Whew! It’s been a long while since I’ve been on here. There’s a new little member of our family that’s been taking up all the time I used to have.
Today, I thought I would get on here and document the story of her entrance into the world.
Disclaimer: It’s very possible that I might give too much information. I never know where I’m going to go with things until I get there.
It all began on a sunny, beautiful day in December. I was 3 days overdue at this point. Here I am on my due date. Ready to be done was an understatement.
I took Taegan to school, came back home, and waited for the farmer to get done with his chores so we could run into town for a few things. I baked Lemon Sugar Cookies. (When the farmer walked into the house, he looked at me sideways. He told me later that afternoon that he knew right then.) I remember as we hopped into the car saying, “Boy, it sure would be a great day to have a baby!” Not like, “Boy, it sure would be a great day for a picnic!” More like, “Boy, it sure would be great if you’d GET OUTTA THERE!”
It’s funny how vividly I remember this day. I talked to the farmer almost the whole way about a show called Man vs. Lion that I had watched and all the interesting tidbits and trivia I had learned. He was spellbound.
We ran our errands and went to lunch at our favorite little Chinese place. (Chinese was my absolute favorite thing when I was pregnant with Luxe. Chinese and Starburst. It was pancakes with Taegan. Pancakes and brownies. ) We were on our way back home when I had a very sudden, pretty intense pain. It crept up, peaked, and then ebbed off. I had experienced Braxton-Hicks from about week 23 with this pregnancy, so I had a little trouble believing that what I had just experienced was, in fact, the real thing. Until about 11 minutes later.
Still having some doubts, so I didn’t say anything. The farmer was already on high-alert and I didn’t want to send him into a panic needlessly.
Well, it happened again. Getting weird, so I said, “Um, you might keep your phone handy when you’re out feeding.”
Farmer: “Do we need to go now?”
Me: “I don’t think so. They’re kind of sporadic and I’m just not sure yet if I’m actually in labor.”
Farmer: “Well, how many have you had already??!!”
Me: “Three. I’ll keep timing them.”
The farmer had only been outside for about 30 minutes before I was calling him. It was time to go. When the pain started stopping me in my tracks, I knew that it was about to get real. I had my bag and was waiting at the door when he walked in.
We have a 1/4-mile of dirt road that leads to our house. It has potholes and rocks. Oh, that was not fun. I had my first bad contraction at the end and had to have him stop the car to get through it.
That’s when we both started to get really worried.
On a normal day, it takes us about an hour and 20 minutes to get to the hospital. There was a good possibility I might not make it. I didn’t want to be tomorrow’s headline:
LOCAL DAIRY FARMER DELIVERS HIS OWN BABY ON HIGHWAY 60
Could he have done it? Probably. Did I want him to? Absolutely not.
The farmer shaved about 25 minutes off and we arrived at the hospital. At this point, I had reached contractions timing 3-5 minutes. He dropped me off at the hospital entrance, but couldn’t leave the car parked there.
So, he raced off to find a parking spot while I made my way to the elevators. The way the hospital is set up is not good at all for a woman in labor. You have to walk. A lot. I stood there waiting for the elevator and walked on thankful that no one else was in it with me. I was in a lot of pain. I grabbed the railing on the way up to the 5th floor and crouched down. It was too hard to stand.
Once I reached the 5th floor, I had to walk a good distance to admit myself. It took me forever because I had to stop, grit my teeth, and gasp. I guess I was doing a pretty good job of hiding my condition, though, because nobody ever stopped to ask me if I was ok. I found out at the admittance desk that you must get a little callous when you work in labor and delivery.
They started handing me sheet after sheet of papers to sign. Meanwhile, I’m standing there white-knuckling the counter wondering where my husband is. Will he be able to find me? I want to push! I can’t sign this! Quit asking me questions! I can’t speak! Don’t push, Breauna! Finally, she handed me what seemed like the 25th document to sign and I said, “I can’t sign it. I can’t write. I’m hurting.Really. Bad.” I think she sensed the shooting daggers coming out of my eyes.Finally, she got on the phone and I heard her tell the person she was talking to to get a room ready and based on how I was appearing, she guessed I was at a 5 or 6. Guess again, lady!! I was at an 8! (And yet, I still had to walk to that room).
