Thank you, Madelyn, for sharing the birth story of your sweet Maggie Jaye with us!
“This pregnancy was unlike any other for me. My husband left for his deployment and the next day I found out I was pregnant with baby number three. He didn’t get home until I was 27 weeks pregnant and I think that’s why I felt such a different connection with this baby. She and I had gone through everything together through this deployment and she was honestly what kept me going through it all.
Right around 38 weeks, I started feeling really sick. I’ve had gallbladder issues ever since having my firstborn, but never during my pregnancies, and this is exactly what this felt like. At my 38 week check up, I mentioned it to my doctor and she wanted to have some blood work done to rule out Cholestasis. She called me that afternoon and said my liver enzymes were elevated and that I needed to come back that week before my 39 week appointment the following week. I went back two days later and had an ultrasound Baby girl looked completely healthy so I headed home. About an hour after my appointment, the doctor I had just seen called me saying that my liver enzymes were almost triple what they should be and she wanted me to go up to Labor & Delivery and get my blood work done again to see if my enzymes were still rising. There was a big possibility I’d need to be induced that day. I called my husband bawling because I just wasn’t ready, but he calmed me down and told me he’d meet me there. I went up with my daughter, got my blood drawn and waited.
The on-call doctor came in and told me my levels were still rising, but I showed no signs of preeclampsia or Cholestasis, so they weren’t going to induce me that day, but that they didn’t feel super comfortable letting me go over the weekend with my levels still rising. My mother-in-law was coming in the next day to stay so we would have someone there with our other two kids, so I agreed to be induced the next night. The day of I was full of anxiety and fear. I wasn’t sure what was going on with my body and I was just hoping and praying everything was okay with our baby. We picked up my mother-in-law from the airport, my husband cooked me a steak dinner, I took a long shower, and we headed to the hospital. We got checked into our room and while they were getting my IV in and everything, my husband went home to put our kids to bed. While he was gone, the doctor on call (who was also the same doctor who I had seen at my last appointment and sent me to L&D the day before) came in to check me and my progress. I was so excited when she said I was already at 4cm and 70% effaced, so we started Pitocin just before 8 PM.
The nurses and doctor kept asking me what my pain management plan was and I told them I had always wanted to be able to have an unmedicated birth, but I just didn’t think I could do it. I was having small contractions, but it was mostly just a slight, irritating pain but nothing strong. The doctor came back around 11 PM to check me again, and thankfully I was about 5cm and the baby had dropped so she was able to break my water! From there, things really started going quickly. I laid on the bed, just trying to breathe through my contractions, but couldn’t get comfortable. I asked if I could stand up and my nurse brought me a birthing ball in for me to bounce on. It felt so much better and was easier for me to focus and get through the contractions. They couldn’t get a good reading on the baby with the doppler during my contractions, so the nurses kept coming in and messing with it while I was having some serious contractions. I just wanted to not be touched. I remember all these contractions feeling so hard and painful, watching the screen they were monitored on, and feeling so discouraged that I wasn’t making more progress.
My husband rubbed my back until I couldn’t sit anymore and then held me while I leaned on him and breathed and swayed through the contractions. I laid back down on the bed and felt that all too familiar need to push. I told the nurse I wanted an epidural and she said they’d check me first. I’ll never forget when she said, “You’re fully dilated, so you’re going to do this naturally!”
I was beyond scared. I started bawling because I didn’t think I was capable of doing it and I was exhausted after the roller coaster of emotions the week had brought. But I knew that I was so close to finally holding this baby girl I had been waiting for for so long, so I breathed and screamed and cried and fought through the pain and each contraction.
After 19 minutes of pushing, our beautiful Magnolia Jaye was born at 1:49 AM on May 19th, weighing 7 pounds 14 ounces and 20 inches long! I remember feeling so emotional because this pregnancy was such a long journey and this little girl was just everything I had imagined and more. That day will forever be one of my most favorite memories and was so empowering to me as a mother and a woman. Our Maggie Jaye was worth it all!”
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