Monday, February 27, 2012

Harpers Birth Story

 Here is the story of sweet Harper's arrival on February 15th, 2012. 

We had a scheduled c-section because she was breech. Although I initially had hoped I would go into labor on my own, our doctors recommended that we schedule it so that it would not result in an emergency c-section. I actually began having some contractions on February 14th, but nothing strong enough or often enough to call the doctor. That night, my husband & I went out to dinner to celebrate Valentine's Day & the Eve of our baby's birthday. I could hardly eat my dinner because I was so nervous & excited for what was to come. 

Wednesday morning, we arrived at the hospital at 5:30 am. All I could think about was how hungry I was & how badly I wanted some jelly toast. I was trying to keep my mind occupied. We got into our prep room, where the nurse hooked me up to my IV, which I was told was going to be the worst part. It was absolutely painless. My husband & I waited in there for a while alone waiting for me to finish the bag of fluids. Here we prayed & talked about how we couldn't believe the day was finally here.


The nursing staff was so sweet & kept telling me I was going to do great. I think I told everyone who walked in the door how incredibly nervous I was over and over again.  I had to sit on the edge of the bed with my feet on a chair, hunched over a pillow for them to administer my epidural. At this point, I lost it. I started sobbing because I was terrified, just a huge rush of emotions. The poor anesthesiologist definitely thought I was a lunatic - he hadn't even finished putting the tape on my back! They told me that I would feel a little sting & then some pressure. That's exactly what I felt. It didn't hurt at all.. It was sort of a scary feeling just knowing what was happening but no pain. As I sat there for a few minutes, both of my legs got warm & heavy. They had me cross my arms over my chest and lay back down. At this point I started shaking uncontrollably. My husband looked terrified as I lay there convulsing on the table, but again I didn't feel any pain, just couldn't shop shaking. The doctor was running late, so we had about 20 minutes to hang in the room while my epidural kicked in. My husband held my hand while we talked with the anesthesiologist & nurse for a while. At one point I remember saying "I am surprised I haven't said very many curse words today yet!" ...everyone burst out laughing as they informed me that I had definitely dropped a few. The mood in the room was very laid back, it helped me calm down & I was ready to go!

The doctor arrived & the nurses wheeled me into the OR. Such a surreal feeling. They asked Brandon to wait outside the room for just a few minutes while they prepped me. I hated that he couldn't come in right away, I was so nervous! They moved me from one bed to another, where I was sure they were going to just drop me to the floor. They threw up the curtain right below my chest & laid my arms out on either side of me on some supporting contraptions. Finally Brandon came back into the room and rushed over to sit by me. I was so scared that I was going to have a panic attack, Brandon did an amazing job chatting my ear off to keep me calm. He was so sweet & calming during the entire process, I never would have made it through this without him.

Then, before I even realized that they had even started, I heard the doctor say "we have a butt! we have ten toes!" I then felt immense pressure in my ribs, I remember telling Brandon that I thought they were breaking my ribs at that point. I could feel them pulling her out, it was painful but somehow amazing knowing what was happening at the same time. And then we heard the faintest little cry.  I burst into tears as the nurse said "Girl! 8:22 am! Congratulations!" The nurse grabbed our camera & told Brandon to come see her. He was yelling across the room to me "She is beautiful! Jess, wait til you see her!"


After what seemed like forever but was probably only a minute or two, Brandon brought our beautiful baby girl over to me. It was the most amazing moment of my entire life.


She wasn't crying anymore, she was so calm just staring at us. I couldn't believe this little, tiny baby just came out of my belly & I already loved so incredibly much.


I laid there holding her & rubbing her head, soaking up our first few moments as a family of three, while they stitched me up. I had never been happier in my entire life.


Harper's birth was the most incredible, wonderful experience that I ever could have imagined. I will never, ever forget those first precious moments of her life & I am so happy we got pictures to document it.

103 comments:

  1. Your story totally just made me cry!!! I don't know if it's because I'm 33 weeks along, or that I want my son here or that my husband is deploying and won't be here to share that with but whatever it was made me so happy that you such a great experience!! Hopefully my little one comes just as easily! Enjoy your beautiful baby girl!!!

