Ryan's birth day!
Last year at this time I was in the hospital thinking that Ryan would just arrive at any point. I had a lot to learn about delivery!
Figured now is as best time as ever to share his birth story. We were incredibly lucky to have Thad’s amazingly talented cousin Jolene (owner of Photography by Jolene @ Studio 217) with us to capture the day, turned night, turned morning. The pictures below are taken by her. She is so very talented and the pictures are priceless to me.
I will always remember the day that Ryan was born. If I close my eyes I can remember each moment.
My plan was to work until my due date. Work was crazy busy and i knew that Ryan knew I needed the time to be at work, so I wasn’t totally worried about him arriving early. I was more worried about my water breaking en route to work in my car pool buddy’s new car. So, for about 3 weeks before my due date, I rode to work on a large plastic tarp. Seriously, I didn’t know what to expect and I didn’t want to feel guilty about messing up the car. I also slept on a mattress cover at home. I was paranoid, and for no real reason.
My due date, April 29th, came and went. It was a Friday and I knew it was my last day of work baby or no baby, so it was a good stopping point. My feet were really disgustingly swollen and I was feeling very slow and GINORMOUS! I was happy to be done with work and ready for Ryan to arrive. Erin arrived on Sunday to wait it out with me. We had a nice day Sunday and Monday, getting some Mother’s Day shopping done and just taking it easy. I recall taking a walk to the mailbox down the street and it taking a ridiculous amount of time to waddle there and back. But, I heard walking helped so walking is what I did.
It must have worked because at about 3am that morning May 3rd I started having contractions. My mother in law (mom to 8, Oma to 11) told me that I would know that it was for real when I couldn’t go back to sleep. I couldn’t go back to sleep, so i was sure that it was it. As Thad lay in bed next to me sleeping away, I was keeping track of how far apart the contractions were. I also called the hospital to let them know that I thought it was going to happen later in the day. The nurse told me to keep track and come in when the contractions were about 4-5 min apart. By 6am, they were getting more intense so I told Thad and went downstairs to tell Erin. The contractions were coming pretty regularly about 4 minutes apart and it was painful, but not awful.
I had a smug moment thinking how lucky I was. My pregnancy was pretty easy and for the most part enjoyable. I thought “wow, this labor might also be a piece of cake; maybe I’ll luck out again and have Ryan by noon.” As Thad and Erin bustled around the house getting ready to go to the hospital, I sat in the living room thinking about how my life was about to change. It was very surreal. Then I started texting people to let them know that it would be later today (or so I thought).
On the way to the hospital, I remember thinking that this is happening and that this baby needs to come out. And for the first time, I was a little nervous about the whole labor. When we arrived at the hospital the nurse checked to see how I was progressing.
I thought I was WAY further along than that! People walk around for weeks at 3 cm! Then, I knew it might be a little while longer than noon! I was happy they let me stay and didn’t send me home. The nurse instructed me to walk the halls for about an hour to see if that helped. By that time mom and dad were there, taking turns walking with me. Erin was there and mOm B stopped by on her way to work. It was a grand old time, just waddling up and down the halls, thinking that in no time I would get to see and finally hold my little nugget.
After all the walking, the nurse checked again.
“not much progress”
At that point I could continue walking or take the drugs. I chose the drugs. The contractions still seemed pretty intense and after I got the epidural I felt like a new person. It was amazing! I didn’t even hurt. Ever since my college days of watching a baby story, I was more worried about the epidural than the actual labor part. It really was not bad, like a little bee sting, and it was worth it!
Thinking back, I’m sure this slowed down the natural progression of the labor, but it did make me feel like a brand new person! And guess what? I would do it again in a heartbeat!
By this time, Leslie had arrived. My awesome cuz Leslie who raced out of work and drove in for the birth from Cleveland just to cheer me on! It was great! I will never forget all of the awesome cheerleaders we had with us that day! I know that some people would rather just have it more private with just their husband, but that is not how our family operates. The more the merrier and it made us feel incredibly loved!
We had a roomful AND a waiting room full. Again, the pictures I have of this day are so amazing to me because they capture so much of what I missed being in the room.
My cheerleaders left nothing not celebrated! Each cm I dialated, it was a huge excitement and really kept me going!
By early evening we had gone through 2 rounds of guessing the arrival time and I started to realize that this was going to be a marathon. The contractions kept coming and my epidural was starting to wear off on the right side. I got another round but it didn’t help much. I was really feeling the labor part. The continued for quite some time.
By 2am and with everyone still waiting and rooting for me I was at 9 glorious cm!!!!
I was ready to start pushing. I wasn’t sure what to expect, I knew it would hurt. I had been up for almost 24 hours at this point and was really just exhausted. So, glass half full self thought perhaps it would be 30 minutes and he would be out.
It took hours.
I kept falling asleep in between pushing, it hurt more than I had ever imagined it would and I totally thought I could still get out of it. At about 4am I remember asking Thad if I could just go have a c-section. He said that he already saw Ryans’s head and it would just be a few more pushes. Another hour and a half later the Dr finally came in and I knew it was go time. He had spend the night at the hospital too and there was no turning back now.
I had to push. And I pushed as hard as I possibly could and at 6:01, after four hours of pushing, Ryan finally FINALLY was here!
It was amazing!!!! Finally getting to see him and hold him was the best moment of my life. He was beautiful, with 10 fingers and 10 toes, perfect, and all ours.
They took him to clean him up and weighed him in 9lb and 11 oz!!! 22in long!!! He was quite the bruiser!
We had a few minutes as our new little family and then Thad went to get everyone who had waited all night long to come and meet our little guy.
Everyone was so happy!!
And surprised by how big he was!
Some of my best memories are everyone meeting Ryan for the first time.
This year has gone by so quickly, but also when I look back it seems like we have had Ryan with us forever. He is the little love of my life and I just love watching him grow and discover the world around him. We are looking forward to a big celebration this weekend, but will never forget the amazing day that he joined our worlds forever.
We love you so much little man! Happy 1st birthday!