“Liam was ready to join the world three weeks early and, funny enough, four days before his dad’s birthday. He made his debut on Saturday, October 20, 2018.
The evening before, we were running errands as we were getting ready to celebrate my husband’s birthday with a barbecue the following day but Liam had other plans for us.
That evening, I did not particularly feel any different, except for a strong urge to pack my hospital bag which I had been dragging my feet on for weeks. A couple hours after we laid down to go to bed, I woke up to cramps in my abdominal area. I had never had contractions before–not even Braxton Hicks–so I had no idea what real contractions felt like. Admittedly, I googled ‘what contractions feel like’ as I could not believe I was already going into labor.
Pretty quickly, I figured out that it was time to wake up my husband. We very calmly got ready to go to the hospital. We even took showers and put a load of laundry in, including Liam’s going home hospital outfit, that had not be washed yet (again I was not prepared for him to arrive early). I would have never guessed that we would be as calm as we were – very different from the movies that usually portray the couple as panicked, rushing to the hospital.
We had taken several birthing classes and I knew exactly how far my contractions needed to be in order to be admitted to the hospital with active labor. Around 2am on Saturday, we arrived at the hospital and went straight to triage. My contractions at this point had intensified but according to the nurse, I was only 2 cm dilated and not ready to be admitted into the hospital yet.
Shortly after, my blood pressure had increased significantly and the hospital’s doctor was concerned that I may have developed preeclampsia, which was strange because I went my entire pregnancy with normal blood pressure levels. Nevertheless, the doctor wanted to admit me into the hospital to monitor my blood pressure but not for official labor. I was in extreme labor pains by now and to my surprise, was 4 cm dilated. It turned out that the high blood pressure was related to my strong contractions and thankfully not preeclampsia.
At 4am on Saturday morning, I was officially getting admitted for labor and taken to a birthing room. The rest of the morning I progressed nicely. The nurse called it “text book.” I was very nervous about giving birth so I was hoping that this meant an easy delivery. Boy was I wrong.
Around 2pm, I was in extreme pain, feeling my contractions more than before, even though I had received an epidural that morning. To my shock, the epidural insert had disconnected from my body so I had not been receiving epidural for who knows how long. All I know is that it was long enough for me to be in extreme pain right before it was time to push. I was not opposed to having a natural birth but mentally, I was not prepared.
A couple of hours later, I was pushing. To my dismay, I pushed and pushed and nothing was happening. I was just in more pain than ever before. The new dose of epidural eventually started kicking in again. I pushed for over four hours but as eager as baby Liam seemed to want to join us earlier in the day, he seemed eager no more. After pushing for close to five hours and giving it my all, there was no progress past seeing a little bit of his head peeking through.
My doctor checked me again at the end of the four hour pushing stretch and said that I was not even close to pushing him out and to consider a cesarean section. While baby Liam showed no signs of distress, she was concerned that at this point I was very tired and had been pushing for hours with little to no progress. So after approximately 19 hours of labor, we made the decision to proceed with a c-section. A c-section had been a possibility even weeks earlier due to Liam’s weight, so making the decision to proceed with a c-section felt right.
On October 20, 2018, at 9:41 pm, we welcomed our sweet baby boy, Liam Haris, at exactly 37 weeks to the day, weighting 8 lbs 1 oz. The exhaustion that I had felt from the day was no longer present. I felt an overwhelming amount of happiness and relief that he was healthy and in our arms. It truly is the most amazing feeling that I cannot put in words.
As the nurse put him on my chest with my husband by my side, tears started coming down my cheeks. How much love a little human can bring into this world within minutes was unthinkable to me before. We fell in love with him immediately and knew that he forever changed our lives. We are so blessed and thankful that we are his parents.”