Harvey’s Birth Story

Monday, March 6, 2023

Now that Harvey is one month old, I figured it’s time to document his birth story. Life has been a little chaotic, as you can imagine, with a toddler and a newborn. I knew it would be hard to juggle but I think my biggest concern was making sure Merloe felt loved and received attention from mommy. 

Let’s jump into it! Buckle up, it happens quick… 

January 18, 2023
I went in for another ultrasound at 36 weeks because he was measuring big. The doctor wanted to make sure he wasn’t getting too big. Surprise surprise, he was still measuring big! So they suggested I consider getting a c-section. They also saw something small on his heart and referred us to a specialist to have another look. They said it wasn’t super concerning but they wanted a second opinion. 

January 19, 2023
We went to Desert Perinatal for the ultrasound and the staff was so kind. They were able to see that his heart rate looked normal, he was swallowing so his kidneys were working and overall he was very active. After the ultrasound we went into another room for heart rate monitoring where they had me sit in a recliner chair and hooked me up to the monitor. They asked me to drink cold water to get him moving. Before we could leave they wanted to see his heart rate go up and down a few times. Luckily, he took really well to the water and did exactly what they needed right away. The doctor came in to go over the ultrasound and said everything looked normal. She mentioned sometimes they see something like this on bigger babies but it was nothing concerning. She also said he was measuring big already at 8 lbs. 8 oz — knowing I still had 4 weeks to go I was slightly scared! I was hoping to have another vaginal delivery but if he got over 9 lbs. they were going to highly suggest I get a c-section. 

January 25, 2023
I went to my OB for my 37 week check up, this time I decided to get a cervix check. I was dilated to a 2/3 and already thinned. I mentioned I had to get induced with Merloe and he said since I was already thinned, I would be able to skip the step of getting cervidil— which if you read my birth story with Merloe, this was great news! With my first pregnancy, I went into the hospital for an induction dilated at 2. It was excited to hear my body was making progress, maybe because this was my second time? Either way I told Seth after the appointment we need to make sure we’re ready to go because he could come soon!

January 26, 2023
I had my weekly heart rate monitoring at Desert Perinatal. They did a quick ultrasound to check his position and he was head down on my right side. They hooked me up to the monitor and watched him move for about 20-30 minutes. He wasn’t cooperating as much as they’d like so the nurse said she was going to get a noise maker and before she could leave the room he started moving. Overall they said he looked great!  


January 28, 2023
It was a beautiful Saturday morning. We got up and got ready to head to the Farmer’s Market. Before we stopped at the market we went to have breakfast at Life’s A Bagel. Merloe loves bagels and we were trying to spend as much “special” time with her as we could. At the market we picked up some blueberries and strawberries before heading home. Later that night when I was sleeping I started feeling contractions in my back but they weren’t close together and I was able to go back to sleep each time. 

January 29, 2023
I woke up around 4:00 AM to go to the bathroom and once I sat back down in bed I felt this gush of water that I couldn’t control. So I woke Seth up thinking my water just broke, but I wasn’t sure so I went to the bathroom. But it continued to leak down my leg so I knew we had to get going! I called my mom to come over and watch Merloe as we started loading up the car. My contractions started coming quick and they were getting painful fast so I knew we had to hurry. I was working through contractions the whole way to the hospital and I was in such pain I had Seth drop me off at the ER doors, I couldn’t wait for him to park. 

As I made my way up to Labor & Delivery I worked through two sets of contractions, painful enough I had to stop and hang onto the doors. I finally made it up and let the nurses know what time my water broke and my contractions were 2-3 minutes apart and that I wanted an epidural! They asked me to fill out a clipboard (!!!!) and said they needed to do a cervix check and bloodwork before they could call the anesthesiologist. I immediately undressed in the room, mind you my water is still continuously coming out (my pants were soaked by the time I arrived). The nurse did a quick cervix check and said I was dilated to an 8! Last time I got my epidural when I was at a 4, so I was in major pain at this point. They said they would call the anesthesiologist but sometimes they won’t come until the bloodwork comes back but thankfully he agreed to come anyways. By this time Seth arrived to the room, THANK GOODNESS! I needed someone’s hand to squeeze. 

