For those of you who didn't know, we were being surprised with the gender. I must say I was pretty sure it was going to be a girl. I even packed some extra girlie onesies and some hair bows. So when Mark joyfully told me we had a boy I was VERY surprised. I don't think I was ever so happy to be proven wrong. We were fine with a girl, or a boy of course! Having a child is a win-win. However, if you know our story over the last year you would know that we lost Noah Matthew at 19 weeks gestation, last October. That was an extremely challenging time in our lives, and by far the hardest thing we have had to face since being married. God gave us the grace and strength and we have been able to move on. I think losing Noah created a "boy" shaped hole in our hearts though. It is so neat to see that even when we do not actively voice our desires to the Lord, he hears and answers them.
Thursday September 19th God gave us a practice run of sorts.The baby's heart rate deceled during a routine NST (Non-stress test). My OB did not like that so she sent me to the hospital right away, and said it was time for the baby to be born. However, throughout our time there and our discussion with the nurse and doctor it was determined that there was no rush for the little one to make their appearance. The baby looked beautiful, all the tests came back just fine. So after a long day in the hospital we went home! So again we played the waiting game...Then Sunday September 22nd came along, and that is where the real story begins.
This day started out like any other normal Sunday. We went to church as a family and then came home for a relaxing and quiet afternoon. That afternoon Eden and Mark took naps while my mom and I headed out to the craft store. While we were out I could tell that my legs and lower back were causing a lot of discomfort. I even told my mom "This baby can't stay in here for much longer because my legs and back are killing me"......As we were wrapping up our shopping trip I had a contraction This was around 3:30pm. I of course kept it to myself. Then about 20 minutes later, a contraction. I even talked through a painful contraction on the way home, and didn't mention a thing. I wanted to be sure before everyone got all excited. So when we got home I went upstairs to take a "nap", or so my mom thought. I knew I needed to keep watching the clock and I truthfully wanted to know if this was the real deal. I went upstairs, laid down, popped open a WORD document and began writing down the start time of each contraction. They started out far enough apart that I began to fall asleep between them. After a few 20 minute apart contractions I realized they were coming quicker. 9 minutes apart, 7 minutes, 5 minutes... Between 5 and 5:30pm I had 7 contractions. I decided that it was time to wake up Mark. He was sleeping in preparation for working that evening, but that of course would not happen. We talked for a while in the privacy of our room about what our game plan should be. We came downstairs around 6pm to inform Grandma of what was going on. Then we took our time pulling things together. The pain began increasing, and as I gathered things together I would take breaks to breathe and work through the contractions. We knew we didn't want to wait super long to go in, especially if the baby's heart was deceling at all during contractions. Thankfully the hospital is only about 3 blocks away, so we knew we could get there relatively quickly. We arrived at the hospital around 7:15 or 7:30pm. On our way to the hospital I mentioned to Mark that things seemed to be moving along rather quickly and that I thought we might have this baby before midnight. Mark of course thought that I should not set myself up to be dissapointed. In his mind he was calculating the length of my labor with Eden, and was pretty sure the baby wouldn't arrive till the early morning hours.
We arrived at the hospital around 7:30pm. Considering that we almost didn't make it to the hospital in time with Eden, we felt prepared and ahead of the game this time. Yes contractions were coming at a relatively quick pace, but I was able to sign necessary paperwork and calmly walk into triage.
Once we were in triage the nurse wanted to check my progress, she was a bit surprised I think when she realized I was 6cm. I was glad to be so far along already! I had just been telling myself that I needed to be OK if I hadn't made a lot of progress yet. After all, that was what it was like with Eden. With her birth I was only 1 or 2 cm when I first arrived at the hospital, and they sent me home! But 6cm, I could handle that! Things happened very quickly after that. People were coming in and out of my room in triage. I met the doctor (laborist) who was working that evening and who would be delivering our child. He began talking and I rudely interrupted with a "WAIT, WAIT, WAIT!!" as I was being thrown into another painful contraction. I needed to focus on what I was doing and not talk to the doctor at that moment :). When I'm in labor I can be a bit rude haha.
After briefly talking with the doctor and going over a few things with the nurses, I walked from triage into the delivery room. I met my new nurse, and then the nurse who would be taking care of the baby after birth. They again checked my progress soon after entering the delivery room. 8cm. WOW! Things were moving and I had little time to process everything going on around me. In the throws of contractions I would scream and want to give up, once I settled down enough I would become extra emotional and apologize to all those in the delivery room for being a wimp. Haha I was a mess. I got to a point where I told them I wanted to push. It seemed devastating at first when they told me I needed to wait just a little longer. I remembered pushing came naturally, and seemed to be a good way to react to the pain when I was in labor with Eden. I was given the "OK" to push just a few minutes later. However, getting to "pushing" this time was entirely different. There was more pressure than I had ever felt before, it took all I had to just relax and listen to the doctors. I wanted the baby to just come instantly. Pushing was much harder this time, most likely due to the fact that this champ was a whole pound and a half bigger than Eden. Even once his head was delivered, there was almost no relief, for along came his shoulders. It took great effort and a God given sense of calmness to finish bringing my baby into the world safely! What relief when it was FINALLY over. We welcomed Titus with so much JOY. I'm pretty sure my first response to Mark's "IT'S A BOY" was "REALLY?" or "ARE YOU SURE?" But than an immediate connection followed as they placed him in my arms. I just started saying "I LOVE YOU SO MUCH, I LOVE YOU SO MUCH, I LOVE YOU SO MUCH!" Mamas everywhere understand this amazing moment! You have worked so hard (it's called labor for a reason ;), and now your eyes catch a glimpse of the little person you've been praying for and dreaming about for over 9 months. Your mother heart is left overflowing!
So for those of you paying attention to the clock, my labor was just over 5 HOURS long! I was only in the hospital for a little over an hour before Titus entered the world. I didn't know that labor could go so quickly! Everything went beautifully! As always the prize was worth every agonizing and painful contraction. We are so very thankful for our little man. God has richly blessed us. There were times in this last year that we faced fear and doubt, wondering if we might never be able to have a baby boy. As we spent time talking and recovering in the hospital it wasn't until the day after he was born that it hit me. All those doubts, fears, and worries were washed away because before my eyes was a beautiful baby BOY. A reminder to me that God is so much bigger than anything I will ever face! He has gone before me, and graciously planned out my future, and the future of my family.
So here are some pictures of the little guy!
And here is our family!
Thanks to all who have supported and prayed for us on this journey! We welcome it all the more as we face new challenges as a family of 4! :)