    ReplyDelete
  2. you and your sweet family are beautiful! what a wonderful birth story. little harper is lucky to be the recipient of so much love. congratulations again :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. This is so sweet! Congrats to you and your beautiful family. Wishing you all a lifetime of happiness :)

    ReplyDelete
  4. I LOOOVE the picture that shows the tear rolling down your cheek. Pure happiness! So precious.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I have tears running down my face right now. I am expecting my first baby on July 2nd. A little girl who we will name Aviana. I can't wait to experience this special moment. Congratulations on your little miracle. Baby Harper is absolutely gorgeous.

    The Simple Swan
    thesimpleswan.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  6. I had a c-section with my baby boy over two years ago. Not because he was breech, but because he weighed in at 10lbs 4 oz! Hearing your story just made all of those precious memories from my son's birth come right back! Such an incredible moment! Congratulations again. Your pictures are gorgeous and you definitely do NOT look like you just went through major surgery :)

    ReplyDelete
  7. What a beautiful magical birth story! I am so happy that it went so well! This seriously made me tear up!

    ReplyDelete
  8. SO beautiful love! Good to know that epidural wasn't that bad! Im 36 weeks and am "planning' on having one. Thank you for sharing this journey with us! Cant wait to hear all about this next chapter!!! Lots of love to you and your hubby and the new bundle xo

    ReplyDelete
  9. CONGRATS! This is a beautiful story and it sounds like everything went perfectly. :) So happy for your little family of three. Her name is so sweet.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Your story just made me cry! I am preg with my first as well, we were going to use the name Harper for a girl, but it will be Hunter instead. I also must say that the picture of you looking up at the camera with her is one of the most beautiful after C-sec pics I have ever seen!!

    ReplyDelete
  11. You just made this preggo cry! Beautiful birth story.

    ReplyDelete
  12. I should have known better than to read this at work. I'm bawling.

    I'm so glad to hear that your c-section wasn't a terrible experience. We found out our little one is measuring a week and a half ahead. I'm afraid he's going to be one big boy!

    You look incredible in the last picture. I hope my first pictures as a Mommy are half as good as yours!

    ReplyDelete
  13. Such a beautiful story! Your little girl is absolutely precious and you look so pretty in the last photo. You don't look like you just had a baby at all! Congratulations to you and your family!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Amazing Story! I started to cry a little at how sweet it was & remembering the birth of my first! Then I saw the picture of you holding your little Harper girl & a tear rolling down your face, so sweet! She is just adorable! Congrats again & welcome to Motherhood! The best hood you'll ever be in!

    ReplyDelete
  15. What an amazing story and a beautiful baby! Congratulations again!

    ReplyDelete
  16. Such a beautiful story! Congrats!!

    ReplyDelete
  17. You look so incredibly beautiful during this entire journey!! This is such a wonderful story, and I loved reading it!

    ReplyDelete
  18. What a beautiful birth story. When I was 39 weeks I had to go in & be induced cause they thought baby girl had extreme low fluid I was so scared that I was gonna need a c section. But I'm glad it went smoothly for you & you now have your beautiful little girl

    ReplyDelete
  19. I'm due in just about 9 weeks and am so nervous/anxious/scared. It's going to be my first birth and I've been getting all kinds of conflicting stories about how it hurts, how its a breeze, how it's the worst pain in my life...

    So nerve wrecking!
    But congratulaions and a sweet sweet baby and a successful delivery.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Reading your story of her birth was pretty much the same with mine except for mine was an emergency c-section. But the emotions i felt when i was reading this reminds me of my son's birth!!! Before i went in the nurse told me to look into the light on the ceiling so i could the reflection of what the doctor was doing and to get to see our son born. that was truly the most amazing experience of my life!! Congrats on your beautiful baby girl!!

    ReplyDelete
  21. What a sweet story! My baby is breech right now and I've been worrying about him not flipping and c-sections and all that but this made me not so worried!

    Congrats!

