Many of you have been following my blog for a long time now, and have been following my growing baby bump each week as well. Our baby is here and today our little boy is 12 days old! This first week and a half has been full of love, snuggles, nursing, family and recovering. I want to share with you my baby story to wrap up my baby bump journey.
My due date was Tuesday, May 29th. At 2:30am on May 24th, my water broke. Earlier that day I went in for my 39 week visit with Dr. Browne and shared about how I had been having Braxton Hicks contractions for the last few days. After checking me out, she said that I was dilated 1.5cm and was 50% effaced. (Sorry if that is too much info.) She then said, “You are well on your way. You could have this baby tonight or in a week”. Not exactly what I was wanting to hear, but I was grateful that I was making progress. I was pretty uncomfortable that whole evening. My husband, Andrew, went to Bible study at our church that evening while I stayed home watching Beauty and the Beast and cutting out patterns to make an owl mobile for the baby. I then decided a bath would be the right thing to soothe myself. By 10:00pm I was so tired and achy I decided I would try to just go to bed and sleep. I took a Tylenol and curled up with the heating pad on my back. At 2:30am, I was jolted awake by my water breaking! (Good thing we put plastic down on our mattress!) I woke Andrew up right away. We were so excited and nervous. I called Dr. Browne to let her know what was going on and she said to get my bag and come on in.
I first hopped in the shower. I figured why not start out feeling clean! We arrived at the hospital around 3:15 am and I was brought right into my delivery room. My contractions were already well on their way: 2 minutes apart, but not unbearable. Labor was going really well and I was progressing pretty quickly. My contractions were definitely getting stronger, but I was feeling like I was able to handle them pretty well. I was seven hours into labor and was already dilated 8cm. I was having the urge to push and so we called in the nurse. I pushed a few times before she called in the doctor. At that point she felt I would be delivering our baby within the next hour. I was so excited and nervous. My contractions were pretty strong at that point, but still no drugs. That next hour was slow-moving and extremely painful. My contractions were coming every minute and very intense. No one can quite prepare you for the pain of contractions during that part of labor. Andrew was an amazing partner and coach through the whole thing. He also discovered I am much stronger than I let on. (I was squeezing his hands pretty hard!)
When the doctor came in to have me push, that’s when some complications started to happen. My contractions were so intense at that point, and the baby wasn’t responding well during them. The baby’s heart rate was dropping during each contraction and I had to stop pushing. When they told me that the baby wasn’t going to be coming for a while, I decided to ask for an epidural. I am so glad that I got it. My entire body was shaking with pain during those contractions and our baby’s heart rate was not steady. It was hard to sit still during the administration of the epidural, but they were quick. I felt the relief fairly soon after and was able to rest. I was put on oxygen for the sake of our little one. The heart rate was still dropping. They were wanting to give me Patocin to help speed up the final part of labor, but couldn’t do that with the state the baby’s heart rate was in. I was in this state for about three hours with the doctor coming in to check on me every so often. Around 12:00pm the doctor came in to tell me that because the heart rate was dropping she was concerned that there might be a problem with the umbilical cord. She said that I could try to deliver normally, but she was afraid that it would turn into an emergency C-section where I would be under general anesthesia and Andrew would not be allowed in the OR with me. So, it was decided that I would deliver our baby by C-section. It was not what I had hoped for, but I definitely felt that God was protecting the baby and myself by allowing this to happen. I agreed to it and was right away prepped for the delivery. I was given some drug (starts with a “T”…I can’t remember the name) that stopped my contractions for the C-section.
Our heads were covered and Andrew was suited up for the OR. The doctor called in the anesthesiologist, and her OR staff to perform the C-section. We had the delivery room to ourselves for a few minutes, so we cried and prayed together for safety and protection. Then my nurses came back into the room to wheel me to the C-section OR. The worst part was when we got there, Andrew was not allowed to go in with me until after I was prepped for the surgery. I cried when the door shut behind me. I was definitely nervous, but I felt confident that all was in God’s hands and the doctors said everything should go smoothly. Once I was prepped for surgery and given a very strong dose of the epidural, Andrew was allowed to come in and sit with me. It took 13 minutes from the time the doctor said, “Incision”, until Andrew was standing up announcing, “It’s a boy”! The doctor help up our baby boy above the blue curtains so I could see him. I cried and cried. I was so happy and relieved that he was here and he was ok.
A couple of minutes after our son was lifted up over the curtain for me to see, he was cleaned up a bit, wrapped in blankets and towels, and brought over to me to hold for the first time. That was the most wonderful minute. I just stared at him and cried, and kissed his cubby little cheeks. He is mine. Sadly he could not stay with me for very long, since I had to be cleaned up and stitched back up as well. The nurses took him off to the delivery room to clean, weigh and measure him, and give him his first exam. Andrew followed behind while I stayed in the OR until I was ready to be brought back to the delivery room. He was born at 1:19pm. 21.5 inches long and weighed 9 pounds, 11 ounces. He was a BIG boy, but perfect! Still seems so tiny in my arms.
It was a good hour and a half before I got to hold our baby boy again. It was a hard time to wait. His temperature was pretty low and they were trying to raise it up a bit with him under the warmer. Then they brought him over to me for some “skin on skin” time and nursing. It is so cool how my body regulates the right temperature for him to achieve just by laying against me. God is an awesome creator! After feeding him for the first time, our son (who still didn’t have an official name at this point) needed to have his vitals tested and went back under the warmer, followed by his first bath. Andrew still hadn’t gotten the chance to hold him yet! It was four hours after delivery that Andrew finally got to hold him for the first time. It was a really precious moment.
Our hospital was so wonderful. The staff was incredible and they took such good care of us the whole time we were there. We stayed an extra night because of my C-section, but I am so grateful for our time there because we were able to rest and be pampered before heading home. Andrew and I were debating between two different names for our son, when I told Andrew that I loved them both and wanted him to pick out his name. His name is, Noah Gregory Vogan. Naps with Noah are the greatest thing! Throughout the whole labor and delivery, Andrew had been keeping our families informed on my progress and how everything was going. My mom had a flight already booked that she was working hard to rearrange to be able to fly out to see us. She arrived that evening to meet her very first grandchild. My Dad will come out this weekend to be with us and then “Pops & Mimi” will go home together.
My recovery has been slow and very painful. I wasn’t able to stand up until nearly a full day after the delivery of Noah. The nurse said, “Ok, this is going to hurt. It is going to feel like your incision is ripping apart as you stand. It is not. Just try to breathe through it and stand very slowly”. She was not joking! It was so painful. If any of you have had a C-section out there, you can relate I am sure. My recovery is still slow going, but I am definitely feeling stronger and know I am getting better. It was just nothing that I had anticipated. I had figured after that first week, I would be up on my feet and ready to go (of course this was before I learned I would be delivering via C-section). When I look at Noah, though, it was worth every bit of pain. I love him so much. I cannot describe the love that has swept over me for him. He is an answer to our prayers.
After nearly four days in the hospital we were discharged Sunday, the 27th, and allowed to go home! It was a bittersweet feeling, but it is wonderful to be home and work out being a family of three for the first time! My mom is here with us until the 12th of June. She has been pampering us and helping us in countless ways! I am so glad to have her here, especially as I continue to recover. We are anxious for the arrival of my dad on Thursday…he is anxious to be here too! This was a long post, but I hope you enjoyed it, especially if you have been following my weekly “baby bump” posts. So glad our Noah is here! I will be easing back into work slowly, but I am looking forward to it.