On February 25th our world completely changed.
Our sweet baby boy was born at 3:35 am, weighing in at 7 lbs and 9 oz.

As most of you already know, last Tuesday my doctor had told us that the baby could come at anytime.
At my 38 week appointment I was 3cm dilated and 70% effaced and my doctor said he’d be coming soon, possibly even within the next 24 hours.
So we had been anxiously awaiting his arrival for the past 4 nights!! Total torture lol
It was super scary because I really had no signs of labor, I couldn’t believe that I was already dilated.
I mean, I would get period like cramps and pelvic pressure every now and then but nothing super painful or uncomfortable! I was so afraid that I just wasn’t going to know when I was going into labor and that I’d end up having my baby in the car or something! Like, I’m not kidding this was seriously a HUGE fear of mine.

We woke up Saturday morning and everything was pretty normal, I had brunch plans with my two best friends and I remember driving to meet them and having SO much anxiety. That was the first time I had been alone since my doctor told me that I could go into labor super soon. I had the worst stomach ache and genuinely thought I might go into labor while at brunch because of the anxious feeling I had, I really thought it was the Lord preparing me and letting me know that it was about to happen. BUT once I made it to the restaurant my nerves went away! So I think it was just the scary feeling of being alone and not wanting it to happen when I was by myself.

After brunch I got home and we decided to go to a park near the house with Charley and get some walking in! I had been walking a ton the last two weeks to try and help move baby boy down and get things moving along. But I was pretty convinced he was going to show up after his due date even though the doctor said otherwise. Mainly because I hadn’t had any contractions or real signs of labor whatsoever!

There really wasn’t anything abnormal or exciting about our day until that evening.
Around 7 or 8 I started to feel a TON of pressure downstairs, and this was a kind of pressure that I wasn’t used too. I would occasionally feel pressure off and on the last few weeks but this was pretty constant and super uncomfortable. But of course pressure is just pressure and doesn’t necessarily mean you’re going into labor, so part of me thought it COULD mean labor was soon, but then another part of me kind of just dismissed it.

Our nights and schedules had been a little crazy since the doctor had told us baby could arrive at any time, we were pretty much on edge all week and SO anxious knowing that any moment could be THE moment.
We weren’t sleeping well and we weren’t eating well, and I was exhausted from nesting like a maniac constantly. On Saturday night once all the pressure subsided a bit I decided to vacuum and mop the entire house. lol I honestly can’t even tell you how many times I vacuumed that week, an unhealthy and unnecessary amount, that’s for sure!

We ended up crawling into bed around 11pm, and that’s when the story starts to get interesting.
I had been laying in bed for maybe about 5 minutes and all the sudden felt a very strong cramp like pain, and I immediately KNEW, this was different. I said “ouchhhh…” out loud.
and told Kyle, “I think I just had a contraction”. I stood up and told Kyle I was going to call my mom.
I started walking to our bathroom and as soon as I got to the sink I was already having another one.
I called my mom and was in tears because I was nervous. I told her I had two pretty painful “cramps” and she told me that we need to time them, but before she could even finish telling me I was already having another one. I was crying and scared at this point. Everything and everyone says to wait an hour and make sure your contractions are strong and consistent but I knew I couldn’t do that.
So Kyle and I decided we were going to go to the hospital, but we weren’t going to tell the rest of the family until we got there and knew for sure if it was the real deal.

Our hospital is about 40 minutes away and I always feared I’d go into labor during traffic hour or something, and I have also been so afraid of going to the hospital too early or when I wasn’t actually in labor and looking like an idiot. Even though I KNOW this happens literally all the time, I just didn’t want it to happen to me. So I told Kyle I was going to put a little makeup on and for us to maybe wait for 30 minutes just to see and then we could leave…
I had put on a little powder and the contractions were still coming every 4 minutes or less and getting stronger so I said “K, nope, we need to leave NOW”

