Thursday, September 22, 2011

The Schwartz's vs Cody's Birth--Her Story

You know how on tv and movies they like to over dramatize birth and delivery.  Well, Cody's delivery came straight from one of those movies.  It all started at about 11:30 pm on Tuesday, September 20th.  I woke up for one of my many middle of the night tinkle breaks and had a contraction but it wasn't bad and I figured it was nothing more than a Braxton Hicks or at best very early labor and I should just ignore it and rest through it.  Then at 12:30 I was up to use the restroom again and had another.  Waited a few minutes to see if some more would follow and when they didn't I went back to sleep.  Chris was snoring next to me at about 1:00 when I had two contractions pretty close together.  I don't have a clock on my bedside table so I nudged him partly to make the snoring stop and also to have him time a couple of contractions.  He said they were 5 minutes apart but I told him that didn't seem right.  (In hindsight, and for next time it's at this point I'm going to go ahead and go to the hospital.)  So I did what was logical to me at the time and I took a bath and watched the stages of birth video Amy, our doula, had given us.  The whole time I'm asking Chris, where do you think we are and is this real?  He's timing the contractions and we can't get a good fix on them.  Most are now 7 minutes apart, but some are 3, and some are 10.  Some are really painful and some don't hurt a bit.  A few last for a minute, others for only 20 seconds.  We just couldn't get a good fix on what was going on.  So after a few more contractions I told Chris let's start getting the car loaded.  It was around 3 in the morning and I thought, based off Sarah's birth that we'd have until about 5 am to get someone to come sit with Sarah and get to the hospital in a timely manner.  I took a shower and Chris went ahead and did the same.  We weren't wasting time in our opinion because with Sarah we didn't have to leave until the contractions were 5 minutes apart.  So we were just doing the same thing we did last time, calmly and casually getting ourselves ready to go.  While Chris was in the shower, I had a decent contraction and with it the urge to push.  And that made me a little nervous because I knew that wasn't a good sign so I went ahead and called Amy and told her my contractions were 7 minutes apart but I felt like we needed to go to the hospital.  Then while I was on the phone with her another one snuck up on me and with it my water broke!  My water broke!  I never felt my water break with Sarah because it happened oh about 5 minutes before it was time to push her out.  I had no idea what to expect and never want to feel that again.  It scared me, I screamed and I'm not a screamer.  I actually pride myself is staying pretty calm during child birth.  But when all of sudden it felt like the water cannon from the end of Splash Mountain shot out from my who-ha I got a little nervous.  And then the contractions were coming back to back and with each one the over powering urge to push.  It's 3:30 in the morning and we live 40 minutes away from the hospital we're supposed to deliver at.

Chris at that point is loading the car as fast as he can.  I hung up with Amy for about a minute to try and call Annie to come sit with Sarah.  Thankfully she didn't answer the phone because there really was no time for that.  So Chris loaded Sarah up too and then me.  My husband, in all his wisdom laid towels down in the front seat and those came in pretty handy later on.  He gets me in the car in between contractions and drives as quickly and safely as he can while Amy stays on the phone with me.  The first miracle of the evening was that we didn't lose cell phone connection.  We live in the country and there's at least 3 places on the road we were on that we ALWAYS lose the call and this morning we did not.  Everyone in the car is trying to stay calm.  Sarah's riding in the back seat just hanging out.  Chris is doing at least 20 over the speed limit slowing down and stopping briefly for red lights to make sure it's safe before running them.  The cameras got us a couple of times but we haven't registered our new car yet, so we won't be getting those tickets.  I'm telling Amy when each contraction is coming and she's walking me through how to NOT push.  But with each one I can feel Cody moving lower and lower and pushing harder and harder to get out.  We passed 2 or 3 cops and none of them came after us, I guess cause we had the blinkers on.  Chris was really hoping for a police escort.  I actually kept closing my eyes as often as I possibly could because 1) I'm not really good with directions or knowing where I am so the thought of being so far away kept stressing me out and 2) I was really praying to not have this baby in the car on the side of the road.

