Morgan’s Birth Story

This post is going to be long, but I hope you follow along to read Morgan’s birth story… it’s packed with pictures!

Wednesday July 15, 2015

We went to the Birth Center for our weekly appointment. Natalie (our midwife) asked if I wanted her to check me. The previous week I was 1-2cm dilated, so I agreed to be checked. I had been having more surges and did not know if they were Braxton Hicks or actually doing something. They were doing something and I was 3cm dilated and my cervix was soft. After the exam I continued to have surges throughout the day. The Hubs and I got a little excited and thought maybe this time we would have an anniversary baby.

Thursday July 16, 2015

Around 2am I went to the bathroom and lost my mucous plug. I woke up the Hubs to show him (I knew what it was but I needed reassurance) and laid back down to sleep. I knew if it was the kick start of labor then I would wake up with contractions. Well, I did not sleep and I did have surges, but nothing consistent or very intense. I text Natalie around 8am to let her know I had lost the mucous plug and she suggested I carb load that day so I have energy for labor. It was our 4 year anniversary….carb loading would be no problem! When we were pregnant with Logan the Hubs hoped for an anniversary baby, 2 years later we were both hoping for the same thing. It did not happen. Over the next weekend 5 babies were delivered by the midwives either at the birth center or home births, and I kept thinking ‘Why not me?’ and I was actually kind of angry about it so I just shut down and focused on Logan.

Over the next few days I would have surges here and there, but nothing consistent.

Wednesday July 22, 2015

We woke up and got Logan off to school and the Hubs came back home to work. He was working from home until we had the baby. I remember so well being super hungry and chopping up some leftover steak and mixing it with scrambled eggs for me and the Hubs. Before we knew it it was time to leave for our weekly appointment at the Birth Center.

11am: We arrived at the Birth Center and I told Natalie and Chelsea I had been having surges here and there, but nothing to get excited about. We also talked about how EVERYONE had their babies the past week so it had to be my turn, right?! We also met Jackie, a midwife that was visiting from California and was possibly moving to Katy to work at the Birth Center. She was going to be there for the rest of the week and I told her I hoped she was there for another Texas baby’s birth. I asked Natalie to check me while we were there and apply pressure to whatever pressure points there were to help this labor party started. She checked me and I was 4cm dilated and pretty much all the way effaced, but NOT IN LABOR. So, we left ad went to have lunch at a Cajun restaurant I love and usually get a Greek salad from. But, I ordered a wrap and quickly went to the bathroom…where I emptied the entire content of my bowels. <—–the same thing happened when I went into labor with Logan, but this time, I thought nothing of it. We sat and ate lunch, well, the Hubs ate and I tried. I just picked at my food and at one point I put my hands near my eyes as blinders and asked the Hubs why it was so loud? ‘Why are all the people over-stimulating me?’ He asked if I wanted to go back to the Birth Center because he was convinced we needed to. I said I was fine and I just wanted to go home and lay down.

1pm (roughly): We got home from our check-up and lunch and I laid down in our bed. I re-downloaded the Contraction Master app that I used while in labor with Logan. My surges were about 5 minutes apart, but not terribly intense. The Hubs came in our room to check on me and said ‘You’re tracking your contractions?!?!?! I’m calling Natalie!’. At this point, I tried to argue but it was pointless. I did not want another false alarm like the previous week when I lost my mucous plug. Natalie happened to be in the area grabbing lunch with Chlesea and Jackie so they came by to check on me. I didn’t jump out of bed or move much <—-another sign I was in labor and this was the real deal.

2-2:30pm (roughly): Natalie, Chelsea and Jackie arrive at our house to see how I’m doing. At this point, when I had a surge I would stop talking. I needed to be in my Hypnobirth zone, and for me, that means no talking. I will never forget the one question Natalie asked me to please answer. She said ‘Emily, if this isn’t IT are you worried about what IT is?’ I told her yes and she said it would be a good time to make our way to the Birth Center.

