Let the title of this post stand as a warning that herein you will find details of the events leading up to and including the birth of our Baby Girl. If you are the type of person who likes to think that babies arrive in this world via stork delivery… I suggest you skip this one.
October 22nd (our estimated due date) came and went with nary a contraction in sight. Neither Mr. Moore or I were surprised that our baby didn’t make an appearance on that date, since we had been convincing ourselves that the actual date meant little to nothing. But, all the same, since we had gone past our due date, it was time to check in on Baby Moore with an ultrasound. So, on the 23rd, we went in and saw another sneak peek of our sweet little one. Baby Moore was, in a word, perfect. Just like every other checkup we had had over the past 9 months, they looked the baby over (we didn’t know she was a her, yet) and said, “the baby looks perfect.”
In fact, the only alarming thing about the ultrasound was that the estimated weight of our Baby was a whopping 9.5 pounds. I had my first doubts about having a completely natural birth.
Despite the ultrasound estimate (which can be off 1-2 pounds!!!) the midwives were certain that the baby was NOT that big.
So, we set up another appointment later in the week and went home to try some home remedies to induce labor. We knew that if the baby was still not making any moves to come out by our next appointment, we would have to start thinking about medical induction, which was not a part of our plan.
Some of the things we tried included: evening primrose oil, bouncing on a yoga ball, walking up and down the stairs, spicy food and pleading with Little Moore to come out before we had to resort to other methods.
Eventually, it seems, something kicked Baby Moore into gear because on the morning of October 24th I woke up and felt… a gush. I sprung up off the couch (which has become my primary sleeping place) and tried not to leave a trail of amniotic fluid behind me as I ran up the stairs to the bathroom.
For a few moments I sat alone in the bathroom with my heart racing. This was it… my pregnancy was almost over. As I sat there I remembered another early morning, nine months earlier, when I sat, for a moment, alone in the bathroom with my heart racing. I felt the same sense of pure joy and utter terror that I felt when I found out that we were finally pregnant. And then, I calmly stood up and walked into the bedroom where Mr. Moore was sleeping and said, “Hey, babe, I think probably you shouldn’t go to work today.”
Since it was still very early (it was 4 a.m. when my water broke) and I wasn’t having any contractions we decided to sit tight for a while until the rest of the world woke up. We settled in on the couch (me on top of a few layers of towels) and watched a movie. Then, when the sky brightened, we made a few phone calls.
My parents, my sister and our doulas. We did not call the midwives because we knew that they would want me to come in for an exam and… we didn’t want to rush things. I still wasn’t having any contractions, the amniotic fluid was clear and healthy, and I felt great. So, we made the decision to spend the day relaxing and enjoying our last few hours of life before baby. But, we knew that since my membranes were ruptured, there was only so long that we could wait before heading to the hospital. Along with our (totally incredible) doulas, we decided to wait until evening and, if I hadn’t gone into labor, give the midwife’s office a call to let them know what was going on.
Sure enough, evening came and still no contractions, so we called the midwife and she said to have a glass of wine (I had two) and to head to the hospital first thing in the morning.
So, that’s exactly what we did. At about 4 am on October 25th I started having regular contractions. By 6 am they were 1 minute long and 5 minutes apart and had been that way for the last hour.
I felt awesome. We had waited and my body did what it was supposed to do and now we were ready to go. This baby was on it’s way.
Only, the minute we got to the hospital… my contractions stopped.
I was so disappointed and discouraged because I knew what was coming next. My water had been broken for 24 hours. I wasn’t having consistent contractions. Next stop, pitocin.
Pitocin was like, enemy #1 on my birth plan. I did not want it. It meant an IV and it meant more intense contractions, and it meant the end of my medication-free delivery.
As I lay on the hospital table in a horrible maternity hospital gown hooked up to the monitors I felt like my ideal birth was quickly slipping away. Then… we called our Doula, Debbie. Debbie is the hero of this story. (She will probably deny that… but it’s true)
Debbie said, first of all, not to worry about the pitocin, and second, to change out of that nasty gown, put on some music and ask them if I could walk around. So, I put on my own clothes, cranked up the music and they said “yeah, sure, you can walk around.”
After being monitored for a while, the conclusion that we had already come to was decided upon and at 9 a.m. they hooked me up to an IV and started a 4 mg pitocin drip.
Then, it started.
Almost immediately I was having 1 minute long contractions every 4 minutes and Baby Moore was on the move.
I was in the tub when I started throwing up (a nice reminder of trimester one) and we decided it was time for Debbie to come to the hospital.
The IV made it difficult to labor in the tub and walk around and change positions as much as I would have liked, but overall, my labor was lovely. I was in good spirits between the contractions and during the contractions I just kind of… went into myself.
Then, when it was over, I would smile and continue whatever we had been doing before it started.
At one point Debbie asked me if the contractions were anything like what I had expected. Truthfully, they weren’t. They were totally manageable. I had imagined crazy pain that radiated through my whole body. (I blame Hollywood) But, in reality, it was this intense feeling at the center of my body and if I closed my eyes I could just… breathe into that spot. It didn’t make the sensation go away, but it was “pain with a purpose” and I could totally do it. (Thanks Victoria!!)
But then… I couldn’t do it anymore.
I hit that final sign post. I lost my mind (Todd and Debbie have been trying to convince me that I didn’t really lose my mind, but, I swear I did). I told Debbie that we had to stop the labor, the baby had to just live inside of me forever because there was no way it was coming out of me.
She just smiled.
And, then… I started pushing. And apologizing to everyone in the room for everything. I apologized to Todd and Debbie for the fact that I was a crazy person. I apologized to the nurses who were tending to me. I apologized to the Doctor when I let a curse slip out during an intense contraction. I probably was apologizing to inanimate objects and people who weren’t even in the room.
But, in the back of my mind, wherever I still had the gift of coherent thought, I kept thinking “let your monkey do it“. And… I started pushing.
Soon, Debbie said, reach down and feel your baby’s head.
And I did.
And I pushed again.
And then… there was this tiny person in my arms and I was in love and I did it, I totally did it, and I didn’t think I could.
And then I heard Todd say, “It’s a girl” through his tears.
And there was Margot. Suddenly there was another person in the room and she was Margot.
And she was blue and bruised from her fast trip into the world but her eyes were wide open and she was looking at me, she was looking RIGHT at me.
And she cried, and I apologized to her for the rude awakening of being born into this world.
And, oh my God, my Baby. I said that over and over because I just couldn’t believe she was finally here.
And I loved her.
And then they put her in Todd’s arms and I saw the look on his face and I loved everything in the world so much that I couldn’t even breathe.
And, oh my God, my Baby, my Margot. I can’t believe she’s really here.
And it’s all because a Bumblebee walked into a party and found Jesus…
It’s all because two people fell in love.