I can’t believe I’m finally sitting down to write a birth story and that Friday marked one whole month with our sweet little Camilla Kate. Yet, it honestly feels like she’s been with us this entire time; I don’t know what we ever did before her, as its truly been the sweetest four weeks with our girl.
Rewinding just a bit and going back to around week 34, I went in for a routine check up and found out my regular OB/GYN doctor who is wonderful and delivered Corbin would no longer be able to deliver Camilla because he was having to take medical leave. Eek, I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t the least bit concerned. Facing having to find a new doctor pretty late in the game that took our insurance and that I felt comfortable with had me a little panicked. Luckily, my doctor was able to accommodate us based on our circumstances, as well as his other patients’ and I was placed with a new OB I had heard nothing but amazing things about through friends who currently see him. He was thorough, had a wonderful staff, and his personality and bedside manner put my fears and “slight panic” at ease from the moment I met him. I feel strongly, regardless of your choice in choosing a physician, doula, or midwife, you should 100% feel comfortable and confident in their knowledge and ability to make your experience the best it can possibly be and he did just that.
During my first visit, we came up with a birth plan, if you will. I was induced with Corbin at 39 weeks and we decided due to my previous experience we would do the same. We talked about induction between the 14th of February up to my actual due date on the 21st and decided to see what availability the hospital had as my due date got closer.
Then, around 37 weeks I was awoken by what I thought were just mild contractions. They started as tightening in my stomach followed by shooting pains in my back then down into my legs. They got so intense that I ended up waking Conrad because I thought I was for sure in labor. He stayed home with me into that morning and took Corbin to school before leaving for work. Thankfully, the pain subsided before Conrad left and it never returned. So strange, I know, and I still don’t know what it was exactly but I’m so thankful she decided to stay put for a couple more weeks and that I was feeling back to normal again for the remainder of my pregnancy.
During my last appointment at week 39, my doctor confirmed our induction scheduled for February 15th and insisted that I go in the night before the induction to start Cervidil (cervical softening). I was already dilated but he felt it was necessary to go ahead with the Cervidil. Chlorophil/Borophil (name that movie). 🙂 Totally reminds me of that line for whatever reason. Ha! Let me just say, that with Corbin I wasn’t dilated or not much that I recall, didn’t have Cervidil at all, only Pitocin and he was born in 6 hours from start to finish. So, I was honestly surprised with having to go in early and remember thinking, “I hope this doctor lives close by because he may have to run up and catch this baby.” He was pretty adamant in his opinion of thinking we probably wouldn’t have a quick delivery this time around so I just went with it. I registered with the hospital to go in on the night of the 14th, (Happy Valentine’s Day to us) and start the labor process. I was so excited to have a date confirmed and that we would soon meet our precious baby! I called everyone to tell them “the date” after that appointment because I simply couldn’t contain myself.
Those next couple of days flew by and before we knew it, we were waking up to Valentine’s Day. I woke up to a beautiful bouquet of roses from my sweet boys, got Corbin up, fed, and dressed and gave him his little V-Day goodie bag before heading to school to attend all the parties. We had a fun day celebrating and I decided to take him out of school early so I could spend the day with just him before heading to the hospital that evening. My dad got to town around 2 p.m., as he, Tim, and Taylor would be in charge of Corbin for the night and into baby day. Corbin and I played, I stole lots of kisses, dad and Conrad grabbed some take-out and I showered while waiting on the call that they were ready for us to head to the hospital. Around 8 p.m. I decided to call and see if they were ready for us, as I had heard nothing, and the nurse told me to hang tight because they were completely full. She called me back around 10 p.m. and said she would call and let me know as soon as they had a room available. I’m truly so glad we were able to hold off for the night. Corbin came in our room and I got one last night of extra snuggles with just he and his daddy before becoming a family of four. It was so sweet and special to have that entire night with him. Then, around 4:30 a.m. the charge nurse called and said to be at the hospital around 6:30 a.m. It was go time!! I put some make up on, curled my hair and we threw our “bags” and everything but the kitchen sink in the car. I packed WAY too much this time, shocker I know! I snuck in and kissed my sleepy little C man one last time before heading out the door.
On the way to the hospital, Conrad and I were talking about how we couldn’t believe it was time to meet our girl and how at peace I felt this time around. It was such a change for me and I really just felt excited and so ready to meet her. When we went to have Corbin I’ll admit I was a little bit of a train wreck inside, if I’m being honest. It was all due to the fear of actual child birth, which sounds so silly now (thanks friends who had gone before me with all the horror stories) and I may have cried a little walking into the hospital holding my husbands hand. Haha! Let me say, I really was so excited to meet him and hold him but the thought of labor was so terrifying to me. Thinking back, I was little dramatic, especially having now been through it twice and having an amazing experience both times. I felt much more at ease this go round and my anxiety was gone. What I think I realized most after the first delivery is that God has us in the palm of his hand, his will be done and Conrad using bribery with the promise of Chick-Fil-A after delivery never hurt either. Haha! He clearly knows the way to my heart through nuggets and well done fries, y’all!
