So I wrote up this post last week, but then somehow my computer froze and didn’t auto save anything. At that point, the baby was up and I just never got around to rewriting it. But now that today is our little guy’s estimated due date and we have Daddy home to hold him, I thought it would be a good day to finally type up Jackson’s birth story. I don’t expect anyone but me to actually be interested in reading this, but it is something I want to remember (well…there are parts I guess I wouldn’t mind forgetting) and I want to write it up before I start forgetting.
On Saturday, 11/15 we were 38 weeks and I look liked this…
Not long after 12:27 on Tuesday 11/18 I looked like this…
So how did we get from Picture A to Picture B? That story starts around 4AM on Monday morning. I woke up to go to the bathroom and realized my water may have broken. It wasn’t a big gush like I was expecting so I really wasn’t sure. I woke Jared up and told him I wasn’t sure what happened but that my water may have broken but I decided to wait it out to see if anything further happened. Neither of us could get back to sleep but I didn’t notice anything else happening so we both got up and went to work like normal. While I was at school, I was noticing some cramping and some other TMI symptoms but nothing consistent and again I chalked it up to normal late pregnancy discomfort, plus I had a doctor’s appointment the next morning so I decided to wait until then.
On my way home from school I started noticing the cramping and…leaking…a bit more and realized it was probably best to at least call the doctor. I was sure she would tell me just to wait it out until my appointment but I was surprised when she told me she needed me to try to come in to L&D ASAP. My primary doctor is a part of an associate group and I had met with pretty much all of the doctors in my practice at this point, with the exception of the midwife (who I was supposed to be meeting the next morning). She happened to be the one on call and in the sweetest possible way, she told me it was pretty stupid of me to have waited so long to call her. Although I was Group B Strep negative, she didn’t want to risk the baby or I going much longer if my water had indeed broken at 4AM.
I called Jared and told him what was going on but that I still didn’t think anything “real” was happening and not to leave work early, that I’d fill him in when I knew more. I then called my mom who offered to drive me to the hospital. As I went to get in my mom’s car I felt the “pop” and gush. I quickly ran back into the house to change my clothes and get a towel for the car. I think that’s when it hit me that something might actually be happening.
Jared ended up beating us to the hospital and once we were checked into triage, a resident came in to test my water. According to the monitor I was contracting about every 3-5 minutes, but I was only feeling some of them and they were very mild. The resident said all the visible signs of the exam were pointing to negative but that he was going to test the fluid anyway. I started to think “if that wasn’t my water breaking…then what the heck is going on?”. However, he quickly returned and said “yep, you’re in labor”. What a surreal thing to hear. I was supposed to go to school the next day! We still hadn’t cleaned up the house! We were supposed to have another 2 weeks! But baby’s do what they want to do and there is no changing that. That’s when I got the wonderful IV. I do not like visible needles (ie. being able to see things sticking into my veins) so this was not fun. But I some how got through it with only minor lightheadedness.
I was still only 2 cm dilated so I knew we still had a while to go. I remember thinking at this point that I really wish I had eaten something. Because you can’t have anything but ice chips while in labor, and I hadn’t eaten since lunch time…it was going to be a long night. They got us set up in a delivery suite (which was actually very nice and spacious) and my dad came to hang out as well. Jared called his parents and updated them, but because they live much further from the hospital, we told them we’d call once things got moving more. Around 11:30PM the midwife came back to check me and I was still only at 2.5cm so my parents finally decided to go home and get some sleep. Everyone told me to try to get some sleep but between the discomfort, the anticipation, and being hooked up to so many different things, sleep was not coming. Jared and I watched the baby episodes of The Office and it hit me that this would be our last night as a family of two. Around 2AM I finally gave in and asked for the Benedryl to help me sleep. While it did make me very sleepy, I didn’t sleep much because the nurse kept coming in every 30 minutes making me change positions because of the baby’s heart rate.
By 5AM, I was starting to really feel contractions. And they hurt. While the ones in my stomach were bad, it was the pains I was feeling in my back that really stopped me in my tracks. The midwife came back in and checked me and I still wasn’t progressing like she wanted. She told me because it had been over 24 hours since my water starting breaking, we needed to speed things up to keep me and the baby safe from infection so we were going to have to start Pitocin. I took one final shower…the hot water felt so good on my back but I was having trouble standing up through the contractions. Then we got the Pitocin hooked up and things really started moving.