Meanwhile, my husband has finally found a parking spot and is sprinting into and through the hospital. I was in the bathroom supposed to be changing into my gown when I heard his voice in the room. Relief washed over me, but it didn’t make the pain subside. I couldn’t get my clothes off. There was no way this gown was going on. But, all of a sudden, I got stubborn and didn’t want assistance, either. I really just wanted to be alone. In the bathroom. In denial. It would have helped if I could have stood, but I had crouched again and couldn’t get up. The nurse kept knocking on the door saying, “Are you okay, honey?” Through gritted teeth, “Yes!” Nope, not okay, but I don’t want you in here. Leave me alone! About 30 seconds later, my husband, “Babe, you need help?”
Sorry, honey, I love you, but I don’t want you, either.
A few seconds later, the nurse is at the door. “You’re not pushing, are you?”
There’s a point when your body takes over and the need to push overrides your will. I had reached that point. But, I lied.
Apparently, she was unconvinced because the door opened and here she comes with the farmer. They pick me up by both arms out of my crouched position and she skillfully managed to get the gown on me while I remained totally belligerent.
“You are not having this baby in the bathroom,” she said. Her name was Starla. I won’t forget her. By the time it was all over, I adored her. I wasn’t really liking her at that point, though.
She starts ordering the other nurses to call the doctor and tell him to hurry. Meanwhile, I’m in tears because the nurse assigned to start an IV can’t get my veins to cooperate. She finally has to ask Starla to do it. She got it the first time all the while comforting me with a calm voice and sweet names.
They were still talking to me, asking me questions, trying to distract me, but I was starting to get delirious from the pain. I couldn’t think straight. One question rose to the front of my mind even though I already knew the answer. I looked at Nurse Starla and said, “I’m not getting an epidural…am I?”
She gave me a sad face and said, “No, but, honey, you’re here. You’re at the worst. It doesn’t get worse than this.” (Um, I’m pretty sure it did…)
The doctor arrived and it was time to push. That’s when I got to feel what God really intended for a woman to feel when bringing a baby into the world. And not by choice, mind you. If I had been standing, I could have ransacked that room. I wanted to punch walls. Knock things over. Swipe all the metal trays to the ground just to hear them clang and bang. And scream. Oh, how I wanted to scream. The pain raged and so did I.
All the while, Nurse Starla and the farmer stood on either side of me, grasping my hands and encouraging me to keep pushing.
Seven or eight pushes in, I met my daughter. I remember the doctor holding her up and I marveled at how long and bald she was. Taegan had been very compact at 7 lbs. 7 oz, 19 ¾ inches with a head full of jet- black hair. Luxe was 7 lbs. 2 oz. and 21 inches. A hairless little stringbean compared to her sister. Their faces, though, were almost identical.When all was said and done, Luxe arrived 35 minutes after I walked into the hospital. Total labor time: 3 ½ hours. I barely made it. They say your second time is faster than your first. I thought, “Well, then I have plenty of time. Taegan took me 17 hours, so even if Luxe takes half that, I’ll still have plenty of time.” Pppfff!! She showed me! She made me wait awhile, but then came like a freight train! I guess it gets faster the more kids you have. The doctor told me to pitch a tent in the parking lot next time. I said, “Ha! There won’t be a next time.”
Taegan arrived with Grammy later and the farmer brought her to our room by herself. We wanted her to meet Luxe with just the 4 of us in there. She had picked out a little pink turtle named Jewel to give to her baby sister a few weeks before. And I had gotten Taegan a gift “from Luxe,” as well. They exchanged their little gifts and my heart swelled to see Taegan immediately adopt Luxe as hers. Taegan’s unspeakable love for her baby sister was tangible. She got a little teary-eyed, but didn’t really know how to articulate why. She didn’t need to. We all knew.
As I parent, I always love my child. But, there are days when I fall in love with her all over again or I feel so much love that I think I could burst. That day was one of those days. Watching my firstborn fall hopelessly in love with her sister.
Our hospital stay was uneventful. Everybody was healthy and doing great. We did give the nurses a good laugh on the second night when they walked in to find the farmer in the hospital bed with Luxe on his chest and me on the couch. I hated that bed, so he traded me.
The next day, we left the hospital and drove home hopeful, optimistic, and somewhat nervous about going from 3 to Krider: Family of Four.
Thank again to Shauna at Olivia Andrew Photography for her patience and kindness. Luxe cried the majority of the session and soiled many blankets, but she still managed to capture how perfectly precious she is.
And I would be remiss to not mention the saint of a man my husband is. From fixing meals to bathing Taegan to spending hours at the lactation consultant’s with me (Breastfeeding is HARD at first) to just letting me cry on his shoulder and telling me how wonderful he thinks I am. I couldn’t possibly have done it without him and can’t imagine anyone else to have been more helpful.