Wednesday, August 15, 2012

The Birth Story....

Now that Kaser is a week old, I have finally found time to sit down and write about the birth! We praise God and celebrate this new little life He has blessed us with. Each pregnancy is such a blessing that we do not take for granted. In the last 10 years we have had 11 pregnancies. Five of those pregnancies have resulted in our womb ushering a soul directly into heaven (two being back-to-back prior to child #5) and six of those pregnancies the Lord has seen fit to bless us with the opportunity to parent on this side of eternity.  We praise Him both for the good and the bad. We miscarried just prior to getting pregnant with Kaser, and the Lord used that experience to really speak to us about the preciousness of life. The Spirit enabled me to carry out what James tells us to do: Count it all joy when you face trials of various kinds.... Rather than feeling sorry for myself, I surrendered to God's will and used the experience to strengthen my faith knowing that I was becoming more like the image of Christ by not parenting that child than I would have by parenting him/her. That being said, God in His sovereignty opened up our womb shortly thereafter and Kaser's life began.

We found out almost immediately (at 13 weeks) that we were having a boy. I had a sonogram at the Pregnancy Center and yes, at that point in gestation it was pretty obvious...  I was blessed by PSC to have 3 sonos in those first weeks, what a wonderful thing to see his little heart beating when he was too small to physically feel moving around. It gave me great comfort!

The rest of the pregnancy was quite normal and uneventful. Finally on child #6 I got a little more assertive about what I wanted the birth experience to be like. I told my OB that I would like to wear my own clothes (not that horrid hospital gown), I didn't want to be hooked up to an IV, I didn't want a bunch of cords monitoring me because I wanted to be more mobile during labor.  He was very accommodating: my clothes would be fine, he was good with a hep lock IV, he wanted continuous monitoring but they had a cordless monitor we would use... then he said: "I know how you are anyway, you will come in dilated to an 8 and have the baby in minutes..."  Oh yea, did I forget to mention that i wanted to deliver my own baby??????  Guess I forgot to ask him about that point...

I typically deliver at around 37-38 weeks, and true to form, at 37 weeks I started to have strong, regular contractions with a little bleeding. Normally, I would have gone in and they would have broke my water and we would have had a July baby.  But my husband was fairly under the weather battling some weird sickness (possibly from a tick bite since it was responsive to doxycycline) and I didn't want him to feel bad during the birth. So my thoughts were to labor at home possibly overnight and head to the hospital in the morning.  I had regular, strong (but not necessarily painful) contractions all night, but when I got up in the morning they went away.

It was another week before the contractions fell into a regular pattern again. On Tuesday, August 7th, my husband went back west (an hour away) to get some things done with water wells and cattle. (I have figured out the secret to starting labor... forget castor oil, just send my husband an hour away and it is sure to put me into true labor. With child number 5, my neighbor had to drive me to the hospital because Byron was an hour away. He did make it back for number five's birth, though.) Anyway, at about 5 pm I began having contractions. They were strong, regular, but not painful. I called Byron and told him that he might think about heading back, although I did not want to cry "wolf". After about 30 minutes they stopped. Then Kaser kicked and my water broke. I called Byron again, he was about 20 minutes away. I was not having contractions, but I was a bit scared to move around for fear of getting them started up. At this point, I was also really praying for strength for labor as well as for the baby to wait just a bit before being born. I do not take pain meds during labor but for whatever reason, I had been feeling really scared of the whole upcoming process of birth. I know I had people praying for me, but I was still not feeling as capable this time around.

Anyway, as I waited for Byron to arrive, I called the hospital and told them we would be coming in, but it would be close to an hour since my husband wasn't home and we were a 30 minute drive from there. My neighbor came over to stay with the kids until my mom came (she was an hour out too). When Byron got home, we grabbed the few last minute things that the kids hadn't already loaded in the car and were on our way.  Once we got going on our little dirt road, the contractions started to kick in and this time, they were painful. Let me tell you, laboring in a car isn't ideal, but it is better than being on your back in a hospital bed tied up with IV's and monitors.  I'm not sure at what point I came to realize that we weren't going to make it to the hospital. I recall looking at the speedometer and seeing that Byron was driving 90mph. I remember Byron calling the hospital informing them that we probably weren't going to make it in time. The lady told him to come as fast as he could, the cops were very accommodating and would likely escort us if it came to that.... I remember Byron reminding me to get a focal point. I looked up and saw an overpass and thought by the time we get there, this contraction will be over. I don't recall reaching the overpass because at that point it became clear to me that this baby was going to come... now. I debated about whether to take my shorts off yet, (how embarrassing that would be if he really WEREN'T coming). By the next contraction, there was no debating going on... he was coming.  I delivered our 7# 20" son at about 6:30pm, no more than 15 minutes after the painful contractions began (and about 45 minutes after my water broke). Everyone has asked if Byron delivered him... no, Byron was driving. He pulled over shortly after he was born. Byron had called 911 somewhere in the midst of all the excitement and the paramedics met us within a few minutes of pulling over.

It all happened so fast and seemed so surreal. After he was born, I remember thinking that I didn't even check if it was a boy or not. So I took a peek: yep, it's a boy!  Is he breathing? Yep, he's breathing. Now what do I do?????? Why weren't we taking pictures at this point????

The paramedics arrived and cut the cord. They assessed both of us and couldn't believe that Byron and I were so calm. (Well, even though it is our first "car" birth, it IS our 6th child and being veterinarians, it isn't like we haven't seen/experienced worse things...) So, yes, we were calm, cool, and collected. They transported Kaser and I in the ambulance to the hospital and Byron followed in the car. It was probably about 7 or shortly thereafter when we got there.
Look at that bruised face? Guess that happens when they come fast.

At least he didn't have a cone head!
At the hospital, they did all of the routine newborn checks. They kept asking me if I wanted pain meds (this line of questioning continued throughout my 24 hour stay at the hospital). OK, I just delivered my own child... without pain meds, mind you. Do you think that I need an ibuprophen?

All in all, the Lord was faithful! Remember how I was feeling anxious about the "labor" part? Well, it all happened so fast, I didn't have time to focus on any weakness I was feeling. This was my favorite labor and delivery and I loved the absence of medical poking and prodding. In 15 minutes the pain came and went and it was over. That's the way to do labor! He was a much easier and less painful delivery than number 5 was even though he was more than a pound bigger.

The whole gang!

Kaser catching some sun while we were hanging up a deer feeder for hunting season.

Look what Great Grammy and Papa Floyd sent us... YUMMY!!!!!
Now that we are all home and settled in, life is returning to the new normal. School has resumed, chores have resumed, and even though we haven't quite settled into the routine I would like yet, each day is a blessing and the Lord grants us new mercies each morning. I have lots of wonderful "helpers" and so many wonderful friends who have provided meals for us. We have truly been blessed.


  1. Thank you so much for sharing your story. What an adventure for you and Byron! So glad he is doing well. Your family looks so happy!

  2. Nicole you really are just amazing. Thank you for sharing this with us and I'm so glad everything was okay. I loved reading your story and seeing all the pictures! It really is such a blessing to know you and your family and even though we don't see each other much anymore I am always thinking of you. I can't wait to see this new baby!

  3. Finally got back and read your blog!!! Yeah....Can't wait to see you guys Sunday!!!Hugs--V