Story Share: Finn’s Story Pt. 2

If you recall where we left off last week, Finn tried to make an early arrival and Mama K was sent home to rest and get ready for a baby at any moment. Read along for the rest of Finn’s first big adventure 🙂


For the next 2 weeks, I didn’t feel any more signs of labor. I was instructed to hang out at home and take it easy, so Tyler and I were able to get the nursery finished up and lay low. By the end of week 36, I was starting to think that the baby was going to stay put until week 40 and that his imminent arrival had just been a false alarm, but I was relieved to have made it past that critical window of time.

Week 37 came,and that day I remember feeling a general uncomfortableness, not so much physically, but mentally. I told Tyler I just felt restless. We went to meet with Dr. Medley for my 37 week appointment and were surprised that I was dilated to 4cm. This meant the first phase of my labor was virtually done. Medley asked if I had been feeling any contractions and had a very skeptical look on her face when I assured her I hadn’t had any that I was aware of. She warned me that when I did go into labor again, it was likely to be fast and my body would go right into the more intense active phase. She also alluded to the very likely possibility that I would not need (or have time) for an epidural. Yeah right, I’m getting the drugs I thought in my head as I nodded in acknowledgement. Later that day Tyler and I were hanging out in the nursery and he decided to Youtube some swaddling how-to videos. We practiced swaddling and diapering a stuffed koala. I felt pretty confident, but still couldn’t imagine it being a real baby in a very short time… That evening I put a heat pack on my back because it felt uncomfortable, but not much about being 8-plus months pregnant is ever comfortable! I felt zero pain or contractions.

At 2:30am I woke up to use the bathroom as was the custom by that point. Tyler heard me get up and asked, “Everything fine?” I replied, “yep, nothing going on”. We went back to sleep.

At 4:45, a small trickling sensation woke me up out of a dead sleep and gave me an adrenaline rush as I all but jumped out of bed. I instantly thought, is this my water breaking?? As I walked to the bathroom there was a tiny amount of fluid, and then nothing. No big gush or anything like you’d expect. I wasn’t sure if it was my water, or heck, maybe I peed myself a little when the baby kicked my bladder. At this point in pregnancy nothing would have surprised me, but I was shaking uncontrollably nonetheless.

Somehow I just sensed something was up. Tyler reassured me that if it had been my water breaking it would have been a huge gush, unmistakable. “The doctor said your socks would be wet if it was your water!” he reiterated. I still felt unsettled about it and told him I was going to get up and walk around to see if anything was happening. I was convinced my water hadn’t broken, but might have started a slow leak which I had heard is possible. I went downstairs and put the diaper bag and my duffle in the car. By about 5am I still hadn’t felt anything, but told Tyler I was going to take a shower in case anything started happening. During my 10 minute shower I felt three separate pains very similar to period cramps. I got out and told him I thought I was definitely starting to have contractions, so he got out of bed and started getting dressed. “Is it baby day?” he asked. I said, “I think so!” as I fumbled around looking for something comfortable to wear to the hospital, finally landing on a pair of sweats and my Mama Bear T-Shirt. Tyler asked if I thought he had time to feed the goats before we left. “Yeah of course, it takes 5 minutes!” I told him.

After getting dressed it was about 5:20 and I was brushing my wet hair, still fully convinced that I’d have time for a quick blow-dry and maybe even to throw some mascara on. I had started to time my contractions, but was convinced I was doing it wrong because the graph was showing that they were about a minute apart, sometimes less. I knew my labor would probably be quick, but this just seemed. entirely unreasonable. From the time that Tyler went out to feed the goats, the contractions went from moderate to SEVERE in a matter of minutes. I fully abandoned any effort to continue getting myself ready as it took all my focus to breathe through each one. The last two before Ty came back in from the barn put me on the ground on hands and knees and I couldn’t help but scream from the intense pain. Later Tyler told me he thought he had heard something out at the barn, but didn’t realize it was me screaming in the house. I met him at the back door and ripped the handle out of his hands as I flung it. open. “We have to go, NOW.” In that moment I was absolutely horrified and convinced that we had waited too long to leave. Despite the pain and chaos, I glanced at the bananas sitting in the kitchen and. grabbed one on my way to the car.

