DEAN ALEXANDER | BIRTH STORY // RALEIGH, NC
1.24.19 | 7 lbs 1 oz | 20 1/2 inches
After so many weeks and months of waiting, we finally got to meet our son AND HE IS PERFECT. I cannot get over his little facial expressions and sounds! Very blessed to have a healthy little boy and an incredible birth experience.
Wednesday, we went in for our routine visit to check and see if he was any closer to arriving (his due date was 1/25) The waiting period is killer by the way; you’re so impatient to meet baby + you’ve got the anticipation of labor hanging over you 24/7. Because we had to be induced with Riley over fluid level concerns, we mentioned we thought my water had started to leak and she requested an ultrasound to check. Turns out we had the opposite issue of low fluid levels and I had polyhydramnios. My fluid levels were just above the normal range and Dr Beatty explained I had grounds for induction or I could be monitored closely over the next week.
I opted to be induced and we went home to wait for the hospital to call us in that night to start the process. It was actually happening. Cue all the packing, cleaning and prepping for Dean’s arrival. Alex’s mom is a rockstar and she came and stayed with Riley at the house while we were at the hospital. We got the call to come in at 8:30pm and started the process of getting checked in, iv’s hooked up and the oh so lovely foley bulb placed in my cervix. Very uncomfortable procedure, but it does its job. Usually they administer Pitocin to begin labor once the bulb has helped dilate you but in my case, it jumpstarted everything. I started having mild contractions and then my water broke naturally which felt like a sharp kick from baby in my side before a rush of liquid. My contractions intensified but were bearable and I was able to breathe through them. There was less back labor than with Riley or maybe natural contractions just don’t suck as bad as Pitocin ones! Alex was incredible, every contraction I would breathe and he would rub my lower back til it passed. Labor makes me shiver so I had a mountain of blankets on me and his touch was warm and soothing which allowed me to relax through the pain.
I had already decided to do the epidural again and I was NOT going to wait for fourteen hours like last time. Honestly, my fear of needles is quite paralyzing and I was just plain old TERRIFIED of the idea of a needle going into my back. But I knew I wanted it and Alex encouraged me, held me and talked me through it while I sat as still as possible. ALL THE WARMTH came pouring into my legs as they numbed out and I was finally able to relax. Our birth photographer, Amanda, arrived shortly after.
Dean gave us a few scares during the night - his heartrate would drop suddenly and at one point it hovered around the 50-60 range for a minute or so. They gave me oxygen at one point as we waited for it to come back up. Thankfully he settled down by 2am and we spent the rest of the early morning talking with Amanda. By 5am, my contractions had slowed down and I was dilated about 6cm.
They began Pitocin at 7am to ramp my contractions back up. We used the peanut birthing ball and spent the morning resting and flipping from side to side. All the nurses were wonderful in checking in, taking care of me and monitoring baby. I started to feel more pressure but didn’t think anything of it, but when the nurse went to check me to see if I had progressed from the last check at 8cm, her and Alex just went “Well there’s a baby.” Dean had already begun crowning all on his own so Alex held one leg while the nurse caught him as the doctor walked in. My body just naturally pushed him out and he was perfect. Dr Beatty had Alex cut the cord and within seconds he was laying on my chest.
That moment is priceless.
He latched easily and we just spent time cuddling and soaking in that skin-to-skin. His sandy brown hair has a reddish tint to it and it’s definitely straight - the complete opposite of his sister with her wild curls.
We ended up spending the whole weekend at the hospital because Dean had high bilirubin numbers. He tested positive to Coombs so our blood is incompatible. This usually leads to the high bilirubin. So we started light therapy and he handled it like a champ. Thankfully, it worked the numbers went down and we checked out Sunday and came home to meet sister.
Since then it’s been feeding + binge watching The Office. Diapers are always a fun surprise with a little boy :P He’s gone through more outfits than Riley EVER did. Pretty sure we kept her in the same clothes for days. He’s averaging two outfits a day haha. Enjoying this slower season of maternity leave and snuggles. We are so blessed and so happy. I will be sharing our birth photos in another post once we receive our gallery back from Amanda @raleighbirthphotography