enough to have had my mom in the delivery room for Ethan's birth and we had a steady stream of family and friends at the hospital to welcome him into the world. Aiden's arrival ended up being lonely and stressful. He came 5.5 weeks early which was nerve-wrecking in and of itself...then add to it that a blizzard closed the highways and airports which meant nobody was able to be there with us. My parents were in Florida at the time and were not able to get there even when the shock of Aiden's diagnosis was one of those moments where I needed my mom and dad desperately. The hours and days after his birth are a blur, yet are singed into my soul in a way I won't ever forget.

When I got pregnant this time I wanted so badly to have a much different experience. I realized it was out of my hands - but I still continued to pray for a healthy baby and an easy labor and delivery filled with only good memories. After all, this was going to be my last pregnancy.

So I began planning early. I carefully thought out every aspect of my labor and delivery. I made lists of what to bring in my hospital bag, packed it several weeks in advance, wrote a birth plan (which I never did before), and even made a play list of calming and meaningful songs to stream while at the hospital. I asked my sister if she'd like to be in the room for his birth. She had two c-sections and never got to experience a regular delivery. While it wouldn't be her own, I thought it would be awesome to have her there to experience it with me.

Just when I had given up hope that it was going to work out for her to make it to Texas from Kentucky on a moment's notice, my mom called the day after my 5th L&D visit to tell me that they were loading up her van to make the trip down the next day. She just knew Hudson was going to come early and they did not want to miss it for the world.

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