We had a big change in the Lewhouse family this week. On Monday afternoon at 5:25, we welcomed Hunter Lewis into the world. He’s definitely keeping us busy and now that we figured out how to actually get food into him. We’re rolling – at least so we think. If you’re interested, you can read below for a timeline log of the actual birth and how it went down.
Here we go:
- 12:30am – we are sleeping.
- 2:18am – Diane wakes up with some belly pains and starts logging contractions. She photographs herself:
- 2:40 – Diane wakes up Mike. Man, it’s early. We know we need to get to a point when the contractions are 5 minutes apart or less and at that point, we go to the hospital. Timing these first contractions, they are 2 to 3 minutes apart. Hmmm, something is not quite right. But we just keep recording them.
- 3:22 – I am now awake, and am a believer. I tweet it out. This will get me in trouble later.
- 330-7am: Strangely, the contractions are getting farther apart. Yeah, that wasn’t covered in our class. We lay in the bed and sleep between contractions. As you can imagine, it’s not that exciting, yet really exciting which means we want to go to sleep because we’re exhausted yet want to stay awake. Sort of strange.
- 7:30: We see some blood that gets us both a little spooked so we call the doctor who (understandably) says to just go to the hospital.
- 7:30-845 – We meet our awesome nurse, named Jill who’s been there for 13 years. We just chillin’ in our room and listening to jack johnson. It’s pretty relaxed and fun.
- 845 – Diane’s already at 5cm dilated and there’s barely any pain happening. For those of you who have never had a baby, the name of the game is trying to get your cervix to be 10cm dilated. Once you get to 10cm, then you start pushing. Up until 10, there’s just pain as your body tries to get there. We’re at 5 and the nurse staff is pretty impressed. Apparently, at this stage the woman is usually breathing very heavily and is in a lot of pain.
- 9:15-30: Diane jumped in the jacuzzi bath and relaxed for a while. Jill came in and checked the baby’s heartbeat while in the bath. The technology in the hospital is pretty ridiculous. While I appreciate that the baby heart monitors are waterproof, it feels totally unnecessary. I would have been just fine if she told diane to just bring her belly out of the water.
- 9:30: Diane sees a text message from her friends Kiki and Carol Stern about how they are thinking of her. She gets pissed at me for alerting the entire world about our private situation. I now remember my 3am tweet. Oh well.
- 10am: Diane’s friend Kiki calls and they talk for a while. Diane learns that Kiki didn’t actually see my tweet and it was pure coincidence. It should also be noted that Diane then texted back and forth with Carol and learned that she also was just texting good wishes to Diane by pure coincidence.
- 10:45 – jill came in and checked and we’re now at 6cm. We’re on the right path. She asks if we want to have someone break the water so we can speed up. We elect to wait a bit.
- 11:20 – Diane’s out of the tub and the pants are back on. She is bouncing on the ball again while we watch some Youtube clips and jam to some tunes.
- 12:40 – Our doctor, the great Dr. Bevan, comes in and is shocked to see how comfortable Diane is. She said that most people at 6cm are in serious pain and huffing and puffing. She wants to speed things up and move things along so she grabs a long stick and manually breaks her water. We are sort of nervous about it but it happened. Here we go. No turning back now.
- 1:20 – Diane is jumping back in the tub to hang out
- 2:00 – Diane’s out of tub and heading out for a little walk around. The action is intense now. Diane can barely talk.
- 2:05-3: Ok, that was wishful thinking. We find ourselves in a pretty dark place. Diane is having basically continuous contractions and they are so intense that she can’t see straight. Then the full-body shakes start rocking her. She’s shaking so bad that the bed is making noise. And it doesn’t stop. We do a little breathing game (thanks Coynes) to help breathe through the pain but there are no breaks between contractions, and things are looking bleak. We surrender birthing gods. You win.
- 3:10-3:30 – We call for the epidural. Dr. David Pius rolls in and we get Diane sitting up. We have to wait for a momentary pause in the shakes for him to stick some needles into her spine. I put my face 2 inches from hers. Looking into her eyes, we just concentrate on each other and she is, at the same time, hurting from the contractions and scared about the needles going into her back. I hate needles too. It’s scary. i can definitely tell that all the fun we were having a few hours ago is gone for good.
- 3:30-4: Something happened. The world i was living in a few moments ago has changed. The lights are put down, the blinds are pulled and it’s dark in our room. D’s asleep. i feel like we’re on an intermission. Nevermind that there’s still a baby in her belly making it’s way out. I order some food.
- 4:20 – Jill comes back and puts in a catheter. She checks and Diane’s now at 9.5cm. We’re almost there. The shakes are still happening but because Diane’s spine is blocked there’s no longer any pain. That’s pretty amazing.
- 5:05 – Jill comes in and checks again. We are basically there. I will never forget what she says next. She leans over to me and says, “ok, mike. Grab a leg. Diane, start pushing.” I always expected a big team of people would make this happen. Instead it’s just the three of us. I hold the left leg. Jill the right. We see a contraction coming and Diane pushes with all her might like a champ. She does a ten second push and does this 4 times during each contraction. It’s exhausting.
- 5:15pm – After only a few pushes, even from the outside of Diane, you can see the baby moving down her body. I’m down below “the line.” It’s fascinating. Jill and I can see the head.
- 5:15 – Upon seeing the head, Jill rushes out to get our doctor – Dr. Leslie Bevan. It’s happening!
- 5:25 – The Doctor is now here. She tells Diane to start pushing again. Diane brings the guy a little closer on each push. The head is half out and then Bevan tells D to just do a little mini push. In one swoop, here he is! On the last push, the doctor tells Diane to open her eyes and when she does Diane gets the first view of the cutest little baby boy. We both are in awe and have tears in our eyes. The guy looks amazing and he’s already making some super cute dragony crying noises. Looking at each other and then back down to Hunter who is laying on Diane’s chest, we immediately know that it was all worth it. Here is how he sounds:
- 5:45 – the nurses in the room now all tell us that he seems like the perfect baby. I’m sure they tell everyone that, but for once they got it exactly right. He is amazing and we’re planning on loving the shit out of this little guy.
(side note: it was not as easy as you’d think keeping track of the time. I’m thankful for the Google Drive app on my iphone and to Diane for allowing me to keep pulling out my phone and computer during the whole day)