Vann Hudson's Birth Story

It's hard to believe I am typing this a week after giving birth to the most perfect boy. I would not trade a single minute of his story. I am writing it here to remember the details that I want to keep fresh in my mind forever because I truly went through a miracle. Every woman, no matter the way they birth a baby, witnesses a miracle from God.

I went to work all week before delivering Vann. The look on people's faces was priceless when they would ask when I was due and my response would be Monday. I felt good besides my feet swelling up and a little waddle going on. A lady at work told me to go eat Mexican food because that sent her into labor. All I could think about the rest of the day was Mexican food from our favorite hole in the wall restaurant. I texted Ryan and asked if he could pick some up on the way home. He was all about it. I ended up ordering chicken and veggies. It was so good, but I noticed soon after that my tongue felt tingly and funny. I did a quick internet search and found out that this happens to a lot of women in their last trimester!

Saturday morning I woke up in need of groceries and getting the house in spectacular shape. Mom and I went to a local produce stand and went to Publix. Then, when I made it home Ryan and I cleaned the house. I was down on my hands and knees vacuuming base boards, scrubbing the bathroom down, etc., and Ryan was working even harder. Looking back, that was nesting at it's finest!

Around 9 that evening, something felt different. I started looking up my symptoms and they were all there...the start of early labor. I also read where this could go on for up to two weeks before you begin true labor. I quickly decided to not get my hopes up and reminded myself that we just KNEW I was gonna be 41 weeks and 1 day like average first time pregnancies. I also knew that it was all in God's hands and I was ok with whatever needed to happen.

Sunday morning Ryan rolled over and asked if we were going to church. I couldn't. My body was not feeling normal and I didn't want to be in the middle of our church service and go into labor. I relaxed all day and tried to prepare myself for work on Monday. I called my mom and was telling her how I was feeling. You could tell we were both trying to play it cool and not get our hopes up. Around 3:40 pm my friend Mindy texted me before she flew home from Texas just to check in and see if I had a baby update. I was texting back and saying no baby yet when Vann's head engaged and I felt some fluid. I thought for sure this was my water breaking (definitely not) and it got me up and walking quickly to the bathroom. Ryan, who was relaxing on the couch, sat straight up and asked me if it was time. I told him what I felt and we were off. He was filling up his bag, I was hopping in the shower, straightening my hair in record time, and getting the last bit in my bag. This checklist came in SUPER HANDY!

Then, about 15 minutes after the excitement I had my first real contraction. You can definitely tell the difference between the real thing and Braxton Hicks. I ran to my bed and hunched over clutching my body pillow and using my breathing to relax. A minute later it was over and we were rushing around even more. This happened once more and we sped up big time. In the car, I texted Erin and let her know what was happening and to please tell the rest of the family. She wrote back "promise?". She thought I was kidding. No jokes here... I put my makeup on between contractions in the car. Ryan was timing them and they were about 5-7 minutes apart. I knew we weren't supposed to head to the hospital until contractions were 5 minutes apart for at least an hour, but I thought my water broke so that trumped it all.
We checked in at the hospital about 5 and before they admitted us they checked me (I was at 2.5 cm and my water had not broken...bummer) and told me to walk around the floor for 1-2 hours. I started walking and each contraction I had grew worse. I used the breathing techniques we'd practiced. Ryan was amazing. He kept the mood light and supported me literally. At one point I was hugging his neck in the hallway praying I wasn't about to fall out in the floor. I would nearly pass out with each contraction I had. The nurse said my bag of fluids was bulging. I totally believe her because it grew harder and harder to walk. I was so sick to my stomach yet super excited that Vann was on his way. After 30 minutes of walking, I physically could not do it without nearly passing out and feeling like I was going to throw up in the middle of the hallway.
We went back to our little room where they were monitoring me and after an hour I had progressed to a 4. They let me fill out papers and admitted me! We were having Vann. The time was here. Excitement does not even come close to what we felt!
I got wheeled to a delivery room, while having a contraction, and made my way into the bed. I had big dreams of bouncing on the exercise ball and using the squatting bar, but my back was in horrendous pain. All I wanted to do was get in the tub. We heard at our birthing class that out of water the average woman progresses 1.25 cm/hour but in the tub it sped it up to 2.5 cm/hour. After my sweet nurse put my IV port in, Ryan ran a bath for me and I labored in the tub for an hour. One of my favorite moments was Ryan kneeling beside me and praying for everything and thanking God for getting us to this point. I am telling you, he is the best! The bath relieved the pressure so much that I highly recommend it to anyone! I continued to progress from a 4 to a 5. Our family was on the way.

