Winston’s Birth Story

Oh Winston, you have already made me a better mama in just 16 days.  It all started with the birth, and has continued on since there.  Lets get right to it, because it is a good one…

It all started on Monday night, June 16th.  We were over at our friends the Durkins hanging out and as Kylie and I were talking I said to her that I felt like Winston was literally burrowing down in.  It wasn’t painful at all, but I could literally feel like getting lower as we talked.  Such a weird sensation!  It didn’t even cross my mind that this was the beginning of anything, since I was 38weeks and 2 days.  I had an appointment set for that Wednesday to have my doctor strip my membranes like she did with Braylen, so in my mind I wasn’t going to go in to labor until after that appointment.  Funny how we have ‘plans’ like that;)  I even worked out at the gym that morning and told the girls in the day care that I would see them the next day, but then after that probably not for 6 months!

Shortly after getting home that night I felt my first contraction.  It wasn’t painful at all, but definitely felt different than my normal Braxton Hicks.  I told Jeremy about it, and he asked if I thought tonight was ‘the night’, and I told him not a chance and to go to sleep!  Thats how in denial I was that I would go in to labor before my doctor did anything!  I tried to go to bed, but the contractions kept coming and so I decided to get up and take a bath and possibly start timing them.  Turns out they were coming 3-3 1/2 minutes apart and it was now an hour and a half later…so I figured maybe just maybe it was time to wake Jeremy up {since my doctor wanted me to go in at 5-6 minutes apart since I was group B Strep positive again}.  I grabbed the brownies I had made, our bags, and we were out the door at midnight.

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We got to the hospital and taken in to Triage really fast because it was a slow night.  They started monitoring me and confirmed that my contractions were about 3 minutes apart, and they still weren’t hurting.  The only bummer was that I was only dilated 3-4cm, which is decent, except for the fact that I was already 3cm that past Wednesday.  They told me to walk around for an hour and see if I could make more progress before deciding if they would admit me or not.

We started walking and Jeremy kept making fun of me because I was literally charging the halls.  I had never been in the situation of possibly not being admitted, so I really just wanted to either know we were having the baby, or go home and go back to bed!  After power walking the halls for the hour, they monitored me again.  I was still only about a 3-4, but the contractions had picked up in frequency.  They said we could relax in the room for as long as we wanted to see if anything could change.  So we did.  And the contractions started to fizzle!  I was so annoyed, and just when we were about to call it quits and go home, they said that Winstons heart rate wasn’t looking great.  My doctor was at the hospital doing another delivery, so she came in and said that even if we ended up not having him tonight, that she wanted us to stay for awhile to just monitor him.

They moved us to a birth room so I could at least get on a birth ball and try and get something happening. This was at about 6am.  I sat on the birth ball and went in the tub, but unfortunately my contractions began to space even more {around 8 minutes apart and not painful AT ALL}.  I was so frustrated, because I truly didn’t care if we didn’t have him yet, I just wanted to know one way or another.  At that point his heart rate was back to normal, and so they checked me and I was still only about a 4.  They gave us the option to go home at this point, and I asked if they could just strip my membranes then, and if in an hour after that nothing was happening then we would call it quits.

They had the hospital OB come in since my doctor wasn’t able to be there for another hour, and I was so tired of just waiting around!  She asked before stripping the membranes if I wanted her to break my water as well, or give me a little Pitocin to get things going for sure, and I said a very loud NO!  When I had my water broken last time it intensified my contractions ten-fold, and I wanted to hold off on that pain for as long as possible!  Well, it didn’t go as planned, because while she was stripping me, she apparently ‘accidentally’ nicked my bag of waters and caused a leak.  I still don’t know if it was an accident or not, but either way they said I was now a 5 and for sure staying because the water was now broken. {this was at 730 AM}

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I immediately got in the tub and started feeling the more intense contractions.  Our nurse Katie was great because she just let me do my thing and only interrupted Jeremy and I when it was time to get back on the monitors every 40 minutes. After about 1 1/2 hours she checked me and I was still only at about a 5-6.  That was pretty disappointing to me since the contractions felt much stronger than that, and with Braylen I had progressed much faster.  I was still in good spirits though, so back to the tub I went!


Another hour passed of way stronger contractions, where I was thinking I would FOR SURE be an 8 coming out, and wrong again! This time my doctor checked me and I was only a freaking 6, and she said she thinks he turned posterior on me! She said that was why I wasn’t progressing like I should be, so we went through and did any and all positions to try and help him flip.


FYI Jeremy isn’t just playing a game on his phone while I am having a contraction, he was actually helping me to get the right track from Hypnobabies to play on my phone for me<3

Let me tell you, that next hour was hell.  My contractions were only giving me maybeee a minute break in between, and the intensity was insane.  I truly felt like I was going through transition {which I very clearly remember that feeling with Bray! Yikes!}. So when that hour was up and she went to check me again, thats when everything crumbled.

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I was still a SIX.  A freaking SIX after almost 2 1/2 hours of unbearable, close, and insane contractions.  Thats when she gave me my options.

