Our 4th baby is here! A birth story!

Wednesday, March 15

I've been quiet on the blog this Fall...mostly because we've had a lot going on with getting back from our whirlwind Europe trip with the kids, and then going straight into homeschooling (that's a whole other story there haha). AND...also because I was pregnant with our 4th baby! (I do still post on IG, so feel free to check there for more frequent updates!)

But...our sweet baby is finally here! Our Ames Bennet Cook! We are so thrilled and over the moon. I wanted to write out his birth story, because I realized with my last baby, if I don't write it down (sorry Ollie!) it's easy to forget all the details! 

My due date was January 22nd, but if he was going to be anything like my other 3, he'd be almost 2 weeks late! Avonlea was 14 days late, Everett was 11, and Ollie was 12! I had high hopes that maybe, just maybe, my 4th would come quicker...but that just wasn't the case. 

Those almost 2 weeks of waiting for him to come were hard. I was so discouraged that my body didn't go into labor naturally, and then there was the feeling of being quite uncomfortable haha! But, when I made peace with the fact that I'd need to get an induction, I was so excited for the day to come. 

Kevin and I checked in at the hospital at 7:15am in the morning. My mom has worked at this amazing hospital in OB for 40 years, so got to pick my nurses and they were amazing. 

I was dilated to about a 3 when I arrived at the hospital. They gave me cytotec, which is a cervical ripener. Kevin and I walked the halls of the labor floor, and waved at all the other couples walking the floors as well haha! After 3 hours, I was dilated to a 4 and not contracting, so they put me on Pitocin around 11:30am. 

Now one really special thing about this delivery is that the doctor who had delivered my first 3 babies, and had since retired, came out of retirement to deliver my baby. YOU GUYS, I bawled when he told me he would make an exception for me. He is the sweetest doctor, who prayed over each of my babies. When I thought he wasn't going to be able to see me or deliver my baby, I was so sad. I had originally started my prenatal care at another provider, and half way through I saw my doctor at church and he told me he would continue seeing me for prenatal care if I wanted. (He retired from OB, but was still seeing patients 2-3 days a week for GYN). And then about a month before my delivery date, he told me he would deliver me! It was a huge blessing knowing he was going to be there at my birth:) 

So...anyway, Pitocin got me contracting mildly...but it wasn't until 1pm, when my doctor came in and broke my water bag, that I really went into active labor. Within minutes of my water breaking, my contractions ramped up.  I moved down off the bed, and stood on the side of the bed leaning over it. Kevin and my mom were an amazing labor team, holding my hands and compressing my hips, rubbing my back, breathing with me, etc. Honestly, having people to go through each contraction with makes ALL the difference. I could not have done this without them. 

At around 3pm it became clear the baby hadn't fully dropped yet. My mom asked if we could get a nurse who does "spinning babies" in the room to do some exercises to help drop baby. In came Amber (a very sweet nurse I had had in previous births) and she had me doing all sorts of different things. Around 3:30pm when I was doing the last exercise, baby truly dropped, and I immediately went into transition. 

My body started completely shaking, and just reflexively I started sobbing. I kept yelling "I can't do this anymore!" over and over, and that's usually the sign that my body is close to needing to push! They called my doctor to come to the hospital (he was in his office a few blocks away), and they wheeled in all the birthing stuff. 

Sure enough....a little before 4pm, I felt the urge to push. The first few contractions I pushed as hard as I could, and while he was coming, he wasn't out yet. On the 3rd contraction, his head got stuck half inside of me and half outside of me. But the contraction ended so I had to wait 3 minutes until the next contraction came. It was the most pain I've ever experienced in my entire life. I just kept screaming "I CAN'T DO THIS!!!!" and Kevin and my mom were the best cheerleaders and kept saying "You can do it Katie! He's almost out! You've got this!!! You're doing SO good!!" Their encouragement helped me so much!! 

On the 4th contraction I pushed hard and his head popped out, then his shoulder, and then his body slid out and the doctor handed him to me and I put him on my chest. 

It is my FAVORITE feeling in the whole entire world! Truly, the 4 times I've given birth, it has been the most heavenly, euphoric thing I could ever imagine. You are meeting your child, whom you've carried for 9 months (almost 10 for me!) and you get to kiss their sweet face and nurse them. I want to cry happy tears now just thinking about it! 

And then...I always forget how hard the after birth process is haha...with having to birth the placenta, and then getting stitched up....BUT...it truly is all worth it to hold that sweet baby in your arms. 

Sweet Ames Bennet came at 4:06pm on February 2nd weighing 9lbs and 6 oz and measuring 21 inches long. His head was HUGE at 38.5cm! 

The whole few hours following birth were so heavenly...I was SO SO happy. I just kept snuggling him, reliving my birth experience, and thanking the Lord it all went well. When you work SO hard for something, it truly makes it all the sweeter:) My mom picked up our favorite bowls and shakes from a local restaurant, and we texted out our families and friends. It was all such a happy memory:) 

My older two kids came to visit the day after we had Ames, and it was so adorable. Everett was fixated on Ames's umbilical cord, and couldn't stop asking questions about the "twig" as he called it haha! Avonlea just snuggled him for hours. Precious moments I carry in my heart. 

Thank you for letting me share our story here. It will forever be a favorite memory of my life! We love you little Amsie!!