This is where I started getting worried because my contractions were so close together and so painful. I was feeling a lot of pressure too so the nurse mentioned if I felt the need to push to let her know and they would get the on call doctor. I don’t know how women deliver without the epidural, I was not prepared to do this! Around 15 minutes later the anesthesiologist arrived so as he was getting set up, I probably worked through 4 more contractions. They were so painful but I knew if I could hold out for a few more I would be pain free. As soon as he got the epidural in, I immediately felt my left side tingle. I couldn’t have been any happier in that moment. To me, the epidural is not painful. Especially if your contractions are painful, at this point nothing compares. 

Around this time my doctor arrived. She was already awake because she had a scheduled c-section at 6:30 AM. She decided to do a quick cervix check and I was dilated to a 10! At this point, I remember looking at the clock and seeing it was 6:00 AM and I thought to myself, "there’s no way it’s 6:00 AM... the clock must be wrong." But they assured me it was not and I was ready to start pushing. I could not believe how quickly everything was happening!

During my first set of pushes Harvey's heartrate dropped. The doctor gave me an oxygen mask to put on and informed me that if his heart rate continued to drop they might have to use a vacuum to get him out or I'd have to go in for an emergency c-section. I was able to catch my breath and relax for a minute which helped because then his heart rate remained steady. I think I was overwhelmed because everything moved so quick I just needed a minute to do a few deep breaths. 

I pushed through 4 more contractions and during my last set of pushes the doctor had me push and pause as she maneuvered his shoulders out. And at 6:44 AM, Harvey Hayes Turner was born! He weighed 8 lbs. 13 oz. (Seth would like to make note he was 8 lbs. 13.9 oz -- almost 14 oz.) and he was 20" long. He had a headful of dark brown hair, which can't be seen during his first few photos but it's much darker than Merloe's hair was. We had Christian music playing during labor and he was born during the song “Wait On You” by Elevation Worship. 

From the minute my water broke to the delivery of Harvey, my fluids were continually leaking. Because of this Harvey swallowed amniotic fluid on his way out which caused some blockage in his lungs. The doctor said this was common for babies born quickly. After he was cleaned up the NICU nurses arrived and took him for a few hours to monitor his breathing. Luckily Seth was able to go with them as I was getting stitched up from my second degree tear. They said he would be there for a few hours. 

This was a completely different experience compared to Merloe because as soon as Harvey left, so did all the doctors and nurses. I was alone in the hospital room after this monumental and overwhelming moment, now to sit in complete silence. The nurse brought my breakfast in on a brown tray -- french toast with sausage links. I was so excited to have a son, exhausted from all the pushing, numb from the anesthesia and shocked that I just had a baby. Seth was able to take photos and send them to me with updates which helped me feel not so alone. I tried to take advantage of this quiet time but it was weird for me. It did give me an opportunity to text family and friends to share the news!

While Harvey was in the NICU, they monitored his breathing to make sure the fluids were flushed from his lungs. They fed him formula to make sure his blood sugar levels didn't drop. He passed all of his tests and after 4 hours, he was able to come back to our room so we could try and breastfeed. 

Throughout the evening, he did have a few instances where he sucked in air like he couldn't breathe. The nurses checked his lungs and heartrate, everything looked great. He was still working through the fluids he had swallowed. It was a little scary to experience this, especially being a tad sleep deprived. 


We had a few visitors including a special Big Sis who came to meet her Little Brother. Merloe was so sweet with Harvey and wanted to hold him. She kept trying to put his blanket over him and put his binky in. She brought Harvey a stuffed dinosaur and Harvey gave Merloe an Elsa baby doll. I know she’s going to be the best big sister!


After one night in the hospital, lots of tests and check ins -- we were able to go home!  Coming home with our new baby was a scary but exciting feeling. After your first kid, you have some experience and knowledge of what to expect during those first few nights. Merloe and Poppy were so excited to greet him at the door! We had to keep Merloe away from Harvey for a few days as she had a double ear infection -- of course! Before we left the hospital they let us know his bilirubin levels were on the higher side. Not enough to keep us another night or have him put under the lights, but that following week we were in and out of the pediatrician's office almost daily. Thankfully by the end of the week due to breastfeeding and extra sunshine, his jaundice levels had gone down! 


Now that he's a month old we have a little more "routine" to our day, we love having our little bubs in our family. Poppy loves licking his toes and Merloe loves giving him hugs, but says he's heavy if she holds him for too long. Mommy loves our breastfeeding journey and Daddy can't wait to play catch with his son one day.

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