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Big T’s Birth Story Part 3: PUSH!

Read Birth Story Part 1 here

Read Birth Story Part 2 here

Photography by: Jackie Willome Photography (PG/Husband-approved photos included).

I tried to sleep a bit more, and nurses told me to let them know if I felt any pressure. I woke up after maybe an hour or so when I could feel something—someone rather, coming down my birth canal.

Luckily the crew was coming in to check on me just then. I told them I felt pressure and I was pretty sure the baby was about ready to come out.

It reminded me of when I was having my daughter. When I told them I felt some heaviness in my nether regions, they went to check, and her head was already visible and awaiting departure.

If I had a mirror I probably would have checked myself this time, but I left it to the professionals. Sure enough I was fully dilated, locked and loaded.

They called my doctor to see if she wanted me to get started on some practice pushes but she told them to wait, recalling that I’m a “good pusher.” I guess I could take that as a compliment.

9:21, I messaged my friends and posted an update on Facebook asking for last minute guesses and letting everyone know I was getting ready to meet the little guy or girl.

My photographer got positioned for the action, but once it started I didn’t even remember she was there.

It was really a surreal moment. I couldn’t believe I was minutes away from meeting my Little Leechie.

My nurses asked if I wanted to hold my baby skin to skin once s/he arrived and helped me get space ready on my chest for him.

My OB came in and everyone was suited up. They helped me straddle my legs on some leg hoister things. And as I lay there in a very compromising position one of the male delivery nurses said: “Oh I recognize you from the news!”

We all had a good laugh as a couple other people chimed in with their “AH HA’s.” How awkward it was that now, in this moment, they put the pieces together.

Everyone guessed boy or girl as I got ready to push. My nurse Heather and I were the only two who guessed boy, and everyone else in the room guessed we’d be having another girl. —My husband included.

When a contraction came I was ready to push and they were all ready to go. The nurses helped count through the pushes for me but there was no screaming or yelling. It was pretty peaceful. Between contractions they joked about the baby having red hair, and we laughed. Looking back at my photos it’s funny seeing myself laughing in between pushes.

It was maybe five to ten minutes later and the baby’s head was out. I was so excited I asked if I could keep pushing. They were like “sure, if you’ve got it in you!”

I was pumped and ready to meet this kid. Another push, and one more for good measure and the baby came flying out. —Almost literally, behind a bunch of water pressure. It was 9:38am. I heard a gush and then cheers and I looked down at my baby, which at the time, looked nothing like my daughter when she was born. My doctor set the baby on my chest and I just stared at that little chubby face, waited for cries that didn’t come right away.

I was looking into my baby’s blinking eyes when I overheard my nurse say “Oh he is a boy!” I couldn’t believe I had totally forgotten to look. I thought that would be the first thing I’d notice, or that my husband would have said something but I was too consumed with his sweet face. For the first time I looked down between his legs and sure enough—It was a boy!

A boy! I rubbed his back and he started to cry a little, but not for long. He was the calmest sweetest little boy.

“Do you want to cut the umbilical cord?” They asked my husband.

“YES!” I answered for him.

“I guess so!” My husband chimed in.

There was no pain in the delivery, the drowsiness was long gone, and I was just completely smitten with my new child all slimy and sweet against my chest.

For the first time I looked up at my husband who was beaming with joy.

“Well, guess we’ve gotta decide on a name now” he said.

I held my baby and stared at his face for what must have been ages but felt like no time. My husband was the messenger and let everyone know we had a son. He couldn’t stop smiling from ear to ear.

I only needed one stitch for a tiny tear I thankfully didn’t feel right away.

After we had had some time to bond, my baby boy got weighed in at a hefty 9lbs 2oz. He measured 22in long. We were in love.

He latched on right away and nursed like a champ. Although I had forgotten how small and fragile a newborn baby felt in my arms, I felt like a supermom for knowing what I was doing.

The only bad part about my entire experience was all of the glucose testing and foot pricking. I should have asked to hold him instead of them keeping him under the warm lamp, but I didn’t think it would take as long or be as often as it was.

Since I had a big baby they had to keep testing his blood sugar levels and after the first test they suggested I give him formula after nursing him. I wanted to cry at what seemed like an absurd idea to me. In fact I remember my eyes tearing up as I sat holding my baby while the nurses prepared a tiny formula bottle.

“Do I HAVE to give him formula?” I asked.

“You don’t want to feed him formula do you?”

“Umm, no, not really.”

