Ari’s Birth Story // Part 2.

November 27, 2012 in Ari Davis,Oh baby!

You’ll find Part One of our story here.

I knew I wasn’t ready to push. I just really did have to poop.

So I continued to labor and continued to have to go to the bathroom.

At this point, I was in a lot of pain, but it was everything I expected and everything I signed up for when I decided to go without the epidural and labor naturally.

But over the next few hours my contractions intensified. And so did the pooping. It seemed like every time I had a contraction I had to poop, too. At the same time. Ugh.

At 7am the doctor asked if they could check my cervix. I said no. I just knew that I wasn’t at 10 cm. So why check?

I met my day nurse and continued to labor. Somewhere around 11 am, my contractions got much worse. Instead of lasting the typical 60-90 seconds, they were peaking at 3 minutes. And the pain was incredible. And I was still pooping.

And then I started to throw up. Like, a lot.

Terribly long and painful contractions + pooping and throwing up at the same time = the worlds most awful experience. Ever.

And pretty much this was my worst nightmare — this was the experience I was afraid of having. I’ve never been good at being sick to my stomach or throwing up, for that matter.

One of the OBs from the practice I go to happened to be in the hospital doing a c-section so the nurse stopped him to see if he could check on me. He ended up sitting in my room with us for an hour while I labored. At this point I was in extreme agony. The three-minute long contractions were continuing, as was the pooping and vomiting.

I was quickly becoming severely dehydrated. By 3:00 pm I was no longer given a choice — I had to get an IV to keep fluids in me.

My OB said nothing about pain management — he knew my birth plan well and knew that I didn’t want an epidural. He just sat in the room with us while I labored.

He checked me for dilation — after all of those hours and intense contractions, I was only 5 cm dilated. Nowhere near where I needed to be.

But in the meantime, the pain, exhaustion and dehydration had taken over me. I was another person entirely. I felt completely out of control of my body. It was flailing all over the place. I could no longer hold my head up to vomit and Chad had to practically hold me on the toilet so that I could poop mid-contraction. I swear I was speaking in tongues. I could hear everyone talking to me, but I couldn’t respond.

Suddenly I screamed out “Please just rip this child out of me!” In hindsight, it’s hilarious. But at the time, I really meant it. I begged my OB to please just cut me open right then and there and take the baby out of me. I was begging for a c-section. My OB, thankfully, declined my requests for a c-section.

Around 3:30 PM, after listening to my ever so supportive husbands words of wisdom, I finally gave in to the demands of my body. I finally agreed to an epidural.

But under one condition — they had to do it now. I couldn’t imagine another minute of the contractions and sickness.

The epidural was terrifying because my body was shaking from the dehydration and intense urge to vomit. But minutes after the epidural, I was asleep. I slept for an hour, at which point I had to be awoken by the nurse. The OB wanted to check dilation again.

10 cm. I had gone from 5 cm to 10 cm in one hour. And I had slept though that entire hour. I was a new woman!

My OB came into the room and I started to push. My contractions had slowed down significantly — every 5 minutes. I pushed for an hour and 15 minutes and I watched everything in a giant mirror.

Yes, it was terrifying to see myself, well, like that in the mirror. But I totally am happy that I did this. I was able to witness every part of my son being born and it was amazing.

My OB remembered that in my birth plan and from our discussions I had requested to pull the baby out. When I pushed out his shoulders, my OB told me to grab the baby — so I did.

It was amazing. I set him on my chest and the nurses covered him with blankets to keep us both warm.

Ari Davis was born at 5:59 PM on October 16th after a, mostly, terrible labor. We survived. And we brought this incredible, beautiful, and amazing little man into the world.

I haven’t since forgotten the agonizing pain. I’ve found out that Ari was very likely in a terrible position from the start,which may have caused the nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. Just my luck. But I’ve still very much been processing the delivery in my head and my heart.

Truthfully, I ache for the natural delivery that I so longed and planned for; but, realistically, I don’t know if I could have survived another second without passing out from extreme exhaustion. Chad credits the epidural for the ability of my body to relax enough to dilate to 10 cm. And, honestly, I do too.

Overall, I’m grateful for the amazing support I received from my husband, the hospital staff, and my doctor. And I’m so in love with the precious baby this process brought us!



{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

Twitter: suddenlysus
November 27, 2012 at 10:20 pm

I know this was hard to relive, but I’m glad you shared it. I am sure there are people out there who would never expect that, but with labor, I’m.not sure anyone can really be prepared for everything.


Beth November 27, 2012 at 10:37 pm

I’m convinced the epidural is the best invention ever, outrunning the wheel and fire. I knew all along that I wanted one and I’m glad I got one. I had really bad back labor and was unable to talk or think in a complete sentence until I got one. Yes, you didn’t get what you envisioned as your perfect birth story. But you have a healthy baby and suffered no serious problems from your delivery, and there’s a lot to be said for that.


Julie November 27, 2012 at 10:59 pm

Giving birth is what freaks me out the most – I can handle the 9 months and yes I know the end result is amazing but it scares me!


Rachel November 30, 2012 at 4:35 am

I’m not certain that it will ever get less scary. BUT I have to say, the contractions were, for the most part, what I expected. I honestly think what threw me off was the dehydration/vomiting/diarrhea. Honestly, without that, I feel like I may have had some control over my body. And I think my situation was probably not the norm, so I’m sure your experience wouldn’t be quite as god-awful. ๐Ÿ™‚ I wouldn’t worry.


