Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Butler Brothers

my birth experience with noah was pretty near perfect, and i wanted our experience with miles to be perfect too. but perfection, in its essence, cannot be made better or duplicated, right? it's perfect. done. so i wondered how it could possibly "measure up."

however, i also wanted the story of miles coming into the world to be unique and different, just as miles is unique and different. a story just his own, yet still perfect.

amazingly, that happened.

a few weeks before miles was born i told his auntie amy that i thought he was going to arrive "fast and furious." and that, he did. even four days late. i sort of half-expected miles to come early because noah did. (noah was due on june 10th and arrived june 5th.) so when miles' due date (june 11th) came and went, the anticipation nearly broke me. i know people go past their due dates all the time, and it's hard. but i can't help but think that my anticipation held much more weight.

i had been pregnant for nearly two years and we had been trying to get pregnant about a year before that. the nursery had been set, then redone, then tweaked, then fussed with, about a million times.

my anticipation was also loaded with fear. would miles be okay? not only were we not 100% sure that miles didn't have the same condition that took noah's life, but i was also heavy with worry about anything else that could go wrong. stillbirth. heart defect. acd. i worried about it all.

so those days leading up to his birth were very, very long. i also wasn't working full time and hadn't been for about a month. my to-do list had long been completed. and then completed about five more times again. i was ready. way more than ready.

beginning about two weeks before miles was born, i kept thinking "it" was happening. my water broke before labor began with noah, so i didn't really know what early labor felt like. however, i knew i was having contractions with miles for these two weeks, they just weren't getting stronger. i would get so excited... then disappointed when they'd trail off. it was maddening.

we even went into the hospital thinking "it" was time. on the evening of saturday, june 14th at about 7pm. and after a couple hours of monitoring, we were devastatingly sent home after still being only 3cm. (absolutely no progress since my doctor's appointment the previous tuesday.)

i went to bed around 10pm that night and got a few hours sleep when i woke up to go to the bathroom. i noticed some blood and just about had a heart attack. shaking, i woke up john and we called the doctor. she said it's perfectly normal and could be that his arrival was approaching. to be safe, she suggested drinking a large glass of ice water and lying down to make sure i could feel him moving. well, it took a very long half an hour as we waited to feel those crazy, miles kicks. with a sense of relief that all was well, john went back to sleep and i tried too, but my contractions were coming stronger. i stayed awake on the couch until about 5am.

my mind was playing tricks on me. was it really time this time? if we went to the hospital, would i be embarrassingly sent home again?

finally i woke john up with an "it's happening."

we sort of non-urgently got ready, showered and were about to get in the car when john suggested we "labor at home" for awhile. i said, "okay."

about two contractions later, and all of four minutes, john said, "i think we better go."

we arrived to the hospital around 7am and i was taken into the "pre-admittance room." my progress was immediately checked.

8 cm.

john and i looked at each other in disbelief. 8 cm!! we were hoping for at least 5 cm. or just something that indicated we had made some progress. but 8 cm. i was 80% done with labor!

things happened very quickly after that. they rushed me into a room. my amazing mid-wife arrived. john called our parents. contractions kept getting stronger and stronger.

at almost 9am i was checked again. 10 cm. we were ready. but my water hadn't broken yet. our mid-wife said she could break it, to speed up the process, or we could wait and it would eventually break on its own. we opted for her to break it.

what i didn't know, was that "speeding up the process" basically meant, after the water was broken, you're going to have the most intense, painful contraction you've ever had, and it's not going to stop until the baby is born.

i was screaming like a monster. clutching the side of the bed. i was officially panicked.

it was at this point my mom raced in.

i don't think the mid-wife and nurses were entirely ready for me to push yet. (she was just getting her gown garb on.) but i remember yelling, "i'm pushing!!!!"

about three-ish pushes later, at 9:04am, he was born.

it was unbelievably intense.

i wasn't really aware when they broke my water, but apparently they noticed meconium in the amniotic fluid. (miles had a poop.) this meant that they had to have nicu nurses there to help with his breathing right out the gate, so i couldn't immediately hold him or see him. so my first look at him he was very, very gray and very silent. but i couldn't really see him behind the group of nurses.

more panicking.

i remembering crying, "i don't hear him crying!!" but the mid-wife assured me they didn't want him to cry just yet, until they knew he didn't breathe in meconium into his lungs. but as john was going back and forth between me and him, he reported back - "he has a heartbeat!"

i don't know how long miles was over on the table, couldn't have been more than ten minutes, maybe? but it felt like an absolute eternity.

then finally, i got to meet the little man that i had been waiting a lifetime for.

though he gave us some scares, he came into the world perfectly, just like his brother noah.

as i anticipated the arrival of miles, the perfection of noah loomed over my head. how could another boy steal my heart the way noah had? everything about noah, and his entrance into the world, was perfect. his dark hairline, his curled lips, his peaceful presence.

but of course, my sweet blondie-boy miles paved a new way to perfection. and though i adore that there are similarities between these two brothers, i'm so thankful they have their very own uniqueness. noah is noah. miles is very much miles.

each of my boys are wildly different, yet divinely perfect.

as is my love for them.


  1. WOW. What a gift to get to hear more of your birth story. And what a privilege to have been witness to yours and John's outrageous courage and love. Thank you, thank you, thank you for not letting the fear win.