May 21st. Part 2

By this point, I am most certainly feeling contractions. I distinctly remember my husband chuckling at me through those first few rough ones. At one point, he tried hiding behind the bathroom door so I couldn’t see him, but it didn’t work. Now, obviously he wasn’t laughing at my pain..he was just amused at the way I was handling them & things I was saying. Which were pretty hysterical, or so I was told. Like telling Mike I thought we should adopt our future children. One labor & delivery was enough for me. No worries friends, I don’t have the same feelings now..4 months later. I ‘d do it all again.

My mom stopped back in with Gianna, but she wasn’t allowed to come back and see me. I was still pretty calm and mellow at this point, so it would have been fine for her to come back. But the head nurse said no.

By 2, the contractions were increasing in pain. Hitting about a 3 on the scale. The nurses were impressed that I was labeling them so low, they told me that was good for the mindset. Since the contractions were obviously going to get much worse and if I said they were a 7 on the scale now, then I’d probably lose my mind once they really got bad. So..yay me, I guess. I just know I was starting to feel pain and my grip on the bed rail was getting stronger.

Because my contractions were increasing rapidly, the nurse felt as though they should lower my Pitocin. My body was laboring all on its own & the Pitocin was only making things worse, while not exactly helping move labor along. I had started at an 8 ml drip and they lowered it to a 6 ml.

At around 2:45, my contractions had spiked a lot. I told Mike I needed an epidural. Words I swore I would never say. I wanted to experience a natural birth, but wow. Just WOW. Labor is no joke. Especially after Pitocin is started. The pain gets pretty intense & pretty unbearable. But…Mike convinced me to hold out. He reassured me that I could do this without them & I believed him. For then.

I do remember Mike left at some point to go home and get a bag of things for me. I’m not sure at what time during the day he did this, but I know I spent his time away blaring Hillsong & praying. Still trusting that the Lord was working everything for good. I held my phone up to my belly, with music playing, & cried out to Him. Begging for a healthy baby. Pleading with Him to deliver a completely perfect girl. I tried resting too. But I don’t think that happened.

3;30 rolled around and I asked Mike if he’d be disappointed in me if I got drugs… I felt like a failure for really thinking this. I knew what I wanted to happen before I walked into that hospital, yet there I was..crying out for a medical intervention. By this point he could tell I was in a lot of pain & I wasn’t asking because I was lazy or weak. He smiled at me & said “it’s ok babe. I’m proud of you no matter what.” Good man I’ve got.

The nurse comes back in and decides to lower the Pitocin again, bringing it down to a 4ml drop. I tell her I wanted an epidural. Knowing my “birth plan” she says why don’t we check you before. She said that I’d be disappointed in myself if I got one and then discovered I was at an 8 or something. But…I’m only at maybe a 2. So I yell…bring on the drugs.

I felt so defeated. Like I had let someone down. Who I’m not sure. Certainly not my husband who was encouraging me every step of the way. I think it was myself. I struggled with asking, but knew that my body was wearing out fast. Really fast. I couldn’t imagine going any further without some relief. Silly me…

My dad stopped in & took a seat. Now I can look back and laugh at this, but at the time I remember feeling pretty freaked. Ha. Him and Mike started talking about baseball. Yes, baseball. I was laying on my side. About the break the side rails of the bed. And there they were, just shooting the breeze! Lexi & my step-dad came too. Looking back, I wish I would have asked Lexi to leave almost immediately. I was in the thick of labor. Hard labor. My body wasn’t something I felt like I could control & in a brief second of no contractions I caught Lexi’s eyes & she was crying. Seeing me in pain had to be difficult for her. I mean I didn’t even really know what was going on so how could a teen girl understand… They didn’t stay long.

Robin comes back after her office hours, so probably around 4:30 by now. I’m still waiting on my epidural & I let her know that. Not in a very nice way. I informed her that the drug man must have gotten lost. She tells me he is in a surgery and will be up as soon as he can. (she was lying folks, I’m sure of it!)

I had been experiencing a lot of pain in my legs. Terrible leg cramps & my eyes were twitching something fierce. I do distinctly remember telling Mike that I couldn’t feel my mouth. It was hard to breathe during contractions because of that. Robin notices how bad my eyes are twitching and how I’m not really in control of my mouth. She puts a wet washcloth over my eyes & I don’t remember taking it off until it was time to push.