    Allyssa

    ReplyDelete
  22. Reading your story felt so similar to reading my own. :) I heard the same, that the IV was the worst part (and I noted that in my birth story, too, LOL). The catheter was the worst for me! Ouch. :\ So happy for you, that everything went well. Here's to a speedy c-section recovery! :)

    ReplyDelete
  23. You look absolutely stunning which is just not fair after giving birth! Seriously...what an amazing story! It just brought me to tears...so many overwhelming emotions! You must be so proud! xo

    ReplyDelete
  24. congrats! your baby is beautiful. cant wait to have my own one day :]

    ReplyDelete
  25. you look fabulous! most women look like haggard hobos after birth! such a sweet story.

    ReplyDelete
  26. I love this! So happy and excited for you all on your new journey!

    ReplyDelete
  27. This definetly made me tear up! Thank you so much for sharing. How awesome that you have pictures to remember the experience, I know I didn't want ANY pictures of myself as I felt like and looked like absolute crap, now I am wishing I did have pictures. You looked beautiful! I still can't get over how perfect Harper looked immediately. Congrats again and all the best! I look forward to reading your blog each week, can't wait to see pics of the nursery!

    ReplyDelete
  28. I'm not even pregnant and I'm sitting here crying. I hope that my experience is like this. I know that I will be a complete mess as I cannot stand any pain at all! Congratulations again!

    ReplyDelete
  29. I adore how honest you are in your post! I love all of them but this has been one of my faves! It reminded me of giving birth to my two sweet baby girls! Congrats to you NAND your husband! Love the name Harper!!

    ReplyDelete
  30. I love how honest you are in your posts! You are so refreshing!! I especially loved this post having my two girls were the greatest experiences! Congrats to you and your husband! Love the name Harper!!

    ReplyDelete
  31. Beautiful!

    I love the last picture!

    XoXo
    ELizabeth
    http://itzalovestory.blogspot.com/

    ReplyDelete
  32. Thanks for sharing! I remember getting all shaky after the epidural too. It was kinda scary, but I loved my epidural. Hot mine at 9 cm dilated. Heaven!!!

    ReplyDelete
  33. can I just say how wrong it is that you look that good minutes after having a baby! LOVE the last picture of you and your baby girl !

    ReplyDelete
  34. bawling!!!!! so incredible and I am so happy for you guys! can't wait to meet her.

    ReplyDelete
  35. This got me all teary too! Probably because I am 35 weeks along and can hardly wait for my baby girl to get here! I love all your blog posts and your ideas have helped me think of some for my pregnancy as well!

    McKinli
    mommyslittlesunshine.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  36. SO SWEET!Congratulations on your new sweet baby and your precious family of 3! I absolutely LOVE the last picture, you look so happy!

    ReplyDelete
  37. I am pregnant with my second child who is breech and I'm 36 weeks. My first was a super easy natural delivery so naturally I have been panicking since my doctor told me he will schedule a c section if she doesn't turn soon. Your blog post has eased my nerves :) congrats on your baby girl. she is beautiful!

    ReplyDelete
  38. This *almost* made me cry for two reasons -- 1) it is such a sweet story! and 2) my baby is oblique & that means a possible c-section if she doesn't change positions. It was really great to read a story about a c-section... I had avoided it until now! I'm glad that you had a good experience... this was really helpful to read. Thank you for posting her birth story! I can't wait to see more updates about you & baby Harper & your little family! :)

    ReplyDelete
  39. Aww your beautiful story made me tear up. All the pictures are so beautiful...especially the one where your hubby brought baby Harper over to you and you can see a tear rolling out of the side of your eye. So precious!

    ReplyDelete
  40. I guess I'm not the only one balling my eyes out reading your birth story! Ha! I've been following your blog for quite some time and I am now 8 weeks pregnant... excited, nervous, scared... every emotion in the book. Reading your story has helped me to feel more confident that this is going to be an amazing adventure. My husband and I just got our first ultrasound and heard and saw our baby's heartbeat. I was balling then too! What a blessing! Congrats on your little blessing!

    ReplyDelete
  41. how precious are these pictures?! SO glad you got to document such a special moment :)

    ReplyDelete
  42. that is such a great story!
    you did so good, and I love the pictures
    ps. thank you for sharing your chalkboard making. I made one this weekend!

    ReplyDelete
  43. AWWW!!! That seriously made me tear up! Congratulations to the both of you! She is absolutely adorable! I have very much enjoyed reading all of your blog posts!

