Sunday, January 17, 2021

The Birth Story of Elliot Rex

The story of my second son's entrance into the world is so so very different from the story of my firstborn. And yet, as I reminisce back on both births, I am reminded not just of the differences, but also of the similarities.
Pain. Hands down, these were the two most painful experiences of my life.
Joy. The moments that they each entered the world were also two of the happiest of moments of my life.
(June 17th and the last full bump picture I took before Elliot was born.

I had my first Braxton hicks contractions about a month before Elliot was born. And then on the 18th of May, I started having intense contractions. They were like the real deal and close together. Under normal circumstances I wouldn't have cared too much at the thought of baby coming early (although a month is a little too early!) but John's brothers wedding was that coming wkend, and I didn't want to miss that wedding for ANYTHING.  I spent that day and the next in bed, drinking water and resting, and the contractions stopped completely. 

Nothing happened for the next few weeks. Well, no contractions, that is. We took a the wedding road trip and hosted a big bridal shower and had multiple batches of company though, so we had plenty going on! But PTL baby obviously got comfy and decided to stay put after all. =)
(Axton "giving baby brother sugar" during our time in the sun Thursday afternoon, June 18th. 
Little did I know that this would be the last picture of my bump with Elliot on the inside!)

June 18th was a day just like all the others that week. I felt great, did housework, sat outside in the sun while Axton played, etc. That evening we went on one of our routine evening walks with John's brother and his family. Toward the end of the walk, I had one slight contraction, but really didn't think anything of it, because I had had a small one that afternoon, and it wasn't that substantial. It was so tiny I barely even thought of it as a contraction, more just like a little twinge of something...

I had a hard time going to sleep that night but that was just because I didn't feel tired. Finally I drifted off probably around 11pm? I must've hardly slept at all because when the contractions woke me up, my first thought was that I hadn't slept yet. In comparing timing later, I realized that I must've slept at least 20-30 minutes before the contractions started. But it wasn't much. I was quite groggy with the first few but didn't stay that way for long as they intensified. With the first few, I remember thinking to myself, "ah, labor is starting....but maybe I'll be able to go back to sleep and sleep through these early contractions for a while?" That was clearly an ignorant thought! A few contractions later and I realized that I was definitely done with sleep for the foreseeable future.

I quietly moved out to the living room couch without waking John. I knew (thought!) we had a long labor ahead of us and I wanted at least one of us to get a little more sleep yet! I had the contraction timer downloaded on my phone and I started timing my contractions. Within half an hour they were two minutes apart and extremely regular. I was groaning through them almost right away which was different than with my labor with Axton, and John woke up before long. He sat with me through a few and then said he was going to call the doula. I was adamantly opposed to that---she had spent upwards of 20 hours at our house when I was in labor with Axton and there was no way I was going to do that to her again! I protested as best I could with the 60 seconds or so that I had between contractions.

John called the doula and let her listen to me laboring. (she told me later that when she heard me she knew I was really progressing) Based on that and the length between contractions, she headed our way and John called my midwives. I was borderline frustrated because I just "knew" that everyone was coming way too early, but I really didn't have the energy to disagree because those contractions were building up right on top of each other. I headed back to my room to do my makeup because I just like to be prepared like that. Note: applying mascara while in active labor takes forever!

My doula arrived at 2am and she could tell right away that things were flying. The midwives were on their way, John was filling the birth pool, and suddenly one of the contractions turned into a sudden urge to push. I remember thinking, "I don't know why, but I have to push!" With Axton's birth I didn't even have the slightest need to push until hours and hours and hours into the labor. So that need to push took me greatly by surprise. I think I said to my doula something like, "yikes, I've got to push!" It started happening every couple of contractions-it was like I just could not help myself, I HAD to push. 

Over the next hour I labored mostly in the living room or the bathroom. I hadn't been laboring long enough to feel hungry but I did throw up. (same as last time) 

*Quick note to other mamas: if you are like me and have a hard time keeping food down during labor, try drinking some kind of sparkling juice/beverage. The sugar/sweet gives needed energy and it seems to stay down better than snacks, maybe because it is a liquid! This has been a lifesaver for me in both of my labors!