After arriving at the hospital, changing into my hospital gown and signing my life away, the nurse began my antibiotics and fluids. Shortly after, my doctor came in, gave the go-ahead to start the “half pill” of Cervidil and ensured me that this delivery would more than likely be much slower and that the other half of the Cervidil pill would be given to me after a couple hours of laboring. I started having some pretty intense contractions about an hour into the Cervidil. I have to say, I never really experienced labor pains with Corbin, as they gave me my epidural thirty minutes after starting the Pitocin. At this point though, the pain was intensifying and my contractions were getting closer together, so needless to say, I was ready for some meds! I was watching the monitor for when they would come on so I could prepare to breathe and not actually hold my breath. There were some mountains on that tiny screen and I was feeling all the things. Seriously though, kudos to you mama’s who take the all natural route, Whew! Y’all are rockstars!! Before the anesthesiologist could come in, my doctor decided it was time to break my water. That wasn’t terribly pleasant but I knew my relief was coming soon after so that made it bearable. The anesthesiologist came in and administered my epidural right after which was around 2-3 hours after my initial first round of Cervidil and once in place I enjoyed a couple of popsicles and some ice chips, all before taking a 30 minute power nap on the peanut. If you haven’t experienced a peanut, it is this huge peanut shaped contraption that acts somewhat as a body pillow. In my case, it was used to get Camilla to turn face down. She had been head down but sunny side up for weeks and they wanted to see if she would turn. Luckily, she did! After about an hour on the peanut, I was checked again and was dilated to about a 7. My doctor had a C-section to tend to and figured I still had some time to labor so he was making his way to the OR. By this time, Conrad and my mom were placing bets on how much longer it would be until we met our baby girl. Conrad said 1:30, I guessed 1:45 and my mom, thinking she was joking at first said 12:45. I thought she was a little ambitious, as it was only around noon by this point. Yet, fifteen minutes after this conversation and being at a 7, my nurse came in and checked me again, confirming I was ready to push. We’re talking 12:15ish! Say what?! To top it off, next door a mama was at the exact same stage of labor about to deliver, my doctor was in a C-section, and it had to feel a little chaotic for the nurses but they just handled it all so perfectly and with such grace. They were prepared and ready and had the room set up for when my doctor got out of surgery! By 12:30 my doctor was back in my room and ready to deliver. It was like bam, bam, bam.
At 12:35 I began pushing and by 12:39 our sweet Camilla Kate Henderson made her grand debut weighing 6 lbs. 10 oz. was 20 inches long, with a head full of hair and was absolute perfection! She let out the sweetest cry as they laid her on my chest and she drifted off to sleep soon after. It was so incredibly special and that feeling of seeing your newborn baby for the first time is an emotion that can’t be explained or accurately described. It’s overwhelming, powerful and the greatest joy.
Around thirty minutes later, Corbin was brought up and Conrad and I got to introduce him to his little sister by ourselves as a family of four. It was a precious moment I’ll cherish forever and so perfect as I really wanted us to be able to have that time together. He loved her immediately and he’s been so sweet with her ever since. He holds her hand, sings to her, and is always checking on her and making sure she’s okay. He’s such an amazing helper and does so much for her, well besides changing diapers 😉 At first, the age difference kind of worried me a little, as it’s just been us with him for four years, but I’m so proud of how gentle he is with her and how smoothly he’s transitioned into his role as big brother. It’s almost like she’s been with us forever and I couldn’t have asked for it to go better. I just feel really blessed to have two precious, healthy babies.
As for our Camilla, she is seriously the sweetest and most laid back baby. She rarely cries, isn’t affected by the dogs barking or the boys rough-housing, loves to be held, and is extremely content. I can’t wait to see what her personality is like as she grows, but for now she just goes with the flow and even has her daddy wrapped around her finger. She constantly smiles, I’ve even witnessed a few giggles, and she completes us so perfectly. We are in love and adjusting to life so well together.
In typing this with one sleeping babe on my chest and the other lying next to me, I’m overcome with gratefulness. To be called mommy and to have such a loving and supportive family through these new and exciting changes, makes me so thankful. I’ve been soaking it all in lately, as I know with each passing day both of my babies grow a little more and need me a little less. I’ve been counting my blessings and praising Him for his unfailing love, for fulfilling my hearts desires and trusting me with such beautiful gifts.