At 5:33 (half an hour after I first acknowledged my labor might be starting in the shower) we flew out of. the gate and I told Tyler he better go as fast as he could. I could barely talk and it seemed like the contractions were less than 30 seconds apart. Tyler offered his hand for me to squeeze but I kept telling him not to talk to me and to keep driving. He sent out a text to family on the way, ‘in labor, heading to the hospital’. Halfway through our drive he was confused to see me shoving a banana in my mouth. between contractions and started laughing when I explained my dad used to make us eat a banana. before our basketball games when we were kids and that I would need the energy. We came up to a yellow light and for a second I was worried that Tyler was going to stop for it. (He’s way less “aggressive” than I am when it comes to driving). I yelled, “YOU’RE RUNNING IT!” He ran two red lights on the way to the hospital, honking in the intersections firetruck style to warn any oncoming cars.

Though my contractions were on top of each other, I had never experienced labor before, and in my mind I worried that maybe I was just at the beginning. I kept thinking, if it hurts this bad and it’s only the beginning, I will absolutely DIE by the end. I CANNOT do this for hours. At that point I was panicking and asking Tyler if I should call ahead to let the birth center know we were on our way and that I wanted an epidural. ASAP. Looking back I know that I felt this way because I had been in transition and almost ready to deliver. Tyler said we’d be there in three minutes anyway and that they’d definitely be able to give me the epidural. We both knew he was lying.

At about 5:42 Tyler parked in the Emergency entrance of the hospital and ran for a wheelchair. A nurse followed him out to help and I could barely get myself out of the car. As soon as I stood up my water fully broke and I hastily got into the wheelchair, instantly feeling a lot of pressure really low in my pelvis. I remember feeling like I might be sitting on the baby’s head and tried to lean my weight to one side. Tyler wheeled me directly into the open elevator and we went up to the Family Birth Center. When they let us through the doors at 5:45 I remember thinking THANK GOD, we made it. But to my dismay, instead of taking me to a birthing room, the nurse at the front desk stopped Tyler and was saying “Oh this is your first baby? 37 weeks? We’re actually going to take you right over here to triage first and I’ll just check you.”

I was beyond irritated that we couldn’t convey to them that I was having this baby NOW. At this point it was all I could do to hold back the uncontrollable noises coming out of me and I felt a ton of pressure. The nurse asked “can I get a urine sample from you?” I yelled “NOOO!” in my head. But Tyler humored her and said to me “can you go pee real quick?” I looked at them in disbelief and squeaked out “I don’t think so!” but I waddled over to the toilet anyway. The nurse handed Tyler a urine sample cup and all hell broke loose.

To our disgust, when Tyler opened the sample cup, it was clear it had already been used.
“THERE’S PEE IN THIS!!” Tyler yelled out at the nurse. She came flying in apologizing profusely as I started screaming in pain. “OK! I’m just gonna check you on the toilet, stay right there!” She knelt down and the second she checked, she reached across with her other hand and ripped the panic cord hanging on the wall next to the toilet. The one other nurse on shift came running in. “Ok, change of plans, we’re gonna have a baby right now!” she informed us. The second nurse started racing around grabbing supplies. I was in total shock and felt so defeated. Here I was stuck on the toilet with a baby ready to crown, not even in a bed, no epidural, and no time to prepare my mind or body for this. In between two contractions I leaned back against the grab bars with a resigned stare, in disbelief that this was really going to happen. Tyler saw my pale blank face, grabbed my arm and demanded “ARE YOU OK?” Clearly he thought I looked like I was going to pass out. “Yeah, I’m fine” I said nonchalantly. What other choice did I have? The nurse squatted down to my level and said “Look at me, you can do this!” “Ok. I can do this” I repeated. In that moment I felt that I had surrendered to my body. The other nurse came back in and frantically asked “Can you get onto this gurney?” The three of them got me to clamber up on the triage gurney while they got rid of my shoes and pants and Tyler started wheeling me toward a birthing room, pushing through the brakes that were still engaged on the wheels. One nurse was holding the baby’s head in the whole way down the hall and was telling me not to push, yelling for the other nurse to get her some oils. “I’m just gonna try to help get things stretched out down here.” I remember thanking her on the way down the hall because I felt so helpless, at the mercy of what my body would decide to do next. I heard Tyler asking, “I know it’s too late for an epidural, but can you give her some nitrous? Anything?” Bless him. “Nope, we’re gonna have a baby!!” They wheeled me into a room next to the birthing bed and it was quickly realized that there was no way they were going to be able to transfer me off the gurney at this point. My body had already started pushing, trying to expel the baby without my consent.