For the first time in my whole pregnancy/birth experience I felt a wave of mommy guilt as a flood of random lactavist phrases came to my mind like “virgin gut” and “exclusively breastfeeding.” I’m not anti-formula, I’m just very pro-breastfeeding. My daughter had never needed a drop of formula and I felt like I’d be failing this baby right off the bat. Is this how people who want natural births felt about getting an epidural?

I told the nurses I’d rather not give him formula and a pediatrician came to my rescue, suggesting I nurse him as long as he wanted, wait 45 minutes, then test his sugar levels again. When they did that they had gone up by 50%.

That was the first and last time they offered formula, thankfully, because it was some kind of strange hormonal trigger for me.

Big sister arrived a couple of hours after he was born and was amazed by her new little brother. Poor thing had been thinking he was a she all along though, and since we had a girl name picked out, she had been calling him her little sister Sanya. (It only took her about a week to get over that).

Watching her gaze at her little brother brought on an amazing feeling. She was truly so excited that “her” baby had “come out” and was ready to meet her. Her face scrunched up in the most adorable perked expression as she said “Hi baby! … My baby brother is so cuuuuute!” She was so in love, and so was I, as my heart doubled in size.

Recovery at the hospital was great. By the evening I was up and walking around, and the next day I was back in my comfy yoga pants.

One of my sweet nurses—Hilary, said she recognized me, and I thought she meant from my work but she said she reads my blog. She got to meet “Leechie” in the flesh, and complimented my take-home outfits.

My family arrived the morning after Ty was born, and other close friends. Everyone was so excited to meet our little boy. A boy! I still have a hard time believing it. Funny thing is though, comparing waiting to find out and finding out at my 20-week ultrasound—I was more surprised with my daughter, because I thought for sure she’d be a he. This time around I felt like I knew it was a boy from the beginning. In the middle of the pregnancy I started to doubt my gut but my guess was always boy. I loved finding out my baby was a boy at birth but I also loved the ultrasound reveal with my first.

Comparing my first labor experience to my second is also interesting. At 41 and a half weeks I was so ready to have my daughter, and induction was absolutely the right choice for me. I’d tried everything from nipple stimulation, evening primrose oil, pineapple, spicy foods, lots of sex and castor oil shakes and nothing worked. Because of my family history I didn’t think I’d be able to go into labor naturally.

This time I didn’t try any self-inducing techniques but just enjoyed being pregnant, especially since I wasn’t sure if this would be my last pregnancy. I thought for sure I’d be induced again and was shocked when I had to wake my husband up to go to the hospital.

I didn’t need a drop of pitocin, and I was much more relaxed before I got my epidural (but I’m not kidding myself, I was even better after I got it). But now that I’ve experienced both, and I’ve had two normal deliveries I think if I do have a third baby someday I’ll seriously consider trying to talk myself into wanting to attempt delivering at a birthing center (especially if they have Fentanyl) with and midwife. I figure the labor will be even shorter a third time, and now I know what to expect and how it feels. We’ll see though. A third is a BIG IF.

Two totally different experiences, both beautiful ones I’ll always remember.

I have a little boy and a little girl. Holding them both in my arms was one of the most amazing and overwhelming experiences of my life. And I couldn’t be happier to begin this new journey as a mother of two.


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Emily says:

Amazing story. It’s good to know that breast milk was just as good as formula at bringing up Big T’s blood sugar…not that I really doubted it. Way to stick to your gut, mama! Congratulations, again!

Tree Lindsay says:

Aww.. Jenn! Congratulations mama!! Gorgeous, gorgeous photos and family! You are blessed. I can’t wait to hear more about it. You had me laughing at “locked and loaded.” lol

FSD says:

Congratulations! Ty is adorable, and the picture with you and the kids is sweet. Your birth story was great, too! I had to have an emergency c-section with my son (my 2nd child), which is still a sad thought for me after a successful vaginal birth with my daughter. Enjoy life as a mommy of 2!

Sarah says:

You made the right decison standing up for yourself and not feeding him formula when you didn’t want to. I didn’t have a choice. My daughter had very bad jaundice and made me feed her formula from day one until she was released from the hospital 6 days later. My milk never came in, despite everything I tried. She liked the bottle better. It was easier. I cried so hard the day my husband made me stop pumping and give up (because I was half crazy after 6 weeks of trying to breast feed then feed herboob juice, then bottle and then pump. By the time it was all done she was hungry again!). Always go with your mommy intuition. Isn’t it amazing how your heart swells to double the original size all of a sudden?

You look beautiful in all your photos! And Little J is so adorable! It makes me think maybe someday I’ll have another one… after considering keeping my daughter an only child after what I consider a very traumatic birth story with her. I’m so glad it went so smoothly for you and that you were able to breastfeed him without having to give formula. That mattered a lot to me as well. You have such a beautiful family! Congratulations!

