Saturday, October 8, 2016

Ruthie's Birth Story

My birth story: Ruthie Grace Ferguson

It seems that each successive pregnancy is more difficult (unenjoyable) than the previous. With Corinth, my feet were SUPER swollen, but I was active the entire pregnancy, ran until I was 8 months pregnant, and climbed the tallest mountain in Texas at 7 ½ months. I actually enjoyed being pregnant! With Noah, I had super bad heartburn, but nothing much more to speak of. With Ruthie, I had increasingly painful contractions starting at 28 weeks until I birthed at 39 weeks, and a pain in my side that was possibly more painful that birth itself. Really. I was SO ready to have her! Here is Ruthie’s birth story. If these weird you out, there is an X in the top right corner of your screen, and you’re welcome to click on it! I love reading others’ birth stories, and I want to record my own so that I can remember them as they actually happened, not as I morph them as time goes by. Enjoy!

Because I have been in so much pain for so long, I was ready to do anything possible to have a precious baby on my outside instead of my inside. I scheduled an appointment for Tuesday morning to have my membranes stripped, to basically get my labor started a little. But, Monday, I felt super convicted that I wasn’t trusting in God’s timing, so I changed my appointment to when it was supposed to be, which was Wednesday. The doctor had already told me she would strip my membranes at 39 weeks, but I was previously being so impatient that I wasn’t going to wait even the extra day. Then, God reminded me that His plans are best, convicted my heart, and made me wait a bit longer. Instead, our whole family went Tuesday and explored some ancient historical monuments (forts) in Delhi, had some lovely tea and a good lunch, and fed carrots to deer in a beautifully treed park. It was totally exhausting, but a good last outing as a family of four, plus Mimi!

Wednesday morning, Kyle and I went to my appointment at 10 am, and the doctor checked on everything. Baby’s head was down. I was 50% effaced and at 3 cm, so the doctor stripped my membranes, and told me we’d probably be back later that afternoon or evening. She had also done this before Noah was born, and I had him the next day, so I knew it wouldn’t be a super long time. Pretty much as soon as we came home my contractions were more ‘real’ and I knew the process had begun. We had lunch, put the kids to bed for nap time, and watched something on the computer for a bit while we waited. Kyle kept saying, “do we need to go the hospital?! You’re making faces…” I was in pain, but I really wanted to watch the rest of the show and say goodbye to the kids before we left. J After they woke up, I cuddled both of them one last time, told them I loved them, gave them hugs and kisses, and then Kyle and I made our way to the hospital.

We arrived about 3:30 pm. When we got there, everything went so quickly because they doctor kept telling the staff, “this is her 3rd baby! She’s going to deliver very quickly!” (A little background info- the hospital we delivered at is a very nice hospital for here, and only very well-to-do Indian families deliver here. Also, well-to-do families in India only have 1 or MAYBE 2 babies, and they question why you would ever have more. We even found out that most Indian insurance companies, including the company that insures the hospital staff, only covers expenses for 2 children, and doesn’t provide anything for 3rd children (or 4th, 5th, etc). That said, it is pretty rare to have a mother delivering her 3rd baby.) So, the staff were all running around getting everything in order so quickly. In my head, I was thinking, “I’m not a doctor, but I’ve done this before, and I know I’m nowhere near pushing this baby out…” but I kept my mouth shut! One of the doctors said, “okay, I’m going to break your water now!” and I was like, “wait! I want an epidural and I want it BEFORE you break my water!” Then, things slowed down, thank goodness!

