Gabriel Alaka'ipono Sikahema

I've been meaning to write this for a while, but if you can't imagine, I've been doing much more important things. Like holding my sweet, tiny, perfect, baby boy. But I still wanted to write his birth story on here for those still interested in hearing it.

So here it is:

Sunday, March 6. 6AM I wake up with light, but regular contractions. I don't think much of it because at this point, contractions of this nature are a regular occurrence. I try to lull myself back to sleep, considering the fact that Sunday is the only regular sleep-in day, but sleep won't come. Eventually, I decide to cease my tossing and turning, and get up and do something productive. I find my scriptures and my journal, and move to the living room to read where I won't disturb my still-slumbering husband. After reading for a good 20 minutes and continuing to feel regular contractions, I become distracted, and wonder if I should start timing them. I get up and walk to the bedroom to grab my cell phone to use as a timer. As I return to the couch, I see a small puddle of liquid pooling where I had just been sitting. How embarrassing. I didn't even know I had to go (weird things happen to your body when you're pregnant. Just saying).

At that moment, I experience a particular strong contraction. It is shortly followed by a realization on my part.

Perhaps that pool of liquid is not urine...

So I sniff the puddle, and sure enough, it has no scent. I'm confused. I thought my water was supposed to "gush" if it broke. Not trickle into a little puddle without me even realizing it. I look at the clock--just a little bit after seven. My mom should be up. She's an early riser.

I am calm as I tell my mom what happened. She advises me to continue timing my contractions, and to call my doctor around nine. I'll probably have the baby today, we both decide. Calmly. Rationally.

We hang up, and I continue to time my contractions. I leave LJ to his sleep, as I figure this might be the last good night's sleep he will get in a while. At 8:30, my contractions are regular and 5 minutes apart. I decide it's time to wake LJ up, and let him in on the news. I sit on his side of the bed and gently shake him until he opens his eyes.

"Hi. We're having a baby today."


We spend the next hour and a half showering, packing, eating breakfast, making sure the camera is charged and the video camera works, and taking a few last minute pictures (none of this had been previously prepared...what can I say except baby boy was 2 weeks early). At 9:30 I am unable to reach my doctor, but my contractions are pretty painful, and when my mom hears me breathing through them on the phone, she instructs us to just go to the hospital. Don't worry about contacting your doctor.

The drive is quiet. Calm. Happy. We talk about what we thought this drive would be like. We talk about having a baby. We talk about how much we love each other. We talk about how great life is.

We arrive at the hospital around 10:30, where I had already pre-admitted a few weeks back. I walk up to the lady at the registration desk, though, because I am unsure where labor and delivery is.
Hello, I say.
Hello, she says back. Do you need to register?
No, I've pre-admitted. I'm currently in labor though.
Oh! Labor and deliver is on the 3rd floor! Good luck!

Once in labor and delivery, I am taken to a room where they will decide if I will be giving birth today, or if they will send me home on a false alarm. My contractions are painful.

The nurse walks into the "decision room" where she tells me to shed my dignity, and my wardrobe. She is witty, sarcastic, and anti-BYU, we learn from the get-go. I like her instantly. Not because she is anti-BYU, but because I feel immediately comfortable with her. After testing my leaking fluids on a little strip, and telling me that I am dilated to a 3, it is determined that my water has, indeed, broken, and that I will, indeed, be having the baby today.

So, she says, we've got to decide a few things. On a scale of one to ten, one being none, and ten being having your arm sawed off, how much pain would you like to feel?
Umm...one? I'm not that into pain...
Oh, good. I thought you were one of those crazies who likes pain (her viewpoint, not mine). Epidural, then?
Yes, please.
When do you want it?
When can I have it?
As soon as we can get the man here!

So we wait for the epidural man to bring his magic. In the mean time, the nurse puts in my IV, and brings me a cranberry juice. At 11:30 the man arrives, and administers the blessed medical miracle (at this point my contractions are preeettyyy intense, and I might have sung the man's praises as the medicine kicked in). Then, we begin the wait. My wonderful doctor who is not currently scheduled to be in labor and delivery comes in just to deliver my baby. It's getting close to one, and I am dilated to a 5. He tells me to hang out and get some sleep if I want. He is going to attend his one o'clock meetings, and he'll be back around four to check on me and perhaps deliver the baby.