Kaitlin says:

Congrats! You have a beautiful family! (Ps) Im where u were about a yer ago… Trying to convince my hubby to have baby #2! :/
I love following your blog too!!

Chandelle says:

Congrats on your beautiful baby boy! He has such a proud big sister 🙂 SO cute!! Love your gowns, too!!

Sarah says:

Wonderful story! Congratulations to you and your new family of four!

Quiana says:

What a beautiful birth story (and love how you look so glamorous through it alll)! Nia enjoyed looking at the pictures too of Lil J with her “baby bruddah” as she says. I too look forward to a birthing center for baby #2 someday in the far far future.

Thank you for sharing this, beautiful! We also have a girl and a boy and I remember that feeling when she first saw him and I just held both of them, surreal!

Alice Anne says:

Congratulations again, girl! I love Lil J’s expression – the proud big sister scrunched-up face. Ahhhhhh! So stinkin’ cute!!!

Nicole says:

So sweet! And I’ve not been around for a loooong time. The last time I was here you’d just given birth to baby number 1. 🙂

YUMMommy says:

Glad you didn’t have to give Ty the formula. As an exclusively breastfeeding mom, I know you felt when they suggested it. We worried about my milk supply coming in after I had JJ and I was going to pieces thinking I’d have to put him on soy formula. Thankfully, that didn’t happen.

Just something about knowing that you’re capable of breastfeeding and that you’ve done it successfully before that just motivates you to succeed a second time.

xlovehappyx says:

thanks for sharing his birth story 🙂 i enjoyed reading it and seeing the pictures! you all look so happy 🙂 congratulations!

keri says:

I also love making babies, 3 in total and found it to be a big deal to name them with the perfect lil names that I could find. I came up with Averi Nevaeh, Kai Xavier and Jaxan Day. I love the name Tyree and was curious of Lil J’s birth name. She is such a doll and I wonder what perfect lil name you used for her.
I love hearing your story and look forward to the next post.

B says:

So exciting! I’m so glad you are happy with both of your birth experiences – I always feel sad when I heard of people who feel cheated or disappointed by their birth experience. I had a c-section, but I don’t regret it for a second!

And you look gorgeous in your labor pictures. Significantly less tired and like you just gave birth than I did in my amateur, unflattering shots my husband took. This next time around I’m hoping to put some effort into how I look since I’ll be going in for a quick scheduled repeat cesarean – lol!

Just beautiful! Congrats! You make it all look so easy!

Ty says:

Now your cute family is complete! I hope that one day when I have children, my deliveries are as easy as you make it sound haha! =)

Caryl says:

Beautiful! Thank you for sharing. My girlfriend had both of her children in an inflatable tub in her living room with a midwife. Hard core! I had a midwife, was in the hospital and was more of the, um, when do the drugs get here, kind of gal. =0)
Cheers,
Caryl

Kathy C. says:

aww man… you made me cry. Whew… great job mama! He’s a beautiful lil guy!

Francine Johnson McGee AKA Franstuff says:

Congratulations on your wonderful birth experience. Fentanyl is definitely the bomb for labor before your epidural! It wasn’t used during labor with my first or second children, 1983 and 1990, both boys, both induced, but by 1999 when my youngest was born, a girl yay, it was. BIG difference! I don’t know if they use any narcotics in birth centers, but that also may vary by where you go also. My daugher was a miracle, I wasn’t supposed to be able to get pregnant or carry another pregnancy because of part of my cervix being removed with precancerous cells, so I was and still am very happy to have her. She has been such a blessing in my life. Not that I don’t love my sons, but they have both been much more of a challenge.

BTW… have you ever ran into a blog, like I did yours tonite looking for no sew tutu instructions for an emergency tutu for my daughter to wear to her football game as a highschool student over her leggings, and just had a feeling the person writing it was LDS? Then I see LDS on one of you sidebars, I had been so focused on your wonderful birth story, after the mad rush to put together an instant tutu before the game, I only noticed the tag a few minutes ago. Maybe it’s LDS radar? I’m a convert, so it’s not genetic, grin, at least not as far back as I have traced. I seem to be only member in my tree.

I’m sure he will want to read this some day, even if he never admits it. His future wife (way future) will be happy you kept this record too.

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Hi! I’m Jennifer Borget

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I'm a former journalist, and lifelong creator striving to make the world a better place. This is the space where I share my journey in making the most of every day by cherishing our individuality and celebrating our differences.



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