I know, I have failed the blogging world for a time, but I totally have to get back on schedule with how I do things! Especially since we have added a little one and the two older kiddos have started school! But, I think I can finally share a very precious memory of a birth story with my faithful readers!
I cannot believe this all happened 5 weeks ago!!!
I know many people got frustrated with me when they heard I was praying for an early delivery. I totally understand their perspective considering your babies health could be at risk, NICU times, and more. But, pregnancy is HORRIBLE for me, and those who were around me enough and knew me at all know that word “horrible” may just be an understatement! I am certainly NOT complaining, because I know of many sweet friends that would give anything and endure any amount of pain to be pregnant! Nonetheless, I specifically prayed for an early arrival with a very health girl and no NICU moments! Seems like a steep request, doesn’t it? Well, the Lord has really been challenging me lately about asking in faith NOTHING wavering! I don’t want to be praying like a rocking boat hoping that the next big wave would get an answer. So, I kept with my requests knowing that God would answer in His way and His time and if those answers didn’t align with mine, that was okay!
It seemed like each week brought it’s own huge hurdles of physical pain, no sleep, and rotten headaches. Ever been in that position where you feel your own pain is keeping you from being the best wife, mother, friend, etc? Yup, that is what it became for me even early on! I know there are many others who endure much greater things and I can pray even more specifically for certain friends who each day tackle HUGE obstacles. So, that brings me back to birth….. that was just a mini rabbit trail.
My husband left for Havelock early on Friday morning, July 27th for almost 10 days. I was a bit stressed simply because feeling well was pretty much a null that whole week before. I had spend the entirety of Thursday on the couch unable to stand due to my hip being out of place. So, let’s just say having 3 little ones alone for any time was making me nervous. However, in my devotions several days that week God had reminded me, ever so lovingly, that He was in control and would give me the strength and joy I needed---even if it was eating PP & J every meal (which, yup, that is the extent of my cooking that week-----which, that alone is a very difficult thing for me).
Friday was a pretty good day and we swam and just relaxed together. Throughout the afternoon though I hadn’t noticed any fetal movements at all and still did not feel her through the night. So, Saturday morning I went in and got evaluated for several hours. Baby was fine and they sent me home telling me to rest. Ha ha, funny story! I decided to tackle washing the couches which aided to my moving them, vacuuming under, and then rearranging the living room! No worries---Andrew pushed the couches where I wanted them! Sunday and Monday held church, cleaning 2 offices, swimming, shopping and a few random other events! Early Monday evening I came down with a Huge migraine (probably one of the worst I had for a long time). No sleep through the night was another huge frustration and when my little ones awoke I knew I needed help. I am so thankful for willing friends at church who came to my aid often. I hadn’t felt the baby again since the afternoon before and they had wanted me to come back in if that were to happen. So, after dropping the kids off I went and sat in the dr office for another 3 hour evaluation. They turned several huge lights off for me since my migraine was so bad! I felt completely pampered and loved by each of them and often rejoiced while there that God had sent me to the perfect doctors office! After finding the baby to be well, they started monitoring my contractions. I was feeling nothing at all and my contractions were off the chart. Kind of made me a bit hesitant to go home since they were saying they were really strong. I was still dilated at a 4 and was completely thinned, but they still sent me home saying it would maybe be by the end of the week! So, off I waddled wondering the whole time if and when this would happen.
I had gotten grocery money that morning and was really love at home on food to eat so I ran to a discount store. It was a jackpot of a trip. I actually filled my whole cart to overflowing and spent only $78! By the time I left I was wiped out so ran home, put everything away, and took a nap. Around 4:30 or so I ran and picked up my little ones and headed to a sweet friend’s house for supper! I think she totally felt bad that we hadn’t eaten much other than peanut butter and jelly! But, I was sooooooo thankful for the fellowship and a very yummy meal! During supper I started having pretty regular contractions but fought hard not to let anyone know. I figured it was just the beginning so I tried to ignore them. After supper Sarah thought it would be fun to build this huge matchbox car track for Andrew to play with. It had a “million” pieces and it took us FOREVER! All the time my contractions continued to increase. So, literally as soon as we finished building this track thing I told the kids we had to go. I figured maybe I could just go home and lay down or rest. As soon as we got in the van in her driveway I called my midwife and told her the contractions were every 10 minutes and seemed to be increasing in pain. She, very calmly, told me to go home and take a bath and then to come in if they increased to every 5-6 minutes. I though, “ha ha, funny” to myself but drove around the corner to home and threw my kids into their pjs after calling the family they were going to be staying with once I went into labor. I did manage to change my clothes and contractions increased to every 2 minutes! Yup, fast, I know!
We jumped in the van and I dropped them off at their adopted grandparents. As I was leaving there I figured I probably should see if someone could drive me the rest of the way considering the pain was increasing. So, I called Sarah to see if her hubby had gotten home yet and he had just walked in. She agreed to drive me to the hospital. Coincidentally our van was empty so I had to stop and pump gas----yes, in between contractions---pretty sight, I’m sure! But, I figured it was better that way than delivering on the side of the road after running out. Contractions got a great deal quicker and we finally made it to triage. May I just say that this was the worst and only bad part of this labor! uggh, some triage nurses have absolutely NO brains and have no consideration for anyone! I’ll stay off that soap box, but seriously, the questions they asked made me want to shoot them!
For several months leading up to this night I had prayed for a particular midwife---my favorite! You know, in this day n age you get who is on call and don’t have a choice, but I knew that God was bigger than the schedules and on call situations! Lo, and behold, who should walk into the triage room????? My favorite midwife!! God is so good!!!! She winked at me and even remembered that my husband wasn’t gonna be with me. I had talked to her in the doctor’s office 3 weeks before and communicated how my hubby was going on a mission trip! I couldn’t believe she remembered! She pushed through all the information and contacted the epidural nurse and got me to a room in no time flat! Due to someone needing anesthetics I couldn’t get the epidural as quickly as she thought so they gave me some medicine through the iv which almost abruptly stopped the horrific pain of back labor! 20 minutes later the epidural got put in and a minute after baby girl was born after ONE push at 11:01, July 31st!!! I love labor in comparison to pregnancy!
May I say the rest was heaven for me!! I, for the first time, in all four of my deliveries was able to hold my baby immediately upon birth! All my others were rushed off to NICU or had complications! Another first was I got to nurse her almost right away---I always had to pump first due to the other 3 NICU babies!
Yup, not having my hubby there was a first too, and certainly not a fun one, but I am so thankful for the awesome support of the best nurse(Tabitha), midwife (Carol), and friend (Sarah)!
Another first was having a no name child until the next morning! It was crazy, but Daddy didn’t get to the hospital until 3 am so we decided on a name around 8 that morning! He actually chose the name I loved but we threw out months before because he didn’t really like it. Guess he changed his mind! Another first was I got to keep her in the room the entire night!!! They never took her away!!!! Unbelievable! With all my others I never got to change their first diapers, feed them right off, or even hold some of the them for days! It was AWESOME!!
Elianna (Ella) Sophia Swaffer was born at 11:01 July 31st weighing 6 lbs 12 ounces and measuring at 18 3/4 inches long! I am still rejoicing at God’s bountiful answers to prayers! He alone gets the praise for bringing another little one into our home!
Sleeping shot and first visit with big sissy!
I love my little family!
This week’s picture! Hasn’t she gotten so big!! It’s crazy!