Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Myra's Grand Entrance

I really don't know how to do this story justice. I'll do my best. Although the birth was extremely fast, the details are many so you may want to grab a drink and a snack...or maybe a whole meal! You ready? Here we go...

The few days before her birth I had been having very strong contractions and many times thought labor was right around the corner only to have my contractions stop all together. I thought Tuesday morning may be another one of those.

I woke up Tuesday around 1:30am, 2:30am, and again at 3:45am. Each time having strong contractions that were similar to the ones from the days before. Each time I got up and went to the bathroom and went back to bed.

At 3:45am Jarom was also having trouble sleeping. We both had sore throats so I went downstairs and got us some throat lozenges. Then I crawled back in bed. I had strong contractions pretty close together for the next few minutes. I told Jarom this may be it but of course he was pretty skeptical considering I had said the same thing to him several times in the previous days. I honestly was a little skeptical myself. I once again headed to the bathroom as I couldn't sleep. As soon as I saw the blood in the toilet (tmi? come on this is a birth story!) I knew this had to be it. I started to pack up the remainder of my things.

A minute or so later I had another strong contraction and started to head to the bathroom. I couldn't make it and stopped at our bedroom door, leaning on the door frame for support. Once the contraction stopped I barely made it to the toilet before another one hit. I was moaning through them at this point and definitely thinking something was up!

Then at 4:15am another contraction hit and my water broke. I felt lots of pressure. I called to Jarom, trying to do so semi-quietly so I wouldn't wake up the boys. I tried again and again, desperately calling out his name. Apparently "semi-quiet" was not going to cut it. I YELLED this time as another contraction came, "THIS is it! Call Kristal NOW!" (Kristal is our wonderful neighbor who was bringing her car for us to take to the hospital and she was to stay with the boys.)

Jarom jumped out of bed and called Kristal at 4:21am. I put a shirt on and was in the process of putting on my pants when a HUGE one hit. I could honestly feel the head descending. This is when I knew we would not make it to the birthing center. No more being quiet...at all! I screamed to Jarom, "She's coming NOOOOOOOOWWWWWWWW!" And let me tell you I have never screamed that loud in my life. Jarom ran in the room and I clung to him and moaned/yelled through the contractions.

Jarom was a rock during all of this. He was absolutely amazing. I felt 100% dependent on him. He didn't seem panicked at all. You wouldn't have believed it if you saw me, but I wasn't panicked either. To say I was in incredible pain was an understatement, but I was calm inside and just knew everything would be fine.

Jarom said he had to get his phone to call 112 (911) and I yelled through a contraction, "Don't leeeeeaaaaave me!" He had his cell phone and made the call at 4:30am. Between my screaming in his ear and the language barrier, it took the man on the other line 10 or more times to understand our address. I kept having contractions every minute. I could feel her in the birth canal and could actually feel her head with my hands, although it was still inside me. I called out, "I can feel her head!"

Jarom said he had to go unlock the door for Kristal and the ambulance and that was the point where I did panic. In my mind he was leaving me and I was going to be utterly alone for this. I pleaded with him not to leave me and he calmly said, "I HAVE to unlock the door. I am NOT leaving you. I will be right back. You let me know when I can go. Okay?" I don't remember ever giving him permission to leave but he did eventually. He was back holding me within seconds. We were now both crouched on our bedroom floor in between our bed and the closet, my pants still around my ankles.

Then two scared little boys came wandering in the room. Glade was wimpering and Jimmy asked, "Mommy, are you okay? Is the baby coming?" In between my yelling I "calmly" told him that Mommy was just fine and yes the baby was coming. I told them they could go in their room and play. Jimmy lovingly put his arm around Glade, who was now crying, and said to him, "It's okay. Mommy is okay." Kristal arrived shortly after 4:30 and thankfully she took the boys downstairs, although I have no recollection of her coming upstairs.

I don't know how many contractions I had after that but they were pretty much back to back with no break in between. Another huge contraction and I screamed as her head came out. I was holding her head in my hands. I yelled, "Her head's out!" Jarom told me later that it was actually her head and one of her shoulders that was out. Jarom then reached down and together we brought her out. I felt between her legs...She IS a girl!

She was born at 4:38am. 53 minutes after I woke up! Only 18 minutes after my water broke!

She took her first little breath and made her first little cry and then was quiet. I was in awe. I just gave birth to my daughter. On my bedroom floor. In a matter of minutes.

The EMT arrived at 4:40am. Jarom got them some towels and I told Jarom to grab the camera. I was planning to tape the whole birth. Jarom held the videocamera in one hand and cut the cord with the other. One of the EMTs took Myra to the bed to check her out and the other helped me deliver the placenta, which was suprisingly very painful.

I was still having contractions just as strong as before she was born and continued to have them all day. I still have them today, which I know is normal, but mine have been extremely painful. They weren't near this bad with either of my boys. The nurse said it's because the labor went so quick that now I am experiencing many of the contractions that would've happened before her birth. In fact, when my uterus was checked today I am one full day ahead on recovery. My uterus has shrunken down much quicker than normal due to all the heavy contractions.

