Thursday, September 26, 2013

Cooper Parry Jones

Writing a birth story requires you to either pour your heart out with details that only you care to remember, or giving a brief synopsis of what happened just so that you can say that you did it. I would say that by the length of this post, I am pouring my heart out, trying to remember every detail...You can look at the pictures, the words are for me to remember the night we had our son.

 Cooper's story is one that I so looked forward to writing.  I think I imagined it being just like Maggie's.  I cut my hair similar to how I had it when Maggie was born, I listened to the music from her birth playlist, I read the same verses.  Truth be told, none of those things worked out for me. My bangs are crooked, the music lost it luster, and he needed his own verses.  I shouldn't be surprised that his birth was completely different.

The Dr.'s scheduled Cooper's induction for Monday, September 16th, the day after Libby's birthday.  I prayed and prayed that this wouldn't happened.  I had this weird feeling the entire pregnancy that something about Cooper's birth was going to be unexpected, like he would come really early, or he would come fast, or I would have to have a c-section.  When I was still pregnant a day passed 41 weeks I thought the "different" I was feeling was that I wouldn't get to experience the natural labor that I wanted.

  I was reading to the girls Saturday night at bedtime, when out of no where I realized that I was stopping the story to breath through contractions.  When I kissed them good night and came downstairs, I looked at Kev and said that I thought  my contractions were about three minutes apart and when I called the doctor and she didn't call me back right away, I told him I thought we needed to leave.  Thankfully, my parents decided to drive down that day so that we could all be together for Libby's birthday on Sunday.  Ironically, just 5 short years ago, on the very same night, September 14th after dinner, contractions started for me also.  When we arrived at the hospital and they checked my progress I was 7 centimeters, exactly what I was, when I arrived at the hospital to deliver Libby.

Cooper's birth is the first that I did not have the support of a midwife or doula, and I missed their calming presence.  We were ushered to a triage room where the nurses handed me a white bag and a hospital gown.  I didn't have the freedom to where my clothes, which for some reason, made me less comfortable.  They monitored me on a triage bed for 30 minutes while I was transitioning, another uncomfortable experience.  Once we were in our room, I looked for my birthing zone, I really tried to find it, but it was different.  I didn't feel alone or upset, I just new that something was different.  Things were moving quickly for me, even now it is hazy.  When I finally saw the doctor she checked my progress again and I had progressed to almost 9 centimeters.  She broke my water and I heard her tell the nurse that I needed to stay in the bed.  Laboring with out being able to move how you want to is very difficult.  My nurse did get me a birthing ball that I sat on for a while, but it was intense.  I felt like I wanted to push, so the nurse checked me again.  No luck, I was the same 8-9 centimeters.

The contractions were rolling in so fast, so painful.  I wasn't managing them.  I was thinking about the night 5 years before when the very same thing was happening to me.  I labored through the night trying to bring my baby down and I never got there.  After laboring all night and into the morning, my midwife told me that my body needed rest, and she thought I needed an epidural to help me relax.
I looked at the clock in my room on this night and it said 3:15.  Then I looked at the bed in front of me and all I could think about was how bad I needed to rest.  With out even thinking about it or discussing it with Kev, the next time I saw the nurse, I told her I wanted an epidural.
I didn't sleep after I got the epidural, I held pictures of Libby and Maggie in my hand and the ultra sound I had of Cooper's little face from the week before.  I stared at them for an hour and thought about how much I loved them.  I thought about how much I have been blessed three times with gifts too precious for words.

 The nurse came back and told me it was time to push.  I pushed through several contractions, but could tell I still had some work to do.  I asked the nurse what I needed to do and she said I needed to push him passed my pelvic bone.  She helped me roll onto my side, told me push, and in my head I repeated "push him past your pelvic bone."  The next thing I knew she was yelling at my friend/photographer Beth to pull a cord out of the wall while she held her hand on Cooper trying to stop him from coming out.  An army of nurses and finally my doctor came filling in...everything was whirling around us and then plop!

 Cooper Jones was laying on my chest.  I grabbed him and tried to warm him myself, but there were hands everywhere.  His little body so very purple and blue from the speed at which he came out.  They took him from me almost immediately and placed him on the warmer to try to get him to cry.  I'm sure that it was only a few minutes but it felt like forever to me.  I knew they were doing what he needed, but I wanted to hold him so bad.  I felt like telling them that he would be fine if they just gave him to me. I could feel hot tears forming in my eyes while we waited to here him cry.  The nurses assured me that he was fine, I just pushed him out too fast and his lungs didn't have a chance to clear properly.

  Finally, when his pulse was stable, they handed me my son.  I don't think I really cried, when I had the girls, but when he was there in my arms, I was overwhelmed.  The tears finally came.
Cooper Parry Jones, entered this world on September 15, 2013.  Five years to the day of his big sister. Eight and a half pounds of baby boy, wrapped up warm in a blanket,  handed over to the Englishman and I to love for the rest of forever.

His birth is a blur to me.  It went so fast.  I was waiting for him for so long and it felt like out  of nowhere he was here.  We had him at 4:20 Sunday morning and were pulling in our driveway by dinner time on Monday night.
Cooper's birth wasn't what I thought it would be, and that is okay.  We can plan for life the way we think it should happen, but I'm always surprised by the twists and turns it gives me.  Cooper's story completes our family, and that is where the magic lies.  When my little girls burst into the room full of energy, to meet their baby brother and their eyes lit up,  they oohed and ahhed over and over again at every noise he made.  When we sat on the bed, all five, that is when I had my magic moment.  The moment I had 5 years ago, then again 2 years after, then again on this day.  That moment where so much thanksgiving poured from my heart I thought it would burst.  I looked to my left and right and in my arms and I was surrounded by love.

Sometimes, or all the time, I look at my life and wonder how I got here.  I remember clearly one night, when I was living alone in a little garage apartment.  My heart had recently been stolen away by a certain young man that lived very far away. In my narrow vision I could see no way for us to ever be together.  I cried out to God, these exact words "God, I promise, if you let me have him, I'll be good for the rest of my life!"  I can't say that I kept up my part of the bargain, but my Father did.  He knit our lives together and has blessed us more than I ever thought imaginable.
Thanks be to God.

 "Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us"
Ephesians 3:20

My cup runneth over again and again and again.
Grace and peace dear friends, big love to you all.

Most of these beautiful pictures were taken by my friend Beth...some were by Daddy :)


Art Teacher's Mom said...

Birth story is are amazing... and I love, love, love the video. Can I say the children are just beautiful and not seem biased? Cooper as the sweetest little expression in the first picture...all of them, but particularly in the first one

Teri said...

Ahhhh!!!! Yay! I've been waiting and waiting and waiting to see this post! Great work mama! Such precious moments captured in these pictures. Loved every one! Thank you for sharing. What a blessing!

Dawn said...

Carly, Your writing is so beautiful and heart stirring...congratulations on your new addition! He looks just like Kevin :) What a sweet little man!

TeamWhitehead06 said...

I've been waiting for this post! Congrats on that little man! You looked amazing all through labor too!

Welcome to the dirt and bugs and slimy things club! It is fun here!

Congrats again!

Abigail said...

I'm late to comment, but this account of your son's birth is so beautifully shared, both in word and image. Welcome, Cooper Parry! What a handsome, blessed little boy you are.

Amanda said...

Yay!!!!!!! You have a son! Congratulations! I cried through all these posts I just caught up on. So very sweet.