I’m really excited to finally share Maddox’s birth story. It was an experience I will never forget and left me feeling extremely empowered. I had gone to the doctor on Tuesday morning and left pretty disappointed. I was still 2 cm dilated and only 50% effaced. I was in so much discomfort and I really wanted to have the baby. My doctor (as well as myself) didn’t want to induce since I was trying to have this baby vaginally and avoid a c section. I got in the car and literally started crying. I now see why people induce. I was officially 39 weeks 5 days at this point.
The rest of the day consisted of running a couple of errands to the grocery store to stock up on some food and last minute things. I vividly remember walking into Walmart and having to walk REALLY slow as I thought the baby was going to drop out right there in the store. It was pretty uncomfortable to walk. I managed to get home and put the groceries away. I cleaned up around the house while Ryan took care of Beckham.
Ryan and I sat down around 9:30 to watch some taped episodes of 24 (we’re way behind). This is when I started having contractions. I sat through the first several of them as this wasn’t really new to me. After some consistency, I decided to start timing them. They were about 6-8 minutes apart and were more crampy than usual. My doctor mentioned coming in if they were 5-6 minutes apart. It got to the point that I wasn’t interested in sitting down and watching TV. So I got up and started making sure my bag was ready to go in case of anything.
I took a shower as I always do before bed and it really felt so good. Got into my pj’s and thought, if this is the real thing, it will only get worse and laying down won’t help. Sure enough, about 20 minutes of laying down and I was pretty uncomfortable. It was about midnight at this point. I got out of bed and just walked around, picked up random things. I didn’t want to call my doctor at 2 in the morning if it was false labor.
At this point my contractions were 4-6 minutes apart and more uncomfortable. Ryan was asleep, Beckham was asleep, and I was pacing my house wanting a clear sign (water breaking) to tell me to call my doctor. He told me not to labor at home due to needing to be monitored closely for any vbac complications. So, I finally decided to call my doctor around 2:00am. He told me to go on in to the hospital and check in to Labor and Delivery. So, I woke Ryan up and called my mother-in-law to come over (she was watching B). In the meantime, we gathered all we needed and packed the car.
We left for the hospital around 4:00am, made a pit stop for gas and a drink for Ryan. We got to the hospital around 4:45am. I was still pretty pessimistic at this point, but knew something was happening. After getting checked in, the nurse checked me at 5:15am and I was still 2cm. REALLY disappointed. She was seeing all the contractions, but 2cm is not far enough to stay. She said she was going to give it a while and come back and check me.
Well, about 5 minutes after she left, I felt a small gush come out. I said, “Uh oh. I think my water just broke.” Ryan got the nurse and she swabbed it and sure enough, my water was breaking. I was relieved as this meant, I was there to stay! They wheeled me in to the L&D room around 6:00am! The room was so nice and I was really excited. When I saw this, it made me so anxious to meet our new baby. Unbeknownst to me, it would be a while.
At 8:00am I was still 2cm. At this point, my contractions were really starting to hurt. I wanted to go a while without the epidural because I didn’t want to slow anything down. Well, at 8:50am, I decided to go ahead and get it. I had been up 24 hours at this point and really needed sleep if I was going to deliver this baby. Let me just say that I have a love/hate relationship with epidurals. I was so numb in my legs and DID NOT like that feeling. Come to find out, epi’s don’t like me either (more on that later). By 10am, I was STILL 2cm. At noon, I was 3 cm. I rested as much as I could in between nurse checks and position changes.
The baby was sunny side up so I had to lay certain ways to try and turn him during labor. This made one leg more numb than the other. I also kept getting the feeling back in my abdomen. So I felt excruciating pains in my stomach/pressure in my back, but NOTHING in my legs. I had to keep adding more of the epidural. It made for a long 12 hours.
Around 3:00pm I got a fever of 102. This made the baby’s heartbeat get really high (180-210). We HAD to get it down or else the baby would need to come out sooner than later (the dreaded c section). So, they tried an antibiotic to try and break the fever. After an hour, it was still too high. I was so scared, but my doctor decided to try another antibiotic around 4:00pm, as they were not sure what was causing my fever. Let me just say, THIS is exactly why I continued to travel to Dallas to go to my doctor. He NEVER mentioned the words “c-section” and was very patient with me.
