Adalyn looks JUST like her Daddy.
These past three (almost four) weeks have been such a blur, but they have been three of the best weeks of our lives. We look at Adalyn every day and can't believe that she is ours. She is amazing and we are so in love with her. When I look at her I wonder how people don't believe in God. She is such a miracle!
For my first post after Adalyn, I thought her birth story would be appropriate. It's a fun one!
The week of Easter, Nick was leading a revival at a church in Millegeville, GA, two hours away. I had been having Braxton Hicks contractions for several weeks, but the Wednesday he was gone was the first day that I had them 4 times in an hour. If Nick had been home, I wouldn't have given them a second thought, but we needed to know how likely it was for those contractions to turn into real labor, so that he could come home if he needed to. Fortuantely, I already had a doctor's appointment scheduled for that afternoon, so I went in and was monitored and checked. I was 2 1/2 cm. dilated and 70% effaced. I was SO surprised. The doctor sent me to the hosipital for further monitoring and said that the daddy better find someone to drive him home. We decided to wait and see what they said at the hospital before he rushed home since we've heard stories of people being 2 1/2 cm dilated for weeks. My wonderful sister-in-law, Sarah, met me at the hospital so that I wouldn't be alone and I could not have gone through that without her. I was calm until they put me in the delivery room. It was so surreal. I just knew that I would be holding my baby that night. I was checked again and was 3 cm. dilated and 80% effaced. The midwife sent me home to pack, eat and shower and said that I could prove her wrong, but she thought I would be back that night. Knowing that there was a chance that the night would be uneventful, I convinced Nick to remain on stand-by, but not to rush home.
Sarah and I went home and I continued having contractions, but none that were timeable. I was anxious for Adalyn to be here, but it was a blessing that she didn't come that night. That was the night of the horrible torandoes in our area and we wouldn't have been able to get to the hospital if I had gone into labor.
That Saturday, on my birthday, my mom drove up from Arkansas to wait with us. Another week went by with no signs of REAL labor, only a few false alarms. I tried everything to induce labor, because emotionally and mentally, I was exhausted. Even though my due date was still days away, I felt 90 months pregnant just because of that one hospital visit. It's hard when you mentally prepare yourself for something THAT big, thinking that your life could change any moment only for nothing to happen. The Akins had a big concert on May 6th and we were all praying the baby would stay put until after it was over. The concert had been advertised on the radio, so it would have been hard to cancel.
It was either an answer to prayer or the BLT and waffle I had for dinner that did it because Addy waited for the concert to be over! At 4 AM I was woken up from a dream with my first painful contraction. I looked at the clock and waited and another one came at 4:15. Everyone told me that when it was the real thing, I would know. Well, I knew! I woke Nick up who, bless his heart, had only been asleep for 2 hours, not imagining that Addy would be here that night (or day, however you look at it). At 4:30, I had another contraction, so we woke up my mom and called the midwife to let her know that we would probably be in soon. At 5:00, Nick called his parents.
I had read and heard that when real labor hits, contractions start at 20 minutes apart and gradually get closer together and intensify, so I didn't think that there was any real hurry... plus, I had always said that I wanted to stay home for as long as possible. We weren't taking our time, but we weren't rushing either. At 5:00, my contractions started coming 10 minutes apart and I put on my make-up and straightened my hair between each one. I guess I was in denial a little AND I wanted to look picture perfect for the hospital, not thinking about how it would all be off by the time we got there.
Between 5:00-5:30, the contractions had me hunching over in pain, so I was ready to go. Everyone says that the car ride makes the contractions hurt 10x worse and they are right! On the way to the hospital they were coming 5 minutes apart. Since it was 6 AM we had to go in the hospital through the emergency room. I was begging the man pushing me in the wheelchair for drugs. I knew he couldn't do a thing about it, but I needed someone to know that I WANTED DRUGS! I felt like a big baby, because I had always said I would make it as long as I could without them just to see how it would go, and here I was begging for them less than 3 hours into labor. I felt much better about myself when I got to the room and found out that I was 7 cm. After what felt like an eternity, the incredible anethesiologist finally came in and gave me the good drugs. I was a different person. From that point on, I enjoyed labor and enjoyed being able to spend time with our family and even closed my eyes for a few minutes. It was the BEST feeling when Nick would look at me and ask "Did you just feel that? You had a HUGE contraction!" and I could smile and say I didn't feel a thing. At 11:00 AM the midwife came in to break my water only to find that it had somehow already broken, even though no one knew when. She said I was 10 cm dilated and 100% effaced, so it was time to start doing some practice pushes. Pushing is always portrayed as some dramatic AND traumatic event, and it was nothing like that. Between pushes during the first hour, Nick and I and the nurses and midwife were laughing and talking, even about movies we had just seen. After two hours, things got serious. It never hurt (except for one hot spot I had where the epidural didn't take effect) but it was exhausting. Adalyn's head would not come out from under my pubic bone and every push was like taking one step forward and two steps backwards. My midwife said that we needed the doctor to come in because we were going to need the vaccuum. That word alone was enough motivation for me to get her out! I worked harder than ever and luckily, the vaccuum wasn't necessary but an episiotomy was. I had always sworn to throat punch anyone who threatened to come near my area with a scalpel, but the midwife explained that it was for the baby's own good. Her heart rate was dropping because she was tired, so we needed to speed things up to get her out of there. I didn't feel a thing (thank you epidural and local antisthetics!!!) and before I knew it, my baby was out! After pushing for three hours, Adalyn was finally here. The first thing I noticed were her chubby cheeks and her headful of hair. She was perfect. Then I looked over at Nick to see him crying. It was the most beautiful moment ever. They put her on my chest and after talking to her for 5 minutes, I remembered to ask, "she is a girl, right?" Nick and I had a joke about what would happen if she came out a he. Adalyn Faith Akin was born on May 7, 2011 at 1:43 PM weighing 7 lbs. 15 oz and was 21 1/2 inches long. She's the most beautiful baby ever born and melts our hearts every time we look at her.