Every mom has a birth story to tell. For me, this would be my last. After this, we are closing the factory, so I made sure to savor every moment of this miraculous occasion.
We were scheduled to be induced on September 17th, at 6am. I got lucky as this was my grandpa Joe's birthday. I got pregnant when my grandmother Lucy passed, and how amazing to have my son on her husbands birthday.
The Day Has Finally Arrived
We woke up so excited and quickly rushed out the door. We couldn't believe today was the day. We were going to welcome our third son to our family. Our sweet girl is going to have three brothers, and we couldn't be happier. My sister-in law and mother-in law flew in to help us with our children, which was beyond gracious. Having such hands on help from the family we love so much really couldn't have made for a more perfect birthday for our new addition.
When we checked into the hospital the nurses were so on top of things. They did a stellar job prepping me for the induction and started the pitocin right away. I've never gone into labor on my own, so I've always had to schedule an induction. The nurses knew we were banking our cord blood and cord tissue with Cord Blood Registy (CBR), so they gladly prepared the boxes for the post-birth collection.
Once the contractions kicked in, they offered me an epidural, and I happily obliged (sorry my 'all natural' friends). My pain threshold is worse than a child's. I scream and cry if I bump my arm. I am a total weakling and the first to admit it. So if I can have a child and feel the minimal, sign me up.
This time around, however, it was a bit much. The epidural was so strong I couldn't feel my legs. So much for pain management... I was temporarily paralyzed. At some point, I felt the head drop. I alerted the nurse, and they said I was ready to rock. They paged my doctor, and in she came.
To my dismay, my husband looked at the doctor with the most determined look I've ever seen on his face, and said, "Doc, it would mean the world to me if I could deliver my 4th and last baby." She looked at him, and without even hesitating said "absolutely."
I looked at both of them like, "Hold on, people, Bobby is going to deliver this baby?" Ok, yes he's a doctor, but a doctor of dental surgery. Not a doctor who delivers babies. That being said, I swallowed my fears, said okay, and allowed this wonderful man to welcome our last child into the world.
Dr. Bobby was elated, I was cautiously optimistic and the doctor and nurses were ready to get this show on the road. But before this baby would enter the world, we had one slight problem…. my legs were paralyzed. I couldn't feel a thing. Which meant I couldn't push.
When they told me to push, and I gave it my all, they looked at me and said "that was quite pathetic." Then the doctor says "get the mirror." I said, "the what… the MIRROR?" At that moment, I thought if there was one thing I could live without, it was seeing what I would soon see in that mirror. Before I knew it, a team of nurses marched in with a full length mirror on wheels the size of my front door. Once the super sized mirror was in position, I gazed ahead to see my husband, smiling from ear to ear, arms straight out as if he's ready to catch the winning pass during his college football championship. And then, I get a glimpse of what happens on the south end of the hospital bed.
Is this really happening? Is this a joke? Did it just take a team of people to get my numb legs in the stirrups? It's all pretty surreal. U2 is blasting in the background, and my OBGYN tells me she loves U2, and couldn't believe I was delivering to one of her favorite bands. Rock and roll has always been present in the delivery room for the birth of my babies.
"It's a Beautiful Day" was playing when things got moving. In the mirror, I was now able to see what I didn't want to see. That mirror was necessary to help guide the pushing. I tried my best to keep my eyes on the mirror and not my husbands face which had me hysterically laughing, looking like he was ready for that 40-yard pass.
After ten minutes of pushing, and a total of 4 pushes, out he came! After three deliveries, it becomes a little easier as you can imagine. So yes, I delivered him like a boss. Or should we let my football star husband take the credit?! Regardless, our baby was perfect. He was better than perfect, he was mine. Beautiful black hair like his daddy and full lips like, well, we are not sure who has those lips, but he does.
It's a Boy, a sweet boy may I add! I couldn't feel more blessed and the spirit of my grandparents was with me at that very moment. As I looked down at that beautiful little face, I thought "Oh gosh, what are we going to name this little fella?"
Cord Blood Banking Done Right
Meanwhile, as I lay there wondering what we'll call this precious little pumpkin, there's an amazing thing happening behind the scenes with CBR. Just like my past experiences with CBR, they made the cord blood and tissue collection effortless on my part. Just after the birth, and while baby was on my chest, the doctors and nurses collected the cord blood and tissue samples they needed, and I didn't even realize it was happening.
While in the delivery room, the doctors and nurses prepared the collection kit, and it was delivered with me to my recovery room, where we made a quick phone call to the medical courier provided by CBR. The courier came directly to our hospital room for the pickup, safely delivered it to CBR’s lab and soon after our CBR representative called us to let us know that our kit had safely arrived and the cord blood and tissue were properly stored. It was as efficient as it was reassuring as we welcomed our baby into the world.
If you haven't had the chance to read my blog post about why we bank with CBR, click here. I truly can't say enough amazing things about CBR and the entire process.
Meet Brody Hudson Schaffer
We named him Brody Hudson. After thinking for nine months his name would end with the letter"N" like his three siblings Jackson, Dylan & Roman, we went with Brody. Bobby and Brody… when we said it out loud, it was too perfect! We chose Hudson as his middle name to represent New York City. September 17th was my grandfather Joe's birthday, so we needed something to represent the big apple and Grandpa Joe. Hudson was the perfect fit.
Welcome to the world Brody Hudson, and welcome to our family!
The next day in the hospital was a great one. On that day, my three littles got to see him for the first time and give him a little present they each got to pick out. I cried with so much joy, the feelings were indescribable watching my three greet him and say how much they loved him. We were now a family of six, and it wasn't just my baby, he was all of ours.
Bobby's mom and sister Kimi got to do their share of fussing over our little guy. Not sure I could have gotten through the first ten days without the support of Bobby's family. My sister-in-law, who is also one of my closest friends, stepped in and went above and beyond to make this transition as smooth as possible. I am so blessed to have her as my family. She is the epitome of what being selfless is. I am so inspired by her generosity and love. With a bonus of my mother-in-law's Japanese cuisine waiting for us at home, I couldn't have wished for anything more. I will be forever grateful for the time they spent with us.
Life as a family of 6!
As we return and adjust to our life with another family member, I couldn't help but feel so blessed to have another child. I count my lucky stars for my family of six every day. There aren't enough words to express the happiness I've felt these past two weeks. No matter how sleepless my nights are, and not knowing if I am coming or going, I look down at these little lives who need me so much, and know that this is exactly where I am supposed to be.
I will always think Baby Brody is a gift from my grandmother Lucy and my Grandfather Joe, whom I have never met. The timing of it all can't be ignored. Finding out that we were pregnant just after she passed - on my husband's birthday - and delivering on my grandfather's birthday seems a bit ironic... or is it? I truly believe that this was no coincidence. Grandma Lucy's presence was all around that day. In me, she lives on.
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Disclaimer: I received a discount from CBR for sharing my story.