Twitter: americanrninnz
November 28, 2012 at 8:53 am

Oh my, I’m so sorry that you had such an awful labor (well, mostly awful!). Yes, getting the epidural was definitely the right decision at that point. I’m sorry that it didn’t go as planned and that it was such a hard, traumatic experience. Thank goodness that modern medicine is there when we need it (and you needed it!).


Nicole November 28, 2012 at 10:16 am

Thank you for sharing your birth experience. I’m so sorry that it didn’t go as you wished/planned. It sounds like you gave it more than “just a try” and I know so many women who wouldn’t have hung in there for so long. Please be proud of yourself as it sounds like you did an amazing job. Truly. As a trained doula reading your story, it sounds like your body needed that rest that the epidural was able to provide. I believe that THAT is what it is meant for. The most important thing about birth is that you delivered a healthy baby. And you DID it.
Another thing that I think about is that the cardinal rule of mamas is that you have to take care of yourself in order to take care of your baby. It sounds like you would have had absolutely nothing left to give, or something scarier could have happened right after he was born & you could’ve missed out on those precious first moments with him. You probably wouldn’t have been able to pull him out & it sounds like that was a really special moment for you.
If you’re not sick of my writing yet, I also want to add that I’m SO impressed with your being able to pull Ari out when he was born! My midwife told, wait, actually I believe she YELLED at me to but I just couldn’t because of the pain at that point. I still mourn for that moment that I wasn’t able to do. You did an amazing job mama.


Rachel November 30, 2012 at 4:32 am

Thank you so much! ๐Ÿ™‚ I guess I hadn’t really thought about the fact that things could’ve have gone much worse. I had been thinking for so long that this was just as awful as it could’ve gotten; but in hindsight, it could have been much worse.


Amanda November 28, 2012 at 10:50 am

I am so glad that you have been so honest with your whole pregnancy and birth story. That is a rare thing to find these days. I am scared to death of having to deal with the pain of labor, I cry over a paper cut….I know our bodies are made to have babies, but I don’t think I could do it.

I am glad you were able to stick to some of your birth plan and that your little man finally made it into the world. Maybe the next time around things will be better ๐Ÿ™‚


Ashley November 28, 2012 at 2:38 pm

Isn’t it awesome when your doctor is the one reminding you of your birth plan??

I was vomiting during labor, too, which sucked SO BADLY. I was just throwing up Gatorade. I was miserable.

I think no matter how you slice it, birth is a pretty awful process. It’s gross, it’s painful, etc. BUT at least you get a baby at the end! I remember after Gabe was born, I looked at him and thought, “I am SO glad you aren’t a girl so you never have to do this.” And yet! People have MULTIPLE children! They do this again!

Sounds like you were a rock star – and you still got to birth vaginally, which is awesome!


Rachel November 30, 2012 at 4:30 am

Thanks! I feel like I owe my doctor an entire blog post. I said so little in comparison of how he actually made me feel that day. As miserable as I was, I will never forget how incredible he was through that process.
And the idea of multiple children terrifies me… I told Chad this might be our only baby! ha!


Dawn November 29, 2012 at 10:14 am

Sometimes, in life, we have a clear picture of how we want things to go. It’s really easy to convince yourself that they will go the way we picture them, that we can map it our and it will be just so. We forget that we aren’t in control of external forces, that things can go in an entirely different direction, no matter what we picture, plan for, hope for, decide. Life has a way of…forcing us to be flexible, often when we least want it to. And I don’t just mean birth experiences. For myself, I imagined I would be married in my mid 20s to my high school sweetheart and done having children by my mid 30s. I had A Plan. As it turns out, we broke up when I was 24. I found my way into an emotionally abusive relationship where I managed to waste 6 years. And I got married two weeks before I turned 36. So much for the plan I had for my whole life. But, in the end, despite all the pain and heartache and disappointment, I married the right guy, and maybe we’ll have time to have a baby and maybe not, but it will be ok, *I* will be ok. Just like with Ari: he didn’t get here the way you pictured, and in fact, the journey was straight out of a nightmare, but it brought you this sweet boy, you’re both healthy, and in the end, this will just be part of the story you share together. (((HUGS)))


Rachel November 30, 2012 at 4:28 am

You are amazing, Dawn! ๐Ÿ™‚ Yeah nothing with this whole process has turned out as anticipated or according to plan. But I should’ve figured because none of this was actually, well, planned! ha! ๐Ÿ™‚


Emily Southerland
Twitter: Mrs_southerland
November 29, 2012 at 1:30 pm

So glad that you wrote it all out. I’m sure that in itself was therapeutic. Sorry that things didnt go as planned for you, but you have a beautiful healthy baby to show for it. as we are finding out in these early months of parenting things don’t always go as planned.


Jessica B. November 30, 2012 at 1:26 pm

Wow! no epidural! You are one brave woman. I want all the drugs they can give me when I have kids. I love how different birth plans can be.


Sarah May 14, 2013 at 9:51 pm

Hi buddy! I know I’m a bit behind on this but just arrived here via Mrs. to Mama on Twitter– love your story!!!! You go girl!!! Hit way too close to home– had my little dude in January and battled the same BS– 20 hours, poop, 2-3 minute contractions, and finally caving for the epi and going from 4.5 to 10 in an hour!

4 months later I swear I can still feel those contractions!!! They SAY the subsequent ones are easier right!? : )


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