Monday, August 12, 2013

Our Little Girl, Our Marley Wren

July 17, 2013... a date that's engraved in my brain... for life. Even though induction was scheduled for the 16th, the little Miss, still had to make things happen on her own terms.

When I think back (wow, it's nearly been a month!)... it still feels like a dream... nothing is 100% fresh in my mind anymore... because all I can focus on, is my little one, and her cuteness. But what I can remember, I shall try my best to document in this post... more so for me, to look back on... and to share with Marley Wren when she's ready to hear her story.

Tuesday, July 16th at 8:00 am, I was admitted into the Children's Hospital of Oklahoma to start my induction. After getting checked in, we were welcomed and settled into our labor and delivery room by our sweet nurse, Anna... who wanted us to refer to her as "Anna Banana" if we were so inclined to. We were greeted by my midwife Dusti, and asked what our "birth plan" was. Hmm... birth plan. Hmm... the hubby and I looked at each other and laughed. So many people have shared "tid bits" along the way, and expectations... and in the end, I knew I didn't want to go into labor/delivery with a "plan". What we knew, was that we wanted to have a healthy girl by the end of this delivery. We had no plan, and shared with Anna and Dusti that we were as open as we could be, that we wanted to go as natural as possible, but if our little one's life was in jeopardy, that we weren't opposed to whatever they needed to do to "get her out". My only request, was for "delayed cord clamping". I wanted to have direct skin on skin as soon as she was out, and wanted to delay the cord cutting, so that she could receive as much oxygenated blood as possible, before the umbilical cord stopped pulsing. Now, let the record show, I'm not making fun of anyone who has had a "birth plan"... it was just something that wasn't for "us". Everyone that knows me, knows that I'm a free spirit, sporadic kind of gal, who would rather adapt to the situation at hand. The last thing I wanted, was to feel disappointed if something started to veer away from my birth plan. After all, one way or another, she was "coming out"...

At around 11:00 we were settled into our room, and was hooked up to an IV and pitocin drips... I was actually having some mild contractions before we were even at the hospital, but they become steadier and stronger once the pitocin started. When my midwife did the first "check" to see how much I dilated... I was told some news that I hadn't heard before... that she could feel built up scar tissue from my previous miscarriages, from the D&C's, and that I hadn't dilated not even a centimeter. She started to "massage" the scar tissue to try and break it down some, to help with my dilation, and in a matter of moments, I went from no centimeters... to 1 cm... to 2 cm... to 3 cm... to 4 cm. I kid you not. She broke down all that scar tissue, and was able to kickstart my dilation. I was hopeful... the contractions started to get a little more frequent and intense...

I started off on the ball, and bounced for an hour... lots of rocking and swaying, even though she was already "super low and in position"... and then did a little walking. Around 5:00 pm, I started bouncing again... and when I stood up to start walking again, around 5:30 pm, my water broke... but wait... it wasn't like a gushing feeling... in fact, at the time, I wondered whether or not I had tinkled my underpants or if my water broke, because the liquid just started to dribble down my leg. I sent my sweet hubs out of the room to fetch Anna to come in, and check what had just happened... and as I waited, more and more water started to trickle down my leg... surely I couldn't have had an "accident", this had to be my amniotic fluid. Sure enough, Anna took a test with a strip of paper to determine whether or not it was urine or fluid... and it was my fluid. As I continued to walk the hallways, my water continued to make its way out. You hear stories for some women of how it's this gushing flood of water... and for others, their water doesn't break until they're in the "pushing" zone... but for me, it just sort of leaked out of me slowly... but boy did it bring on some serious contractions, stronger and longer.

I spent the better half of the next 5 hours laboring in the tub, walking and bouncing... My labor and delivery nurse Anna's shift was over... and I was handed over to Allison, who was just as sweet and caring. She had only been a labor and delivery nurse for 6 months, but she did awesome.  Always made sure I felt comfortable enough, had enough popsicles, brought in extra pillows... and at around 11:00 pm, I was ready to be checked again.