The midwives came in around 3am. Someone said I needed to get in the birth pool and I told John, "I don't want to!" (ha, I probably sounded like a 2 year old or something!) Much as I wanted a water birth, I had bad memories from the birth pool with Axton's birth-I had been in and out of that thing so much then! In my mind it was just entirely premature for me to get in and I just didn't want to get in and have things slow down and have to get back out. 

Somehow, in spite of my stubbornness, they convinced me to that it really was a good idea to get in. Once I was in the pool, around 3:10am, it really did feel so good and I was glad I was in, even though I knew I'd probably be in and out again like last time...

In between contractions I was able to sip some sparkling juice which tasted HEAVENLY and so refreshing! One of my midwives asked me what time Axton usually wakes up and I told them "7:30am" to which she responded "aww, there's gonna be a little brother here for him to meet when he wakes up!" and I thought, "wow, they really are optimistic, bless their hearts."

That thought was at 3:15am.

Suddenly, at about 3:20am, the pushes weren't random, but were every contraction. I HAD TO PUSH every time and all of a sudden it hit me that maybe this train was really moving a whole lot faster than I thought it was.

The next ten minutes were fully focused on pushing and bringing our little man into the world. John said I was squeezing his hand so tightly that he was going to take off his ring in between pushes...only for the next ten minutes there was no in between anything-it was one after another and I was getting closer and closer!

At exactly 3:30am little Elliot Rex arrived! As he was born, the song "In His Time"was playing on my birth playlist, and it was SO fitting, especially after the trauma of Axton's birth. Truly, Elliot's little story felt so redemptive and healing for my heart. It was a beautiful experience and once again I was just in awe of God's amazing design in the gift of LIFE!

"In His time, in His time. He makes all things beautiful in His time. Lord please show me every day, as You're teaching me your way, that You do just what you say, in your time." 
Back in bed, warm and cozy, just an hour after Elliot was born. This was one of my favorite parts of the home birth-being able to relax in my own bed and rest on my own schedule. I knew I would love a home birth but it was honestly just above and beyond even what I thought it would be! I HIGHLY recommend!

John and I had a couple of hours to just lay in our bed and soak in the amazing-ness of everything and little Elliot. Because my labor was so short, and had started in the middle of the night, we hadn't even told anyone I was in labor. (with Axton, we had ended up telling both of our families so that they could be praying for us, especially with the length and complications) So it was pretty wild to think that there was no need to contact anyone or anything because literally nobody knew anything, and it was still the middle of the night! The timing was really great. Finally around 6:30am, we face timed our moms. They were both so shocked! When they answered their phones, I could see a mixture of questioning and worry in both of their faces...and then I turned the phone away from John and my faces and down onto little Elliot! Our moms were both SO surprised! We also face timed Gigi to tell her in person since little Elliot Rex was named after her husband, John's late grandpa. That was a very special moment as well. It was an honor to get to name our son after his great-grandpa Rex.
Such a praise-even though Elliot was 8lb 4oz-almost a whole pound bigger than Axton-I hardly tore at all and didn't have to have any stitches! 
My amazing birth team. These ladies are rockstars and I cannot brag on them enough. Having midwives that I completely trust and love has been invaluable!
First picture of the little brothers together. Just beyond sweet. We took a video of Axton coming into the room and meeting Elliot for the first time and his reaction was just honestly the cutest thing ever. He was so inquisitive and smiley and adorable with Elliot. I will treasure that video always.

Our baby, our Elliot Rex Maxwell, was finally here!
And that's the story of his little grand entrance into the world.
-Chels

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34 comments:

  1. Oh honey as i sit here a few weeks from my second son being due im so so happy for you! His birth sounds beautiful and im so happy you got such a beautiful experience this time around. God bless your beautiful family. Elliot Rex is perfect, and my little one will be named after his great grandpa as well. Such a gift. ❤

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    1. Thank you so much for your kind words! Best wishes on the upcoming birth of your second son!! 💙
      And how special that you are naming your baby after his great grandpa, also!