3:45pm: We made arrangements for my BIL to get Logan to my mom’s house, called our birth photographer, Andrea, and made our way to the Birth Center.Morgan_Ojo_Birth-1 Just like with Logan’s birth, I was more comfortable with very little clothes on. I was also nauseated, but never vomited! Morgan_Ojo_Birth-3We discussed my ideal Birth Plan with Natalie during a previous check-up and they did a fantastic job having my Hypnobirth cd on repeat and the room quiet and calm. Labor progressed and looking back on it all now I finally know what my birth color is. In Hypnobirthing you are taught to have a color that you associate with birth, I had always said pink probably because it is my favorite color. But not once did I picture the color pink while having a surge (aka contraction). I ALWAYS pictured blue. It makes sense as I was most comfortable in the birth pool and it’s blue. I was very glad when Natalie checked me that I was dilated enough to spend some time in the birth pool.Morgan_Ojo_Birth-14Also, with each surge I would imagine a wave and know once I got to the top of the wave I would slowly come down from it until the next wave came. I kept imagining me and the Hubs were on a beach with our toes in the sand like a Corona beer commercial. Morgan_Ojo_Birth-39Another thing I mentioned during our birth plan meeting was massage. At this time, my water still had not broken and I was having some pretty intense back pain. The Hubs has super warm hands and just his touch brought me so much comfort. Morgan_Ojo_Birth-8Morgan_Ojo_Birth-10The midwives were AMAZING! Natalie kept encouraging me to sway and move my hips and ‘curl into your baby’ to help me dilate and help Morgan move down.Morgan_Ojo_Birth-30I wish I had the right words to use to describe the way these women made me feel…like me and my baby were the ONLY thing in this world that mattered. That’s huge for any momma, but for a momma attempting a VBAC it is so positive and inspiring and helpful. Not once during Morgan’s birth did a thought enter my head that she wasn’t coming out vaginally. Natalie, Melissa, Chelsea and Jackie worked so incredibly well together that at times I did not know which one was massaging me or checking Morgan’s heart rate or helping me move my hips. THAT is what birth is about—a team, rather a village, in our case. Gosh, we were lucky!

Chelsea would check Morgan’s heart rate and let me stay in whatever position I was comfortable, at this point it was in the warm water with the Hubs hand right where I was feeling the surge.Morgan_Ojo_Birth-17Labor progressed very well and I was in and out of the birth pool. I preferred to be on the bed when I was in need of massage, and at one point I remember asking Melissa to please not stop massaging. Her hands had to have been sore and probably cramping, but she did not stop until I was ready to get back in the pool. Her massaging brought such relief to my back labor. Look at the happiness and smiles in this picture, I just love it! What these women did for me is priceless.Morgan_Ojo_Birth-26Shortly after this I was ready to get in the birth pool again. I have no idea what time it was, but shortly after getting back in the birth pool I felt a HUGE sense of relief as my water broke. Right when it happened I lifted my head off the pool and in a panicky voice said ‘my water broke’. Then all the pressure on my back was gone.

A while after my water broke (again, I have no idea how long) I had the urge to push and I told Natalie. She told me it was ok and asked if I could feel my baby’s head. I felt and I couldn’t so she checked me, and I was only 8cm dilated. I remember hearing that and thinking there was no way…I had to be totally dilated. I wanted to push, I felt the need to push. For a few minutes it did crush me and I had to really focus on my cd and my breathing. Then, surges kicked in to high gear and my beautiful Hypnobirth was not so pretty. I was crying and drooling and telling Natalie over and over again ‘I’m trying I’m trying I’m trying….’ as she moved my hips and encouraged me to take deep breaths and curl around Morgan. I was on my hands and knees in the birth pool with the Hubs near my head, Natalie moving my hips and Melissa wiping my face with a cold wash cloth. It was then that Melissa pressed the wash cloth to my forhead and said what I so badly needed to hear ‘You are not alone.’ Those four words were so powerful in that moment because I was starting to doubt myself. It help me quickly realize there was no need to—I had all the support and love needed for this VBAC.

With Natalie and Melissa focused on me I am not sure who was checking Morgan’s heart rate, but during one of the checks the familiar and rapid sounding boom-boom slowed incredibly to boom……..boom. Morgan’s heart rate had dropped from the 130-140 range down to 60-70bpm. I knew it wasn’t good because the blip of the fetal monitor was so slow. Natalie told me I needed to get out of the birth pool. I remember thinking in my head ‘ok, ok, just a second and I will.’ I was not moving fast enough and in the most calm yet stern voice Natalie said ‘Emily, get out of the pool now.’ It worked, I was out of the birth pool with a quickness.

