Audra's birth story, Part 5

If you need to catch up:
Audra's birth story, Part 1- Where Stacy's Water Breaks
Audra's birth story, Part 2- In Which We Go to the Hospital
Audra's birth story, Part 3- In Which Stacy Rambles on about the Hospital
Audra's birth story, Part 4- In Which Stacy is REALLY Feeling those Contractions

And here's the final installment.


So I'm a 9.

The on-duty hospital doctor comes in after I tell one of the nurses that I feel a slight urge to push. By the time he gets there and gets all suited up and seated, I'm not really feeling the urge to push so much anymore, but I'm still in that bring-it-on/let's-get-this-baby-born stage so I ask him, "Can I go ahead and push even if I don't feel the urge to push?" He says yes.

At some point I'm aware that they've called the on-call doctor that's supposed to deliver our baby by now, and he's "on his way".

I try pushing, which doesn't come so easily when you're not feeling the urge to push, I discovered. I was like, "When? When do I push? Tell me when. What do I do?"

All I remember is that he said I was still a 9, and there was a slight "lip", "rim"-- I forget which term he used-- of my cervix left and we needed to get up and over that, or "around the corner".


So I'm there, trying to "get around the corner", when another nurse appears in the doorway telling On-Duty Doctor, "Room 19 is ready for you." I gather from this that there's a woman laboring in Room 19 who needed the doctor seated between my legs. He's looking a tad flustered, being the only On-Duty Doctor. He says, bless his heart, "That woman has had an epidural. This woman hasn't. Tell her to blow."

So that woman blows while I try to push, but really- things aren't happening so much in our room. He's still there with me, coaching me in the pushing department, but I don't think I'm quite ready for the pushing-this-baby-out stage. Nurse enters again, reminding doctor that Room 19 is ready. He says, "How ready?" She picks up her ringing cell phone and says, "NOW." He watches me for a split second, and then makes a quick decision to go to Room 19. Tears off his scrubs and gloves and rushes out. At that moment I was thinking he'd made a smart decision. That woman was ready, I was almost ready but not quite there.

But then, pretty much right after he exits our room, I am suddenly as that woman in Room 19: REALLY feeling the urge to push. Like yelling and screaming and bearing up to push.

I remember hearing this unfamiliar voice saying, "Just pant like a puppy. Pant like a puppy." (Okay, so there were 3 times of Annoyance. This was #3). And I literally asked, "Is she talking to me?" Apparently some nurse had taken up residence in the seat between my legs that the doctor had just vacated, and was trying to tell me to blow, now. I think I may have obliged for about 3 seconds, just to be nice and obedient, you know, and then decided that wasn't going to work, and kept right on with what my body was telling me to do.

Thankfully, On-Call Doctor arrived right about then. He saunters in and asks the nurses, "Do I have time to change?" They all say NO (and I imagine them glaring at him, too), and so he suits up and takes his seat.

Things are a little blurry in my mind from here on out, honestly. Mark, Amy or my mom could do a whole lot better telling you this part, but I'll do my best (you guys can fill in details in the comments if I miss something.)

I'm pushing, and trying to breathe, and wanting water and a cool rag, still. And everyone is so involved in what's going on down there that no one is telling me what's going on anymore. I want to know if I'm now a 10? Did we make it around that corner? Do we see the baby's head? What's happening now? So I ask, "Do you see the baby's head?" And he says, "Yes. Do you want to feel it?" I do, so he guides my hand to the baby's head (which I really can't tell from anything else down there, but I believe him that that is the baby's head, yes, and that makes me happy to know it's down there, ready to come out.)

I'm pushing, and saying things like, "I don't remember this part being so hard. I usually LOVE pushing." The doctor asks me if I want some numbing stuff down there to help with the pain. I don't know if I do. I think to myself that I'd like someone (Mark? Anyone?) to tell me if I should have that or not. No one pipes up, so I tell the doctor that I'll wait. And then I push a few more times and tell him "YES I DO WANT THAT NUMBING STUFF NOW. WHERE'S THE NUMBING STUFF?"

Then I hear the nurse tell the doctor "83" or "84" or something, and I am dimly aware that it's the baby's heart rate she's referring to. He tells me to stop pushing. I don't remember stopping. I vaguely remember him telling me that the cord is wrapped around the baby's neck, twice, and that he needs to cut a little "notch" (as he snip, snip, snip, snip, snips. Sure sounded like FIVE "notches" to me, but I'm just saying.) And then he, in a very calm sort of way, mentions that the last delivery he did in this room, the baby had the cord wrapped three times around the neck AND had a knot in the cord, too. Maybe he said that to help us all feel a little bit better about his expertise. It worked for me. I don't remember feeling alarmed. He pulled the baby's head out, unwrapped the cord -one, two times- [I saw later on the video that the baby's head was gray-blue, but I didn't see it at the time].

He told me to push.

Out came baby.

I heard baby cry after a few seconds and felt relieved.

I was crying.

I was looking to see if it was a boy or a girl. Mark leaned down and whispered, "You have a girl."

