Birth Story: Welcome to the world, Hazel Isla!

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Happy New Year! Hazel is almost 4 weeks old and I am slowly slowly maybe sort of kind of getting into a routine? Ish? Anyhow in trying to get back to real life I wanted to start getting blog posts together again so I figured I’d make the first one back Hazel’s birth story!

The week of December 14th was an anxious time! I was 39 weeks pregnant and UN. COMFORTABLE. Everything hurt, I wasn’t sleeping, and literally every text message and phone call made me irritated. Even the sweet ones asking how I was feeling and if I needed anything started to get under my skin. I was just so so done.

In addition to being extremely pregnant, Amit and I had just wrapped up our third attempt at bidding on a house, and our third failed attempt. This one especially stung as we had been outbid by just $1000. We had been so damn close. Amit was in a particularly ripe mood because he had really really loved this one. There’s more to this whole story, but we’ll save the house hunting stuff for another day!

So fresh off the loss of another house, feeling stressed to the max about where we would live come January, and anxiously awaiting our new baby Amit and I were not super fun to be around I am sure. I was having very painful, inconsistent contractions (about every 20 minutes), and was unable to sleep because of them. I could also barely walk because every time I moved my round ligament pain would kick in and BOY did it kill. With all of this going on there is no nice way to put it, I was turning into one cranky bitch. I went into my weekly appointment on Monday with a chip on my shoulder, just ready to have this baby al-damn-ready! They asked me all the normal questions like if I’d felt movements — I told them yes, but less. This alarmed my midwife who sent me for a non stress test. The NST department appointment was one for the books. After taking quite a while to get much movement the nurses decided to check my fluids. After not finding much fluid two anxious nurses debated right in front of us if they should call the doctor. Initially this really confused us — why debate it…just call her in! Well, once the on call NST doctor came in it was clear why they had debated it. Her level of crankiness would have made you think SHE was 9 months pregnant and had just been outbid on another house with nowhere to live in a month. First she yelled at me for not telling anyone I had felt less movement (untrue, I had told my midwife, which was why I was there in the first place) and then yelled at Amit for asking a question. We later found out she does this with everyone, but at the time with everything we had going on…we were not at all pleased!

To make matters worse I continued having PAINFUL contractions that led to nothing that night. Not Braxton Hicks, these HURT like the real deal. But they’d only come every 10 minutes or so, for hours, and then nothing for a few hours. I knew that wasn’t what “real” labor looked like and wasn’t worth heading to the hospital for, but boy did they kill. I was miserable. Amit and I decided to pack for the hospital around 12 am just in case. (Which, by the way, pissed off our downstairs neighbor. She started loudly banging on our floor when she heard us scuffling around prepping for the hospital…just another reminder we needed a HOUSE.) We ultimately decided not to go in that night and just wait until morning to see if my contractions got closer. The next morning came and I felt absolutely no movement at all. I was still having contractions, maybe every 8 minutes apart, but no movement at all. I tried drinking cold water and laying on my side, but nothing. We had a doppler and could hear baby’s heartbeat, but no matter what I did I couldn’t feel her. We called the hospital who told us to come in right away, I was still having painful consistent contractions, but again only 8 minutes apart.

When we got there my midwife monitored me for a while, checked my fluids, did a pelvic exam and determined there was enough going on that it was time to get baby out. My fluid was extremely low, I was already 4 centimeters, and baby wasn’t moving much at all. They told me to wait in triage and that they’d have a room for me shortly to start an induction. Well…my body had other plans. Before they could get me into a labor and delivery room my contractions sped up to every 3 minutes and were becoming PAINFUL.

Finally a room opened up and we were in business! Amit and I got all set up as I got hooked up to all my monitors. He went down to the car to get our things, filled up my giant water bottle with sparkling water, got wash clothes and essential oils out, found snacks and set up watching Parks and Rec for a while. Honestly, it was the most relaxed I had been in weeks and I was SO relieved to get this baby out and into my arms. We just relaxed and spent time together for a while until anesthesiology came to ask if I was interested in an epidural. Things were still manageable at that point, but I knew L&D was fully booked in every room with women giving birth that day so I said yes put me on the list. Thank goodness I said that, because not long after my contractions started to become unbearable. About 45 minutes later I got my epidural (heavennnnnnnn.) Guys I gotta tell you, loved my epidural the first time and LOVED it this time. It really allowed me to enjoy the birthing experience. I also got a little pitocin to help move things along. Not long after that my midwife came in to check on me and as she walked into the room I felt my water break. It wasn’t a gush like the first time, it was just a little dribble of wetness, I guess because the fluid had been so low. My midwife told me things would speed up from here. Sure enough, about 20 minutes later I got the urge to push. My midwife and nurse came in, we did a few practice pushes and they told me they’d be right back with the table…it was time to meet my baby!

While they were gone though my body kept trying to push. “Amit, you need to get them back, I need to push!” Amit called for my midwife who told me to hold off for a few more minutes, she kept insisting it would be better to just wait a few more minutes. “I really don’t think I can!” I told her. So she hurried to get everything ready and told me this would be quick! And boy was it! After just 10 minutes of pushing, sweet baby girl was out! I didn’t even break a sweat this time. As soon as they handed her to me all I could think was ” She looks just like Summer! …but so much more pale!” She looked beautiful and sweet, she came in at 7 pounds, 2 ounces and 20.5 inches long. She just looked so beautiful and sweet and tiny and I was immediately in love with her! Amit and I had debated for MONTHS what her name would be, but upon seeing her we were in full agreement. “She looks like a Hazel, right?” I said. “Oh, totally!” Amit replied. FINALLY, a name! We had gone back and forth forever, it was amazing to see her and just know she was Hazel.

We snuggled and nursed for a while which was really special. All in all everything felt so much more natural and relaxed and calm the second time around. Everyone tells you the second time is easier and faster, but my goodness I could not have imagined to what extent. It all really felt so easy! Now we’re all home and getting to know each other and enjoying every newborn snuggle!

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