Merloe's Birth Story

Tuesday, November 10, 2020

Merloe Charlene Turner is finally here! She was pretty comfortable in my belly so we ended up having to be induced. I thought I'd share my story since I was unfamiliar with the induction process and hopefully it can help others. 

And let me tell you... I am so thankful for our family helping us as we adjust as new parents. Giving birth and caring for another tiny human has been the most challenging, yet beautiful thing I've ever done. I couldn't have done it without my husband cheering me on and taking care of me, postpartum life is no joke! Anyways, I figured now that Merloe is officially 2 Weeks Old it's time to document her birth... 

October 7, 2020

My first official cervix check - only 1 cm dilated. The doctor said that's completely normal for a first time mom. He said to expect her the week of my due date or after.

October 13, 2020

I lost my mucus plug! Or at least some of it. After doing some research, many moms can lose their mucus plug and go straight into labor while others can be stuck waiting a few more weeks. AKA - me!

October 21, 2020

My last OB appointment and I'm still only dilated to 1 cm. AH! I was hoping to be at 3 cm. My doctor performed a membrane sweep which caused me to loose more of my mucus plug, but no signs of Merloe coming early. We decided, with the doctor, to book an appointment to be induced. I called to book the appointment and we were hoping for a later date to give Merloe more time to come on her own, but the only available date was October 27 - so there's that! I think that was God's way of telling me, no matter how hard I tried I wasn't going to be "planning" her birth -- it's all in his hands!

October 24, 2020

Happy Due Date! Still no signs of Merloe coming. And we tried everything to induce labor early! Doctor said she's still sitting high which is crazy because I can feel her down in my pelvic area but she continues to kick my ribs! 


October 27, 2020

Time to check in to the hospital. Both Seth and I worked all day, which was probably helpful since we we're both feeling anxious so it gave us an outlet to focus on. Check-in time was 9:00 p.m. The doctor said they usually bring in the moms late at night to start the process since sometimes it can take up to 12 hours to get the process started. We arrived to St. Rose San Dominican - San Martin Hospital and went up to the 2nd Floor. With Covid-19 we had to get our temperatures checked as we arrived and put on a new face mask that they provided. (Side Note: Seth was the only visitor I was allowed to bring with me during our entire stay. He could leave and grab food or run an errand if needed, but I couldn't have any extra visitors.) We got settled in with our Labor Nurse, Darlene - she was amazing! She had me change into my hospital gown and hooked me up to the fetal heart rate, contraction, and blood pressure monitors. After that she started me on an IV. She checked my cervix and I was 2 cm dilated - YAY progress! Then she had to pull my cervix forward, this was one of the most painful things during my labor. WOWZA - wasn't prepared for that. Then she started me on Cytotek - also VERY painful. This was going to start thinning my cervix. She mentioned I could have to do up to 4 rounds depending on how quickly my contractions came together. 

October 28, 2020

Darlene came in around 3:30 a.m. to check my cervix again - now dilated to 3 cm! I was starting to get uncomfortable, like period cramping but a little bit stronger. Not super painful but I couldn't sleep through them so she gave me Dilaudid through my IV. This was going to help take the edge off and make me drowsy. At this point on a scale of 1-10, I'd say my pain was at a 2. I just wanted to sleep knowing I had a lot to prepare for in the coming hours. I ended up waking up on my own around 5:00 a.m. and Darlene came in saying that my contractions were getting close together so I wouldn't need to do Cytotek anymore - thank goodness! Since she was there I had her help me go to the bathroom, once I got back into bed my water broke on it's own! This was such a weird sensation. I was hoping my water would break on it's own to have that "experience" haha! It was like a gush of warm water that I had no control over. She performed another cervix check and I was 4 cm dilated. YES! I made sure to mention I absolutely wanted the epidural! But of course, he was 30 minutes away. The contractions started pretty quickly after my water broke and gradually increased in pain. The first few just felt like bad cramping again, but I could see on the monitor they were ramping up. Eventually they got worse... I'm not sure how many I had to go through before the anestealogist made it there but it felt like forever. It just felt like my whole body would lock up and tighten. I had to squeeze Seth's hand the entire contraction and focus on my breathing in and out. I don't think I could ever do it without the epidural -- that was enough pain for me. At this point I would say my pain level was at an 8. Darlene gave me another dose of Dilaudid to try and take the edge off before my epidural arrived but that wasn't strong enough. Finally he arrived at 5:45 a.m. and then life was golden! Some people say the epidural is painful, but I didn't think it was at all. Maybe because it was less painful than the contractions? The epidural finally kicked in after 15 minutes or so, about 3 more contractions. It's such a weird sensation not feeling your lower half, I was nervous it would make me feel "stuck" but I think you're just so thankful to not be in pain that it didn't even cross my mind. Darlene performed one last cervix check before her shift ended at 6:30 a.m. and I was 5 cm dilated and 90% effaced! WOO! We were getting closer. She also prayed over us before she left which was so special and something I'll never forget. It was exactly what I needed to keep me going. We played a Spotify worship playlist the entire time to keep me calm and remind me that God is in control, there was nothing to worry about. 