At that point I didn’t feel as though I could go on any more.  If I had been making progress, maybe even almost to the point of pushing, you better believe I would’ve continued enduring that horrific pain. BUT the fact that nothing was changing, and he was in the wrong position- it was all just too much.  My sweet doctor apologized, saying she knew how badly I wanted to go natural again, but that it wasn’t looking good.  She said I could keep trying, and potentially end up in a C-section if he didn’t flip, or I could get an Epidural and that way even if he doesn’t flip on his own, she could manually flip him right before pushing time.  My #1 priority was healthy baby.  My #2 priority was a vaginal birth.  Yes, I wanted to go natural again, I wanted it with every bone in my body…but that wasn’t the most important thing.

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So there I was, bawling my eyes out to Jeremy, to my doctor and nurse, and to my best friend Melissa {who was SO incredible to be there and photograph and video the whole process!}.  I felt so defeated, but I knew in my heart that I had truly given it my all, and in no way did I want to risk ending up in an unnecessary C-section just because I was too stubborn to get the Epidural.

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So at 10 am the anesthesiologist came in and gave me my first ever Epidural.  I wasn’t afraid to get it, I was honestly mainly curious and ultimately relived to have a break from the pain.  The doctor was so sweet and did a great job.  I thought that the second that puppy was in that I wouldn’t feel any more pain at all, so I was pissed when I still had to endure about four contractions at the normal pain level. Haha. But then, ohh man, that thing kicked in and I was in freaking heaven.  Melissa asked me if I felt like I was high or something {I have never done drugs in my life, but I could try and imagine} and I laughed because I didn’t feel high, but I was totally acting like I was.  I was just so happy to have the pain gone that I couldn’t stop smiling and giggiling.  I felt like someone had pulled the ultimate prank on me and there was this whole new world of still having a baby, but having it without any pain!

Apparently the Epidural was just what my body needed, because 25 minutes after it was in my nurse checked me again “just in case”. The anesthesiologist told me I wouldn’t be having my baby till late that night since I was only a 6 when he administered it.  Well sure enough, 25 minutes later NOT ONLY was I a 10, but Winston had also flipped all on his own!!!  Hallelujah!

She told me that she would give us awhile to rest up since we had such a rough past few hours, and to just let her know if I was ever feeling any overwhelming pressure.  The next hour was blissful.  Jeremy took a nap, I rested and laughed with Melissa.  It was like a vacation;)

At about 12:15 my doctor came back in and asked if I wanted to start trying to push soon and I was game.  I think I would’ve been game for anything at that point;)  She got everything all set, Melissa got the video rolling, and off we went!  I started pushing and just couldn’t get over the fact that not only did it not hurt, but that I could also still feel when I should push.  I was worried that I would be in the situation where I couldn’t feel anything at all, but that wasn’t the case {except for my right leg- that thing was dead as a door nail!}.

It was so incredible being able to push and reach down and feel his head as he started to crown.  We were elated when they told us that not only did he have a good amount of hair, but that it was dark!!  Bray has always had this mysterious light hair, and both J and I are super dark- so we couldn’t wait to see some dark hair on one of our babies!

The best part of the pushing though was toward the end.  I had the head out and right as a shoulder came out my doctor had me reach down and pull the rest of him out!  I got to pull my baby out my self and put him on my chest.  Talk about the most incredible feeling in all the world!!!!!!

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He came out totally covered in vernix and with a sweet loud cry.  He was perfection in every way possible.

I held him for a long while and Jeremy cut the cord once we let all the blood drain from it {probably about 8 minutes after delivery}.  I did tear again this time, but nothing compared to last!  Last time I was a pretty severe third degree, and this time only a light second- WHAT A GAME CHANGER for recovery that was!  Praise God!  The ironic part of that was that Winston and Bray had the same exact stats.  Both were 7lbs 7oz and 21in long!


Sweet sweet hubby wiping his tears

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Since Winston didn’t have any potential heart issues like Bray did, we were able to have him checked out quickly and then put right back on my chest where he belonged!  He didn’t want to nurse too much right in the beginning, but has quickly become a champ just like his fatty brother:)


Showing Winston off to our incredible Dr. Schwartz

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So, was this the birth I had imagined, planned, and prayed for?  Not at all.  Not even close.  BUT it was still incredible.  It is our story.  He is here.  He is healthy.  He is ours, and that is all that matters.

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Will I attempt a natural birth next time?  Honestly- unless I get to the hospital and am already an 8, probably not.  There was something so beautiful about being able to be SO present and peaceful during the labor and pushing because you aren’t overwhelmed and exhausted from the pain, and that is something only I can achieve if I have the epidural.  I wouldn’t change either birth story for anything.  I am so thankful that I was able to experience both sides of the spectrum, but I think I will opt for the medicated side next time:)  Judge me if you must;)

I wanted to say a huge thank you to my best friend Melissa for not only being there as a support, but helping us to document such a special time! These photos and video are something I will always always cherish! Now if only it wasn’t WAY TOO much TMI to share all the birth photos with y’all, because those things are crazy- but I think i’ll spare you;)


We are so in love with Winston, and now being a family of four!

