I had been having off and on contractions for a couple of weeks, and there were a couple of times I thought I was in the beginning stages of labor only to be disappointed when the contractions suddenly stopped.
At my 38 week appointment my doctor offered induction, and with my fluid a 7 (5 being the lowest they could safely let me go), I decided to schedule an induction for the following week – right after I’d turn 39 weeks.
The week leading up to my induction was busy, full of last-minute prep and intentional time with Rylie and Emmaline in the midst of still feeling contractions and praying I would just go into labor naturally.
Monday (9.23.19) evening, I told Aaron I wanted Tuesday (9.24.19) to be a day of rest – take a nap, chill, basically let my body prep for labor. But when the morning came, Aaron walked into the playroom where I was hanging out with the girls and clapped his hands excitedly saying, “IT’S BABY DAY!!! We’re going to go to the park and walk and eat spicy food, and you are going to have this baby today!!!!”
I wasn’t complaining, so we got ready to go to the park and headed out.
I walked a good bit at the park, and our next stop was Jim’N’Nick’s for spicy food. I called it “ultra-feast” (where are my Office fans!?). I even said, “I feel like I’m pigging out…” to Aaron, who laughed and said that’s what it looked like haha
In the midst of all this, my contractions started up and were every 20 min to an hour apart so we were hopeful our efforts really could be working.
We did a little more walking at a store nearby (because it’s still 90s + humidity) so we’d have AC and then went home so Aaron could go to work. I did some housework in attempts to keep my body moving. Unfortunately, nothing changed. I did my normal routine of putting the girls down to bed but enjoyed the bittersweet feeling that this was it. I explained that I was going to the hospital to have Baby Paisley and the next time they’d see me we’d be a family of 5 and they would get to meet their new sister.
Rylie was so excited I think it kept her up because she kept asking questions and making exclamations like, “Emmaline’s gonna be a BIG sister!” and “I wanna go with you to hospital.”
After finally leaving their room, we loaded our stuff into the car and left for the hospital at 9:30 pm for a 10 pm check-in.
We met our nurses and they got me set up with a room, gown, IV and started me on Pitocin to get my labor moving.
I don’t know if it was nerves, fear or anticipation… or all of it put together, but I was a crying mess for a few minutes. It’s moments like this when I’m thankful for Aaron and the peace he brings and how he lovingly redirects me to the Lord. In this instance, it was worship and I found myself singing along with our Spotify playlist even after Aaron had fallen asleep and I was just laying in my bed.
I surprisingly got some rest that night. At least an hour of actual sleep before the contractions became noticeably uncomfortable and I’d practice taking deep breaths through them (something I struggled with when the bigger ones came with the other two girls, so the practice was good for me).
At 5:30 am, the on-call doctor came in and broke my water. It hurt, but not as bad as it hurt when they broke my water when I had to be induced with Rylie. Before the doctor left, the nurses confirmed how much more Pitocin to give me and he replied with their medical language, followed with, “but this is her 3rd… so once you get to blah blah blah it’s going to fly out.”
From there my contractions got steadily more painful, but I was determined to breathe through all of them and keep control and not “freak out” as I had with Emmaline’s labor. At one point the nurse had to check how dilated I was and between the placement of what they were looking for being in an odd and hard to reach place + a painful contraction and I just started crying… which isn’t pretty when you’re in pain. The nurse recommended I reposition my body to help, so we did that and it helped Paisley move further down.
I was feeling lightheaded, and the nurses offered I could have a popsicle to help bring my sugar up. I gladly accepted her offer and said I loved popsicles so that was phenomenal. She asked my preferences and I said “orange, red or purple. Not blue!” Shortly after, another nurse came in with a box and 3 nurses were holding up popsicles to the light, determined to find me an orange one. They did and I expressed my thanks and told them I felt so cared for at that moment.
Between contractions, I sucked on my popsicle and it made me feel a lot better.
Because this was my 3rd, my nurse told me I had to help her out and tell her when I started feeling pressure because the likelihood of Paisley flying out of me was extremely likely. “Faith,” I called, “I’m feeling pressure!” Faith, my nurse, checked me and said I was 9 centimeters and I could not push. After another contraction passed I told her she better get my doctor down here because I didn’t know how much longer I could not push. After one scream my nurse looked at me again and I heard what sounded like a frantic pace to get my doctor in my room. They started to put my feet up and I saw my doctor walk into the room. “Oh good, I can push now!” I said out loud. I saw her put on a cover and felt a contraction coming.
I started pushing and heard some voices giving encouragement. I was mentally prepared to take a breath and start pushing again but the room joyfully exclaimed and I saw our beautiful baby girl and saw them place her on my stomach as they rubbed her quickly and clamped her cord so Aaron could cut it.
Paisley Alora Shaver
September 25th, 2019
20 inches long
From the time my water broke and Paisley was born totaled 3 hours and I pushed for 22 seconds. That is crazy!
It wasn’t long before the family filled our room to meet Paisley. Our favorite guests, of course, were Rylie and Emmaline. They loved meeting our newest family member.
The remainder of the day was spent with nurses checking in on me and loving our baby girl while the family filtered in and out.
This photo looks staged, but it isn’t, which makes it all the more funny to us.
We are officially a family of 5 😄
& with 3 kiddos under 3-years-old, I feel like this first family picture is a great representation of our new normal – a little bit of crazy 🤪
Thursday (9.26.19) morning my doctor came in to check on me. She said “I feel like you were a little hard on yourself about how labor went. But you did GREAT & you should be proud of yourself.” I thanked her and she said she would see me the next morning.
I’m not sure what I said or did that gave her that impression, but at the same time, I knew she was right. But when I thought back on labor, I think it was my personal best. Even though it was an induction, I believe my confidence was stronger, my knowledge of my body was better and I without a doubt knew I was made to do this.
The remainder of the day was spent hanging out in our room.
Friday (9.27.19) we anxiously awaited for a handful of “okays” so we could be discharged. Thankfully, they came quickly and we were able to leave before lunch.
The hospital gave us a gorgeous souvenir to remember our stay 😍
I don’t think there is anything special or crazy about Paisley’s labor and delivery. I actually think it’s the simplest one we’ve had. But what makes it beautiful to me was the process. Yes, I cried. Yes, I was scared and I cannot even tell you why because I’m unsure myself. But I absolutely love that Paisley is with us. And even though it hasn’t been a week yet, she fits our family.