She's here! { Ava's birth story }

September 5, 2013

Four days old. Quite possibly the most wonderful Monday morning of my life waking up to this!

You've probably guessed by now that our little bundle finally arrived! Ava (or "Bean" as we affectionately call her since she looks just like one when all swaddled up) joined us Friday, August 16th at 8:17am safe and sound and perfect in every way. Words can't express the overwhelming love in my heart for this little being. I always suspected that parenthood felt something like this, but you just truly can't imagine it until it's real. Although the last couple of weeks have been challenging in many ways, I already understand what an amazing life-altering decision we made when we said it was time to grow our family.

 With Daddy on a lazy morning during our first week of life.

For those of you interested, Ava's (somewhat wordy) birth story:

First let me say that I could write an entire post on my frustration in the last couple weeks of pregnancy. I was definitely blessed with a smooth experience overall (except for heartburn and the inability to sleep, like, ever), but I truly believed that I would go early (yes, I know most first time moms go late) and I was deathly afraid of being induced. There were literally tears the day we scheduled our induction. I wanted everything to happen as naturally as possible, and in my head -- whether warranted or not -- induction made things ripe for complication. Fear is an obnoxiously powerful emotion.

I could easily dedicate another post to all of the wives tales on natural induction. Jokes, people. Jokes. Baby comes when and only when baby is ready. Period. Thursday night I went on my thousandth loooooooooong walk with a very supportive friend, I cleaned bathrooms, ate pineapple and I cussed like a stranded sailor. I think Eric was convinced our baby would come out yelling four letter words.

Per usual, I went to bed unhappy and ungrateful. Surrious attitude problem given the blessings of a healthy baby on the way and three thousand months of mild pregnancy. That was around 11:15pm.

A few minutes after midnight, that was me you heard yelling, "My water just broke!" as I shot straight up in bed. Naturally, I decided to take a leisurely shower while Eric called our doctor, who was on call as luck would have it. Then we thought it best to finally pack our bags (What week do they tell you to do that? 32?), grabbed some snacks for me to inhale since you're only allowed ice chips during labor and headed to the hospital. I couldn't really feel any contractions for the first 20 minutes after my water broke. Once they started, though relatively mild, they were only 1.5-2 minutes apart. To my delight dismay, within an hour they were more or less right on top of each other and were a teeeeeeny bit more than mild (sarcasm). By the time my mom arrived two hours later, Eric met her at the door with, "Don't try to talk to her and definitely don't touch her."

Quite the bundle of fun, this girl.

My intentions for a natural labor were fading fast. I'd been 3cm dilated at my doctor's appointment two days prior and was now only at 4cm three and a half unfriendly hours into the big event. My body had little to no opportunity to relax with the contractions being so close together and I was exhausted. Not to mention a bit hangry. Unfortunately, you just can't know what to plan for when it comes to pregnancy and labor. That part of the whole process made me crazy...not to mention crazy nervous. Would the discomfort get even more intense? Could I make it another three hours? Four? Seven? Twelve??? I decided no. Cue anesthesiologist....who arrived another 30 minutes later. By this point, I'm thinking of all the strong women that endured natural labor (specifically my own mom, who labored with me for 21 hours!) and feeling extreme guilt for not being strong enough to tough it out.

Pretty sure those delivery room nurses take bets on how long people will last.

It was a huge relief for Eric when I opted for the epi. He was so extremely supportive of my intention to go natural, but I know it hurt him to see me uncomfortable. Plus, you know, hangry women in pain are no joke.

Twenty minutes after the epi was administered, I could barely tell when I was contracting. The pain literally disappeared. I could relax!!! And you know what? The nurse checked an hour later and I was fully dilated. That's all it took. (Not that I'm advocating for or against natural birth. All of our bodies are different!) My dad arrived shortly after and we all just waited for little Ava Bean to make her way down on her own. It was really a special morning having my husband and my parents in the room, talking and joking, watching the sun come up, and anticipating the arrival of the most beautiful human I've ever laid eyes on. By 7:45am the doctor declared that we were ready to start pushing, which I did like a CHAMP because I was so ready to meet our baby. Thirty short minutes later, Eric declared that it was a girl and she was in my arms (and already feeding!! Hooray!!).

I'm sobbing while I type this, remembering the emotions as we saw her for the first time. Her perfect little round face, tired eyes, head of hair (holy hair! The heartburn wives tale might be true). I pray that the memory of that moment will never, ever fade.

A typical mid-afternoon around here. There's a rule about mommies sleeping when babies sleep, you know!

I'm still working hard to figure this whole parenting thing out, so posts may be spotty for the next few weeks, but I am eager to get back to it. For those of you that are new to BIA, welcome! Promise to try to keep the baby talk and photos to a minimum. (Though I can't promise the same for IG and Facebook followers. Those baby photo forces are hard to resist!)

Now off to change my millionth diaper.... ox

25 comments:

Tiffany @ Savor Home said...