We left our house to head to the hospital around 11:30pm,
the contractions started to get worse and closer together. They were about 2 minutes apart the entire ride to the hospital. They weren’t unbearable, but they were definitely painful and I had to hold onto something tight and take deep breaths through them. At this point we knew it was the real deal so Kyle went ahead and called his parents. We arrived to the hospital a little after midnight and they took me back to check me and see if I was actually in labor.
By the time we arrived to the hospital the contractions were extremely painful and about 1 minute apart.
I was 4.5 cm dilated when she first checked me, so they admitted me and got us into a room.
Once I was in a gown and in a room I got in the bed and was in SO much pain.
I couldn’t open my eyes, I just remember holding on SO tight to Kyle’s hand and the railing of the bed, and trying to breathe through each contraction, and then my body started making these moaning sounds trying to cope with the pain that I was feeling. At this point I was begging for an epidural and starting to panic because the pain was a lot worse than I ever imagined it being. I think I would’ve handled the pain better if the contractions wouldn’t have been SO close together, they were literally back to back and I just wasn’t getting a break whatsoever. My parents showed up not long after I got in the room and I couldn’t even greet them because I was just in survival mode at this point. I had one hand in Kyles, one holding on for dear life to the railing and my parents standing over me comforting me the best they could.

My eyes were closed my entire labor, so it all kind of feels completely surreal. Almost like an out of body experience. Every now and then I would open my eyes to try and focus on something in the room to help with the pain but that’s really the only time they were open. We had been there for about an hour and I had asked for an epidural about a million times it seemed like and it was taking SO long. My nurse checked me again and I had progressed to 7cm within 1 hour. This whole part of my labor is a bit of a blur because I was just in so much pain. But I remember the anesthesiologist coming in and them saying it was time for my epidural and I was SO relieved. They made everyone get out of the room and had me sit indian style on the bed. It took me a while to do that because my contractions were so strong and coming on so quickly.
I was always afraid of getting an epidural while I was pregnant, the needle, the being completely numb, just everything about it. Well, in that moment I had NO fear whatsoever and just wanted it ASAP.
Since I was in so much pain they gave me a spinal block which works immediately to help ease pain. Epidurals take about 30 minutes or so to kick in, so they gave me a spinal block and then did the epidural afterwards. Once it was done I laid down and Kyle and my parents came back in the room.
I finally felt some relief. I could breathe normally again, and it was incredible.
However, I could still feel the intense pressure of every contraction and would have to stop talking and breathe through them. I’ve always been told that once you get an epidural you’re literally on cloud 9 and completely numb, so I was really surprised/disappointed when I could still feel the terrible pressure of each contraction, but the anesthesiologists and all the nurses said that epidurals don’t take away the pressure, just the pain.
So I guess there ya have it.

Once I was out of some pain Kyles mom, sister and brother in law came in to see us.
I think it was about 30 minutes of them being in there (felt like 5) and all of the sudden I started to feel pain with the contractions again. I had a little clicker that was supposed to give me more pain relief every 8 minutes when I clicked it and I started pounding on it like a maniac but it wasn’t working.
Kyle made everyone leave the room except my mom and I started having to focus super hard on my breathing and moan through each contraction again. They were every minute like clockwork.

Kyle was absolutely amazing my entire labor, right by my side the entire time, letting me squeeze the crap out of his fingers and comforting me and supporting me and encouraging me every way he knew how.
Maybe another 30 minutes passed by and the contractions and pressure were unbearable again.
I all the sudden started to feel the need to push with each contraction so my mom ran to tell the nurse.
She came in to check me and I was 9.5cm dilated but she told me that I couldn’t push yet,
The doctor hadn’t arrived and if I push before I’m 10 cm dilated it could really damage my cervix.

This infuriated me because I truly had NO control over the urge to push, a contraction would come and my body would just completely take over and start pushing. It was just Kyle, my mom and me in the room and I knew I couldn’t wait any longer…another contraction came and I shouted “I’m pushingggggg, I can’t stop it I’M PUSHING” So my mom ran and got the nurse and before I knew it the room was full of people.
My doctor still hadn’t arrived so there was a doctor on call (who looked extremely nervous, Kyle says) and she told me that it would really be best if I could hold off on pushing for a few more minutes but if I absolutely need to push then it’s okay. Well, I absolutely NEEDED too.