    ReplyDelete
  44. I have had 2 c-sections (first ER & 2nd scheduled) I am having my 3rd and final in EXACTLY 2 weeks from today...

    ..I know exactly what you went through. It is strange getting the epidural in your back and I am always sad they don't let my hubbie stay by me the entire time. I also have shaken uncontrollably with both. I found with the 2nd that wearing 2 pairs of warm slipper/socks, asking for extra blankets has helped, although it's mostly just shock for your body is what they told me, but FYI for next time.

    ReplyDelete
  45. such a sweet birth story! Congrats on the little baby girl!

    ReplyDelete
  46. What a lovely story. You made me both laugh and cry. The three of you make a beautiful family!!!

    ReplyDelete
  47. What a beautiful birth story! Congratulations on your little girl.

    ReplyDelete
  48. Beautiful pictures--it made me cry!

    I am so glad that you are able to document your story from the day you found you were pregnant to giving birth to her...that's a beautiful journey right there.

    I am doing the same for my pregnancy and it has been a really wonderful experience so far.

    Congrats on your beautiful birth story.

    ReplyDelete
  49. Your story is soo wonderful. Thanks for posting..It was such a happy tear jerker :-) My bf and I both laughed about you not knowing you dropped a couple curse words..Congrats!!

    ReplyDelete
  50. Congrats and thanks for sharing!

    ReplyDelete
  51. What a beautiful story. The picture of you holding her for the first time is definately a framer! Congratulation. :)

    ReplyDelete
  52. Congratulations! What a perfect birth story!

    gandacummings.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  53. Congratulations new momma!!! I have to say I am a new follower of your blog via your chalkboard pins allover thaaa place! :) you are soo famous. And I wanted to say I am catching up on your history and you are absolutely adorable, and inspirational in so many ways! Your smile is so bright and REAL, and I especially love the way you write, because its YOU! Many happy Congratulations on your beautiful new baby daughter, to your husband, your courage, and your amazing hair! (I had to) I'm your newest biggest fan! Go Jessica Go! xox

    ReplyDelete
  54. Your story made me cry. My husband and I currently trying to get pregnant. It has been so great to follow your blog. I am so happy for you. I cannot wait until I experience it all for myself.

    ReplyDelete
  55. Your story made me cry. My husband and I are currently trying to get pregnant. I have enjoyed following your journey. I cannot wait until I can have these experiences for myself.

    ReplyDelete
  56. Amber M. (Redding, CA)February 27, 2012 at 8:47 PM

    I know I'm not the first to say this and wont be the last, but YOU LOOK AMAZING in your birth photos!! Totally tryin not to hate right now! lol Congrats!

    ReplyDelete
  57. I can see a tear down your face in the third picture! How adorable was this, made me tear up :) LOVE YOUR BLOG! Can't wait to see more!!

    ReplyDelete
  58. I'm not sure if I've seen anyone look THAT good directly after giving birth! Congrats, and you all look beautiful =]

    ReplyDelete
  59. Thanks for sharing so much of your story! I started reading your blog about 12 weeks ago and have been hooked ever since. You have made my first pregnancy so much more enjoyable by being able to connect with someone with the same humor as I have. Beautiful birth story with the best ending.

    ReplyDelete
  60. You look absolutely stunning as a new mommy! Thanks for sharing your story with us.

    ReplyDelete
  61. what a beautiful story and pictures. you have a wonderful family.

    http://mrmrssorensen.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  62. Yup, I cried too! I can't thank you enough for letting us follow your birth story. You're such an inspiration and so damn beautiful! I hope I look as good as you right before and after I give birth in July.

    Thanks again and congratulations!
    ♥ A

    ReplyDelete
  63. You look beautiful! Wow, what sweet pictures. Gorgeous family! Love your blog, thanks for sharing your stories with us!

    ReplyDelete
  64. How do you make your little collages? I know in one of your posts you said you use paint but I cannot figure it out. Any help please? Thank you!

    ReplyDelete
  65. SUCH a beautiful story and pictures! I got goosebumps reading this :) Congrats to your gorgeous fam!!!

