Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Kenlin's Birth Story

Warning: I'm not going to get all graphic or anything, but if you don't want to know about childbirth, skip the words from here on out and simply look at the adorable (I may be slightly bias) pictures of my sweet baby girl.

Well folks, it's official.  I'm now a mom!  I'm so in love with my little monkey it's ridiculous.  What is even more ridiculous is how I had her.  I mean, I had admittedly an easy pregnancy with no morning sickness to speak of, hardly any pains, I fit into many of my normal clothes until I was about 8 months, and had just about none of the pregnancy side effects people complain about.  Sure I had my rough days, but overall it was easy.  Because of that I just knew that labor was going to suck.  No one gets it easy through pregnancy AND the birth.  This thought had me terrified for the entire last month.  I was not looking forward to the pain of contractions, the hours and hours I'd be spending in the hospital dealing with them, and the potential for a c-section.  Like I said, I just knew I was in for a worst case scenario delivery.

Here is Kenlin's birth story.....

On Wednesday May 8 I went to my scheduled doctor's appointment and was told I was just about 2 centimeters dilated.  It hadn't changed from the week before.  For those that may not know, you need to hit 10 centimeters before you can actually push out your child.  I was a little disappointed in the lack of progress despite the fact that things can change quickly.  I was impatient and wanted Kenlin here sooner rather than later.  Also, I was afraid she was going to go over her due date.

Thursday rolled around and in the late afternoon I started to feel crampy.  We're not talking on and off time-able contractions of the Braxton Hicks (the non-labor inducing contractions) variety, but constant period-like cramps.  I knew this was fairly common and while I spent a large portion of the night curled up in the fetal position, it never became time-able nor did it become any worse.  By the time I fell asleep it was mostly gone, and by Friday morning I felt nothing.

I actually spent the day Friday cleaning, running errands, and finally packing my hospital bag less than a week before my due date.  There was no cramping, no contractions, nothing.  It felt like a normal day.  I woke up Saturday excited because my mom was getting into town that day.  She got in around 3 that afternoon and it was around then that I noticed something might be going on.  I thought maybe my water hadn't broken, but was leaking.  I called the doctor who told me to go into the hospital to get checked.  After that advice we hurriedly scarfed down the dinner that had been cooking in the crockpot, but wasn't quite completely done (because you can't eat once you're in labor in case of emergency surgery), grabbed some last minute things, and headed off.  I honestly fully expected to be sent home with a false alarm.

I got to the hospital just after 5:00 and started the admitting process.  After giving all the information they needed the nurse checked to see how dilated I was since there was no liquid leaking at the time so they weren't sure my water actually had broken.  The following was our conversation:

Nurse: How many centimeters were you at your last check?
Me: I was 2 centimeters on Wednesday.
*she does the exam*
Nurse: You were 2 centimeters the doctor said?
Me (in my head): Crap, she thinks I'm less.  This sucks.  Kenlin is never coming and I'm about to get sent home.
Me (out loud): Yeah, that's what she said.
Nurse: Well, you're at 5 centimeters now.  You're not going home.
Me: What?!

Feeling no pain

Apparently all that cramping Thursday night had been progress.  They put the monitors on me to track Kenlin's heartbeat along with the frequency and intensity of my contractions.  The machine tracking it was behind me so I couldn't see it, and I wasn't really trying to watch it.  I figured that when things started really moving and contractions started kicking in I'd know, because that's what everyone says.  You can't mistake real contractions from Braxton Hick's or cramping.  They hurt, and hurt bad.  Unmistakeable.  That's when the next shocking thing happened.

Nurse: Are you feeling any sort of pain, pressure, or discomfort?
Me: No, not at all.
Nurse: Well, you're having a contraction and a pretty serious one.
Me: I am?!

Yep, that's right.  Apparently I was having contractions about every 3-4 minutes and had no idea.  I'd gone through almost all of labor without knowing it.  At that point we decided to break my water to get things moving and I chose to have an epidural before doing that.  Things were about to get more intense and even though I wasn't feeling the contractions then, I didn't want to gamble on the chance that I'd be able to handle it when they got worse.  A few hours later I was ready to go and hadn't felt pain for even a single second.

However, I'm glad I got the epidural because that actual pushing part kind of sucked.  I pushed for almost 3 hours, which is just about as long as they let you go before suggesting a c-section.  The epidural started to wear off and while I still didn't feel any pain, the pressure started to overwhelm me a bit.  That and I was exhausted from waking up at 7am that morning and it was after midnight.  I hit the button to give me a new dose of the epidural and not long after, I actually fell asleep.  Yes, I fell asleep in the middle of pushing.  Only for about 5-10 minutes, but when I woke up I felt refreshed.  It didn't take much longer after that for Kenlin to finally arrive.

At 1:54 in the morning on May 12, which also happened to be Mother's Day (and my Maid of Honor's birthday) Kenlin Teresa McKenna was born.

It's definitely been an adjustment since coming home with her, but Mike and I are slowly starting to figure it out.  Unfortunately Kenlin seems to have the same hours as her mom and doesn't go to sleep until after midnight, and sleeps in until sometime between 10-12.  We're going to have to work on that.  My mom was here for almost 3 weeks to help out, and my dad came in for a week as well.  They were huge helps in the time when Mike and I were just trying to adjust and I'm so grateful they were there.  Now Kenlin will be a month old tomorrow and I'm starting to feel like I'm getting the hang of things.  Of course, as soon as I do, she'll hit a growth spurt or reach a milestone and I'll have all knew things to learn and worry about.  The life of a parent I suppose.  Even so, I love my little monkey and can't wait to watch her grow and learn about the world.  The moment I hear her giggle for the first time will probably be one of the best moments in my life.  I can't wait.

Here's a few more pics of her:

Meeting her brother Bauer for the first time
Proud of Daddy!


  1. She is beautiful! Congratulations!

  2. What an adorable little girl! All the best going forward to you and your family!