Ellie Joy's Birth Story - The Perfectly Imperfect Mama

Ellie Joy's Birth Story

by - Thursday, March 08, 2018

Ellie Joy Pegram was born 12 days ago on February 24, 2018 at 9:09pm at 36 weeks and 6 days.  Just three hours shy of 37 weeks.  She weighed 6lbs 12oz and was 18 3/4 inches long.  My tiniest baby!
When I was 35 weeks pregnant my blood pressure elevated (and it stayed that way until after I delivered).  My swelling got three times worse than it normally does during my pregnanices and I ended up spending the night in the hospital for a 24 hour observation.  I didn't have preeclampsia but I did have what they call gestational hypertension and they treat it the same way.  That week at my doctors appointment my doctor told me that she wouldn't let me go past 37 weeks pregnant.  So before I left that day, we scheduled my induction.  My doctor wanted to see me twice a week until I delivered to keep an eye on my blood pressure and to do a NST (non stress test) on Ellie Joy to make sure she was doing ok.
I didn't really want to be induced because I just wanted my body to know what to do and when to do it but mine and her health were top priority and we had to do what we needed to do.  Surprisingly at 36 weeks, my body started doing what it was supposed to do and I was so thankful!  I had dilated to a three and my contractions were non stop (which wasn't anything new because I started having Braxton Hicks at 24 weeks and kept them almost all day, every day) but these were actually doing something.
The morning we were supposed to be at the hospital, the kiddos, Dan & I headed to Cooper's basketball tournament and then afterwards it was time to go to the hospital.
We were admitted at noon and I was still only 3cm dilated.  My contractions had not let up and were only getting stronger.  At 1:00pm the nurse came in and started the Pitocin to get things going.  As soon as she started it I got the WORST contraction and it lasted MINUTES!  It was horrible and Ellie Joy must've thought so too because her heart rate dropped down in the 60's and the nurse made me turn on my side to try to get it up again.  Thankfully it worked.  I really don't think the Pitocin had anything to do with that contraction though because it takes an hour or so to even start working.  I think baby girl just decided at that time it was time to transition so that's what she did.
At 2:59pm I got the epidural.  And this time it worked (it did not with Millie Jo).  I was able to tell I was contracting but was very comfortable and felt no pain so I was able to rest.
My doctor came in right after my epidural just to see how I was doing and she said she'd be back to break my water.  So at 5:30pm, she came back and broke it.

Around 7:10pm my doctor came in and checked me and I was only at 4 1/2 cm dilated but Ellie Joy's head had dropped.  I had ONLY went from a 3 to a 4 ... I just knew then it was going to be a very long night.

Or so I thought ...

At 8:30pm I started feeling ALL the pressure and when my nurse came in I told her.  She left the room and when she came back in at 8:50pm she had my doctor with her.  She checked me and said "Yep, I thought you may be complete.  It's time to start pushing."  Whhhhat!?!  I was just a 4 an hour & a half ago and now I was at a 10!  My nurse made the comment that when she was checking on me just a few minutes earlier, she saw my contractions on the monitor and thought that she should probably go get my doctor.
I laid there waiting to push and started crying just thinking about the journey it took to get to her.  My heart.  It was really time to meet this precious baby girl.

At 9:01pm I started pushing.  Two pushes in and the doctor said "she has dark hair."  And then a few more pushes she says to the nurse "give mom some oxygen" and then says "I am going to get the vacuum because baby needs a little help getting out."  Ellie Joy's heart rate had dropped down in the 60's again.  As soon as I heard the word vacuum, I remember thinking to myself no way, I am getting this baby out on my own.  The next contraction I pushed and my doctor said "keep pushing, we don't need the vacuum anymore.  She is going to do this herself."  At 9:09pm with only eight minutes of pushing, Ellie Joy Pegram was here!
And while I wish her birth story ended like that, it didn't.  The scariest moment of my entire life happened right after ...

My doctor laid her up on my chest and Dan cut the cord but as soon as he did she stopped breathing.  They immediately took her off my chest and three NICU nurses started working on her.  I laid there getting cleaned up and looked at Dan, who was by my side, and asked him if she was ok.  They wouldn't let him over there near her so we had no idea.  I laid there watching through the bed rail as they massaged her, shook her arms, used oxygen, suctioned her throat but she just laid there not moving and blue.  The only thing that was going through my mind was surely we didn't come this far to lose our baby.  I looked over and saw my mom sitting on the couch with her head in her hands.  I knew she was praying.  With the help of the nurses and oxygen, she started breathing on her own.  I know without a doubt that God wrapped His hands around my sweet girl's tiny body.  A few minutes later they started measuring her and my doctor told me if they were doing that, it's a good thing.  They then told Dan that he could come over there. 

I have never ever been so scared in my life as I was during that time.
They finally brought her over to me and I was instantly in love.
She is just perfect!
[Due to the flu ban, Cooper & Millie Jo were not allowed at the hospital but we FaceTimed them so they were the first ones to see her!]
Thank ya'll so much for all the love and congratulations.  We have definitely felt all the prayers throughout our journey.  Y'all are the best!  We are so in love with this precious gift from God.  He gets all the glory, honor and praise!

Weeping may last for the night but JOY comes in the morning.
Psalm 30:5

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  1. Congratulations! So scary, I can only imagine, but thank GOD!

  2. Congratulations! I teared up reading about those scary moments - so thankful that all ended well and that she is healthy!

  3. Oh I just teared up reading this! The miracle of childbirth will always overwhelm me. After the months of worrying over the millions of things to possibly go wrong it is truly a miracle from God to give birth to a precious perfect baby. She is beautiful and I know y'all are on top of the world! My most heartfelt congratulations to your family!

  4. I can see why you'd be scared in that situation! Glad it all worked out and congratulations. She's adorable and I love the name.