    ReplyDelete
  66. Congratulations on your beautiful baby girl! I found your blog on Pinterest soon before getting pregnant myself and knew immediately that I wanted to follow a format like yours for chronicling my own pregnancy journey! It's been so much fun (this is my first blogging experience)! Thanks for sharing!

    ReplyDelete
  67. That is such beautiful story...I read this at work (bad idea!) and was forcing the tears back...but they were there! The pictures are amazing and you, your baby and your family are sooo beautiful! I cannot wait to experience this someday! Congratulations again...such a blessing!

    ReplyDelete
  68. I just love your blog so much and like most people found you on Pinterest I think when you were around 20ish weeks! My husband calls me crazy since I do not know you but you have inspired me to blog our journey also! We just started trying this month so we shall see how this all goes!!! Good luck and you look amazing!!

    ReplyDelete
  69. Ahhh you have me crying too! Such a precious birth story! Glad you are both doing great!

    ReplyDelete
  70. Ahh you have me crying too!! Such a beautiful baby story! Glad both of you are doing well!

    ReplyDelete
  71. CONGRATS!!! She is gorgeous. I am super duper jealous how flippin beautiful you look in those pictures. . . sooooo unfair. :)

    ReplyDelete
  72. Aww and the world def sang a song that night to welcome sweet Harper!
    Reading your birth story just made me teary eyed as the birth of your child is def a day you will always remember and now I need to go back and look at my birth photos of Elle.

    ReplyDelete
  73. Congrats on Baby Harp! and also Congrats! You have been nominated for the Versatile Blogger Award. To read more about it please visit my blog: http://www.pozniaks.com/

    ReplyDelete
  74. I have just caught up with your story. I love your chalkboard idea! It must be the teacher in me. You have a beautiful family and baby Harper is precious. I can't wait to read about your wonderful journey.

    <3 Carli

    ReplyDelete
  75. I love love love your blog and always check for updates! You are one sexy mama, and you looked amazing for Harper's birth!!!

    You are a great writer too, and amazing blogger!!

    With love from Sydney, Australia! :)

    ReplyDelete
  76. I've read your whole blog over the last couple of weeks, and I was so excited the day I found out Harper finally came! Also, I am in awe of how lovely you look even while you literally had just had surgery and a baby.

    ReplyDelete
  77. I stumbled across your blog and I think it is just beautiful!

    I had my son 18 months ago by c-secion because he was breech. I went into labor 6 days before the scheduled CS and ended up being rushed in there because his foot was in the birth canal.

    Congrats!

    ReplyDelete
  78. I cant help but get teary eyed when I read birth stories, probably because Im a new mom myself! your pictures are beautiful and you look so pretty! Your baby girl Harper is so precious, im glad your experience was amazing, that is so wonderful!

    ReplyDelete
  79. Thanks for sharing this experience with is. I enjoyed looking every week.....Harper is beautiful. Congrats! Paula

    ReplyDelete
  80. I had a breech baby girl born at 8:22 a.m. in December! :) Greatest joy!

    ReplyDelete
  81. Jessica, I am soo happy for you, brandon and harper! Once again, I teared up with your post, I do this on a regular basis. Your writings are just so sweet and totally heart felt, love reading them makes me even more excited for when my day comes one day to start the pregnancy journey.

    ReplyDelete
  82. Congratulations to you and your husband on Harper's birth. Thank you for sharing your pregnancy journey and birth story with us! I only stumbled upon your site via Pinterest at week 35 but I enjoyed reading back to the beginning of your pregnancy. I love how you go into detail on certain things. I really helps put other women who are expecting at ease knowing they aren't alone.

    Thank you for sharing your lives with us!
    Stacey

    ReplyDelete
  83. Wow. Your story was a mirror image of mine! Two of your pictures look EXACTLY like mine. I had my son in 2010, and my water broke a week before my scheduled c-section (due to his being breech and too big to turn-8lb9oz)! You described "our" experience very well! Congratulations!!

    ReplyDelete
  84. Wow! Your story is a mirror image of mine. In fact, two of your pictures look EXACTLY like mine! My water broke a week before the scheduled c-section (also because he was breech and too big to turn, 8lb9oz!). I had him in 2010 and already I'd forgotten some of the details, and your great description brought back those precious moments and feelings. Congratulations!!