I can only liken the sensation to the uncontrollable urge to vomit. It felt like I was in a different realm and I couldn’t have told you where I was or who was there besides Tyler. One nurse was ripping packaging open and I heard the other nurse ask “do you want to feel your baby’s head?”
“NO!! I’M NOT READY!!” I yelled.

With one push his head was born, and then with the second push the nurse freed his shoulder and he was completely out. She whisked him up onto my chest and Tyler was saying through tears and laughter “He’s out! We just had a baby Kelby!” It was 5:50am on May 8 th. I was laying there holding him in complete shock. An incredulous grin on my face, I just kept saying “I can’t believe it, I can’t believe it”.

Just an hour before I had been sound asleep, completely unaware that my world was about to be forever changed. He was perfect. It was instant relief, and I was in disbelief that I was on the other side of it and that I had not in fact died. Finn started crying instantly and Tyler started making phone calls to our moms who were supposed to be in the room for the delivery. The on-call doctor had been called at 5:46 after we checked into triage, the baby was on my chest 4 minutes later, and the doc made it to the room a few minutes after that, but he was a few minutes too late. I thought wow, that was so quick, I must not have even torn! Turns out labor that fast tends to have the opposite effect, and 15 stitches later I was singing a different tune. When our parents and my sister arrived shortly after, the CNA at the front desk let them in and they asked, “Did the doctor make it for the birth?” She said “Hell no the doctor didn’t make it! Sorry, but HELL NO. They barely even made it!” She later informed us that when we rolled up, there was another woman at 10cm ready to push in one of the other rooms, but they’d had to leave her to deal with our pandemonium.

It turns out Dr. Medley had called at about 5:30 to check and see if any of her patients had come in, so we just missed her. I knew I should have called ahead. When our family got to come in and meet Finn, everyone was cracking up that in all the chaos of that morning, Tyler still hadn’t tied his shoes. Childbirth was always such a wild idea to me. I’ve always loved watching birth videos and reading stories because the whole miracle of bringing a baby into the world really boggles my mind. The strength of the female body and its God-ordained design has always intrigued me to no end. There was also the fear; the skepticism that my own body could in fact be capable of such an amazing feat. I always wanted to try it un-medicated if I could, but it’s no secret that when I asked Tyler if he thought I could do it without meds at the beginning of the pregnancy, his response was, “No offense, but you’re kind of a wet paper towel when it comes to pain.” Thanks Ty. Truth is, I had never really experienced true pain until that point.

Honestly, I don’t know if I would have had a natural birth had I been given the choice, or
if I would have opted for an epidural. But now, I know what my body is capable of and feel like I can get through anything. Though it was such a shocking experience for me in every way, I’m so grateful that things happened the way they did and that I got to experience the whole process with practically no intervention. It brought me a perfect healthy 6lb 15oz baby boy and has empowered me in more ways than one as a new mother.

Laying there after Finn was born, I kept hearing my grandma’s words from when I spoke to her about my birth fears just a few months before she passed. She said, ‘Kelby, let me tell you, it hurts like hell. The pain is TERRIBLE. But it’s only for a short while!’ She was so right; worst 45
minutes of pain I’ve ever experienced, and I wouldn’t change a thing.


What a WHIRLWIND story! I love  every last bit of this. Especially that Mama K has a profoundly new view of her body and all that she is capable of!

If you are interested in sharing your birth story on our Story Share series, contact Jess

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