The Story of Ainsley’s Arrival

June 22, 2010 § 4 Comments

Yes! Our sweetest little miracle finally made her appearance and she’s much more than our hearts even dared dream.

On Monday, May 24, I was 39 weeks and 2 days and we headed to the doctor for our weekly appointment. Once I started getting closer to my due date I made a conscious decision not to get my hopes up about this little girl coming early or even on time, so I wasn’t expecting too much at our check-up.

My doctor checked and I was still only 1 cm which I had been for two weeks. Our sweet angel was definitely going to take her time it seemed. As we discussed everything my doctor noticed that my BP was somewhat elevated. I have chronic hypertension and was on medication throughout the pregnancy but my BP had been pretty much perfect at each and every doctor appointment. She was a little concerned that it was above what had been normal for me. She stepped out of the room for a moment and consulted with one the high-risk OBs and she agreed….simply as a precaution and to avoid any complications, it would be best to go ahead and induce me.

So, before we left the doctor that Monday they did a non stress test to make sure everything was okay with the baby and things looked perfect. They instructed us to check in to Vanderbilt at 8:30 that night.

Josh and I experienced just about every emotion possible at that point. We were excited, nervous, shocked, over-the-moon happy. All these months of preparation and the time had finally come. It would not be long before we got to meet our baby girl!!

We left the doctor’s office and headed home to get all of our stuff together. We already had our bags pretty much packed, but it was nice to have to time to think clearly about adding anything we were missing. We even vacuumed and did a quick cleaning before we left too!

So, once we had everything ready we said goodbye to the dog and cat and headed out. Since I was allowed to have a meal before checking in to the hospital we ate dinner at Panera Bread. Yummm. And conveniently located next door to Panera….Ben and Jerry’s!! So, of course we made a pit stop there too. 🙂

After that, it was off to Vanderbilt to check in. Once they got me settled in a room, they hooked me up to the monitors to track my contractions and the baby’s heartbeat and got my IV going. Throughout the night they gave me doses of a medicine to get my cervix ready for the induction. And I tried to get some good rest, but it was hard. I was so excited to meet my baby girl.

So, the next morning at about 10:30 the doctors decided I was ready to go and they started me on the pitocin to induce labor. By about noon, I was having regular contractions. They weren’t too bad and I was able to stand them for a few hours. By about 3pm I was between 4 and 5 cm dialated and the contractions were starting to come stronger. I asked for the epidural at this point. Unfortunately, every room in labor and delivery was full and lots of women were having babies, which meant lots of women wanting epidurals. Anesthesiology was backed up and they didn’t make it to my room until about 4:30 and by that point my contractions were kicking my butt.

After they put in my epidural, I had instant relief simply because of the pain medicine they put in my IV. However, we did have a scare right after that. Ainsley’s heart rate dropped really quickly. It was an intense and very scary moment. All sorts of doctors and nurses rushed in the room and they gave me oxygen, had me move positions and worked to get her heart rate back up. Luckily everything went smoothly and returned to normal, but it was one of the scariest experiences I’ve had.

I was great for about an hour and a half after the epidural was administered and couldn’t really feel the contractions. But after that initial dose of medicine wore off it seemed that my epidural was not taking and I was starting to really feel the pain of my contractions again. Pushing that little button they give you to administer extra doses was not helping either. So, at one point I had three different anesthesiologists in my room trying to figure out why things weren’t working right. And finally into the evening they decided that it just wasn’t inserted correctly. They would need to take it out and re-do it. WHAT? Are you kidding me?

So, as my contractions raged on, they made the second attempt at my epidural. And guess what? I still got hardly any relief! Ahhhh why was this not working? I was in some serious pain and was not sure I was going to make it. As we got later into the evening, I was dialated almost 9 cm and there wasn’t much more the anesthesiologists could do for me. Sad face. 😦

I was sort of freaking out. I could not get control. And then this WONDERFUL nurse snapped me back to reality. She asked me if I wanted to end up having a C-section. Of course my answer was NO. She said if that was that case that I needed to focus. Focus on my breathing and focus on getting my little girl here. And to NOT focus so much on the pain. It really hit home with me and I was able to get my bearings again.

By 1 am, now May 26, I felt like I was ready to push and lo’ and behold my epidural had finally kicked in and I was not feeling the contractions as badly. Thank GOD! Because pushing was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. I pushed for almost 2 hours and FINALLY at 2:56 am Ainsley Reese McCormack arrived in this world.

Daddy cutting the cord

We had another scare as Miss Ainsley arrived. She ingested meconium (her first bowel movement) into her lungs during labor. So, right after delivery she was a little shell-shocked and had some breathing problems. It’s one of those things you don’t envision for your delivery. While we got to hold her for a moment, they had to work to clear her airway and make sure she was 100% okay. So, it wasn’t long after these pics that she was whisked away to the NICU to be taken care of.

Before we were moved to a postpartum room, Josh and I got to stop by the NICU and hold our sweet baby again.

Once we got settled in our new room, Josh and I tried to get some rest. It was hard with all the nurses coming in and out. By about 9 am, we were ready to go see our baby girl again since she was still in the NICU. I got to breast feed her while we were there too. And talk about amazing. Watching this little tiny human know exactly what to do sent chills through me.

Unfortunately, we had to leave her in the NICU a bit longer. When checking her out, they discovered a heart murmur and had to do an EKG to check out what was going on. Turns out it was a VSD (ventricular septal defect), which is a defect (or small hole) in the septum. After Ainsley’s tests were run, the cardiologist informed us that the hole was a very small one and would most likely heal on its own.

Finally by about 5 pm, our sweet angel was cleared from the NICU and brought to us in our room! It was such a relief to finally have her with us.

There are no words for the joy that this tiny little human being has brought to our lives. It is truly amazing how in one instant all your priorities can shift to something completely different. It’s already hard to remember our life before Ainsley Reese blessed us with her presence.

So many times throughout the day I’ll look at her and think about all those kicks and turns and movements she made while inside my belly and it takes my breath away to think that here she is now – so perfect and beautiful. An incredible mix of me and my best friend in the whole world.

May 26, 2010 — definitely the best day ever.

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§ 4 Responses to The Story of Ainsley’s Arrival

  • Krisa says:

    Wow! You are one tough mama! I know how hard it is to leave your baby in the NICU so I’m glad she wasn’t there long. She’s perfect and I can’t wait to meet her!

  • Ainsley is so pretty! Congratulations. I’m sorry your labor was difficult, it is rarely how we plan it. It’s amazing how hard it is to focus when all the pain kicks in, it was like I was in another zone. Simeon had ingested some meconium so he had to be taken to the NICU for a few hours too, pretty scary. It certainly makes me even more thankful for his good health too. Enjoy every minute, you’ll blink and she’ll be almost a year!

  • Mom says:

    SO GREAT. It brought it all back. Hard to believe it has been 4 weeks. I want to see her and hold her and kiss her little sweet baby face.

  • Shirley McCormack says:

    My baby is 37 years old now plus 3 others and boy did it bring back memories. You did a wonderful story with the pictures and written word. I’d heard you all ran into some problems but didn’t know what they were. Our 4 were all induced and I never had an epidural but the pain medicine didn’t work much on me either. Maybe I wasn’t focusing.
    Love you all and congratulations.

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