Ellie Reese: birth story

This story is something that will be so special to me forever.  I love sharing this, but writing it out is mostly for me.  We prepared for the labor process, but I don't think anything could have prepared me for the rush of emotions right after she joined us (outside the belly).

I was determined to let Ellie arrive when she was good and ready. I had no idea the emotions that would bring.  We walked a lot and went swinging.  I ate mexican food and went swimming.  We tried other things, too. ;) My due date (Thursday) came and went... along with a couple more days.  And on Sunday I was a mess.  I cried.  I just wanted to know she was okay.  I vacuumed our staircase with the heavy duty vac and did a couple of natural remedies to bring on labor. And that night I went to sleep thinking I would just wake up in the morning disappointed again that nothing happened.

I woke up at 1:40 in the morning... had to go to the bathroom like usual. I had my very first "real" contraction.  So, that was what everyone meant when they said "you'll know" ... I knew.  I decided to go back to bed and try to sleep a little more and time the contractions to see if they stayed.  Sure enough... they were a good 6-7 minutes apart.  No more sleeping.  A shower sounded good.  I woke Michael up to tell him that I thought this was IT and told him to try to sleep more (ha!).  I showered and by now the contractions were coming closer and staying around longer.  Michael was timing them and called my other support person.. my friend Meagan.  She got to the house and they were coming on about 4 minutes apart and each one was lasting a good minute.  I was able to talk in between and pretty much stayed on my exercise ball while leaning on our bed.  Meagan asked if I felt like it was time to head to the hospital.  I told her I didn't want to go too soon.  But, she looked at Michael and said she thought it was time.  She was so right.

We got to the hospital and I walked in .... stopping every so often to let a contraction pass.  I bet I looked pretty silly.  We checked in at 5:50 am.  They took me to triage.  I was a 4 and fully effaced.  I wanted to be at least a 5 or 6, but at the time didn't think a thing of it.  We got to the delivery room and they hooked me up to equipment that would allow me to walk around and started an IV for fluids only...I got sick a couple of times when we got to the hospital and knew I needed to stay hydrated.  The nurse asked if I really wanted to try without medication and I told her yes.  She never asked again.  She checked me an hour after getting there and I was 6 cm dilated.  I thought I would want to walk around... use the exercise ball... have music... etc.  but, NOPE.  All I wanted to do was lay on my left side.. hold my husband's hand.. and did a deep "moan" through each contraction.  The beginning of each contraction was not easy, but as I relaxed (with the help of Meagan telling me to relax my shoulders and drop my jaw almost every time) I kind of felt out of my body.  My mind was focused on getting her OUT.

I felt the urge to push at 8:30 am.  She checked and I was a good 9.5 cm dilated.  She let the doctor know.  He came to check me and said I had a lot of work ahead of me... she had to make her way under my pelvic to get out.  She wasn't positioned well.  Now, my OB was a strong supporter of my birth plan, but he definitely had his doubts if I would be able to deliver vaginally.  My nurse was wonderful and kept telling me I COULD DO IT.  We tried pushing a couple of different ways...I sat in a sitting position in the bed, used a squat bar, and pushed while lying on my right side to help her change positions.  We got her to turn just right and she started to finally make her way down and out.  My mom said "I see hair" and Meagan and Michael were both cheering me on.  Michael had every intention not to look... but he did and then he got really excited and kept telling me through every contraction/push how close I was.. how close she was.  The nurse asked if someone would call the doctor to tell him to make his way over.  He was taking his time.  He didn't think I would be ready.  She crowned.  The nurse gave me the option of not pushing so he could be there, but she said she wasn't telling me I couldn't.  There was no way I could just stop pushing.  It burned.. honestly.  I told her I HAD to push.  She said ok...push her out... and within a matter of seconds my baby girl was here at 9:58 in the morning.  They placed her on my chest and I looked at her and she screamed right away.  Girl has some lungs.  We bonded a bit and my mom cut the cord (Michael said no thanks ;))

I did it.  I felt unbelievable.  I felt tired.  I didn't cry.
I couldn't stop smiling.  She was here....My beautiful little baby girl.

My "birth plan" was just that... a plan.  My actual birth went way better than any plan I could have come up with.  It went fast for me (1:40 am-9:58 am..not bad).  They only made us stay one night at the hospital.  Home never sounded so good to me.

I'm not going to lie and say it was easy.  It was work.  I got sick.  I said I didn't want to do it anymore a few times.  I asked multiple times how much longer?  How many more pushes?  I dreaded each contraction coming on when it was time to push.  And, with each first push of the contraction I said I couldn't do it.  But, I did.  It was a rush.  I'm a bit sore.  Would I have another baby all natural without any medications?  You bet.  Would I be disappointed if my next labor didn't happen the way I planned?  No way.  I've learned that the end result (the precious little life) is way beyond more important.

I'm over the moon in love with my baby girl!


  1. What a beautiful story!! Your baby is sooo cute and you look so in love and happy! I just love reading birth stories!

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  3. I absolutly loove this story! It made CRY!!!! OH HOW I WISH I COULD HAVE BEEN THERE!! Meagan is so great! I bet she was the perfect person to be there!
    I love you guys and miss you a ton!
    Praying for a quick recovery!

  4. Congratulations!! :) She is beautiful and you are a trooper!
    My SIL had her first all natural and just recently had her second. She was planning on going all natural again, but when they got to the hospital the baby had flipped and was breach so they stopped her labor to get the baby to move. Once they finally got her turned the right way, they had to give her pitocin to get the labor going again before the baby moved. The pitocin made the contractions so much worse than with the first baby so finally she got an epidural because she said the contractions when she was dilated to a 7 were worse than pushing the first one out.
    So lesson learned is have a plan but don't be afraid to change it. Every baby/birth is different!

    So happy for you :) What a perfect little family!

  5. Yay for you all!!! She is darling! Praise God that everything went so well (and fast!). You guys are going to be amazing parents!

  6. so very beautiful...the picture of you all is precious!

  7. Crying over here! This sounds so much like lunas birth! I love that feeling at the end when you realize you did it!

  8. i am so happy for you, lesley!
    this was so encouraging for me.
    she is so beautiful! : )

  9. Beautiful birth story! Very inspiring :)

  10. Congrats! This made me cry! I gave birth 10 weeks ago,, my birth story is very dramatic, I ended up getting an emergency C-Section. :( Ellie is a beautiful little lady!

  11. You make such a beautiful mama and it suits you perfectly. Words cannot express how happy I am for you and your little family of 3!!

  12. Congrats to your beautiful litte Miss Ellie!
    Thank you for sharing your story, I loved it!
    My due date for our first baby is in 6 weeks and I have 'a birth plan' as well .... If possible, I want to do everything as natural as possible. I know that the whole thing can turn out completely different, but your story gives me a lot of confidence.
    Let's see how it will work out.

  13. wow, that's awesome!
    great story, lovely picture. :) :)
    congrats again!

  14. What a lovely birth story. So inspiring and sweet. You make one beautiful mama and you're baby is precious :)

  15. What a beautiful birth story! Thank you for sharing it with us. Ellie is beautiful!

  16. You're amazing. =] I'm happy you were able to give birth the way you wanted to! I'm happy that Ellie is a happy healthy baby. Your little family is absolutely beautiful. Congratulations! <3