At 4:50pm, my fever started lowering, so the antibiotics were working. Yay! Around 5:40pm the pain in my abdomen started hurting pretty bad so I received more epidural. Here is where I learned that epidurals can be funny on certain people. My legs were SO numb, but my stomach would occasionally feel the contractions. I DID NOT like the feeling of numbness, but when I was pushing, I sure did appreciate it.
Anyway at 6:40pm, I was fully effaced and 9.5 cm dilated. Dr. Fogwell said the vbac was a go once I dilated fully! I’m so thankful that the medicine and prayers worked to lower my temp and avoid a c-section. At 7:30pm, I fell asleep for a short nap. Dr. Fogwell came in at 8:30pm and said I could start pushing (he left and I started pushing with nurses). I was so nervous. After a few practice pushes, I felt that I could totally do this. The time was going by pretty fast and the nurses were very encouraging, as well as Ryan. Side Note: Ryan was THE best coach ever and totally surpassed my expectations…we didn’t go to any classes so we weren’t sure what to expect (glad we did not).
At 9:10pm, I had to turn on my side and continue pushing because the baby was sunny side up (head up). We were hoping to turn the baby as I pushed. At 9:45pm, I was still pushing sideways and it seemed to be working (baby was now sideways). Around 10:00, they asked if I wanted to try pushing on all fours to change positions, but I couldn’t totally feel my legs (the feeling was coming back in my legs, but not fully enough to kneel).
After 1 1/2 hours of pushing, the baby was head down. I continued to push for another half hour when the pain really started to hurt. The contractions were pretty bad and I remember saying “I can’t do this anymore.” I was so tired and it hurt to push through a contraction. They asked me if I wanted to use a mirror to see my progression during pushing. I said yes, and it was actually pretty helpful. Around 10:15pm, Dr. Fogwell came in to deliver the baby. The last 30-45 minutes were the hardest. Luckily, the area that needed to be numb, was numb 😉 This picture makes me laugh – Before Dr. Fogwell stepped in to deliver baby, he decided to take a little break. He’s a “funny” doctor to say the least and was trying to make light of a long labor. Everyone was making jokes and talking and I was like, “get this baby out!”
After 2 1/2 hours of pushing, I finally felt relief and experienced the most amazing feeling in the world, seeing our baby boy come into the world! I cannot tell you how empowered I felt. They placed him in my arms right away. Ryan got to cut the cord, which he had been looking forward to the entire pregnancy! I cannot tell you how amazing the experience was and how all the hours of laboring and pushing were worth it!
On July 25, at 10:57, MADDOX CADE SNYDER, was born. Weighing 9 pounds 1 ounce and 21 inches long. I was surprised at how big he was. I was certain he wouldn’t be 9 pounds. When they told me how much he weighed, I felt even stronger…I pushed out an enormous baby whose head was well above average in size through my “small pelvis” (as the doc said). The entire day and night, my doctor never once mentioned a c-section and patiently let me labor and push. I’m so thankful for doctors like him! I put a lot of miles on my car to visit him, but they paid off. Dr. Fogwell, the nurses, and Ryan kept going on and on about how amazing I did. Perhaps they tell all their patients that, but it sure felt good. My mom said, Dr. Fogwell came out to talk to them afterwards and kept saying how impressed he was. It really does feel good to hear that. Not sure why my lips are purple in this pic below..lol
My brother was in the room (far enough away from the action…lol) and was able to capture some photos. Remember, I was there a full 24 hours and had been awake almost 2 days at this point. I was a hot mess! There were SO many cool pictures, but maybe just a little too personal to post on a blog. Here are some internet appropriate moments from the birth!
That feeling of having him in my arms after so many hours was priceless! He’s almost 2 weeks now and we are in the “how are we going to survive” stage with no sleep, but I know it gets better and he will soon be as old as Beckham. Speaking of Beckham, here are a few pictures of B meeting his little brother at the hospital. He brought him a gift and was so excited to give it to him and hold him. He has done GREAT with him so far.