They had me lay on my side to try and “ease” the pain and hold off pushing and then another contraction came and I was shouting “I’m pushing!!!!!” again. There was a loud POP and then a total explosion of water. Thank God I had blankets over me, otherwise I’m pretty sure that entire room of people would’ve been covered in my amniotic fluid. I specifically remember saying “my water just broke” but of course everyone around was extremely aware of that haha

Once my water broke they told me to lay on my back, scooted me down on the bed and it was really time to push. I’m not sure how many times I pushed but my doctor FINALLY arrived right as Hayes was crowning. He walked in and saw what was going on and was in complete shock. I had about 3 more contractions, Would take a deep breath in and then PUSH hard for 10 seconds holding my breath – I could feel his head slowly coming out while I was pushing but then go back in once I would need to take a breath again. There were SO many people around me cheering me on and encouraging me and I just remember with each contraction the urge to push was so incredibly overwhelming. By about my 3rd contraction his head was out and his body followed pretty easily afterwards, and then he was in my arms.
At 3:35AM my baby was in my arms.
A tiny, breathing, crying little human that Kyle and I made was laying on my chest and all of my pain was instantly gone.
I remember crying and saying “oh my gosh, oh my gosh, oh my gosh” over and over.
There are no words to even explain the emotions and RELIEF you feel once they lay your baby on your chest.

One thing I wasn’t really prepared for was delivering the placenta.
After they laid Hayes on my chest my doctor started pushing down super hard on my stomach to help get the placenta out. I tore, so he also stitched me up while Hayes and I were doing skin to skin.
I could feel each stitch go in and my legs never became numb the entire time.
I remember after Hayes and I did skin to skin and I nursed him, it was time for them to weigh him and everything, and I told my nurse I needed to pee and I could stand up perfectly fine.
So for some reason, my epidural didn’t fully take, and I felt A LOT more than I was hoping too.
But let me tell you, birthing a child is the most empowering thing you will EVER do.
I have never felt more proud of my body and more accomplished in my life.

After my nurse helped me use the restroom, I walked out to see Kyle holding Hayes.
Easily, the best moment of my entire life.

My heart immediately exploded and I couldn’t believe that any of this was real.
After about an hour my dad and the rest of the family that was there came in to see Hayes.
Then our family went home to get some rest and give us some time as a new family of three.
I remember all of the doctors and nurses freaking out and telling me that I literally just had the most perfect birth. That NO ONE, especially first time mamas, deliver a baby so quickly.
My doctor even told us that once they called him when I was 9cm dilated (around 3:00am)
that he wasn’t planning on showing up until around 10AM and figured I’d deliver around noon, because that’s how long labor typically takes for first time moms.
Which completely blows my mind because I truly can’t imagine going through everything I went through longer than I did…God bless all you mamas who have had super tough long labors. Y’all are absolutely incredible!!!

Kyle and I spent the rest of that morning in total shock, we just stared at Hayes and at each other and couldn’t believe what we just experienced together. Kyle watched pretty much the entire birth and couldn’t stop telling me how proud he was of me.

It’s crazy how much my love for Kyle has grown so much in just 4 days, He is SO good with Hayes, and has been SO helpful while my body recovers. Ugh, I’m crying right now with Hayes on my chest just thinking about how lucky we both are to have Kyle. He is the best daddy in the entire world and makes me want to be better and stronger for our little boy.
My world will never be the same, and gosh I’m so thankful for that.
We are all exhausted, but our hearts have never been so full.

Thank you Lord for this beautiful baby boy, thank you for loving us and giving us this precious gift even though we fail you every single day. We are so undeserving and so grateful that you’re trusting us with Hayes. Thank you for blessing me with such a supportive and loving husband. I pray that you will give me the strength and patience that I need to be the best wife and mama to Hayes.
Kyle and I constantly stare in awe at Hayes with so much love in our hearts,
and It’s crazy to think that you love all of us EVEN more.

(right after he was born)

(headed home from the hospital)

(two days old)

(three days old)

Mommy and Daddy love you more than you will ever know sweet boy.