This is my recount...of that day, and the few leading up to it.
It all started with our 38 week appointment on Tuesday the 2nd of July. We had our fingers crossed for progression naturally, but we had no such luck. Amanda was still the same that she had been the week prior. I have to say, I was very emotional and I lost it in the Dr.s office. The last few weeks of Amanda's pregnancy were...miserable. For both of us. Amanda physically and emotionally, and me emotionally. I was having such bad anxiety about her going into labor when I wasn't around, and us missing the whole thing. I had 3 weddings the last 3 weekends in June, and I am not gonna lie I was extremely anxious the entire day of each wedding. Luckily I had amazing support around me, and friends who were willing to step in if something did happen the day of one of my weddings. Thankfully, I made it through the month of June and Amanda ended up being induced on the 5th of July. Now, this day did not come smoothly... after her appointment on Tuesday, I went back to Amanda's house and we decided to hang out and go for a walk around her little town. It was nice to just walk and enjoy our time together. Later on that day Amanda called the clinic and asked about the induction. She had been against it the entire time, but the Dr had told her that the baby was at least 8 lbs and I think that weighed on her, and I also knew she could feel my anxiety. Her, having the big heart that she does, decided she would give it a go, and so we got scheduled for the next day. Jack, the girls, Mom and my uncle came down the next morning and got a hotel room...we waited for the hospital to call...and call..and call... they finally did around 1 and said it wouldn't be happening that day, maybe not even that week due to emergencies and over crowding in the birthing rooms. Once again... I lost it. I needed some time to myself so I went and sat in my car and had my freak out away from anyone else. I went back into Amanda's house about 15 minutes later to hear her on the phone talking to the hospital telling them they need to get us in because of the arrangements from everyone coming from out of town. They said they couldn't get us in until Saturday, then later called and said Friday would be the day.
Thursday was the 4th of July. We again tried everything to get our little firecracker to come naturally, and nothing worked. We went to watch the fireworks that night but the mosquitos were so bad we ended up just going back to the hotel to get a good nights rest.
( Thank you to Alicia Bertram for being there and taking the photos for us)
The next morning we got the call. The hospital was ready and Amanda could go in anytime. As soon as her mother in law got to her house to watch her kids, we headed in. Amanda beat me there and when I got there she was just getting settled into the delivery room. We sat there and just smiled for a while... then the nurses came in and got her hooked up to the monitors and got her IV going, as well.
It was around 11:30 in the morning when things started rolling. Or should I say, the waiting began.
We waited for probably around 3 or 4 hours before we saw any type of progression. She had went from a 2..to about a 2.5 or 3. Amanda decided she wanted to get into the tub and relax. I took her spot on the bed and relaxed myself while her husband fell asleep in the chair. :) A well deserved nap.
A few hours later is when things started to get uncomfortable. The Pitocin in Amanda's IV had taken over a bit too much. She had progressed to about a 7 and contractions were coming back to back. Amanda couldn't catch her breath, and from the beginning wanted to do this all naturally. It ended up being too much and the Pitocin got shut off and she asked for an epidural. I would have done the same in her position. It is so incredibly hard to watch someone in that much pain, and feeling absolutely helpless. While she was getting her epidural, I hid in the bathroom and had a good cry. I felt so terrible that she felt this pain because of something she as doing for me, and I couldn't do anything to help her get any sort of relief.
It was about another two hours after Amanda got her epidural that she progressed to a 9 and they gave her the OK to start pushing. I went down and got Jack and told the family it was time for Amanda to start pushing!!! We came back in and the Dr and nurses were getting everything ready and before I knew it Amanda was pushing. It was about 10:30pm I think at this point. So, it had been a long day of anticipation and waiting.
After the first couple pushes, the Dr realized Amanda didn't have her Epidural pump turned on. So YES...she pushed all natural. Super woman.. I'm telling you!
After a few more pushes, the dr confirmed what we already thought, he was face up...but had a lot of hair! ;) He was definitely face up, and not moving. They tried moving Amanda to her left side and Finn's heart rate dropped drastically. At this point is when my anxiety came in full force. I tend to have anxiety here and there but this was unbearable. "We have to resuscitate him inside of you Amanda" Oh God.. I started stripping my layers off because I was sweating, playing with my hair, biting my nails... all of my go to habits. I looked over to Jack and he was calm, which then calmed me down. He was at the head of the bed helping Amanda hold her head up and I had her right leg, with her husband across from me on her left. This was when it was going to go wrong... I knew it. This was too good to be true, this is where it ends. I am just not meant to be a mother....
When you have been through what we have, it all just seemed like it never is gonna happen for us.
Next came the vacuum. Dr. Erika tried the vacuum three times on him and was not moving. Amanda rolled onto her other side, and Finn's heart rate went back up, but was still not moving. Much longer and Amanda would have had to have a C-section. She was NOT okay with that... and I don't know but it was like a light switch and she pushed like a mad woman and he flipped face down and slid right out.
That second he came out really is a blur for me... I remember Erika holding him up and rushing me over to cut the cord so they could take him over to the warming area. I hugged Amanda so tight... for what seemed like forever until we both realized I should probably go see my new baby. ;)
I walked over there and held his hand.... my emotions were so overwhelming, the feelings I was having I cannot even recall. It may sound strange but I was almost numb. Did this just happen?? The day I NEVER thought would happen after all we have been through.... happened. I still can't believe it some days and I feel so lucky to have met Amanda. I did not want to let go of his little hands..feet...they were so perfect. His poor little head was straight out of the cone heads movie but I didn't care. I remember thinking how weird it was, that he was so clean when he came out. I had imagined it as him being covered in tissue and blood and having to wait for the DR to pat him on the back to cry...but clearly he was ready to make his presence known because he came out screaming. The most beautiful sound I have ever heard.
Group hug!! :) Dr. Erika....
He got all cleaned up, weighed ( 8lbs 3 oz) and measured ( 21.25 inches ) , bundled up and handed over. He was PERRRFEECCTTT!!!!
The nurses and Dr. Erika were nothing short of amazing the whole time we were in the hospital. It was actually really hard to leave because they were so nurturing. The last night we were there I stayed up in the nursery with them just chatting and sharing our story.... I feel I have made lifelong friends, even if I may never see any of them again. ( Which wont happen Finn misses his nurses.. )
The last 6 and a half weeks have been amazing. Finn is such a good baby. He loves to just hang out and giggle all day. Which has made it a little easier for me to go back to work..he just lays in his swing and watches me work. Takes a few naps..poops a few times and then we eat and smile all day long. I don't feel my life has changed that much. I feel like I have been waiting so long to be a Mom, now that I actually AM one...it only seems natural. Everyone loves up on him and I know he can feel that love.
I have so many photos to share of his first month and a half of life..and this will be the place I will be continuing to share his growth.
Some photos from his birth.....
Dr. Erika holding Finn!! I have no idea why this wont let me rotate these two..but you get the idea.
Thank you everyone for the support, calls, texts, emails...everything over the last three years
Our ultimate goal has finally been reached, and we couldn't have done it without the generosity and selflessness of Amanda and her family. She will and is always going to be our angel.... and to the Drs at Sanford and all of their amazing nurses, we couldn't have done this without you either. From the beginning appointments to the sob sessions after the first round loss... you all kept us on track and helped us get where we are today. Words cannot describe how thankful we are for this whole ordeal. Fate definitely brought Amanda and I together...and our friend Jill of course... and
it is so cool to look back and see just how perfect everything was.
Our family has never been more full
The Kelly's...the family of 5!
...and 5 dogs, 6 fish and the tortoise. ;)