7:40pm: Once I was laying on the bed and breathing oxygen Morgan’s heart rate quickly came back up and I enjoyed getting some deep breaths of air. Natalie explained she wanted the baby out and she wanted her out now. Morgan_Ojo_Birth-70 Morgan_Ojo_Birth-57I do not remember having any surges at this point, but I must have. All I was focused on was pushing and getting Morgan earth side safely. Melissa held a mirror while her and Natalie coached me and told the Hubs the best way to hold my legs for resistance. Chelsea stayed near my head to make sure I could see Morgan crowning in the mirror. I have to assume Jackie was charting everything…like I said, it takes a village! Pushing was not easy but it was also different than with Logan because I actually had the urge to push so I could feel where I needed to direct the effort. Natalie let me know she was going to have me stop pushing once Morgan’s head came out to suction her mouth and nose. I remember asking for a break, to catch my breath, and after a few more pushes Morgan’s head popped out. After 10 short minutes of pushing Morgan was here! It was amazing to see her head outside of me and know her little body was still inside and I said ‘I just want to hold her!’Morgan_Ojo_Birth-807:54pm: Natalie reminded me I need to push some more to get the rest of her out and it was probably the easiest thing I have ever done. When you have your baby literally RIGHT THERE that last push is nothing.Morgan_Ojo_Birth-84I was so immediately in love and the Hubs had to remind me of what we ALL just did and he leaned down and said ‘You did it!’ We got our VBAC!Morgan_Ojo_Birth-85We got to hold our tiny baby right away! This was HUGE for us and felt like a dream. Looking at the pictures 3 months later still makes me emotional and feel a love so strong for our midwives because they believed in us. They knew my strength and determination better than I knew it myself. Morgan_Ojo_Birth-87Morgan_Ojo_Birth-88Morgan Marie was born at 7:54pm weighing 7lbs 8.5oz and was 21inches long.Morgan_Ojo_Birth-132Every newborn test, procedure, exam etc that needed to be done was done right there, with Morgan always in my sight. Morgan_Ojo_Birth-153Morgan_Ojo_Birth-114While Natalie stitched up my tear, the Hubs went to get something for us to eat. I was starving and was really looking forward to French toast, scrambled eggs and bacon! To help keep me distracted (it’s not every day you get your vagina stitched together) Chelsea showed me Morgan’s placenta before it went of for encapsulation. Morgan_Ojo_Birth-109_1It was very neat to see the placenta up close and understand more how it works and how it supplied Morgan with all she needed while in my womb. Morgan nursed the majority of the time Natalie was working on me, then the Hubs was back with our dinner. Morgan_Ojo_Birth-143After we finished inhaling eating our meals the Hubs spent some time with Morgan while I got ready for the herb bath. Morgan_Ojo_Birth-126When I imagined Morgan’s birth I always pictured delivering her in water, so when that did not work out the herb bath filled in that part of the plan. It was so peaceful and calm and was just me and the Hubs and our new baby girl!Morgan_Ojo_Birth-164Morgan_Ojo_Birth-170I saved my favorite picture from Morgan’s birth for the end because it captures the whole journey in one image. Without the strength of David, Natalie, Melissa, Chelsea and Jackie my need for a VBAC would not have been fulfilled. Thank you, David, for believing in me and not letting any negativity get in the way of what I wanted. Thank you, Natalie, for making sure I was safe and Morgan was safe every step of the pregnancy and birth. Thank you, Chelsea, for listening to my crazy concerns and being calm and reassuring along with Natalie at every appointment. Thank you, Melissa, for meeting me for lunch early on in my pregnancy to share everything you knew about VBACs, to discuss Logan’s birth with me AGAIN, and for leaving your family to come offer your skills and love during Morgan’s birth. Thank you, Jackie, for being in Texas and coming to my birth so I had all the attention, care and focus on me that I needed. Morgan_Ojo_Birth-166Birth requires the most intense form of strength—-physical, emotional and spiritual all wrapped up in one tiny 7lb 8.5oz bundle of joy. Thank you, Andrea, for capturing the amazing images from Morgan’s birth and making our awesome slide show.

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  1. Grandma Pat says:

    great post. I knew you would be able to do the VBAC. I am so glad the Birth Center supported you.

  2. I’m so glad you were able to get the birth you wanted and needed for Morgan. And, I love the pictures and I’m slightly jealous I never did any!

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