We had to check heart rates on the monitor, so I got out of the tub. Vann was doing incredible and my contractions were continuing to stay strong. After that was confirmed I got back into the tub. Ryan hooked me up with the relaxation station on Pandora and let me relax. Our parents and siblings made it to the hospital. My mom, Ryan's mom, and sister all came into see us. I would talk a little bit, breathe through a contraction, and then resume talking. At this point, my back was in excruciating pain with each contraction. It felt like my back was going to break from the pressure. Is this normal? With each contraction, my belly would tighten up and become rock hard, my lower abdomen would cramp up, and my tailbone would have extreme pressure. At times my body would push involuntarily which would scare me because I knew it wasn't time. The nurse came in around 9:30 to check in on us and I had progressed to an 8! 

While I was out of the tub and having a contraction, Ryan was rubbing my back. I guess you could call it rubbing, he said he was sure it was going to break my back as hard as he was pushing. I was breathing through a strong contraction and boom my water breaks. Ryan immediately backed up and thought he had done something to cause it.
Going into labor, I didn't want to get an epidural. My main reason was I didn't want to get caught in the trap of an epidural, then pitocin, and then wind up having a C-section unless it was for necessary medical reasons. By this time I had been playing with the idea because I had progressed so quickly and my back felt like it was going to snap at any time. Once my water broke, I was ready. I do not regret it one bit. I feel like I got the best of both worlds. I felt real contractions, progressed naturally to an 8, and then relaxed even more with the epidural.

My nurse, Jennifer, was incredible. She really couldn't have been more helpful and kind. When I told her I wanted to try labor without meds she was very supportive. I had prayed for my nurses and doctor starting very early on in my pregnancy. God placed the right people in that room and I was so blessed. When I decided to get the epidural she made sure the anesthesiologist was there fast. He made his way in. I sat up, held Ryan's hands, and while having a contraction I got my epidural. My legs never went numb enough to where I couldn't move them. They felt like the tingling in your mouth when you have dental work and the numbness is wearing off. I could pick them up, move my feet around, and feel pressure when I had a contraction. This helped when I began delivery. I did shake uncontrollably at points and worried Ryan and Erin a bit. My teeth would chatter and arms and legs would shake. Ryan kept asking if I wanted to turn the air up or needed more blankets. I was definitely not cold, just relaxed and my nerves were going all crazy!
I did slow down significantly with the epidural with my progress. To pass the time away we watched Fast and The Furious Miami and chatted with all of our family that took turns to come up. Greg, Alexis, Erin, Adam, Anna Beth, and our parents all got to visit with us. I should have been getting sleep, but who can sleep with sweet Vann on the way. The last two centimeters took 5 hours. I progressed to a 9.5 and a piece of the cervix wouldn't move. Thankfully Jennifer had me push through it which budged to a 10. It was finally show time. Vann was arriving soon!

At about 4 am we got the show on the road. Erin and Ryan were beside me helping me hold my legs. Mom and Miss Shelia were huddled on the couch. Jennifer coached me through and Vann started to emerge. While Jennifer was directing me on how to push she would stop and talk about Vann's head full of hair. It made me so excited and motivated. Thankfully, I had a minute and a half to two minutes between each push (sets of 3-4) and I could catch my breath. I would close my eyes with each contraction and focus on getting Vann out. I would look at Ryan, who told me prior to that he was not going to look at what was happening, and I caught him taking it all in. He got to see his son first.

Dr. Little was called when time was getting near. I hated to wake him up at 4:45 in the morning. Once he arrived Vann was born at 5:16 am. They held Vann up and I caught a quick glimpse of a sweet piece of heaven.

It was the neatest thing I have ever been a part of. He was taken away and cleaned immediately because of a tiny bit of meconium staining. I watched Ryan as he stayed right by Vann's side while he was getting the attention he needed. I asked if he was ok and if he had all of his fingers and toes. The nurse let me know he was, he did have all of his fingers and toes, and he didn't have any extra either! My mom came up to me, rubbed my hair, and told me how proud of me she was. I will remember that moment forever. Before long, Ryan brought our son over and handed him to me. He was stunning. I cradled him and started nursing him. He knew just what to do. God is beyond good. Vann was a healthy 8 lbs, 20.5 inches long, and so loved.


After our families came into the room to see him, they went home to sleep. Sleep for us would not happen on August 12th because we were now parents ... a job that never ends.
 {I will give details in the next post all about our hospital stay and 
visitors who came to see us Vann!}

Pin It