The three hours fly. After about an hour and a half I am fully dilated, and by four when the Dr. gets back I am +1 and absolutely ready to have this baby.

The nurse tells me that we should have this baby out by 4:30. The Dr. agrees.

Delivery is exhausting. I was told after the fact that most women burn an average of 50,000 calories during delivery. After experiencing it, I can understand. After an hour of pushing, we're about half-way there. My epidural is wearing off, and I am in quite a bit of pain. I had refrained from pushing the "pain" button which would give me another dose of the epidural medication because the nurse told me it would make the pushing more difficult if I were to push it, but the pain gets to the point where I can hardly handle it. I push the button again, but it is too late to kick in. The last 15 minutes of the delivery are pure agony.

At 5:37PM, though, after almost 2 hours of pushing, my beautiful baby boy is born. Immediately, I feel a billion things, all at the same time. The emotions are higher than anything I have ever felt, and can hardly be explained in words. He is squirmy, and flailing, and beautiful with a head chock-full of black hair, still wet from the womb. We sob, although not as loud as Gabriel. We can't take our eyes off of this perfect little boy. We've never been so happy.

He is weighed, measured. 7lbs even, 19 inches long.

He is then placed on my chest. Skin to skin. I cry harder. He is perfect.

I desperately want LJ to hold him, too, and I tell the nurses so. One of the nurses suggest I leave him on my skin, but my kind, understanding doctor says that it's my baby, and it is also LJ's. We make the calls.

Soon, everyone has gone. It is just the three of us, our small family, alone for the first time. We continue to cry, all three of us, until the nurse comes to get him so that he can be bathed. LJ goes with him. I'm not fit to walk, and I have to prove that I can go to the bathroom by myself before they will let me go downstairs.

The next couple days are a blur. Friends and family visit with their wishes. He cries at night, but I refuse to let the nurses take him to the nursery. He pees on his face while our favorite nurse, Kally, is changing him. He is kissed probably a thousand times. We can't get over our happiness.

48 hours after he is born, Tuesday, we are allowed to go home. We are told to return to the hospital for a biliruben test the next day though. It's should be nothing to worry about, they say, but his levels are a little high.

That night my mom stays with us. We are exhausted but absolutely ecstatic to have him home.

(This blog is plenty long, so I'll stop here. Wednesday we had to readmit him to the hospital, and I might write about that in a Part II of sorts, but we all know how good I am at fulfilling blogging promises, so we'll see.)


Claire said...

I felt such a whirl of emotions while reading this. What a beautiful day. I'm just...thrilled for you. Baby Gabey is so handsome and sweet. Thanks for giving us the deets from wake-up til after birth. What a pleasure it was to read.

Love you :)

Aimee said...

Aw, this is beautiful. I can't believe you didn't go right in when your water broke. My boss's water broke at work on Tuesday and she had the baby 2 hours later.

Congratulations to you and your beautiful little family!

Camille Spence said...

Kaylie, I just loved reading this. I love that you write in such a real way...like I feel like I am you, feeling your feelings too (well, almost). This makes me SO INCREDIBLY excited for September to get here. I get scared sometimes, and was having a little moment, but when I read this, it really calmed me and made me so excited for the months to come. Keep up the postings, especially stuff like this because it makes me feel peace that I will be okay too. Gabe the babe is really adorable, congrats again!

Susan said...

Congrats Kaylie, I love how you worded all of this. What a beautiful experience! Hope you are adjusting well to motherhood (sometimes I think I'm still adjusting after 2 years...) and I hope you're feeling well! I love his name, by the way.

Angela said...

Wow, such an amazing, life-changing experience! Congratulations, he is beautiful!

Bobbilynn said...

that was so fun to read!

Hello friend! How are you? How's mommyhood? I found your blog though Megan. Hope you don't mind me peeking in:)

HeMz 'N nOrMz said...

I'm so grateful that I found your blog. It is so beautiful! You and LJ are amazing people, and such wonderful examples. Some of the words you have shared have answered some of our prayers. Thank you! Congrats on the beautiful new family member:)

Bon Bon said...

oh my heart. what a beautiful post. Love everything about it! What a sweet little bubba:-) xoxo