Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Our Pregnancy Story: A Birth I Couldn't Do

Ok people it’s birth story time…here’s just a little part of our story and the amazing things God did because I couldn't have.

On Monday the day before my due date Michael and I ventured up to Springfield to talk with my doctor and one of the things we discussed was an epidural because my chart said the high risk doctor wanted me to get an early epidural due to my pacemaker.  Call me crazy, but I didn’t want one.  I really wanted a vaginal, without epidural, and as minimal intervention childbirth as I possibly could.  So we talked about it, she talked with the high risk doc, and my cardiologist and EVERYONE said it would be okay for me not to get an epidural (so we thought).

BUT then came Wednesday, the day my water sprung a leak (no, it literally sprung a leak) and Michael and I went to the hospital.  The doctor came into the room, not the one I’d been seeing, but the one on call who would also be delivering the baby and tells me that they want me to have an epidural.  I then proceed to tell him about the conversation I JUST had with my doctor two days ago.  He informs me that he also spoke with all of my doctors again and everyone was of the opinion that I should have an epidural.  Okay, now I’m confused, and frankly angry.  Picture it with me people, I’m sitting on my birth ball, rocking away, crying because this doctor is telling me that I now have to have an epidural and I would only be allowed 30 minutes of pushing time because of my pacemaker.  Did you know the average first time Mom pushes 1 to 2 hours?  Awesome, 30 minutes, when my doctor and I discussed it earlier and she said I could push for up to 1 hour and 30 minutes.  Now, I know Rachel Ray can whip up a meal in 30 minutes, but we are talking babies here people, not chicken marsala!

Anyways, I think the tears may have swayed my doctor a bit because he told me that if I could keep my heart rate under 100 and push for 30 minutes he would let me do it without the epidural.  This also meant I would have to labor down as long as possible, which just means I’d have to wait for Gabriel to get as low as he could in the birth canal so I wouldn’t have to push as long.  That just means I could be fully dilated for quite some time without being able to push.  Wow, okay, labor without pain meds and keep my heart rate under 100, while laboring down, and only pushing for 30 minutes. 


Yep, I couldn’t, I had to have God’s strength.  I always knew I couldn’t give birth without God’s help, but now I really needed some divine intervention. 

My doula, who was awesome and loves Jesus prayed with us and we asked God for His help.  Folks, let me tell you, He showed up!  

There was one time my heart rate went over 100, and that was when my family walked in the room.  It startled me and sent my heart rate into the 100’s.  Other than that, even in the most intense part of labor my heart rate stayed under 100.  Now, I just don’t know how that happened, unless God was behind it all. 

Oh, but it doesn’t stop there!  It’s now pushing time.  Remember, I’ve got 30 minutes.  The doctor decided to have me push through every other contraction though, so I’d push and then breathe through the next.  That was fun (enter sarcastic tone here).  While that was difficult I think it worked to my advantage and the doc gave me some grace because it took about 40 minutes total with about 20 minutes of actual pushing time for me to get Gabriel out.  Once he crowned, I’m not kidding, on the next set of pushing he literally flew out all at once.  He must've known we didn't have much time left. ;)  (*update 3/25/15) My Doula told me that right after I gave birth my heart rate went above 100.  It's true, I actually have a picture of my husband holding Gabriel and my heart rate is 122 and that was minutes after I had given birth.  Wow, now that's just the Lord, there's no other way to explain it! 
(Heart rate at 122 after delivery)

I remember praying through this time, and just hearing from the Lord to rest knowing He was right there.  He sure was and He showed up big.  I just love it when He does this because I know I could not have done this alone, He did it and He deserves all the glory! 

Our beloved Gabriel is an answer to our many prayers.  In August of 2009 Michael and I started praying for a child, and on August 20th, 2014 God granted our request.  What a great God we serve!


  1. So proud of you, Michael and Gabe! You inspire me in many ways, especially your faith and complete trust in God. Thanks for sharing your beautiful birth story!

    1. Stephanie,
      Thank you so much for your kind words! You inspire me too! God's grace and blessings to you my friend. :)

  2. It was wonderful reading your birth story and how blessed you and Michael are with your newest family member and I am so pleased at what God has done in your life. You both deserve all the happiness you will have over the years with your little son. God bless all of you.

    Love you,
    Margie Edwards

    1. Dear Margie,

      Thank yo so much for your kind words! We are so excited and thankful to God for Gabriel, he is nothing short of a miracle. God's grace and blessings to you in your own journey with Jesus!