By 7AM I was in a good bit of pain. The contractions were coming often and strong and I’m surprised I didn’t break Jared’s hand through a couple of them. I was begging him to watch the monitor and tell me when they were peaking and fading and it was all I could do to focus and get through each one. The midwife came and checked me again and I was finally at 4cms which meant I could have the epidural. As I mentioned, I do not like the thought of needles, especially the thought of needles in my spine, but at this point, they could have come at me with a 20 ft needle and I would have welcomed it if it meant relief. The anesthesiologist came with with another resident. Lucky me…I got to be the test subject for this particular resident. Don’t get me wrong, she was very sweet, but after being stuck 5 times I was over it. It took a full hour for her to place it correctly…an hour of sitting in an uncomfortable position, while contracting, while also not being able to move because someone was injecting my spine. Not fun. Thank goodness for Jared sitting in front of me helping me focus on holding the correct position and not moving. I’m pretty sure I begged him to make it stop a few times. But once it was placed and the meds started to take effect, I finally felt like I could relax a bit.
It was crazy to look at the monitor and see that I was contracting, but not being able to feel the pain anymore…at least for a little bit. Soon the contractions starting coming back and they had to come redose me because it was wearing off. This happened once more, apparently being tall can effect the amount needed. This next part is a bit of a blur…as they were redosing me, I started feeling really weak, cold, and sleepy. My body started shaking really bad and I felt like I couldn’t get my eyes to focus on anything so I closed them. Next thing I knew, I woke up with the most wonderful heated blanket on, and oxygen mask over my face, and a very scared looking husband holding my hand. I remember hearing him say, “I don’t like seeing her with that on”. Poor guy, I must have scared him pretty bad. Apparently I had a weird reaction to the anesthesia and my blood pressure dropped very low. Once they got the oxygen on, I came back to, feeling much better, and my blood pressure stabilized. Needless to say, the epidural was not exactly a seamless process for me. BUT it was helping ease the contractions, however the back pain was still there : ( and still intense. The nurse told me I could have a Popsicle if I wanted it and oh my goodness…I don’t know if anything has ever tasted so good!
At this point it was a little after 9AM and the midwife came and checked me once again and I was at 5cms. She told me to expect to progress at about 1 cm/hour. I remember looking at the clock and realizing it could be well after 3PM before he was born and the thought made me want to cry. I was already so tired and uncomfortable but there was really nothing I could do about it so I did my best to set my mind on the moment and taking it all moment by moment. Unfortunately the midwife told me she was at the end of her shift but that I was doing great (ha!) and she would come by and visit me AND the baby as soon as she could the next day. I was sad to see her go. She was so incredibly motherly and nurturing and really helped keep me calm. But the doctor who relieved her was also great (I had met her twice before). I really did luck out with my doctors and nurses. They were all wonderful.
Around 10:30 or so I started feeling the urge to push and it was only getting stronger. I told my nurse and she said because I was just at 5cm it was probably too early but she called the doctor back anyway. When the doctor checked me she said, “yep you’re at 10! It’s time to push!”. Some how I jumped from 5cm-10cm in a little over and hour and it was go time. The nurse coached me through a couple of practice pushes and the urge was getting harder and harder to resist. The doctor got herself prepped and told me first time mom’s can expect to push anywhere from a couple minutes to a couple hours.
At this point, Jared’s mom joined us in the room. My mom was staying to help (and I am so thankful for that. My husband was absolutely incredible throughout the entire thing..he never left my side and was so great at keeping me as positive as possible…but it really helped having someone who had been through childbirth before). Jared’s mom kept asking if I was sure it was okay for her to be there. This was her first grandchild as well and I wanted her to be there to experience it, and honestly at that point, there could have been anyone in the world in there looking at me naked and it wouldn’t have phased me. I just wanted to be done.