Robin decides to lower my Pitocin again, but the nurse hooks me up to a giant bag of fluids to prep my body for the epidural. At this point, things were extremely blurry to me. Mike tells me that when Robin was in the room, I was much calmer & would breath through my contractions like a champ. But as soon as she walked out of the room, I yelled. And cried out. I still had the washcloth over my eyes so I like to think I really had no idea when my midwife was in the room and when she wasn’t, but since this part of labor is fuzzy..I’ll give the hubby some credit and believe him.

My midwife tells me that my epidural is coming around 5:45 but she plans on checking me before he comes to see if I’ve progressed. My dad takes this as his cue to step out & Mike walks out with him. Theresa was there with a bag of things for Emma so he went down to the hospital entrance to get it.

When Robin checks me, she tells me I’m at 9 cm and she’s basically opening me to a 10 during the check. She smiles & tells me it’s time to push. Which I precisely remember asking her how long I’d be pushing & how long until Emma was born. Because if it was going to be long, I wanted drugs anyways. She promises me that we’ll have a baby within the hour. It’s 5:40 pm. She told me to roll off my side and get myself propped up and comfortable.

I do remember hearing the anesthesiologist coming in & saying my name. And I also remember Robin telling him to take a hike. That I didn't need any drugs. It was baby time.

The room starts to fill with nurses & the pediatrician & the baby nurses & the medical student that was observing Robin. Mike makes his way back upstairs and walks into chaos. Robin tells him it’s time to have a baby & he needs to grab a leg. I do remember the giant grin on his face. He holds my leg and has his other hand on my head. Just smiling at me. And telling me you can do this. Which I probably responded with No I Can’t. I was weak, people. I felt like I had no stamina to do this. No energy left. And since Robin told me I wasn’t getting an epidural anymore, I wasn’t feeling very confident.

But it’s crazy how the Lord comes in and holds you up when you need it. I really thought I wasn’t going to be able to deliver this baby after experiencing such intense pain, partly due to the Pitocin.

Well, I did. I started pushing on the next contraction. I did 4 big pushes during each contraction then I was able to take a break. Which is when I yelled I couldn’t do it anymore. But…I did.

I felt SO much pain. You know where. It’s so amazing how labor and delivery happens… As Mike is saying “babe I can see her head. keep pushing. you are so amazing. I love you. you’re doing great. don’t give up.” He was such a huge support system. And still is. (when I told him I needed to write this thing out, he said ok. good. but I’m not. I remember that night so vividly and it’s nothing I want to revisit…) Yet, the details of that day and night are so blurry to me. I think that was God’s grace. Allowing me to experience it, but not quite remember all of it. But not Mike. He remembers every detail. Every look. Everything. I can’t imagine the images & emotions he has surrounding it. But, friends, the Lord blessed me with such a perfect mate. He loves our girl so deeply and so fiercely. Those memories of the night she was born don’t need to be written out for him. He doesn’t need to revisit those days. And that’s ok.

Robin had told me that when I get to my last push, she’ll let me know to just breathe. So when she tells me to relax & breathe, I feel a ton of relief. Until she yells PUSH. Really loudly. There wasn’t any sweetness or patience in her voice. She meant business. I pushed. Hard. Not understanding what was going on. So I just pushed.

And at 6:34 pm, Emma Joy Edwards made her entrance.

to be continued ...


Claire Flores said...

oh Liz, I just cried reading this. How beautiful--and how strong you are!!! And yes, writing it out seems to really bring healing and also clarity. Bryan was the same about Hunter--he remembered it all and didn't feel the need to revisit it, just like Mike. Funny how the same exact experience can be so different for the mother and the father. Every person is different and has to walk through things like this differently. Amazing though to read how the Lord was so near to you and so loving through this. He is so good, in spite of difficulty.

Liz Edwards said...

Yea, I actually asked Mike if he would prefer I not share the rest of the story after he told me reading this was hard for him. Everything is so clear to him from that night. Writing has been so, so good though. Hard, but good.

Bethany said...

Liz, I was going to wait until I finished reading your story... But I changed my mind. Although I subscribed to your blog I think during a time where you weren't writing, I can see that on here and on Instagram that your testimony touches people's lives and I'm sure they were missed... It's like encouragement. It's really nice to have when it's put out there... Seems like God was preparing your heart and mind for the right timing.
I know for me, as a single woman with dreams of a husband and family, your story has already ministered to me... And I'm only on part 2! It's inspiring. God carrying you and mike through, reverberates throughout your story and your testimony... and for me, again... Reminding me the importance of waiting on the mate God has for me. Looking forward to reading the rest. Thanks to you and Mike for opening your hearts and sharing your testimony

Liz Edwards said...

Why am I just seeing this?! Thank you, thank you Bethany!! xoxo