July 2nd, 2009
It all began as Carey and I drove to Ocean Shores WA for the '4th of July' weekend with some dear friends of ours. It was a late night, but the anticipation to get there and enjoy the sweet time of fellowship and delight in the beauty of the Lord's creation kept us going. On the way I felt our girl make a few kicks to let us know she was excited too and was trying to communicate she was about to meet us... but we didn't catch on! After all it was 3 weeks prior to our due date and 5 weeks earlier than our 20 wk ultrasound predicted. In our minds we had plenty of time to relax and make the 3 hour drive to the Washington coast for a few days. With a few braxton hicks I leisurely made the comment to Carey while sitting in traffic, "Wouldn't it be funny if I went into labor while we were here this weekend." A foreshadow I had no idea would come into fruition in less than 48 hours.
We awoke to a beautiful day. Carey and I went for a walk along the beach dreaming over what the future may hold for us and the anticipation of meeting our little girl. We knew the next time we came to the ocean we'd have our girl with us (outside the womb), and that was a joyous thought. In the afternoon we went to the community pool for a swim. I hesitated getting in, but the water looked too enticing to refuse. And because I was ready to feel a bit 'lighter' and since I could use the exercise I decided to make the plunge. I was pleasantly surprised at how wonderful the water felt! And apparently Niyah liked it too, for she was getting closer to letting us know she was ready to come on out.
That evening we had a good ol' steak and potato dinner, and topped it off with delicious icecream sundaes. Carey gave an inspiring intro class on "Bible Study Methods", and by 12pm I was tired and ready to turn in for the night. My last full night of sleep for the next... who knows!
6:45am... my normal early morning bathroom run turned into a noticeable small leak in my amniotic fluid, which turned into my water breaking (I later discovered).
7 to 8am...Talked to my midwife and became reassured it could still be days before I went into active labor since no contractions had started and it seemed to be a small leak. I was told to stay hydrated and limited activity. So I rested and spent time in prayer while Carey went for a run (yes, we were quit calm!)
8:30am ...We made the decision to make our way back to Portland just in case this was the 'real deal'. At this point I was disappointed we were going to miss the fireworks on the beach that night, but confident I would have an easier time staying relaxed and enjoying the day if I was closer to our birth center, Andaluz.
10ish... After a filling waffle breakfast we packed up and left for home
** few contractions in the car
1:00pm... Home. We ate Red Robin for lunch, finished packing our bags, and rested.
** contractions become more regular and noticeable at each passing hour
7:30pm... Called my midwife and gave her an update. She told me I was still in early labor and to let her know when contractions were less than 4 minutes apart and lasting 1 minute long and this should continue for 1 hour. Well, the next hour fulfilled this requirement. I spent this hour pacing the living room while Carey read aloud Scripture, pausing to let me stop and focus at each contraction.
8:30pm... Left for birth center. A bit concerned about how bad traffic may be since it was 4th of July and our birth center is in SW Portland near the waterfront. Thankfully we cruised right along and arrived to an empty birthing center around 9pm.
9:30-10:30pm... Paced the room, listened to instrumental hymns, dimmed lights, and candle light. Heard the load BOOMS of the Portland waterfront firework show.
10:30-11:59pm... Labored in tub and coached by my wonderful husband. Recieved abundant grace from God to persevere and endure to the end. It was a sweet time of fellowship with my savior as He was my strength.
July 5th, 2009
12:00am... Niyah Joy arrived! She was 1 minute away from being a 4th of July baby! Carey was intently watching the clock as the contractions came and went and the minutes ticked by. We were glad she has her 'own' birthday apart from the rest of the Nation. Although I'm sure through the years she'll enjoy celebrations with fireworks on her birthday as well! :) Below are pictures of our amazing birth team. We were so blessed for their quiet spirits and knowledgeable aid throughout the entire pregnancy, delivery, and postpartum care.
And that's our story...
God was so gracious to us. We experienced such a sweet time as we welcomed Niyah Joy into this world. Thankfully we can look back and say, "Let's do this again someday!" Lord willing, we look forward to the announcement of more baby Mac's. Especially since daddy's ready to start teaching Romans to the lil' one!
Thank you for your prayers. We love you.