Monday, March 17, 2008

A Baby Story

Let me just start by saying that God has been blessing me immeasurably lately when it comes to celebrating new life. My last post was about my boys' baptism and now, tired and incoherant as I am, I am excited to tell you that I had the amazing privilege to be a part of a birth last night.
My sweet friend, Heather, was due to have her first baby last week. She was a little apprehensive about the whole labor and delivery thing, so she wanted someone who had been down that road a few times (wink) to be in there with her. Her hubby was a little.....ok, ALOT.....skiddish about the whole process, bless his heart, so they both agreed that ol' Gayle ought to take his place next to her Mama in there.
We arrived at the hospital on Saturday night around 9 p.m. where she labored on her own until around 7:30 a.m. with little progress. It was then, that the Dr. came in and decided it would be a good time to get things moving a bit faster (thank you Lord), so he put her on a pitocin drip and broke her water.
Ok, NOW we are in business. She labored until about 9 a.m. with those horrid pitocin contractions until, most blessed and honored event that it is, she was able to get her epidural.
The angels sang audibly at that moment, folks. Life was good and all was well.
Heather was even able to catch a nap while her Mama and I drank our 256th cup of coffee and prayed that our deodorant wouldn't wear out. At about 5 p.m., she was ready to start pushing.
Here is where I give a big shout out to all the nurses and labor coaches in the world. I am sure that many of us can relate to only having been on the pushing side of the whole delivery event, so we don't realize that it takes a village of folks doing a full body workout to assist in getting these little pumpkin's out. Before you say that it is nothing compared to what the mother is going through, I will tell you that I unequivocally agree. Remember, I have done this 4 times myself. I just have to say that I was SURPRISED at how physical it is for the helpers.
Our (Heather's Mama and I) main duty was to hold Heather's legs and push backward on her feet during a contraction. It's all about giving them resistance, I guess, and let me tell you, her legs are STRONG. We pushed, pulled and contorted, dispensed numerous spoonfulls of ice, and dried exhausted tears from our champ for about an hour and a half. My shoulders and legs are sore today, but I wouldn't change it for anything, because, at 6:21 p.m., I saw the most amazing and beautiful thing happen. I saw this perfect little face and then this perfectly formed little body slip out of her mother, and I absolutely marvelled at our God. I just wept (and still do every single time I think about it, including now) at how miraculous birth truly is. God is so very good to us. I just want to give Him the praise right now, for this awesome experience.
Well, I need to wrap up this long post and make my children something to eat. I will end this by telling you that Mom and Baby are fine, and are resting comfortably as they get to know each other while figuring out this whole nursing business. I have a trillion pictures of Heather's sweet baby girl, but I don't think it would be a good idea to post them on the world wide web without permission. Just trust me that she is extremely cute with her wide eyes and a head full of fuzzy dark hair. Alright, I'm really going now..
OH! HOW could I forget? Happy St. Patricks Day, from this Irish lass! Are you wearing green?


duckygirl said...

How great that you got to be there with your friend! I've always wondered how labor is from the other person's point of view, since I've never attended any except my own :)
It sounds like she had a pretty long labor though, I bet you were exhausted!!


Cindy-Still His Girl said...

YOU ARE SO LUCKY!! (Blessed, I know.)

That is my DREAM! I've always wanted to see a birth (while not in excruciating pain). :)

My horrible first doctor made me hold my OWN legs and kept yelling at me to hold them back more. Evil man.

Your friend will ALWAYS remember you there; that is so precious! Miss you!!

Leanne said...

Oy, HOW long was her labor???? Wow, I can't imagine going through that long of a labor myself...I won't brag or boast....we won't even talk about my labors on this comment. Suffice it to say that my friend Steph was with me when my Sofia was born 2 years ago, and she was prepared for a very horrible experience as I shouted and screamed and cussed a blue streak....only to find out that I did no such thing, in fact, I didn't even make a peep, she said. She was stunned and said she'd come in with me anytime I wanted her to!

I can't imagine pushing for like an hour and a half! Two minutes is intense enough for me!!!

I don't know if I want to watch a birth. I definitely don't want to watch my own...I'm kinda squeamish that way!

Anyway, I was so glad to see that you had posted! I missed catching up with you but I'm glad you've taken a breather from computer stuff to minister to your family! That's why I love my bloggy gals so much!!

Leanne in Longview WA

javamamma said...

Why yes I am wearing green! But I'm not drinking a green beer. ;)

We're such a weird family that I've watched my mom give birth...more than once. Of course, we're the 'home birth family' so maybe it's not sooo weird.

Oh, the 6-week challenge is up at Hope you join in!

Caroline said...

PLEASE tell me the DAD was in there!! I can't believe he wasn't helping with the whole legs workout!!!

Reformed Grits said...

I'm so jealous at all the folks who get to help squeeze out babies! I wanna be there! Man, someone invite me and I'll not be annoying, I promise!!!!! I mean, if Gayle can not be annoying for a few hours SURELY I CAN TOO!!!!!! ;-)
So how do you know this person?

Gayle said...

Kim, you big jealous goober, she is my "Katie".
For the rest of you, that means that I have known her since she was a young girl. She babysat my kids when she was a teenager, and we were (are) really close to her family. Now she is all grown up. ~sniff~ The wedding pictures on the sidebar with me and the Littles were taken at Heather's wedding 2 years ago.
And Caroline, he was there...he was just hanging out in the waiting area. He is REALLY squeamish. Believe me, it was better this way, and it's all good now cuz he ADORES his little girl.

Halfmoon Girl said...

I have had the awesome privelege of being in on my sister and SIL's births- what a miracle! I still can't wrap my head around seeing a perfect little body slip out!!! So glad you got to experience this!

Yes, I am wearing green and made sure everyone else in my family was too!

Stacey said...

Oh Gayle that's a wonderful story. I wish I had a friend that close to me that would ask me to be there. Such a gift that was.

Happy St. Patrick's Day right back atcha! xo

The Bullocks said...


I'm gonna have to get me a friend like that too!

EEEEMommy said...

Wow! What an awesome experience! I'll tell you though, it makes me feel a little guilty. I only wanted my husband to be with me, so I never blessed my mother or m-i-l with the experience, how inconsiderate of me!

wendy's world said...

Gayle...this makes me soooo ready to see our precious Alivia!!!
I might "hire" you myself to help through the labor process.. ha ha

Emily said...

TOTALLY awesome. Although I'm with Angel...I was pretty selfish and wouldn't even let my mom in the room when the nitty gritty began.

Your friend was so gracious to you.