Addilyn's Birth Story 2011: Written by her mother Lori Smith
Readers Digest Version:
Addilyn Ranné Smith
May 4th 2011 at 10:35 am
8lbs 15oz; 18.5 in long
Picture #1 On Sunday when I was 40 weeks and 6 days.
Picture #2 After laboring for 14 hours, about to go to the hospital. Yes, very attractive. This is at 40 weeks and 8 days.
Picture #3 On our way out!
During church in the afternoon I was feeling more back pain than normal. It was really uncomfortable sitting there! Afterwards I started to feel more consistent contractions that felt like the Braxton hicks ones I had been feeling for a couple of months. However they went away and I slept really well that night.
We went to the doctor at 8:40am. Because I was a week late at that point, they hooked me up to do a stress test. They put two monitors on my belly, one at the top to measure contractions and the second lower on my belly to measure Addilyn’s heartbeat. They also gave me a little hand clicker to click every time I felt her move. That was easy to do because she like always, was moving and a grooving in her hot tub. Everything was perfect from the test. I was dilated to almost a 4, 90% effaced, and her head was stationed at a -2 in my pelvis (-5 is all the way out). The doctor came in (our least favorite one too, because he is very medical and not keen on letting me do the route I was wanting) and gave us his thoughts about me being late. Even though I was perfect and the baby was perfect, he wanted me to go in that day to be induced. LAMER. He gave us his 2 cents about the risks of being late (he literally said we could have a handicapped child and that 50% of mothers died 150 years ago at childbirth. Do you see why we don’t like him??) and then sent us on our way to the ultrasound tech to check my amniotic fluids. Before he let us go he asked us when we would like to be induced- I said I still didn’t. So to appease him we told him we’d let him know what our thoughts were after we knew what my fluid levels were at. We asked the tech how the fluids were and she said that they were totally normal, a little on the low side, but is expected for how far I was. Our doctor came back in and we told him he could set an appointment for Wednesday. (I had a feeling I was going to be in labor the next day) That satisfied him and he said after he made the appointment “I don’t even think you’ll make it in to this appointment. You’ll probably go in on your own.” Now why would he say that after trying to make us think we’re in horrible condition? If you couldn’t tell we don’t like him!
All day Monday I was spotting (which was expected after being checked for dilation etc) and also cramping. However my cramping was very consistent to contractions. My only issue was that I couldn’t tell when they were starting and stopping. Our lovely doula Linda said that I will know when the come and go- they may not be consistent or anything, but that I will know when they change. Monday night I slept perfectly.
I woke up a few minutes before 6am with a contraction. Just like Linda said, I knew when it started and stopped. The feeling of it was also slightly different from my Braxton hicks, a little more intense. We started timing them right away. I was really good at being about the same length of the contraction and also time between. From 6am-8ish I was having them average of 7 minutes apart and they lasted an average 40 seconds. From then on out I was consistently at an average of 9 minutes apart and lasting between 50-70 seconds. There came a point though where the contractions felt different. It was later in the afternoon when I decided to call Linda. The intensity of the contractions was obviously different for me. It wasn’t until after 6pm that I was having them an average of 6 minutes apart. 7:30 pm and on I would go between 6 and 5 minutes apart but they were lasting average 75 seconds and sometimes when as long as 90 seconds. Finally at 8:50 I got down to 4 minutes apart, but they would come and go mostly staying at 5 apart.
During this time Linda and Scott were catering to me. I was using my relaxation techniques that I had been practicing. Because I was having back labor, we were trying all sorts of different positions and pressure points to help alleviate that pain. The ones that worked the best for me was sitting straight up on the couch with pillows propping me up with Linda or Scott pushing on my knees to counteract the pressure. Also during this time, my mom was keeping track of all of my contractions. It was helpful for me (probably annoying for others) to tell her when I was starting one and ending a contraction. It was more inspiration and encouragement for me that it was happening. We left for the hospital after a contraction at home at 10:08 that lasted 90 seconds and was 4 minutes from the last.
Our drive to the hospital included Scott and me and in our car, Linda in hers, and my mom in hers. When we came in, no on was at the desk, so Scott picked up the phone like the sign said. They asked how we could be helped and Scott said nicely, “Hi, we’re here to have a baby.” Once in our room at the hospital, they hooked me to a monitor to check my vitals and the baby’s vitals. I was then checked and was dilated to a 5 and 90% effaced. The rest was a blur- but my mom kept track of times and events. After I was free from monitors, I went into their laboring Jacuzzi tub.
