Word of warning:
This blog is my way of documenting life. One of life’s most incredible events occurred this week, and I don’t want to forget a single detail (well, except the pain… that I would prefer to forget). Hence, the ridiculously lengthy account of Mary Grace’s birth that follows. Read at your own risk.

It all started one week ago when I prayed at dinner that I would go into labor in the next 24 hours. A bold prayer, perhaps, but I think God likes it when we ask of Him boldly. After fulfilling my urge to paint my toenails and have the pack and play set up in our room, I went to bed. Around 2 am, Matt finally made it to bed after working on a paper all night at which time I woke up with some cramping. The cramping worsened and by 5 am, we called our friend Sarah to come over to watch Carson until my parents arrived from Richmond.

We got to the hospital around 7 am, and of course as it always goes, my contractions slowed down as soon as I was hooked up to the monitor. At that point, the nurse said I was 2.5 cm dilated and wanted me to walk for an hour and a half to get things going. I was super frustrated and convinced that they were going to send me home. We probably looked ridiculous walking those hallways in silence (I wouldn’t let Matt talk to me during that hour and a half… poor guy) and with tears flowing down my cheeks.

After a thousand laps around L&D, my nurse checked me again and proclaimed that I was “still one centimeter dilated.” Umm what?! I couldn’t hold my tongue at that point and kindly pointed out to her that I had previously been told I was 2.5 cm, thankyouverymuch. The poor nurse tried to backpedal and then told me that my OB wanted me to walk for another hour. I cried and begged for pitocin, but all I got was a “see ya in an hour.” Well, by then, I was beyond frustrated but slid on my flipflops anyway. We paused to pray for the labor to pick up and set out on our marathon. It was then that I informed Matt that if I was sent home, there was no way that I would return to the hospital and would do a home birth instead… with his best friend, Jon- a first year Ob/Gyn resident- attending. Frightening thought perhaps, but Matt knows how stubborn I am and became slightly concerned that I really might follow through with this. Trying to make the best of our situation, Matt found a pedometer app for his Ipod touch. I have no clue how many steps it said we took, but we calculated that we walked about 5 miles that morning.

Thankfully, our journey paid off. My OB came back to check me and let me know that not only was I 4 cm but that I could stay! We decided that she’d break my water and see what that would do. She broke my water around noon, and I started really feeling the pain around 1pm. I knew I didn’t want to wait too long for my epidural this time around (I didn’t get it until I was 9cm with Carson), but I also didn’t want to look like a wimp requesting one only an hour after being admitted. I finally was begging for the anesthesiologist by 1:30, and he rolled in at 2:30. By now, I was struggling. At one point, I looked up at Matt in the midst of a contraction and pleaded, “I want Jon!” (i.e. his best friend… maybe a bizarre request, considering the circumstances, but Matt didn’t even stop to question…)

So I got my blessed epidural which then brought on a whole new set of issues as my blood pressure dropped to 60/30. As they worked to bring it back up, I became a tad melodramatic and asked my nurse if I was dying. Word to the wise: this is not a great question to ask an experienced L&D RN. She was slightly offended but let it slide. Once I no longer felt like I was about to meet my maker, my nurse checked me and informed me that I was already 10 cm and that it was useless to hang my bag of meds for my epidural. Sweet. She told me that we would just wait until I felt the urge to push, and I am not lying- the second she stepped out of my room, the urge came! And anyone who has ever had a baby before knows that when a girl’s gotta push, a girl’s gotta push. Unfortunately, this girl wasn’t allowed to push because my doctor was nowhere in sight. So, for the next 10 minutes, I used every bit of willpower within me to prevent my husband from having to deliver our daughter.

Alas, my OB came and slapped on some gloves as I pushed our baby girl out in one contraction at 3:18pm. Strong cry, full head of dark hair, Apgars of 9 and 9, and perfect in every way. My labor and delivery didn’t quite go as planned, but when does it ever? All that matters is that Mary Grace Allison is here, that she’s healthy, and that she is dearly loved.

2 Comments on Mary Grace’s arrival

  1. I loved reading your story! I would have walked and cried with you had I seen you Monday morning!! Glad that you got the epidural šŸ™‚ and do not even worry that you worry being dramatic, they saw a new kind of drama with me šŸ˜‰
    No one from there will probably ever want to visit the summit now that there have been three births in a week from the staff there.

  2. what a beautiful story! and i'm sooo jealous…only 1 push!? thats amazing šŸ™‚ I hope you're feeling well and getting some sleep!!

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