    ReplyDelete
  85. Jennifer,

    I loved this post so much that I included it in my link up, Lots of Link Love! Lots of Link Love is a biweekly link up inspired to share the love between bloggers and work towards a positive community of fabulous bloggers such as ourselves! ;)

    http://www.stresscasey.blogspot.com/2012/03/lots-of-link-love.html

    I would love if you shared Lots of Link Love with your readers (there's a button you can share at the end of an unrelated post if you'd like!) and would be overjoyed if you considered linking up with me for the next Lots of Link Love on Thursday, March 22!

    Casey
    http://www.stresscasey.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  86. I am sorry you had to have a c section, but am glad everything went well. I have had two c sections and just found out I am pregnant again. I am not going to lie I am scared to death! Not of another baby, but another surgery. It is scary, but just know there is nothing you could have done to change that you had to have one. What a beautiful little girl! I have been following your story for months! Congrats!

    ReplyDelete
  87. I found your blog on accident and am so glad I did! I loved reading your pregnancy posts and it makes me even more excited for my baby's birth day (October 17, 2012). Thanks for sharing your story...got some great inspiration, laughs and tears! Your family is beautiful!!

    ReplyDelete
  88. seriously?! who looks that gorgeous after just giving birth?!! you have a beautiful family :)

    ReplyDelete
  89. this was so beautiful it made me cry! (and i've read plenty of birth stories without the tears!) congratulations! (and those pictures are so beautiful!)

    ReplyDelete
  90. So I am sitting at work crying. I am so happy that you were awake when she was born. My daughter is almost 7 months now and due to complication I had to be put completely out and didn't wake up until nearly 2 hours after she was born. I wish everybody at my hospital had all their ducks in a row :( (https://growingkanewischers.wordpress.com/)
    Congrats - she is beautiful!

    ReplyDelete
  91. Our stories are very similar....uncontrollable shaking from epidural, scheduled c-section, baby girl born on February 15th only my little Gabriella was born 2011. Congratulations! I really enjoy your blog and little Harper is adorable.

    ReplyDelete
  92. Lovely story & beautiful photos (throughout the entire blog too!). I am loving your blog a lot, only discovered it today via Pinterest :)
    Also, may I say, your lovely daughter was born on the best day - my 20th birthday in fact ;)
    Congratulations on her birth!

    ReplyDelete
  93. I know this is a throw back post for you and I have already read it about 4 times since the actual post :) but now getting closer in my pregnancy it was so wonderful to read again. So beautiful!

    ReplyDelete
  94. I have been reading your blog for a while, but just read this post and can't tell you how much peace of mind it is giving me. My little girl, due Feb. 13, is breech and has been for a while. I have tried everything to get her to turn and have been so sad over the loss of birthing her naturally. C-section scheduled for Feb 14 and terrified....but your post gives me hope and calms my nerves, so thank you :)

    ReplyDelete
  95. Jessica,

    I have been keeping up with your blog for about a year now. I love seeing all the pictures and hearing stories about sweet little Harper. I'm only in high school, but your blog makes me so excited to have sweet babies of my own someday! I was bored tonight, so I decided to re-read some of your older posts, and when I got to this one I actually cried. Such a precious girl with such loving parents! I can't even believe this babe is almost one. I love watching her grow up! Happy early birthday, Harper!

    ReplyDelete
  96. So sweet! My baby was born the very same day a year earlier, 2011. There is just absolutely nothing like bringing a little miracle into the world. :)

    ReplyDelete
  97. Holy crap you have me balling like a baby!! Her birth story is absolutely beautiful and the way you told it made it that more amazing! You have such a beautiful family. Love reading your posts it makes me that much more excited about having a little one in a couple more years :) xoxo

    ReplyDelete
  98. Ahh! Such a wonderful story! :) I love the pictures... so pretty!

    ReplyDelete
  99. Ummm....you looked #amazeballs after you had her.

    ReplyDelete
  100. As a child how did you imagine your life as a adult? You have a great husband, lovely house, and TWO gorgeous daughters! You are so inspirational and I hope to be a fun-loving wife and mother like you. Congratulations Jessica, Brandon, and Harper! Eloise is absolutely stunning, enjoy every moment you can with her!

    ReplyDelete