Halloween 2012 was one day that forever changed our lives.
It started out like any other day. B and I woke up around 7:15 and had some pillow talk till about 7:45. We had an appointment in Moreno Valley with our midwife for an NST at 10, so we got up and started getting ready for the day. After my morning pee, I head back to the bedroom and realize liquid running down my leg. I thought it was odd, but figured it was just another weird last trimester issue. So I go back to the toilet and the liquid just keeps coming at a really slow steady trickle. I call Branson in and tell him what's going on. We both just kinda giggle and start to get a little excited, although neither of us really thought it was my actually my water. I then go call Labor and Delivery to ask them what I should do and they ensure me that it is most likely my water. I then talk to my midwife who tells me that it is a 50/50 chance, but that I should go in and have them check it out. That made me think it wasn't time. She also told me that the delivery rooms were full at Moreno Valley hospital where she was working so it would be best to deliver at Riverside. I had planned on delivering there, but was bummed that my midwife wasn't going to be the one to deliver Parker. We decided that having a private room at Riverside was better than sharing a room at Moreno Valley...SO we got ready for the hospital and hit the road. While getting ready I started having some contractions. They weren't too painful so I wasn't sure if it was the real thing. While we were about 20 minutes away from the hospital, I feel a big burst of water... then I knew. The contractions were getting stronger and were about 5 minutes apart so Branson started going 90. We pull up to the labor and delivery parking spots and sure enough they were all full. We had to park in a normal parking spot (which was pretty far from L&D) and as we are walking in, the rest of my water breaks. I am completely soaked at this point. We check-in to the hospital and we head to our delivery room. I pee in a cup and dress down in my gown. A midwife comes in and checks to make sure it was really my water that broke... sure enough it was! Then she checks my dilation and I am at a 3 and fully effaced! This was shocking because just the day before I was only at a 1.5 and only 60% effaced. I was so excited to know that I was going to meet our sweet boy that day! The nurse that helped me throughout the whole labor was named Sherrie. She was awesome! She started an IV in my arm and hooked me up to the machines to monitor the baby's heart and to watch the contractions. I told her I wanted to walk around, so we did a couple laps around the hospital. The walking definitely sped things up and the contractions got a lot stronger- about 2 minutes apart. We headed back to the room and I got back on the monitors. I told her the contractions were getting a lot stronger and closer together, so she checked my dilation again. I was almost at a 5. That's when the contractions really picked up...and FAST! I had gone into this whole labor thing thinking I would do a natural birth or at least go as far as possible and then have the option for an epidural. Yeah well that was before I realized how painful those contractions really were. There were two pain management choices we had- an epidural or IV medication that only lasted about an hour. With the pain I was in I realized I wanted an epidural... I did not want to feel that pain anymore and I knew I was going to be in labor longer than an hour. So then an anesthesiologist comes in (after what seemed like a lifetime) and gave me the juice! The epidural didn't hurt one bit. Probably because I had a contraction during that time and was told to not move at all. Um easy for you to say, dude. Anyways, about ten minutes after the epidural I was in heaven. Branson tells everyone that he knew I was in pain because I wasn't laughing at his jokes, and apparently they were really funny...haha. A little time had passed and I told the nurse that I was feeling a ton of pressure. She checked me and told me the babies head was as low as possible. The epidural helped me go from a 5 to a 10 in less than an hour and a half. I was ready to push by about 4 pm. Branson had run out to get some food and was shocked to hear I was ready to push when he got back. We figured it would be best to wait for him ;) Once he had a little food in his belly, we got started. They wheeled in a mirror so that I could see what was going on. It was quite the sight, let me tell ya. But so awesome at the same time. When Parkers head was crowning the nurse yells out that he's got a ton of blonde hair! I was SO excited to hear that and it made me push even harder. I just couldn't wait to see this boys face. The whole pushing part was really my favorite part. My mom and sister were in the room along with Branson and I and it was really pretty funny. They would trade off counting to 10 for the contractions and half the time they would get distracted watching and their counting would be off. One of the pushes I finished the counting on my own because they were so far off. haha. I even joked that I missed pushing on one of my contractions because I was fixing my hair. It really was so nice to be able to enjoy the whole experience. But even though I wasn't feeling any pain, I did feel an immense amount of pressure. It was nothing compared to the pain before the epidural though.
Anyways, before the whole process began we asked the midwife if Branson could help deliver Parker. She was more than okay with it and we were SO excited. So once I was crowning, the midwife came in and got ready to deliver. Branson put some gloves on and was standing by her side ready to grab him when he came out. I ended up having to get a small episiotomy because his head just wasn't wanting to come out. Once she snipped, out came Parker! Branson and I both grabbed him and I pulled him onto my chest. B cut the cord and I started to ball. He was PERFECT! He ended up pooping right when he came out so they had to take him away to clean him up and it killed me to have him away for so long. I just wanted to stare at his precious face. While cleaning him up they weighed him and everyone was shocked! 8 pounds 13 oz. Almost 9 lbs!! He was solid. That's my boy :) I can't believe I was carrying that big of a baby...I knew he would be bigger but not that big, especially with the whole 2-vessel cord issues that were going on. But we weren't mad about it one bit. Our little bundle of joy was big and healthy and we could not have been happier! Once they were done cleaning him up, they brought Parker back to me for an hour of skin-on-skin time. One of my favorite parts was when they put his head on my chest and we watched him inch his way over to my breast, all on his own. It's amazing how that is just instinct for them. I had no idea they did that and it was so cool to watch.
That night we had Angel, Harmony, my mom and dad, Stephanie, Jenee, Kelli, Lorna, Terry, and Sierra come visit. The next day Derek, Preston, Lance and Jana came and we only had to stay one night and left the next day around 9 pm. We didn't get much sleep in the hospital with the nurses coming in every 2 hours...I love how they kept telling us to get rest and then would wake us up every hour. So we were definitely ready to go home. I wish I could remember every detail but when I think back to the delivery, parts of it almost seem blurry. I think the epidural made me a little loopy and my memory isn't as sharp as it normally is. But I definitely remember the important parts and I will never forget the day that forever changed my life. I now understand a mother's love. No one can possibly prepare you for the love you feel when you have a child. It is so amazing. Branson and I have been in heaven spending time with our little boy. He is such a joy and is the most handsome little guy I've ever seen. We love you Parker Branson and feel so lucky that you chose us as your parents. We are beyond blessed!
Apple juice and ice chips. Yum.
Still smiling...before the contractions got bad.
Just missing Coley!
My cousin Kel and Nae Nae
Getting all cleaned up and weighed.
Nana and Grandma Angel with the babe.
Our good friends Doug and Paige were in town from Oregon and they came to visit. We got to meet their cute little boy Porter- to die for! So good to see you both :)