January 8, 2014

Soren's Birthday

 We are a little over a week into our new life as a family of five with our first baby boy and I
a) still can't believe he's here and I'm no longer pregnant, and
b) can't seem to imagine life without him.  You mean we still only had 2 kids a few weeks ago?!  That seems so strange to me!

I'm so glad that he decided to come before all my siblings had to go back home after the holidays (I'm sad Joey and Jess missed him by just a few days).

Whereas with Lila I had a fast-and-furious labor after a night of some pre-labor contractions, with Soren I experienced over 2 days of on-and-off contractions that had me thinking multiple times, "Okay, it's the real thing this time!", only to have things die down and life return to normal.  Talk about a way to heighten the anticipation of having a baby!
On Monday night I woke up to a really strong contraction that I had a hard time relaxing through.  Then nothing.  Then another contraction 30 minutes later.  Then nothing.  Then another big one 20 minutes later.  Then nothing.
This pattern continued the rest of the night, keeping me awake but far enough apart that I couldn't call this "labor".
Luckily I had an appointment with my midwife, Tara Elrod, that morning at 10am and when I asked her to check my progress, I was shocked to hear her announce that I was 6cm dilated and definitely in labor.
She sent me on my way to our "birth-place", the home of one of her colleagues (and a friend of ours) who was out of town and had offered her home to us for Soren's birth.  Thank you Rebecca! :)

 The very last "belly picture".

 Within an hour my midwives, my mom, and Garrett were all there and getting set-up to have this baby boy, but my contractions--though strong--remained 15-20 minutes apart for the next 4 hours.  When I finally voiced my frustration over not having progressed, sweet Tara explained that I had really been dilated to 7cm in her office but she didn't want to tell me that and have me panic or feel the need to rush.  She reassured me that it wouldn't be long and that wasn't it nice that I had come so far without having to be in hard labor (yes, it was!).  Within a few minutes my contractions suddenly sped up to every 3-5 minutes and I decided to get in the tub.
Garrett "helping" me through a contraction, although it looks like he's laughing at me.  I may have been saying something awesomely weird.  Somehow labor has that effect on me.

The water was really great, but within two hours into the more active and frequent contractions I began repeating the classic "I can't do this anymore" pleas.  I got out of the water and onto the bed where Tara offered to break my water to speed up the delivery.  My mind thought I had been in labor for like 15 hours or something, so she had me at "speed up the delivery". :)
Within 20 minutes (that seemed more like 200 at the time), Soren was here!
Garrett guided him down to the bed and then slid him up to where I could scoop him up into my arms.

 Completely shocked and what my body had just done and so happy to be holding my baby boy.

Soren's delivery was followed by a lot of bleeding on my part and a partially-retained placenta--super painful but luckily I had an awesome team (midwives Tara, Tish, and Tara's husband--who also happens to be an OBGYN) there to handle everything quickly and calmly.

While I was being taken care of, Daddy loved on his new baby boy.

Overall it was a pretty perfect experience--healthy baby boy, pretty smooth delivery, and surrounded by family and a great team of providers.
Thank you, Integrated Women's Wellness!  We sure do love you guys. (And I'm super bummed that I didn't get one picture with any of you?!)  You can probably expect to see me coming back to your office in a few years. ;)

After getting all cleaned up, Daddy checked Soren out and gave him his first adjustment.  Lucky baby boy!

Soren is lucky to share a birthday with his very proud Grandpa Willardson.

Grandma Willardson and Auntie Katie were also there for the birth.

Soren Money Christensen
December 31, 2013
8 pounds 5 ounces
21 inches

(Soren--a family name from both sides of our Danish ancestries.
Money--Garrett's paternal grandmother's maiden name.  Grandma Phyllis Christensen means so much to our family, we wanted to honor her by naming our son after her.)  

With Daddy's tiny ears,

and webbed toes, :)

he is absolutely perfect.
Welcome to the world, precious boy.


Taffy and Tony said...

Awesome! I'm so happy for you--a home birth and a boy?!? Wishin' I lived near a midwife/OBGYN couple. I would love to do a home birth. But even with the right help, I'm pretty sure my husband would never go for it. Anyway, thanks for sharing. I love birth stories. :)

Tanaya Larsen said...

He is just so cute. Thank you for your story. Though it seemed long, you wrote it with a more positive attitude than I would have had at this point. You look gorgeous in the picture with Garret and Soren, having just gone through birth or not. Congrats!

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