Jarom took Myra downstairs to meet her brothers and the EMT helped me down the stairs and onto the stretcher. These Dutch stairs are a blast minutes after giving birth! Just trust me on that one.

We headed outside in the rain (of course) to the ambulance and rode to the hospital where we were both checked out and everything was fine. We were there for such a short time, just long enough to get checked, get one stitch put in (my that hurt), and take a shower. Then we headed back home just a few hours after giving birth.

Looking back, we should have called the midwife rather than the EMT, but we weren't thinking quite straight (can you blame us?). There really was no need to go to the hospital. The midwife could've done the same things right there in our home. However, the call was already made and I do believe the EMTs were glad. They were two men about my Dad's age. They said it's not every day you get to experience something like this. One had just become a grandpa recently and the other was excitedly taking pictures with his phone before leaving the hospital.

So there you have it! Believe it or not I did actually leave out many details for your sake! This experience is one we will obviously never forget and never tire of telling! Thank you Myra, for making this such a memorable day!

20 comments:

the speers said...

Aw, Erika!! So tender! I still can't believe how fast she came, seriously, SO crazy!!!! She is so sweet (and so chubby...aww!!!) and you can see how much you love her in your eyes! I can't believe what you went through, seriously, insane--but so awesome!! I love you!!!

Anonymous said...

That is CRAZY AMAZING!!! Now you have the best story to tell her forever! You are a super woman! Congrats and I hope you heal fast and well!!!

Another crazy thing...My MIL made me that SAME blanket but with stripes instead of dots...how CRAZY is that?...Such a cute blanket too!!!

amy b.

Stephanie said...

Oh! So similar to Serena's birth, though we did make it to the birth center and she was about the same weight too! What a squishy cutie!

And after pains with number three are ROUGH. I think that's just part of the deal.

Kenna said...

My gosh, I'm bawling right now. That is crazy beyond belief. You're an amazingly strong woman! Congrats, Higley family, she's so darling.

Danielle said...

NOt sure why, but I'm crying. Congratulations. What an awesome story!!! She is such a cutie.

Jones Family said...

Oh my Gosh!! I am crying too! Sounds so scary Erika! I am so glad that everything went so well---AMAZING!

Ashlee said...

Add me to the "now crying" list. What an amazing experience to go through. Thank you for sharing. The miracle of birth is so spiritual in nature. And you guys experienced it in it's most natural form. Congratulations!

Michelle D said...

All I can think to say is W O W.

(Thanks for making us cry - it's such a sweet story!)

Our fun family said...

wow that is crazy and at least it was fast so your pain which i am sure was a lot! did not last for hours like some. though I would never want to be without an epidural, I guess I am looking on the bright side of things. It could have been worse, like having her in the rain out in the car? right? well you are a brave woman and that is crazy! but I am so glad your doing well, hopefully it saved you some money, and she is so cute!!

Katie said...

Glad to hear you tell the story in your own words. I want to hear all the details you didn't include though! You'll have to email them to me. :) I think this is so fun that you have such an eventful and amazing birth story to tell. You're amazing! You did it!! A day or two more rest and you'll feel like a new woman. LOVE YOU!!

AshlieM said...

That is the craziest story that I have ever heard! She is soooo dang cute! You are amazing to go through that! Congrats and I am glad that you are both doing well!

Jared & Tristan said...

That is amazing Erika!! YOU are amazing!
Delivering the placenta can be very painful sometimes (one time it was just as bad as delivering the baby, another time I hardly noticed it). I'm so glad you are doing well and that your little girl is healthy. She is so cute and chubby! I love the baby chubs in that first picture! Here cheeks and extra chin are sooo cute!

mikensi.jimmy said...

holy moly! that was SUCH a story! aahhh! congrats and .. wow!!

Rob and Jill said...

She is so beautiful- I love the chubby cheeks. What a story! Amazing! I love the pictures of her wrapped in a towel and Spiderman blanket-precious. You guys are amazing. I'm glad everyone is healthy. Here's to a quick recovery.

Karlene said...

Wow! I'm in awe of you. What an amazing experience. And such a cute little baby.

But you know, you look about 12 years old in those photos. (You'll be glad of that in about 20 years.)

Rachel said...

She is beautiful! So are you! I love Jarom's proud smile. And I love how the spiderman blanket is in every picture. :) Congratulations!

Fleming Family said...

What a beautiful baby girl! And what a story! I'm glad everyone is okay. Congratulations!

Liz said...

Wow Erika, I'm so proud of you and grateful for Jarom being so strong and taking care of you. The whole story made me cry. Love all you guys. You're amazing, and look beautiful in your pictures- not at all like a mother who just delivered! Merry Christmas!!!

Fowler family said...

This is ABSOLUTELY AMAZING Erika! Wow! What a neat story, and what an amazing little baby girl. How neat to think you and Jarom delivered her! You can do anything girl!!!

Mary said...

Wow, Erika! I am so proud of you. What an enormous ordeal but such a beautiful story. You and Myra both looked lovely. So crazy to think that all happened a year ago and you're now moving across the world!!! You have such an unusual life. Wishing you the best in everything. Love you!