Our new Labor Nurse, Penny, came in around 7:30 to start me on Pitocin. This was the final stretch and what makes the contractions come closer together to initiate labor. She was also super nice, answered all of our questions and talked with us to get to know one another better. The nurses dropped off breakfast, but I was on a "Liquid Only" diet so my breakfast consisted of chicken broth, hot water, apple juice, orange Jello and an Italian ice. Honestly I was worried I would be hungry but I wasn't. I ended up just having a few sips of the hot water since I was cold. And I knew if I was going to get sick during labor, whatever I ate was going to come out. Throughout the morning Penny had told me to let her know if I felt "pressure" down there, as a sign of labor -- TMI, but if I had the urge to go 'poo' I needed to let her know and she would check my cervix. I felt pressure, but nothing painful so I never said anything. Penny came in around 9:00 a.m. to check my cervix and to everyone's surprise I was 10 cm dilated and 100% effaced - it was time to have a baby! Our doctor ended up being there at the perfect time, she just came to say hi and check how I was doing. She checked my cervix too and said she had another C-Section delivery at a different hospital so we needed to get going now! And then things moved QUICK. More nurses came in, carts rolling in with different equipment. Seth set up the tripod for photos and started our worship playlist again. We had just started watching Spider-Man and I was not going to deliver our beautiful daughter to a Marvel movie LOL. After about an hour of pushing she was here...

Merloe Charlene Turner

Born on October 28, 2020 at 9:59 a.m. weighing 7 lbs. 13 oz. and 19.5" long

while "Tremble" by Mosaic MSC was playing in the background. 

Overall I'd say our experience at the hospital was very positive. Everyone was so kind and accommodating to our requests. Dr. Shiode was so great, she really made us feel comfortable throughout the labor. And Seth was amazing! He held my leg throughout the pushing and didn't pass out! HAHA you never know! He kept me calm, fanned me, helped me get ice chips and Chapstick. It was a whirlwind of an experience, we both thought she wouldn't come until later that night or even the next day. But as soon as she was placed on my chest our whole world changed. Seth cut the umbilical cord and said it was a lot harder than he thought. It felt like cutting a thick plastic tube. They got her all cleaned up and Seth watched over Merloe as I got stitched up - I had a 2nd degree tear... ouch. Honestly I couldn't feel it then, but the recovery has been rough. Now that I could officially eat whatever I wanted, Seth ordered sushi for us - spicy tuna roll please! This was one of my most missed things during pregnancy. 

We stayed in the hospital that night and our parenting instincts kicked in as she woke us up about every hour to feed. We're currently breastfeeding and hoping we can continue that journey for a while! Since I couldn't move my lower half for a few hours after delivery, Seth became the master at changing diapers and swaddling. For someone who had never changed a diaper before he sure caught on quick and it was great for them to bond through those moments. He even helped with her first bath!

Merloe passed all of her tests and my Doctor gave me the green light for discharge! We came home on Thursday night. Both of our parents were there to welcome us home and of course hold their first grandbaby - Merloe Charlene Turner.