Lucie’s birth story is much different than Eli’s. When thinking about it though it isn’t all too surprising since everything about her has been completely unexpected.
While she’s always been unexpected, from not having to go through infertility treatments to have her & everything turning out okay from my subchorionic hemorrhage when we sure things were over, she’s always shown up right on time. Her Birthday was no exception.
Like a lot of books start out, it was a day like any other day. My family had planned on coming to celebrate Christmas with us early since we wouldn’t be traveling this year with my due date being so close (January 6th). I had an OB appointment that morning so I’d asked them to come up earlier so they could keep an eye on Eli while I went. I’d thought I’d go to my appointment, grab some lunch, & swing by Target for some last minute things I still needed to grab for Lucie & Christmas.
Once I was back in the room & my OB had checked me, a look came over her face. She said, “So…you’re by yourself today?” & I thought to myself, “Uh, oh-where is this going?”
I was dilated to a 3-4 then and 80% effaced. At first she’d hooked me up to the monitor to see if I was having contractions & said, if I had any, she’d send me straight to the hospital. After 20 minutes, I hadn’t had a single one. She checked me again & said I was a solid 4 dilated & that she was worried if my water broke on its own at home, I wouldn’t make it to the hospital in time (I’m guessing because Lucie had been sooooo low for a good two weeks at least). We talked about it & decided the best thing to do was let her strip my membranes, come grab my bag quickly, & then head to the hospital for her to break my water.
I called my husband, who didn’t answer at first & had sent one of those automatic, “Sorry, I can’t talk right now,” responses to me. I had a few thoughts about that-number one being, he’s gonna answer LOL Two, life rules: when your wife is nine months pregnant & she calls you-you answer the damn phone. But I digress. 😀
I called him back & he picked up. I filled him in & he left his meeting in a hurry to meet me at the hospital.
I’d also text my birth photographer/friend, Vicky, & my doula/friend Shilah to fill them in.
On the way to get my bag, I already had a few contractions & started spotting. When we got to the hospital, I was still dilated to a 4 & the nurse, after checking me, said, “Oh, that’s definitely a head,” confirming again Lulu was super low. They hooked me up to a monitor again & I had a few mild contractions. They picked up a bit & then would fizzle out from there. We’d thought a few times they may stay regular but they remained irregular until my OB got there to break my water.
Up until that point, Shilah had gotten there & we all walked the halls together, I bounced on an exercise/birth ball, & we all just kind of hung out….& may, or may not have snuck in a snack.
My lower back had started to hurt from the start so Shilah had massaged it during our waiting game too, which was really helpful.
By the time Dr. James got there, I still hadn’t dilated any more than I was so it was time to break my water-which I was anxious about. She’d had to break it with Eli too but hadn’t done it until right before I started to push. I remember seeing this brown stick like thing in plastic laid out beside me while she was checking me & that wasn’t exactly comforting because I knew where it was going to go but it wasn’t excoriatingly painful or anything. It did continue to gush out everywhere after I stood up-which was crazy to me since I hadn’t experienced it before. There’s soooo much water I have no idea how women’s bodies hold it all, plus a baby, plus a placenta but, back to the story-
The nurse told me they wanted me to stay hooked up to the monitor for a bit just to make sure baby was tolerating my water being broken well so I sat on a birth/exercise ball & hung out for a bit & had a few contractions there. Since they still weren’t consistent, we decided I should probably walk the halls again to see if they’d pick up. My OB had mentioned, if they didn’t, possibly needing to use a bit of Pitocin, which I really wanted to avoid if possible since I’d hear horror stories about it.
When we set out on walking round two, my nurse stopped us to tell us about a longer way to go where we could see the hospital’s outdoor Christmas lights & a Christmas tree at the end of the hall. Since Christmas was days away & I welcomed any distraction, we headed to it. It wasn’t long before my contractions picked up & started feeling intense really quickly. By the time we’d made it back to the outside of the room, I could barely breathe through them & lost my breath during them a few times.
Shilah had asked if we wanted to walk around one more time but I opted to go rest for a bit. Someone suggested using the peanut ball the nurse had mentioned earlier so I used that for a bit & the contractions continued picking up in intensity & speed. Someone had asked if I wanted to get in the tub like last time & I’d say yes, hoping for some kind of relief.
Vicky later told me Dr. James pulled her aside & said, “She’s not getting in that tub,” so I think she knew it wouldn’t be long but, what she didn’t know then was just how soon she’d be coming back to the room.
Not too long after I was using the peanut ball, I started feeling a lot of pressure & got nervous because I knew I hadn’t until it was time to push with Eli. Somewhere during this, I started crying & saying to Scott, “I can’t do it, I’m not getting a break. I can’t do it.” I also remember saying I felt pressure in my butt at first (aren’t birth stories glamorous :D).
Not long after I felt an insane amount of pressure in the place Lou would actually come out of & screamed, “SHE’S COMING OUT!!!” Vicky went running out of the room & happened to find Dr. James in the hallway to fill her in. She’d picked up a hall phone to call for nurses but Vicky told her there wasn’t time for that so they both came running back into the room. Dr. James jumped in bed with me like the situation didn’t phase her one bit. No time to put her green gown thing on but she’d grabbed some gloves from somewhere & was ready to go. I think I was screaming at this point & just plain freaking out because I had NOT anticipated things going to quickly & felt like things were more intense very fast as compared to Eli (every labor and delivery truly is different it seems).
In the midst of my freak out, Dr. James said, “Cesilee-look at me! Look at me!” trying to get me to calm TF down & focus. Scott & Shilah grabbed my legs (there wasn’t even time to get me in stirrups) & held them back while I pushed. After a handful of pushes, Lucie Rose was born at 7:12 pm on December 20th. Shilah & Vicky said her tongue was out when she was born so she was ready to crash our Christmas party it seemed 😀
She is, without a doubt, the best Christmas gift we’ve ever gotten & we are so thankful for her.
We are forever thankful for our amazing doula Shilah & so blessed she could be there for Lucie’s birth, too since the day she was born was LITERALLY the only day she was available due to her other job. We couldn’t have done it without her, either time.
We are also so thankful for Vicky being there again as well & continuing to capture the major milestones of our lives & for being sooo much more than a photographer to us.
Last but not least, we are immensely thankful for Dr. James, who found both my endometriosis & MTHFR & helped us bring our little miracles home. Above all, we are thankful God blessed us with these sweet babies because, without Him, they never would have been possible. They’re our 1-2% chance miracles & we couldn’t love them more.