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  2. Thanks so much for sharing! Beautiful story and it sounds much quicker and more calm than Axton's!
    Elliot is adorable!

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  3. What a sweet, redeeming birth story! We’ve loved working with midwives. We just welcomed our third and it amazes me how different each experience has been! Our latest was a VBAC and entered the world about an hour after my water broke and contractions started - minutes after we arrived at our birth center and while I was standing in a hallway 😂

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    1. Congrats on your third! Wow, that sounds like an extremely fast labor! Amazing!

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  4. Congratulations on Elliot Rex! Such a cute name! How are you doing after birth and now?

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    1. Thankyou!!
      The postpartum journey has honestly been amazing. The first three days after Elliot was born were a little crazy and I wasn’t sure if I could successfully mother two babies! 🙈 But God was so gracious and we settled into a routine so quickly and now I can’t imagine it any other way! I healed and “bounced back” really quickly also which has been a huge gift.
      So yes, we are doing great and I am feeling better than ever! Thanks for asking! ❤️

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    2. I'm so glad you are doing and feeling better! I just have birth to my first child as well. Her name is Melanie Brooke. I too, am doing good! I look at your husband's family's blog as well. It is understandable how you could feel like you couldn't handle two children as well! The day after Melanie was born, I felt like I couldn't even handle even one child even with a husband helping me! I was so tired, and felt like I couldn't make it, but I am just very thankful she is here now!

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    3. Congratulations on your firstborn!
      Yes, those first few days/weeks postpartum can be a little wild! But I’m so thankful for how soon everything normalizes and falls into place with schedule and routine!

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  5. Wow! I'm so glad this birth went well! I enjoyed this post!!

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  6. Congratulations on the birth of Elliot Rex! Can you post sometime in how you and John choose names for your kids? I'd love to know!��

    Love,
    Renee

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    1. Yes!
      So with Axton, John found his first name when searching online, and we both loved it. We really wanted something unique and with a strong, masculine sound, so it was perfect. I chose his middle name because I wanted to name him after his daddy. 😍
      Then for Elliot, I’ve always loved the name Elliot! We also greatly admire the missionary Jim Elliot, and my brother Denver’s, middle name is also Elliot. Elliots middle name is after Johns grandpa Rex!

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  7. Loved reading this!!! Happy that it was an easier labor than with Axton 😊

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  8. So glad Elliot arrived safely. Congratulations on the birth of another little son!

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  9. I loved reading the story of Elliot's entrance into the world. There is nothing like that first hour or so with you, your husband and the new baby. My second birth was also a lot faster than my first. (First was 13.5 hours and second was 4 hours) Both your little guys are adorable. Congratulations!!

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    1. Yes, Laura, so true-it is such a special time!!❤️

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  10. I'm so glad this birth was easier and more peaceful than Axton's!! Do you and John have a set # of kids you'd like to have or is it just the more the merrier!? LOL

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    1. Definitely the more the merrier. 😉❤️
      We are super grateful for whatever number God gives us!

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  11. Beautiful! Just beautiful! What a precious looking baby! Great job Chelsy! Love his name!

    Alla

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  12. How often do you post things on here? When will you be posting something again?

    Love,
    Chessy

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    1. Not very often, as you can tell. 😂 It’s pretty hit and miss, kinda whenever I am in the mood! 😅

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  13. To the anonymous woman who commented on this post and asked for her comment/question to remain private, I have no way to respond without contact info. (Blogger does not require email addresses for commenting) Please send me an email at chelsyrenee91@gmail.com
    Thanks!❤️

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  14. Thank you for the warning Chelsy. What a beautiful baby boy you delivered! He is a precious gift from God! Love his name!

    Maddelynn

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  15. Baby Elliot Rex is a BEAUTIFUL baby! How is Elliot developing now?

    Love
    Adella

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    1. He’s doing great! Super active and mobile and into everything! He isn’t walking yet but he loves to pull himself up on things and stand at any opportunity!

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  16. Cute, precious looking baby! Love him! Could I adopt him?!��

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