Back in the room at 1:30am, I was dilated to a 7 and 100% effaced. I knew if I went back into the tub, I wasn’t going to make it back out. So we stayed in the room. 3:15 am I was an 8, 5:15am I went back to a 7. We believe now looking back I digressed because I found out the Doc we don’t like was the on call until about 7am. Because I digressed, the doctor put me on monitors again and convinced us to get my water broken. The reasoning behind it was because of her being late, she may have had a bowel movement which would not be very good. At 6:10 am I was at a 9 and at 6:30 he broke my water. My water was almost clear, which was awesome. That doctor said several inappropriate things to me, a birthing woman, like “women die giving childbirth” to tell me that things needed to pick up or else I may have a c-section. (Did he forget that I was dilated to a 9 and 100% effaced??) Finally our poo poo doctor left for a plane, and another one of my better doctors took over. For 2 hours I couldn’t help but push during my contractions. My pushing was a “breathing” push where I was doing just that, exhaling as I pushed. Well, it wasn’t working and the doctor wanted to get me on pitocin to help speed the contractions up and the intensity of them. The nurse came in and said in essence, “Okay Lori- this is what you’re going to do and this is going to get the baby out.” She knew I didn’t want the pitocin and that there were alternatives we could try until the doctor would order it on me. Well, I ended up getting the pitocin at 10:05am. It wasn’t terrible though because it didn’t do anything to me. I ended up doing the “purple” pushing. A.K.A. holding my breath and pushing for 10 seconds 3 times during a contraction. It wasn’t the route I wanted to go, but 20 minutes later we had a baby. I did get an episiotomy, but I didn’t tear anymore than what he cut. The episiotomy was my choice because I could sense she was going to be very large and I was going to tear anyway.
I had a mirror there to watch her come out. Linda and Scott were on either side of me, Scott was counting, Linda was telling me that she was coming and I was almost done. My mom was behind Linda by my shoulder with the camera.
I don’t really remember the moments after Addilyn came out, just bits and pieces. Scott cut her cord (the doctor said, “I will hold your hand and help you”…Scott wasn’t sure if he wanted to do it because it weirded him out. But at that point after all he’d seen it was easy for him), they put her on me, I was kissing her telling her hello, Scott was next to me touching her, he asked what we should name her, we agreed on Addilyn Ranné, I remember Scott taking a picture with his phone and my mom with the camera…
Scott said that right when she came out the nurse who was the one who got us through the last stretched said, “Look at those cheeks!!” I remember thinking that she was massive and I couldn’t believe that she was in me. The events after included the placenta coming out 10 minutes later. That was a really weird feeling. I was stitched up, and Addilyn was trying to suck on me. After some time after all the cleaning and everyone but our nurse was left, we got Addilyn’s measurements. The nurse was so excited to find out how much she weighed. I couldn’t see, but the nurse, Linda, Scott, and my mom were all standing around the scale. It first came out in kilograms, which was a very strange number and shocked everyone. But then it was changed to pounds and again, shocked everyone! She was just shy of 9 pounds. BIG baby!!! Scott was there the whole time watching her get measured and he helped bathe her and was taught how to do her diaper with her cord. I was sitting/lying in my bed still receiving pitocin to help with my uterus contract.
Picture #1: Scott (Husband) cutting the cord.
Once Addilyn was taken care of, I was helped to the shower. The nurse kept telling me to keep my chin up, look up, and breath. So I did. My shower was a little on the warmer side because it didn’t have a middle- either a little warm or cold, I of course chose warm. Once the water was off, I sat down on the bench and had my hair in my towel. The nurse came in and she was asking how I was doing. I said, “Man. I am pooped.” And then I asked if she could hand me the other towel. Once she handed it to me, she just kept saying again, “keep your chin up, look up, Lori keep breathing”. I don’t really remember too much after that. The next thing I remember was Scott standing in there saying my name too. He brought in a wheel chair and wheeled me out. Apparently the nurse had me stand up so she could help put these diaper like panties on me and she had asked me to sit back down…but I didn’t. In other words I fainted. I have never done that before. It was the weirdest feeling. I felt like I was on drugs.
From Left to Right Top Row:
Picture #1 Dr. Barton (the Dr. they liked more than the first Dr. in the story)
Picture #2 Nurse
Picture #3 Scott (Father)
From Left To Right Bottom Row:
Picture #4 Doula Linda and Addilyn
Picture #5 Lori and Doula
Picture #6 Addilyn's Grandma
Addilyn's first outfit, on the way home from the hospital.
All photos taken and edited, are by Lori Smith-
1 Week Old:
“…We have also come to the conclusion she looks like me when I was a baby. When my mom goes home she'll send me a picture of me and we'll… The doctors have all been so impressed by how perfect she is. Since she has left the hospital, she has only gained weight! She loves to eat, and it's a good thing I have the supply for her! We think the eating comes from her daddy.”
2 Weeks Old:
“…Addi got her hearing checked again after not passing her right ear at the hospital. She passed with flying colors. No hearing problems here! It really just confirmed that she is all around perfect.”
3 Weeks Old:
“…She had an appointment on Monday. She's still perfect and since her birth weight she has gained 1.1 pounds! I told you she was a muncher. The picture below is a partial smile. She does these random smiles here and there… The past few nights I've been having Scott wake up once to feed her which has been really nice for me! I get to sleep a couple more hours in a row. As for eventful moments for Addi (besides Sunday's ultimate poo/fart experience) she has slept the longest for 6 hours, once. Today she sprayed poo on me when I was lifting her up to put a new diaper under her. She loves taking showers and being warm. Her legs are always straight rather than curled up like newborns usually like. When she stretches she is super cute and looks like the middle picture (she knows she's got some win in her...Jadwin that is) She is really an easy baby and hasn't had any problems. She only cries when she is hungry or cold or her binky fell out and she wants it again.”
All photos taken and edited, are by Lori Smith-
Hello! My name is Linda. I am a Doula CD(DONA), Hypno-Doula, Childbirth Educator, Midwife Assistant and a Registered Nurse (RN) by profession.