Just the most precious story that brought a bright spot to the middle of the longest workday EVER for me. She is beautiful and I just know that you are going to be the best mom - and super fun one!

Becca - Rebecca Atwood Designs said...

SO happy for you guys! Ava is adorable.

crabigail said...

Congratulations! I, too, went on thinking I'd have a natural birth and changed my mind after some hellish contractions! You are not alone! Enjoy this time, it all changes so fast.

InteriorGroupie said...

Congratulations!! Your baby post is so nice to read - I am due on sept 26 so time is ticking... :) glad to hear things went well for you two and you are all madly in love!

erin williamson said...

Awww, congratulations! I love reading baby stories, as they so remind me of my own. You done good, girl. She's gawjus!

My Interior Life said...

Yay!! Congratulations, Tobe!!! I've been waiting for the news. Birth stories are all so different and not a one is boring. Trust me, you won't forget that feeling of the first sight of her ever. Ava Bean is beautiful, and I know you are beyond excited to be a new mom (and of course a wee bit tired). Love to you all!

xo
Kathy

Albertina M. Cisneros said...

SUch beautiful shots and she is beautiful!! I'm glad you got the epi. Your story sounds similar to mine...except I always knew I wanted that epi...there is no need to go through all that terrible pain. Things will be tough the first month and any insecurities you have will be magnified as a new-mom....at least with me...just trust your gut, take any help that is offered (ie grandparents), sleep when you can, and enjoy the moment....remember and you will actually really get this now...the days are long but the months are short. Congrats and all the best to you and your beautiful family!

Morgan said...

Love reading your whole birth story and you are going to be so glad you wrote this all down :)
Sounds like our labors started off in much the same way--when your water breaks, man, those contractions get bad really fast!!
Congratulations again on your beautiful little bean, I cannot wait to meet her!!!

A Perfect Gray said...

so, so happy for you. I remember those wonderful, dreamy first days.
enjoy every one.

all my best to you three, donna

victoria | vmac+cheese said...

Ohhhh how I loved reading this. So happy for you guys. I can't wait to meet her!! Hope you're doing okay too and hanging in there.

bec said...

so beautiful...so awesome....well done...enjoy your precious little bub...
Bec x

Natalie {Designer Bags and Dirty Diapers} said...

So happy for you and I love hearing peoples birth stories. They are so special. You will never forget it. I was such a bitch before I got the epidural I am not kidding my dad was trying to nap in my room and snored and I was like get him the hell out of here. I kicked him out! I turned into devil woman. The epidural helps so much but like you I had wanted to try not and have it. Ava is gorgeous. The first few months are so hard but enjoy them too because they are only little and cuddly for such a short time!!

(Eileen) a creative day said...

Such a beautiful story I totally teared up! I mean she is GORGEOUS. Congrats mama!

jacquelyn | lark+linen said...

AAAAND I am now a sobbing mess. I am just so proud of you! Look what you did!

Unknown said...

Loved reading this my friend. You guys are one beautiful family. XO

Maggie Jones said...

Wow, what a story! Thanks for sharing, and congratulations!

alison g. said...

Hi Tobe,
Congratulations on your sweet bean! First-time commenting, but followed your precious pics to the blog. I have a 10 week-old, so I totally get the constant urge to snap away. It doesn't change whether it's your first or fourth.
Best wishes to your lovely family!
alison g.
alison giese Interiors

KL eternalicons said...

Congratulations to you both on the safe arrival of your beautiful bub. How a baby comes into this world is irrelevant, as long as they arrive safely and to lots of love...I too needed epidural assisted births after induction and very long labours, one involving the deliberate breaking of my cocsic. All forgot when those babies were in my arms! Enjoy these wonderful first months..... X kl

Kimberly Hughes said...

Couldn't be happier for your little family and snap away, she's absolutely beautiful! xxx

Jessie | The Design Daredevil said...

SO HAPPY FOR YOU TOBY! I've loved looking at your Insta pics, keep em comin. She's absolutely lovely and you are a beautiful Mama. XO

Nancy {at} powellbrower at home said...

So glad for Ava's safe arrival and soon you will forget all the pain and drama of the birth..Everything from this point forward makes the bad memories go away! She is beautiful and so are you!
xo Nancy

Nicole Michelle Centers said...

Congrats on the new addition to your family!

Nicole
www.eleganceandclutter.com

Alecia said...

congrats! congrats! She is beautiful and perfect. Go get some rest :)

xx Alecia likesof.us

Linh Nguyen said...

Congrats on your bundle of joy! OMG - You are going to love motherhood. My baby is turning 6 months tomorrow and time has really flown by. Take in every moment and take lots of pictures! She is going to change right before your eyes :) Glad to be back in the blogging world and see you are still doing so wonderful!
xoxo
Linh
http://foreverdarlinh.blogspot.com

lindsay {stets} said...

she is so sweet! <3 love your post; definitely starting to feel a bit more anxious these days as i near the third trimester! congratulations and you take all the time you can to soak up those precious moments! xx

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