Miller’s Birth Story

*Sorry there are so many photos! The first set is in order as they were taken and the second set are all done on film* We didn’t end up doing a ‘first 48’ session. I wanted the photos I had from the hospital to be raw and real. We took family photos together when we shot her newborn pictures.

the miller affect birth story

Miller was born on 11/7/18. She weighed 7 lbs 13oz and measured in at 19.25in.

Her story starts on 11/5. I had my 40 week appt with my OB and I asked her to go ahead and strip my membranes. I heard this helped bring on contractions, which I needed since I still was only dilated to a 1-2. It really wasn’t painful at all.

I started having contractions almost immediately, but there were spaced out and not strong enough to be actual labor.

Later that day my sister and I went on a walk around my neighborhood. I felt a gush of fluid come out and stopped walking. It didn’t run down my leg so I was so confused. In the movies the water always rushed down your leg. I told my sister I would check it out once we were done with our walk. When we got home I looked and it turns out I had lost my mucous plug. It was very bloody and so gross! A thick glob of bloody mucus. I immediately went to Google and learned that it meant labor could be imminent (or days away)… gee thanks Google.

After our walk, my sister and I went for massages to try to bring on even more contractions. I got a 30 min foot massage and a 30 min head, neck, and shoulder massage. It was amazing.

I continued to feel more gushes and decided to call my dr that night. The dr on call (my OB’s partner) told me to go ahead and go into the hospital to check to see if my water had broken.

Troy and I packed everything up and went in around 8pm. After a few hours we learned my water had not broken anddd I was still only a 1-2 (even though at this point I was having pretty painful contractions!) We were sent home. We were so exhausted at this point.

On the way home my contractions were so intense. I was in so much pain! Troy drew a bath for me and massaged and scratched my back until I fell asleep (with a little help from Benadryl!)

My contractions started again in the morning and continued all day long. I timed them and eventually that night they were 3-4 minutes apart and lasted around 1 minute long. The last thing I wanted to do was go to the hospital and be sent home again. I decided to call my dr again and she said to go ahead and go into the hospital to get checked.

Troy and I packed up AGAIN. We were so tired and defeated at this point. We got to the hospital and got checked in. They hooked me up and sure enough, my contractions were close butttt I WAS STILL ONLY A 1-2 DILATION!! I couldn’t believe it. They said they would have to send me home again and that my contractions may last days before actual labor. I cried guys. I was so mentally drained at this point.

They went to process my discharge paperwork and they came back in and said Miller’s heart rate was up so they needed another 20 min strip of regular heart rhythm. This was at midnight. We just wanted to get out of there. I remember asking Troy, ‘Why can’t my water just break?’

Around 25 minutes later we still weren’t discharged. I had a really bad contraction (I cried out) and BOOM, I felt a sudden gush of liquid again. I thought I had peed myself but then considered that my water may have actually broken. I let the resident on call know and he took a sample and left to check it. He didn’t seem to think it was amniotic fluid, and Troy and I were not about to get our hopes up.

When he came back and told us ‘sure enough, your water broke’, WE COULDN’T BELIEVE IT!! FINALLY!!! I was going to have my baby! They admitted us and we called our family to let them know Miller would be coming within the next 24 hours. When your water breaks you and the baby are at risk of infection so they keep you at the hospital to monitor you both closely.

I IMMEDIATELY asked for an epidural. I cannot stress enough how important it is to ask for it right away (if you aren’t going natural!) Your contractions can go from light to VERY, VERY BAD within minutes after your water breaks. It still took 45 minutes for me to get the epidural because the anesthesiologist on call had a couple of other rooms to stop in first. A few of my contractions made me cry and they were probably at a level 6 out of 10 at that point.

The epidural hurt. I am not going to lie to you. BUT, it wasn’t near as bad as I thought it was! I squeezed Troy’s hand and a stress ball at the same time. They put a numbing shot in first and that is what actually hurts. It feels like 1000 bee stings in your back all at once but goes away within 10 seconds. From there all you feel is pressure as the actual epidural is inserted. And then HEAVEN. Pure bliss.

I will say the numbing of the epidural feels really strange. You can’t move the bottom half of your body at all. People have to move your legs for you when you want to move at all. The longer you are on it the more paralyzing it feels. It feels like your legs weigh 1000 pounds. Definitely, don’t try to touch your legs. That is even weirder! Nurses kept coming in to check me and flip me all around so I was just exposed to the world all night and had no idea bc I was so numb down there!

IT IS 100% WORTH IT because let me tell you… I did not feel A THING! If I ever started feeling any type of contraction or pressue I let the nurses know and they immediately called in the anesthesiologist to top me off!

Hours went by and I still wasn’t progressing at all. They also couldn’t put me on Pitocin because my contractions were too close together. Eventually, my contractions spread apart a bit and they were able to give me the Pitocin.

