Thanksgiving Thursday is the perfect day to share Quinn’s birth story. I have so much to thank God for, I hardly know where to start! It’s one of those things – if I don’t write it down, my holey memory will lose all the details before long. So here goes. In chronological order, this is how Quinn arrived in our family last week, and how God helped me through it.
Elephants Cause Labor
This just in! Standing too close to the elephants at the zoo MAY induce labor! So said the Del’s Lemonade man who served us there. Apparently the elephants scare him a little, and he wanted to be sure we didn’t have a baby at the zoo if I became suddenly terrified. No worries. Quinn wasn’t making his appearance on his due date, which found us at the zoo, watching animals and walking and walking and walking. It was a fun day, and a great memory.
Around dinner time the next night, contractions began and settled in to a rhythm quickly. I’d been cautioned not to wait too long before heading to the hospital, as things could go much faster with my second delivery. We arrived at the hospital around 11pm and I was monitored for an hour. 1cm dilated and no changes on the horizon. Rats! Home we went, and so did my older sister Kimberly, who would be part of the delivery team, and my mother-in-law June, who had driven out in the middle of the night to watch Riley.
It was a good dry run.
I now know that showering will not speed up labor one bit if it is FALSE labor. For the next three days, labor pains began toward evening and increased in intensity toward night. But sleep was possible, and a morning shower killed all progress. Each time the cycle repeated, the contractions were more painful than they’d been the day before.
“You will keep her in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because she trusts in you. Trust in the Lord always (forever). For the Lord, the Lord, is the eternal Rock.” Isaiah 26:3,4
Those verses were my rock – God’s strength pumped into me like an I.V. He gave me the grace to enjoy those few days of mental and emotion strain, and not to waste the summer. The house got very clean too. 🙂 Scrubbing floors helps to modify feelings of anxiety.
The Real Show
When it’s real, you know. On the fourth day of madenning and painful nothing, we visited the midwife. She pronounced 3cm and helped things along by stripping the membranes. Immediately after, contractions began again. This time it was real, and by 9pm, we were in the hospital again, admitted, and ready to WORK.
The delivery room. It’s amazing how it goes from a place of pain to a room full of joy!
Jon rubbed my legs, which shook uncontrollably, even when I was warm. A very strange sensation.
4-5cm. Sigh. All the day’s pain and 4-5cm?! Sustain me, oh God.
I had the BEST labor and delivery team ever. Jon, Kimberly, a wonderful nurse, and Deb, our midwife. She is a Christian, and prayed for me during labor. Jon and Kimberly read verses to me that strengthened my resolve and kept me focused. My prayer had been that I would not focus on the pain, but on Christ and on Quinn, on relaxing and worshiping and thanking God for His help and His plan.
He answered mightily!
By about 6cm, well into the night, Quinn still had not “dropped” into my pelvis. Little bugger 🙂 Deb’s timing was impeccable, breaking my water at just the right moment, ensuring that he dropped into place in the best possible birth position. Absolutely amazing skills.
Lots of breathing and swaying and showering and praying later, I started to feel “pushy.” Here we go!
7-8cm. Inside I raged. COME on!!!! I thought I was almost done!
The last two cm were the hardest, and it was by the grace of God that I was able to finish strong. Suddenly, it was time to push and in ten minutes, believe it or not, Quinn was born. Looking down at his emerging head was one of the most special moments of my life.
He lay on my chest for a while, snuggled in perfectly, and I told him over and over how much Mommy loved him. What an incredible miracle! Early in the morning after days of agonizing waiting and working, we became a family of 4.
Daddy got a great tattoo and at the same time. . .
. . .a great second son.
Thank you, God, for an amazing and normal delivery and for the strength and courage you gave me, when I thought I couldn’t go on. You truly are my eternal Rock and I worship you as I lean on you still.
Thank you for an incredible sister, whose support also meant the world to me…
…for parents who sat in the waiting room, praying through the wee hours, and many others doing the same at home.
Thank you for my boys!
And thank you for the grace to become a family, figuring out how to keep making each other feel special.
Time to go take a nap. I want to be fresh and cheerful for those boys when they wake up from their afternoon slumber. What could be better than this? Family is the most special thing on Earth.