Thankfully Amy was already at the hospital and had told the staff of the situation.  Unfortunately, I guess the hospital didn't believe us because they didn't send anyone down to the lobby to wait with her.  As we pulled off the interstate onto Humphrey's Blvd (the road the hospital is on), Cody was tired of waiting and he pushed his own head out while I was doing my best to breath out the contraction instead of push during the contraction.  I holler into the speaker phone, "Amy the head's out!", Chris turns and looks and since there are street lights he shouts, "Oh!  The head is out!  The head is out!"  Amy has now gone back inside and one more time told them that I'm coming, the head is out and get someone down there then raced back downstairs to meet us just as we were pulling in.  Chris throws the car in park and runs around the car just in time for the next contraction which forces Cody out and catches him.  Amy's telling him to wrap Cody in a towel and put him on my chest.  I just keep saying, "he's blue" because I don't know what a baby looks like when they first come out.  I have a strict "don't hand me a bloody baby" policy so I got Sarah after she was all pink and cleaned up.  I hear Amy tell Chris to rub Cody's back to make him cry and they both do as their told.  Cody starts to cry a little and by then the hospital staff is finally outside.  Chris steps back and the hospital staff cuts the cord and rushes Cody inside.  (Sorry Chris, but at least you got to deliver the baby.)  At this point I'm in a little bit of shock.  I keep apologizing to everyone for having  baby in the car.  And I'm really concerned about delivering that placenta right there in the car, because that would be gross.  So they take me inside to the room where they are checking over Cody and everyone starts going to work doing whatever needs to be done.  At this point, I'm not really pleased with the labor and delivery staff who I felt was pretty rude but it's not worth journaling since it's not worth remembering.  I'll suffice it to say they were not listening to what I wanted and took some liberties of their own that I did not think was medically necessary (i.e. giving me pictocin to start my uterus back contracting instead of massaging the top of it and allowing me to nurse immediately which would trigger the same reaction.)

At the time I was mortified about giving birth in the car.  I didn't want pictures taken.  I kept apologizing to people.  I really didn't want to seem like one of those women who just didn't know she was pregnant and delivers a baby on the toilet when all she thought she was going to do was poop.  I knew I was pregnant, I knew I was in labor, I just didn't know my contractions were going to suddenly drop from 7 minutes apart to no minutes apart and I still be at home when this happened. And no where in my wildest dreams did I think my water would break!  But now I think it's a pretty awesome story and am actually glad my husband was brave enough to snap a few pictures of the situation.  We've made a number of jokes about how we're going to name him Cody "Freestyle" Schwartz and his first birthday party is going to be Hot Wheels themed.  Cameron joked I should throw a shovel in the trunk with some muddy boots and take the car to be detailed to handle the mess in the front and tell them, "clean this up real good and don't ask any questions".  Ha!  But my dear husband already took care of it all.  It's been fun to see the different medical professional's reactions as they change shifts and a new person who doesn't know comes in.  I can't wait to go back to my OBGYN who just last week said "are you sure you can handle this delivery without an epidural".  Handle it--I nailed it!  As my sister in law put it, "I only thought this happened on tv" so now it's kind of neat to be that person who you can say you know delivered their baby in the car.

So here are some of the embarrassing photos from the event, but I'm glad to have them.
A little confused, with a "I seriously can't believe I just gave birth in the car" look on my face.  That's the nurse down there checking things out, I don't remember if she's already cut the chord or she's about to cut it.

Just to prove Sarah was there when Cody was born.  Here she is such a big girl sitting in her car seat calmly during this whole event.  She's got her paci and her lion so she was perfectly content.

They just took Cody inside.  It looks like I'm an extra in some horror movie.  Needless to say, I threw this nightgown away after it was all over and I finally showered and got cleaned up.

Mommy and Daddy finally reunited with Cody.

Amy, our rock star doula who kept us all calm and together during this crazy labor process.  I think normally her job is to help the mom stay calm while she delivers the baby.  This time, it was to coach me how to not deliver the baby in the front of my Freestyle.

Cody Dennis Schwartz
7 lbs 15 ounces
20 inches long
Delivered by his father at 4:19 am on September 21, 2011


  1. Aaaaugh! That is the most amazing story EVER!! It's the kind of thing that I worry about every time I'm pregnant but never happens of course, because "that only happens in movies"! You and Chris are rocking Super Heros!!

    And Cody is adorable.

  2. Oh my gosh oh my gosh oh my gosh that is awesome! YOU are awesome! I loved reading this! Man so lucky that it was so fast!! He's a cutie congratulations! I seriously can't wait for the family reunion!! Three cute boys all in a couple of week s!!

  3. LOVE LOVE LOVE this! My favorite picture is Sarah in the back seat all like what's the big deal?

  4. I'll have nightmares now, oh, for the next 19 weeks or so until my baby is born. No epidural, how did you do that?! Sarah's just hanging out in the back seat... cool that she could be in the same room.. or, CAR, with you when her baby brother was born! Amazing, absolutely amazing.. welcome to the world, sweet Cody!!

  5. Congratulations and thank you for sharing your amazing story. You really DID do a great job.

  6. I've never laughed so hard in my life! And Sarah just kickin' it in the backseat, oblivious to the madness that is occurring right in front of her! I can't wait to meet Cody. Congrats again! You and your husband did a stellar job!

  7. Simply amazing! I love the pictue of Sarah chilling in the back seat. ---Sandra

  8. Nat, I can't believe that happened to you. congrats on a beautiful and healthy baby boy!

    Especially since I am pregnant with my second and I can just see this happening to me!

    He came so quick!!! Eeekss! You have me all nervous now!

    You are a rockstar by the way! How was the pain with no meds??

  10. That's the most awesome birth story EVAH! Congrats on a healthy delivery and healthy baby boy. Cody's precious!