And they put our Audra into my arms and I noticed her little blue head and blue hands and feet and asked if she was okay. They assured me she was perfectly fine. The nurses vigorously wiped her down with towels.

I cried some more, and said things like, "Honey, we have another daughter!" in between more crying and saying things like, "Hi beautiful Audra. Mama is so happy to finally meet you. I'm so glad I have another daughter. I love you so much." in between more crying and saying things like, "I'm done. I'm done! I'm all done. I did it. I'm so glad it's over."

But then it wasn't over because I had to deliver the placenta and OW, that hurt. And the pressing on my stomach by all the nurses. OW. And please can we be all done with this?

But oh, the delight! of having our sweet baby Audra in my arms, Mark leaning over me. Bringing her to my breast, whereupon she latched on right away and began nursing like a champ.

And that's Audra's birth story, Parts 1 through 5. Thanks for living through it with me all over again.

And MUCH praise and thanks to God for a beautiful daughter.


  1. What a story: beautiful, amazing, tear-jerking! Much praise and thanks to God, indeed!

  2. Thank you for sharing! All 5 parts! :-) We are thankful for a healthy baby girl!

  3. It's so amazing to me how a picture says a thousand words. When I got to the pictures I started crying. The one of Mark holding her did me in.

    Rejoicing with you over this little life.

  4. Love it all. Thanks for sharing it Stacy - and good job remembering!

    My favorite picture is the one of Mark leaning over to give you a kiss. And the one of him holding Audra - the arms of an experienced Daddy, so much different than the tentative ones of a first-time father, huh?

  5. What a beautiful story thank your for sharing. You made me cry! I love the beauty and miracle of it all. I did not realize it was Amy that I know, What a blessing! I can't wait to meet her! Maybe family night.

  6. Oh I love your humor. I'm really getting it since I'll probably be having a baby tomorrow! I will remember you and your puppy panting ;) I love the picture of Mark holding Audra in just her little diaper and hat! Blessings!

  7. I just read the whole thing start to finish and loved every. single. detail! :)

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  9. I love that Dr.! Wow. Nice to see a little respect for the LACK of Drugs you had....(tell HER to blow)
    And the picture where Mark is right over your face and you're craning your neck to smile at him...Oh, the energy and joy, intamcy, relief!!
    Good Job, Stacy. Nice job doing what your body said!
    Yay for Audra!

  10. Stacy - I so loved reading all these installments! And I'm NOT crying at all right now. Nope, NOT ME. ;-)

  11. Thanks for sharing the whole story, Stacy--I loved every word! You have a gorgeous little girl and a wonderfully blessed family! And now I'm all giddy and nervous and excited for my next baby's arrival! (Which is not for a while yet... I'll have to come back and read this again in August!)

  12. Hi Stacy :) Thank you so much for wanting to share your story with us! For those of us who love you and your sweet, sweet family from far away, your words bring us a little closer.

    What a wonderful adventure! I loved the pics :)Love, Q

  13. I have enjoyed reading every single detail!! I, too, am a firm believer that those epideral needles are WAY too big, even though, our dear friend Michelle tried to persuade me to get one with Mollie. I refused, but I have to admit during some of the contractions and pushing I was wondering to myself why I didn't listen to my friend:)

  14. what an amazing birth story! You are a star Stacy!! Congratulations again.

  15. What a miracle...and what drama!

    Take joy in your tiny babe!


  16. And now she is here! And wonderful.
    Can't wait to love on that girl soon.

    Thanks for letting me be there!

  17. I'm teary eyed, because birth is absolutely beautiful, lovely, and everything wonderful. You did an amazing job, in retelling Audra's story and for going through all of that to bring another life into this world. I love what the doctor said as well. I love the pictures--your face upon meeting Audra is the definition of joy. Perfect middle name! Good job Mark!

  18. Oh Stacy! I loved reading the story of Audra's entrance into the world! Seriously, when my children are born, oh those are the days I want to remember for ever! Every little detail!

    Josiah had his cord around him twice and a knot! Sheesh!

    Welcome Baby Audra!!

  19. Beautiful birth story, Stacey! I loved EVERY single part! And what precious pictures. Enjoy your little Audra. She's beautiful!

  20. What fun to read all these details! And I cannot wait to hold that baby girl in my arms in a couple of weeks. ((You will let me hold her, right????))

    Didn't you know that you could ask for the teeny-tiny epidural needle that doesn't even hurt at all??? :)

    I am so proud of you!

    :) Michelle

  21. Stacy, thank you so much for sharing Audra's birth story. What a wonderful retelling.

    God bless you all.

  22. what a beautiful story
    i was curious as to how you chose
    the name Audra
    i love to hear the stories about names
    my name was chosen after my dad was served by a lady at a checkout counter at a supermarket whose name was Lauren
    thank you for sharing your story

  23. This has been the most amazing birth story I have ever heard!!!How you have managed to capture all the beautiful details amongst loving on your man and five (FIVE!!) kids is simply! Thank you for sharing. I have been blessed and am SO excited for you!!!

  24. YAY!!! What a great story. :) I cried at the "You have a girl" part. And I always just love photos taken right after birth...I love all that rich emotion. Praise God!!!


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