Three hours later I woke up from a nap feeling the intense need to push. There was so much pressure down there (felt like I needed to push out a massive poop!) I told my family and they immediately called the nurse. She came in and checked me and told me I was a 10 and baby was ready to come out. She said, ‘In fact, I can already see the head!’ I dilated from a 3 to a 10 in THREE HOURS!

My dr was actually at a luncheon at the time. I told them I couldn’t hold her in! I needed to push. The need to push was soooo strong. I felt like she was about to just slip out. They called the anesthesiologist in for a final top off which helped to numb the area down there again and the intense push pressure wore off a little.

The nurse told me we were going to do some practice pushes before the dr came in. I knew this was BS. These weren’t going to be ‘practice’ pushes. I think they needed to get the ball rolling because Miller’s head was already crowning.

PS- I should take a break here and let you know my entire family was in the room with us. My sister took photos, my mom took a video, my dad sat in a corner facing the wall, and Troy held one of my legs up each time I pushed. It jusy all happened so fast and the nurses and my dr were all fine with everyone being in there.

This is how labor works: Both of your legs are held up or put in stirrups. You wait for a contraction, take a deep breath and push as hard as you can (like you are pushing a poop out), then you repeat that two more times during that same contraction. By the third push you are completely winded, but apparently, it helps keep the baby where it is at instead of it getting sucked back inside. Since I couldn’t feel the contractions the nurse had to have a hand on my stomach to let me know when they were coming.

I did this through eight contractions and then she was here. 20 minutes total.

Pros and cons to such a short delivery. Pro- you don’t have to push as long and there is less chance of C Section (long labors could result in C section if the baby isn’t moving down the birth canal at all or if you get too fatigued and can no longer push!) Cons- you will probably tear like I did.

There is NOTHING in the world like holding your baby for the first time. I ugly cried for sure. She was screaming, which apparently is a good sign! They laid her on my stomach at first while they cleaned her and then immediately put her on my chest. It felt like she was on my chest for seconds before they took her but my family later told me they kept her there for an hour! I could have laid with her that way forever I think. I just held her and breathed her in. I couldn’t believe she was here. The best feeling in the entire world.

They took her away for a minute to measure and weight her and wipe her down a little more. It was so hard letting her go but this was the time for Troy to hold her. They also put him on the spot and asked if he wanted to change her first diaper! Have your husbands ready for that!

The doctors spent forever stitching me up. I kept asking if everything was OK. My sister later explained how much blood there was. Buckets she said. I ended up with two second degree tears and three first degree tears. The first degree tears were all around my urethra and they didn’t want to stitch those or else I would have to go home with a catheter.

After a couple of hours, they wheeled me and Miller to a different room. A nurse came in every 30 minutes it felt like for the next 24 hours. We told them immediately that we wanted to go home within as soon as possible. I felt like I could recover just as easily at home and Miller was doing great. They agreed we could go home in 24 hours!

I will say one thing- I don’t know why but I was NOT expecting to be soooo sore down there after birth. I guess I just never thought about it. When you get up the first time to go to the restroom it feels like your insides are going to fall out. That’s how much pressure is down there!

Also, every test Miller went through at the hospital was so nerve-wracking. They did a heart test, a hearing test, a newborn screening test, multiple jaundice tests, a lactation specialist came in to see if Miller was latching, and then a pediatrician came in to exam her. You just kind of pray and hold your breath through each one. Troy and I would sometimes hold hands as we waited for the results. I wasn’t prepared for that either!

All in all, labor was a wonderful, painless experience for me. I felt a few contractions early on before my epidural but can’t even remember them now.

The doctors and nurses took such great care of us. If you are in DFW I would highly recommend delivering at Baylor.

If you have any questions at all, please comment below! I may have missed something and would love to share as much information as I can with you guys!

PS-If you haven’t already, make sure to read my Postpartum Week 1 blog post for what happened AFTER we left the hospital!

xox Amanda

Photos by Adria Lea

19 Comments

  1. November 26, 2018 / 4:42 am

    Such a beautiful, incredible experience Amanda! I loved reading her birth story. Also, agree, Baylor is wonderful!!! That’s where I delivered Eleanor and everyone there is so kind, caring and fantastic!

    Hugs!

    Emily
    http://www.fortuitousfoodies.com/

  2. Anonymous
    November 23, 2018 / 6:08 pm

    This sounded like my end of pregnancy experience. I had early labor contractions for over 1 week and nothing had changed. My ob stripped me again, and then luckily they checked my blood pressure as it had spiked and was in a bad zone. So rushed to hospital and was immediately started the inducing steps. Ballon to open my cervix more at 8pm for overnight. 8am next day (11thNov) they pulled it out and broke my water. By noon my contractions were sooo bad I got my epidural. Finally was able to nap around 1. I had went from a 2cm to 9cm within 4 hours. Then they waited another hour to see and at 6 I was at 10cm. They could see his head too, but I couldn’t push because my grandma wasn’t at the hospital yet and she was meant to be in the room. I somehow managed to keep him in for 30 minutes. Pushed for 30 minutes and bam! 7:01pm he was born, he was 6lbs 12oz and 21cm long. Doc told me I barely tore. I just needed 1 stitch just to be safe for healing, otherwise I didnt tear basically.

