Meet the Sullivans: Luke's Birth Story

December 11, 2015

Luke's Birth Story

Are you ready to read a novel? I'm going to apologize in advance for making this so long, but for the sake of my memories I wanted to include as much detail as I can remember.

It has been nearly a week since our little Luke Robert Sullivan was born, so it about time I share his story!

On the day Luke was born we woke up and played with Owen, finished packing and showered. Keith's mom took two days off to stay with Owen while I was in the hospital, which was a HUGE help to us. I was pretty nervous about the surgery because my previous experience with Owen was so rough, and as weird as it sounds, the only thing that helped was that I couldn't drink anything after midnight the night before and my desire for water completely over took my concerns. Isn't it funny how when you can't have something it's all you can think of?

I spent some extra time sitting with Owen watching a movie and rubbing his feet. I knew we'd be missing each other while I was in the hospital and it was bittersweet knowing this was our last morning together before he became a big brother. We took a quick photo and gave Owen lots of hugs and kisses, and then we took off to the hospital! Owen seemed like it was no big deal to him, although I know he was feeling sensitive.

We arrived at the hospital right on time at 10:30am for my 12:30pm surgery. We checked in at the front desk and signed a few papers before being brought to our room. My nurse Pam arrived shortly after I got changed and asked me a ton of questions. My doctor was running a little late with another delivery, so we had some extra time to wait. We watched a little TV, talked, visited with my mom and sister who came to be with us for the surgery, and I went over my prayers.

 Like I said before, I was really nervous about the surgery this time around. It helped knowing that I would be in a better place going into it since I wouldn't have to have been induced or go through labor like I did last time, and I somewhat know what to expect from a c-section since I've had one before. My biggest concern was that I would freak out during the procedure and end up falling asleep, like last time. I wanted to be awake and present for Luke through the entire thing. My doctor suggested practicing some meditations to say during my surgery and I found that prayers are what work best for me. My favorites that really helped calm my nerves and keep me focused on the beautiful outcome of this surgery and experience were:

1 Peter 5:7 – “Cast all your cares upon Him, for He cares for you.”

Philippians 4:6-7 –Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.”  

The anesthesiologist came in to talk with us about any concerns before the surgery and told us about what he does. He told me exactly what he would be doing to make my experience a good one, and it was so comforting knowing we were on the same page. My doctor popped in too to let us know she was ready and to touch base with me. They gave me a super tart tasting cocktail to help with some heartburn, and not soon after we got the go ahead to walk down to the operating room. Keith walked with me most of the way before having to head back to our room. They don't want anyone in the OR with you until they have everything set and ready to go. We walked right by the waiting room so I got to wave bye to my mom and sister. I could tell they were nervous, although they still kept a happy face.

It's such a surreal experience walking right into the OR and hoping up on the table. Once we were in the OR the anesthesiologist got right to work giving me my spinal tap. I had an epidural with Owen and I'd heard that the spinal was much less painful and easier on your body so I was not too worried about getting one. There were a few pinches and a bit of pressure but it was over quickly. They had me lay down on the table right away and got me positioned. The anesthesiologist moved the table around to get the numbness just right. At one point it got pretty heavy in my chest making me feel a little panicked but he was able to fix that right away. The spinal eventually set all the way in and I couldn't feel anything below my waist. I kept repeating my prayers and my nerves calmed all the way down. I actually felt so at ease and relaxed that I could have fallen asleep right there on the table.

The nurses and people in the OR had me all ready and the doctors scrubbed in. I had two OB's working on my for the c-section which seems to be the norm at our hospital, although I'm not sure it is every where else. After putting up the big blue curtain they got right to work on me. I don't know what happened on the other side of the curtain after they put it up because I requested to not be told any details. That's one of the things that freaked me out with my first c-section, hearing someone say they were putting my uterus back inside my body.

As they were getting to work I started to feel a little nauseous, which I was told could happen, and ended up getting a little sick right there. Again, my anesthesiologist came to the rescue and took care of it, and I felt fine again. A minute or two later Keith came in and sat up by my head and we chatted about all sorts of things. We talked about Owen and some extra Christmas gifts we wanted to get him and we chatted with the anesthesiologist about movies we've been wanting to see. It was SO smooth and actually not too un-enjoyable.

I started to feel like it was taking forever for them to work on my, but that's probably because my other c-section was an emergency one and that had to work fast. This time the doctors were able to take their time and I could even hearing them chatting about their hobbies on the other side of the curtain. It put me at ease hearing them just chat away while they worked like they were so confident in what they were doing.

Minutes later they told me I was going to feel a ton of pressure on my chest as one of the doctors pushed the top of my stomach to help push Luke out. It wasn't nearly as bad as I thought it might be.

And just like that our sweet baby boy Luke was born!!! He came into this world weighing 7 lbs 9ozs and 21 inches long.

The first thing I remember anyone saying was, "Wow his head is huge!" and then "And it's still a BOY!". I smiling from ear to ear and felt and overwhelming feeling of JOY. He was here finally and he was screaming at the top of his lungs, which means he's doing pretty well and I was awake for it all and feeling great. Keith got to stand up and sneak a peek at him, and then kissed me on my forehead, and went over to the warmer and to be there as they weighed him. It seemed like I had to wait forever to see him or hear about him. He was totally fine, they were just taking their time with him. I asked the anesthesiologist, obviously my best buddy during all of this, if he could see him and what he looked like. I had been so curious about his hair and he said he though it was dark brown, which is so neat since my sweet boy Owen has blonde hair.

After a little while they brought him over and I got to relish in his beauty and kiss his face and just stare in his eyes. I was absolutely thrilled to be feeling so great and getting to spend time with him. He was all swaddled up and stopped crying as soon as he was placed on my chest. They let us hang out for a while and spend time with Luke before they had to take him to the nursery to be checked out. Sometimes they're able to keep the baby in the room with you the whole time, but it all depends on how many nurses are available and what else is going on in labor and delivery at that time. There was a baby coming up from the ER, so they needed more nurses in other places, so Luke had to go to the nursery. Keith went with him while I stayed to get sewn back up.

I was still so very thirsty and it was taking forever, or so it seemed, for them to finish up with me. We chatted some more about Halloween costumes and that my doctor had been a zombie that year, which is kind of funny since she seems pretty straight laced to me. Once they were done they brought me into the recovery room where I finally got to have some ice chips and water. It was heavenly!!!

A while later Keith and Luke came back to visit me and I got to have some sweet skin to skin and nursing time with Luke while we waited for my time to be up in the recovery room. It was about two hours from start to finish, but it didn't really matter because we were together with each other and our baby (only missing our Owen!).

So there you have it, Luke's nearly uneventful birth story!

Even Luke thinks his birth story was too long! Thank you for reading!

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