Once pushing started the nurse and doctor told me I was a “great pusher” and asked if I was a runner or avid exerciser. I couldn’t help but laugh a bit because I have felt so UNFIT the last month but they told me they can always tell when people stay in shape through pregnancy because it makes the pushing much easier. Within 20 minutes they were telling me they could see his head, that he did in fact have some hair (I was convinced he’d be bald) and that he could be here any minute. Well…that’s where things stopped. He just wasn’t moving any further. For another hour and a half I pushed with very little progress. We had even added in a 4th push per contraction but he just wouldn’t budge. I have never in my life been so emotionally and physically exhausted. I always knew labor would be hard, but I didn’t realized how insanely physical it was. Plus, I was having intense pain in my right hip (I found out later this can be a side effect of a slightly off center epidural…I was basically having labor pains in my hip). Between contractions my mom and Jared were massaging it which helped but that was honestly the worst pain of the whole experience.
This is when I started to feel desperate. I was so exhausted and felt like I had absolutely nothing left, yet he still wasn’t here. I had been pushing for close to 2 hours. I finally started crying, frantically saying “I really can’t do this anymore…you need to find another way!”. Rationally I knew I could and would in fact make it through but I just couldn’t wrap my head around that. My mom, my nurse and Jared helped pull me through, telling me I was doing such a great job and that I’d be holding my baby soon. I always remember screaming, “why can’t I do this?!” at one point and Jared told me, “yes you can, you ARE doing this!”. Finally, with what felt like the last bit of energy I had, I pushed through another contraction and the doctor went in and grabbed him and helped pull him out. I heard his first cry and there are no words for the relief that washed over me. The nurse and doctor both said, “oh my goodness, where were you hiding him he’s so big!”. At 12:27pm on November 18th, 2014, Jackson Wesley Jorgensen entered the world.
They put him on my chest and all I could do was stare at him. All I managed to say was, “I’m your Momma!” and looked up at Jared who had tears running down his face which was one of the most endearing things I had ever seen. My husband is a strong man. He is a fixer. All he wants to do is take care of the people he loves and as I looked at his beaming, tear stained face, I realized that as hard as this whole thing was on me, it was just as hard on him, in a different way. He saw the pain and desperation I was going through and he couldn’t fix it and I know that was incredibly hard and painful for him. But here we were, staring at this sweet, not so little, cone headed angel (being stuck so long gave his head quite the funny shape, luckily it has evened out) and realizing he was ours forever was the best feeling imaginable. Jared was amazed how big his hands were and we were both amazed how perfect he was.
I kept him on my chest for about 30 minutes just taking in everything about him. Plus he was quite the wonderful distraction as the doctor was stitching everything back up. I finally handed him over to get cleaned off and weighed. I almost passed out when they told me he was 8lbs 10 ozs! Just the week before the doctor had told me she estimated him around 7lbs.
I looked over and saw my husband holding my son and my heart just melted.
These two wonderful men were instantly my whole world and I fell in love with both of them all over again. I also remember being amazed how immediately the pains were gone. All the pains in my back and hip were gone and aside from feeling completely drained, I didn’t feel too bad. Adrenaline and drugs are wonderful things! After delivering the placenta and having the doctor push on my stomach to clear everything out (gross), I was officially done with labor. I had Jackson back and the nurse helped me try breastfeeding for the first time and he latched on right away.
Eventually the grandfathers were able to come in and everyone was immediately in love his this scrunch faced little guy. They took him to get his bath and vitals finished up and they helped us move to the Mother and Baby wing, and I admit, the whole time he was gone I felt empty. I couldn’t believe how in a matter of minutes I was to attached to that little one.
I HATE the way I look in this picture…I didn’t realize how horribly puffy and exhausted I looked, BUT it is our first family photo so I have to love it.
So happy Due Date, Jackson Wesley! You surprised us but I wouldn’t have it any other way! The pediatrician said he doesn’t show any signs of being an early baby, we are thinking he was right on time, the EDD was just off. Either way, he came exactly when he was supposed to and is so perfect. I already can’t believe how much he has changed in 11 short days. Even when we are getting up with him in the middle of the night, it feels like time is going by too fast.
Jackson Wesley Jorgensen, 1 day old. Already so much personality!
1 Week Old. Always looks suspicious.
My little baby burrito not wanting to make up this morning.
Our first anniversary was a bit different than I may have ever thought…instead of waking up next to one amazing man, I woke up between two ; )
Labor was by far the hardest, most miserable, most miraculously wonderful thing I have ever done. Our lives are forever changed for the better. We are now a family of three. I adore my boys to pieces.
And I’m pretty happy that today I am at home with my Jorgensen men, rather than giving birth ; )