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If you want to check out the birth video {only appropriate stuff shown- I promise!} check it out here!

Braylens birth story is here and here, if you are interested:)


  1. brittany says

    Your birth stories always make me start bawling!! Beautiful. So happy for you guys and I was definitely curious to which way you went on the epidural… Thanks for sharing!!

  2. Brooke says

    This is a great story! Congratulations! I had a similar experience with an epideral and I completely understand where you’re coming from! I was able to take a quick nap before I pushed! And I could still move my legs (slowly) and could feel the contractions coming (lightly). It made for a beautiful active labor and only 20 minutes of pushing before my son was out. I’m a believer now and would opt for an epideral again in a heartbeat! No judgement here! xoxo

  3. Karla says

    From someone who’s birth was not as we had ‘planned’ (ha, plans right?!) this comment resonates with me:

    ‘So, was this the birth I had imagined, planned, and prayed for? Not at all. Not even close. BUT it was still incredible. It is our story. He is here. He is healthy. He is ours, and that is all that matters.’

    THAT is the way one should feel about their birth story. Congratulations on the new addition! I admire your strength and courage as a mother and as a woman willing to share such a personal part of their life with others. Enjoy your family of four (as a fellow furry baby owner, let’s be honest, it’s you have a family of six!).

  4. Karla says

    From someone who’s birth was not as we had ‘planned’ (ha, plans right?!) this comment resonates with me:

    ‘So, was this the birth I had imagined, planned, and prayed for? Not at all. Not even close. BUT it was still incredible. It is our story. He is here. He is healthy. He is ours, and that is all that matters.’

    THAT is the way one should feel about their birth story. Congratulations on the new addition! I admire your strength and courage as a mother and as a woman willing to share such a personal part of their life with others. Enjoy your family of four (as a fellow furry baby owner, let’s be honest, you have a family of six!).

    • says

      You are too sweet! Thank you! Glad you enjoyed the story, I love sharing it because I want women to feel confident and good about their situations even when they arent what they planned:):) And yes, totally a family of six;)

  5. Shannon says

    What perfect timing to post your story. I am 38 weeks and 6 days today. Tomorrow doctor is stripping my membrane in hopes it will move my little guy along. I also have been dilated to a 3 since last Wednesday. I also understand the epidural feeling. I was in active labor at home having contractions for 36 hours with my little girl, who is now 19 months old. Once I got the epidural my husband says I became the biggest chatter box and was talking to everyone that walked by. I have really enjoyed both of your stories and can’t wait till I can have my own with my little man later this week!
    Thank you for sharing!

  6. says

    So heartwarming! Winston is just perfect and so are you! Things that are supposed to work out usually do, and thank goodness everything worked out for you guys wonderfully! We’re so happy for you! XOXO!

    • says

      Thanks Kristen! I am SO excited that you are getting closer and closer! You will have an amazing birth as well- do you feel ready at all yet?

  7. Amanda S says

    Thank you so much for sharing this story. I am only 16 weeks right now, but am feeling conflicted about the birth: to epidural or not to epidural? Ironically I have a fear of birth both with medication and without. Your beautiful story has given me new perspective and I feel much better about the choices I will have to make.

    Congratulations to you and your sweet family.

    • says

      Thanks Amanda. You will do fabulous with either route you chose. The main thing to focus on is getting that baby here safe and healthy:) So excited for yoU!

  8. Jean Bass says

    That is so special. Thanks for sharing. And how wonderful to have a best friend who is also a fabulous photographer. Your boys are so cute.

  9. says

    Congratulations on your beautiful baby boy! It was so nice to read your birth story, as I expect my first little one (a boy) next month. What hospital did you deliver at? It sounds like you had a wonderful experience. 🙂

    • says

      Congrats Jordan!! I delivered at Scottsdale shea hospital. The one off 92nd and shea. We love it there- had both boys there and have always had great experiences! Good luck!

  10. says

    What amazing photos and the whole story had me in tears! It’s such a beautiful thing, bringing every miracle baby into the world. It gets me every time.

    You are beautiful through every moment – such a strong momma you are. I know what it’s like to have your “plans” changed, but I also believe that it was a great reminder about being a parent for me.

    • says

      Kim- I love yoU!!It is truly a miracle, one that you and I are so blessed to have gotten. I know with Henry your plans were definitely thrown out the window, and yet it was still perfection:)

  11. Lisa Vinograd says

    What a beautiful story!! Congrats on such a beautiful baby boy. I feel like you and I lead somewhat parallel lives. I had my second baby boy on May 15th and typed up my birth story here ( which had some VERY similar moments to yours (especial the walking the halls part and the possibility of not being admitted). Birth is amazing, but I am a HUGE fan of the epidural, and like you said being able to be “present” and not exhausted/in horrific pain. The pain that comes before you get it is enough to really “feel” it, so in my opinion, the actual birth should get to be pain free 😉 Congrats again!

  12. Emma says

    Well I just ugly cried all over my keyboard. Melissa’s photos are so warm and real, and the video was gorgeous. Thanks so much for sharing xx

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