One of the CRAZIEST days of my life was the day I gave birth to Ryker Austin Hartig. It is actually really hard to describe because words do not even do it justice! I will just start from the very beginning…
Early Sunday morning I woke up at 4 am with major cramping. I felt like every 10-15 minutes my lower abdomen was really tightening up! I knew that to go to the hospital it was best to wait until contractions were every 5 minutes or less so we stayed at home as long as possible. Looking back I think I was so excited to have Ryker that I was tricking my body into thinking the cramps hurt worse than they actually were and they were occurring more often. Anyways we decided to play it safe and call the doctor when they opened around 7 am. They had us come in just to get checked out! Of course, as soon as we get to the hospital my contractions completely stopped and I felt totally normal! We went inside anyways and got checked in, changed into a robe, and hooked up to the machines just for them to tell us that the contractions were not consistent enough and we could go home for the day! UGH what a tease little Ryker was being.
I was a little crazy when it came to going into labor. I was (am) an old wives tales believer and I swore that all the weird things I had done the last week had made me go into labor… of course I did have Ryker that next Monday so I think one of them worked!
Anyways I was really grateful we spent Sunday relaxing at home instead of stuck in a hospital room! It felt like our last day of normalcy before we had a newborn baby in the house. Both of our families were really anxious because they wanted to know whether or not they should come to Lawrence, take off work, or fly in from california so nobody would miss the birth! I literally had NO CLUE when Ryker would come. I know that some women have false contractions for weeks!
We spent the entire day either relaxing at home or going on long walks! I felt like the walking is what really got labor started. I have never walked so much in my entire life then how much I did in the 10 months that I was pregnant. That night for dinner we ate Chilis LOL and I tried to get the most spicey item on the menu but I really did not have much of an appetite.
Around 10 pm we decided to go to bed…I fully intended on going to class the next day as well. I hate missing school so I was going as long as possible. Then literally around 10:15, after derek and I tried another old wives tale 😉 I started getting PAINFUL contractions. I could not sleep through them at all. It was so odd, I would be totally fine for 7-8 minutes then all of a sudden I had the worst pain ever and could not talk or move at all. Just talking about it makes me feel like I am having them again LOL. I also could not get comfortable. I was moving all around the room, sitting, standing, on my knees, etc. and nothing would ease the pain. I told myself that I was going to wait as long as I possibly could before I went to the doctor because there was no way I was going to be sent home AGAIN.
I stayed up all night just trying to get through each contraction. My mom was in my bedroom with me rubbing my back, talking to me and basically just doing whatever she could to help. I wanted Derek to try to get at least a little rest especially since we were up the night before and who knows what the next week would bring. Obviously with me yelling and moving right next to him he was not able to rest very easily. Everyone was just so excited and anxious!
Around 5 am I told Derek and my mom that I could not take another second sitting at home and it was time to go. We went to the hospital and had to enter through the emergency room since it was in the middle of the night. Once we got checked by the nurses we let everyone know that TODAY WAS THE DAY WE WOULD MEET OUR BABY BOY.
Around 7 am my contractions were so intense I would cry through every one of them and it seemed they were coming so often. It was terrible. I requested an epidural and the anesthesiologist would arrive around 8 am. Once he got there and gave me the medicine I was so relieved. I felt like I could finally enjoy this day and hangout with all of our family who were so excited too!
I was told that Ryker was face up so for the next few hours I had to maneuver my body into lots of weird positions to try to get him to turn. The numbness from my epidural was going back and forth from my left to right and back to front. Things were also starting to slow down. I was given pitocin to speed things up and WOW did it seem to kick in instantly. Derek had stepped out of the room briefly to get some chic fil a and before he left I asked for ONE fry. (even though you are not supposed to eat in labor). In the 10 minutes he was gone this baby was on its way!! I told the nurses that I was starting to feel every contraction and a huge urgency to start pushing. They checked me and I was fully dilated! It was time!! We began pushing a little after 12 pm. Derek got back to the room at 11:45 but jeesh could ya cut it any closer?!
After some intense pushing little Ryker came into the world at 12:24 pm at 7lbs 3 oz. Derek and I both started crying because he was the most precious and beautiful baby I have ever seen. Who would have thought that this little man was everything that I wanted and needed. We spent the next few days in the hospital and brought him home Wednesday evening. My whole postpartum journey is a whole different story that I won’t tell today…. to wrap this all up.. having a baby is intense!! I couldn’t be more happy with the way my delivery went and I was thankful to have Derek and my mom in the room and also my mother-in-law Keri who captured these precious pictures we will cherish forever.