With how tough these contractions were, taking the breath out of me, I was sure, after 5 hours, I HAD to be dilated to at least 6 or 7 centimeters... but when my midwife came in to check, she shook her head in disbelief... "I think it's only 5 cm ... maybe 5... definitely 4 cm still.. maybe 5...", she said.  UGH. Not the words that I wanted to hear... 5 hours of laboring hard, and I barely even made it a cm... I was overcome with doubt in my mind, discouragement that I'd be able to do this without being medicated... I had labored for nearly 12 hours, with only clear liquids in me, and still wasn't even halfway there with dilation. I looked over at my hubby... and he must have seen how upset I was in my eyes. I told him that he needed to decide for me, because I didn't want to have a "control" issue... I didn't want my selfish reasons to get in the way... he answered, "Karen, you've already proved to me how strong you are... if you get an epidural, you'll still be a hero in my eyes... and you can still push her out, it's just going to give you "some rest"..." I shook my head in agreement, and my midwife 100% supported our decision, thinking that it was wise that I try and "catch some rest". She believed that rest was what I needed. She hoped that "magic" would happen during that rest, and that she would check on me a few hours after the epidural was administered, to see if I progressed a little.

Two gentleman strolled in moments later... my two anesthesiologists that were pretty comedic. They bantered back and forth so much, that I barely even noticed what they were doing (since I was still trying to breathe through contractions). I felt a few "bee stings" in the mid section of my back, and some pressure, and all of a sudden, it was done. My legs became numb... my toes stopped wiggling, and I was able to only feel pressure in my tummy throughout each contraction. relief. amazing relief. And with that, I was able to sleep for a few hours. Around 3:00 am, I woke up from a dream in sheer panic... I'm not sure why I freaked out so much, but at this point, my legs and toes were completely pins and needles, that it was almost "scary" for me... I could see them, but I couldn't move them. I immediately ran Allison's bell, and questioned her... "How am I going to push this baby out of me if I can't feel my legs?" "Am I supposed to be able to wiggle my toes?", etc. She reassured me that it was exactly what I was intended to feel, so that I could rest... but that if I wanted to have a lower dosage for my epidural, that she would call the anesthesiologist. Minutes later, one of the guys from earlier walked in... I shared the same concerns with him, and he reaffirmed that my legs would regain feeling all over again as soon as the epidural wore off. I asked him to lower the amount that was being administered... and he did... that way maybe it would wear off sooner, rather than later. At 5:00 am, I woke up with a strange desire to be checked again, and asked Allison to find Dusti... it was as though my body knew it was ready... even though at the time, I didn't know.

Dusti came into the room close to 5:30, and when she went to check me, she was completely startled and caught off guard. In the 5.5 hours that I was under the epidural's influence, I dilated 5+ cm... because she was able to see my little one's full head of hair. I was THERE, and ready to push and meet our little one. Both Dusti and Allison went into "Go" mode, getting the room prepared/ready for delivery... and by 6:00... it began. At first my sweet husband had all intentions on staying up by me, holding my hand, and encouraging each and every push through the contractions... but when Dusti asked him to hold my left leg in a squat position, he knew where he needed to be. He watched through each and every push as she inched her way out... 15 contractions later... at 6:38 am, our little one, Marley Wren Davis entered this world...

She was immediately placed on my bare chest, and once the cord was done pulsing, my husband was able to cut the cord. They suctioned her passageways out while she laid on my body, and let her snuggle with me, skin to skin for nearly 30 minutes, while they stitched me up (I only had minor tearing). They then took her over to "clean" her up, measure her, and take her footprints.

Our little Marley measured in at a whopping 7 lbs 11 oz, just like her Daddy did when he was born, and 20.5 inches long. She completely stole our hearts the moment she laid her eyes on us...

To say we are smitten... is an understatement... who wouldn't want to munch on those scrumptious little lips? This sweet little girl has been our little miracle, and blessing...  I've been a little absent from this blog... but, just know it's because these last few weeks I've been busy smooching on this sweet baby girl... our little girl... our Marley Wren. 
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  1. Love, love birth stories! Thank you for sharing yours! She is just beautiful!

  2. Aw, it's so sweet to read how Marley Wren made her entrance into the world. She is precious!

  3. Beautiful blessings to you on the arrival of your sweet girl, Marley.

  4. What a sweet child. I love her name. :)

  5. I love you guys so much. Why are you so far away??? I hope our paths cross again soon I so miss having you apart of my life... Oh and congratulates!!! I AM SO SO SO HAPPY FOR YOU TWO. WITH A BUNCH OF LOVE AND MORE, john

  6. Our birth plans were pretty much the same. No plan, except skin to skin immediately and delayed cord clamping. She is beautiful! And I adore her name

  7. What an amazing story! Thank you for being so honest. I love what your husband said to you when you got the epidural - what an awesome person to have by your side. Marley Wren is such a beautiful little girl.

  8. I love reading birth stories! This was a great one, so sweet, and the photos are gorgeous. Congratulations on your darling girl.