    Its honestly a miracle I didn’t tear horribly with how quick it was.

  3. November 21, 2018 / 1:03 am

    Amazing! Such a great photo shoot. Just an FYI for future pregnancies and expecting mamas out there – your water doesn’t always break so don’t wait for that! My first pregnancy, my water broke at 9cm dilation. My second, my water never broke! He was born “en caul.” 🙂

  4. Anonymous
    November 20, 2018 / 9:02 pm

    Thank you for sharing your experience! I had a very similar delivery experience, my baby boy was born on 11/4 with lots of epidural and pitocin. I went from 3 to 10 in 2.5 hrs and barely felt any contractions thanks to the epidural. I had a hard time having my legs numb and feeling itchy. and not being able to feel when I scratch. It was a weird feeling.
    My baby was born early and was very small but healthy. He is now at home getting bigger and cuter every day.

  5. Camille
    November 20, 2018 / 8:54 pm

    Thank you so much for sharing! I’m due in February and it was so encouraging to hear what your wrote, see your beautiful pictures, and have some fears calmed. Your daughter is precious! Love following you!

  6. Samantha Valadez
    November 20, 2018 / 8:23 pm

    Thanks so much for sharing! I am delivering at Baylor in a few weeks and it makes such a difference to see someones birth story that is at the same place as you! So glad everyone is doing well!

  7. Marisol Cervantez
    November 20, 2018 / 7:47 pm

    Thank you for sharing your personal intimate story, the pictures are just beautiful and you look so great !I thought wow she was beautiful during labor and delivery good for you. May god keep your family and beautiful bundle of joy healthy and happy this holiday season

  8. November 20, 2018 / 7:14 pm

    These photos are gorgeous! Miller is going to love them when she’s old enough to see them. 🙂 I don’t have kids yet but we are hoping next year to start trying and this story just makes me want them even more. (Minus the tearing!)

  9. Kathy L
    November 20, 2018 / 6:50 pm

    Beautiful pictures of Miller and your birth experience!! 🙂

  10. Kelly
    November 20, 2018 / 6:39 pm

    Just sitting at work, crying out my own pregnancy hormones while I read your post. Beautiful <3

  11. Teresa Villa
    November 20, 2018 / 5:03 pm

    My eyes immediately started to water when I saw the pictures. Loved your birth story I feel like it was so similar to mine! I love love love that you mentioned that you push like you’re going to take a big poop, no one ever told me that and I kind of figured it out on my own and now I tell everyone that’s about to give birth to push like that vs your vag. Lol!

  12. Anonymous
    November 20, 2018 / 4:45 pm

    Thank you for sharing , You’re so so sweet and beautiful. God bless you and your beautiful family .

  13. Taylor-Rose
    November 20, 2018 / 4:42 pm

    Thank you so much for sharing Amanda! My husband and I will be trying to start our journey with pregnancy soon and I have appreciated so much on following along with yours. I am so happy you have a healthy, precious baby girl 🙂 wishing your family all the best!

  14. Deanna
    November 20, 2018 / 4:42 pm

    Loved your story!! If you have another baby do some research on delivering in a side lying position. There is a much lower tear rate. With my first i delivered like you and had a second degree tear. With my boys I delivered both side lying. My middle son I only had 1 small first degree tear and my youngest, who was literally 1 push i had no tearing at all!

  15. Anonymous
    November 20, 2018 / 4:28 pm

    Hello, what OB did you use? Also, what were you wearing when you delivered?

  16. Janice
    November 20, 2018 / 3:56 pm

    Your story made me cry (happy tears) loved reading it. You should consider writing a book someday…you’re such a good writer and so thorough. Am excited to be able to watch Millet grow. Congratulations again Amanda! You will be a great Mommy

    • November 20, 2018 / 4:03 pm

      So sweet thank you Janice! I would need an editor for sure since I just type away and never put much effort into going back to edit it! It is more like a journal or diary! xox Amanda

  17. Anonymous
    November 20, 2018 / 3:48 pm

    I loved your birth story! Each baby has their own and every part of it is so special. These photos are priceless. This practice pushes aren’t BS I promise you! I did these pushes for both my kids. They have you do that as it helps stretch everything out down there before you go ahead with the big pushes. It’s to try to reduce the risk of tearing even though that always isn’t the case. I tore a little with both but not nearly as bad as you did with Miller. I can’t imagine what the recovery was like. I hope you are feeling well!

  18. Meg
    November 20, 2018 / 2:52 pm

    Your pictures are beautiful and definitely made me tear up! I am preparing to give birth in February so it was helpful to read about your experience. Congratulations mama!

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