I’ve heard some bad things about epidurals in India, and had my first Indian baby without any meds, so I was pretty afraid of the epidural, but it went great! After I was wheeled to the Operating Room (here called the Operation Theatre), the anesthesiologist explained everything very well to me, and then asked me if I had any questions. I said, “have you done this before?” I think he might have found that a (tiny) bit funny, and replied, “I’ve been doing this for 15 years.” “You don’t look old enough to have been doing this for 15 years…” “I’m 40.” “…you don’t look 40…” Okay, glad we got that all cleared up. At least I knew I wasn’t his first patient ever. ;-) He actually did an awesome job, and I had no complications at all! After that, another doctor came in to break my water. While she was prepping everything, she was telling me that now was the time to pray to God because God always listens to a pregnant woman’s prayers. This doctor is Muslim, while my main delivering doctor is Hindu. I told her, “actually I’ve been praying non-stop today, and reminding myself of a verse in the Bible. Can I tell it to you?” “Sure!” she said. “’You keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is fixed on you, because He trusts in you.’ I have great peace right now, because I know that my God is with me, and that He loves me so much.” She seemed to really appreciate that, and I was so glad to God that He was giving me opportunities to share His love with people even during labor! Also, I was really believing it! I had so much more peace throughout this entire labor process than with my two others, and I know it’s because I was trusting Him who is able to be trusted! God is good! Okay- so, the doctor broke my water, and it was like the floodgates were opened. They filled 1 entire container, about the size of a 5 gallon basin, and then had to run to find another one because it was still flowing. The doctor and nurse just kept saying, “there’s so much fluid!”

After that, I was wheeled back from the OR to the delivery room. Kyle was there, and asked me how I was feeling, to which I responded, “great!” Man, let me just say- I’ve had 2 babies with epidurals and 1 baby naturally, and epidurals are AWESOME! While I “relaxed,” the nurses pumped me full of 4 bags of fluids because I was really dehydrated (probably from exerting myself too much while we were out the day before). Then, the doctor gave some Pitocin to increase the strength of the contractions. While inducing drugs isn’t my preferred method, I was pretty sure I would have to do this, since both previous deliveries also needed it. My body contracts, but not effectively enough to push the baby down. So, because I knew that, I was okay with the Pitocin. After that, I started getting more pains, and after laboring a while, I started pushing at 8:30 pm. Her head came out fairly easily, but her shoulders got stuck. Then, with a strong push and the doctor pulling as hard as she could, the shoulders came out, tearing me quite badly. I didn’t think about it at the time, because there was my baby! 5 pushes in 5 minutes and Ruthie Grace was born! She was completely silent as they took her to get her APGAR and get cleaned up, and I kept asking, “why isn’t she crying?!” Longest moment of the entire process was waiting for that cry. Then it came, and my heart was so full! Kyle went with Ruthie and the doctor helped me finish laboring. I even got brave and asked the nurses if I could see the placenta. Yep, just as disgusting as I imagined it. J While the nurses were taking care of Ruthie, Kyle came back in to check on me, and watched the doctor stitch me up. He said she used 3 sets of thread, each about a foot long, and that the tear looked incredibly painful and that the doctor did a really good job stitching me up. Again, so glad for the epidural. She considered it a “very bad tear,” and it took her about 30 minutes to stitch up everything.

After all of that, they brought my Ruthie to me and it was wonderful. The first time you hold your baby is simply wonderful. A total gift from God. This whole thing- motherhood, pregnancy, labor- is a gift from God. I have friends that have never experienced it, and friends that won’t ever get to again. I do not take it lightly that God blessed me in this way, and for that I am SO thankful to Him. Our God is SO good to us! Praise Him from whom ALL blessings flow!

Last bit- here’s how we chose her name!

Ruthie- means ‘friendship.’ I love the story of Ruth in the Bible, because it is full of devotion to God, providence from God, faithfulness (from and toward God) despite worldly circumstances, and God having a great plan for each life. I wanted a little less traditional than Ruth, so we put the ‘ie’ on, and I think it suits her well!

Grace- means ‘unmerited favor and love from God.’ We daily need to be reminded of God’s grace in our lives- how much he loves us, cares for us, provides for us, despite ourselves or anything that we can do. His love for us is so much greater than anything we could earn on our own.


Thanks for reading! Pray for Ruthie- that she would grow into a strong, healthy girl and someday woman who loves God and serves Him with her heart and life! To God be the glory, great things He has done!

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