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She’s Here!!


posted: 05/15/14

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy
This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy

Our newest addition is here! And this is the story of her dramatic entrance into our lives.


Disclaimer #1:  This is a birth story, I’ll include the fun details at the beginning in case words like blood, cervix, and dilated make you gag.

Disclaimer #2:  When it comes to having a baby, people need to make choices that are best for them and their babies, while my choices might be different than what someone else might have done, I have no judgment towards the choices someone else might make, and I would hope to be given the same respect.

In the very early morning hours of Friday May 2nd, 2014 (like 2 am early), we welcomed Piper Elliana into our lives.

We have always named our children after important people in our lives, giving them a middle name that is the first name of someone near and dear to our hearts. And Piper is no exception. She is named after her older brother, Elliot. And her middle name means, “God has answered.” It is exactly how we feel about her and her arrival into our lives. We have struggled so much in building our family, from struggling to get pregnant, losing my mom soon after Gavin was born, losing Elliot, and all the heart ache in between.

And then Piper’s pregnancy just . . . happened. We were so worried about having another child, and it was like God just took the decision out of our hands. So the meaning, “God has answered,” for little Piper seems to fit just so perfectly.


I love hearing birth stories, and I love telling them. So this is Piper’s story.

I was due on May 4th, and starting at 39 weeks, I started having long periods of Braxton Hicks contractions. They were maddening. Hours and hours of contractions that were consistently 10 minutes apart or less, but never got closer than 5 minutes apart and never really hurt.

The same thing started happening around noon on May 1st. At that point I was fairly certain that I would never ever go into labor with Piper, so I didn’t pay them much attention. They started becoming more uncomfortable, but not painful. Around 10 p.m., with some contractions coming like two minutes apart (though still not hurting the way they did when I headed to the hospital for Gavin and Quinn), we decided to call someone (my awesome brother in law) to stay at our house overnight and we headed to the hospital.

I knew something was up, but I still wasn’t entirely convinced that I was in labor.

They didn’t admit us, but put us in a triage room and put me on a monitor. I was immediately relieved that Piper’s heart rate was great.


Then they came in to check me.

1 cm. ONE. #sonofabitch

I nearly started bawling. I was exactly the same as I had been when I had gone to the doctor’s office four days earlier. FOUR. To put it in perspective, when I arrived the hospital to deliver Gavin and Quinn, I had been about five or six centimeters both times.

1 cm.

The doctor on call wanted to send me home, and I just couldn’t imagine that. At this point, it seemed like I probably was in the beginning of labor, and going home seemed . . . . scary. The nurse seemed pretty convinced that I was in labor, so she suggested that I start walking the halls to get things going. An hour of walking and contractions were suddenly painful. I had to stop walking with each one and breath through it. I thought for sure I had made some progress.

2 cms. #youhavetobefingkiddingme

The very kind nurse looked at me and said, “This is happening tonight. It is. You are going to hit 5 cms and then things are really going to get rolling. Let’s get you in a tub and see what happens.”

Half of me wanted to hug her for understanding how defeated I felt . . . . and another part of me wanted to punch her and her optimism in the face.


I got in the tub. I was absolutely freezing, despite the water being really warm. I have never experienced that kind of shivering (that normally comes after you deliver) during labor. The nurse took it as another sign that things were progressing, my hormones were getting with the program. #wanttohugher #wanttopunchher

Contractions picked up speed in a dramatic fashion. At times they were coming one on top of another, with like 30 seconds of relief in between. At this point it was about 1 am and because of pregnancy insomnia, I had been up since 4 am Thursday morning, about 21 hours. I was actually sleeping in the tub between contractions. The nurse checked me again.

4 cms. #killmenow

It didn’t make any sense to me. The kind of pain I was experiencing, was similar to when I was going through transition (from 8 cm to 10 cm) with Quinn. Maybe even more intense. The feeling of defeat was a vague little memory in the distance, I was now feeling absolute dread. How in the world, with this level of exhaustion, could I go on. I was only at 4 cm, it was going to be hours of this before I made it to 10 cm. I suddenly and desperately wanted an epidural. I had really wanted to do this last labor without it. Getting one felt so much like giving up. I hadn’t had one with Gavin or with Quinn, and I had really loved how those labors went. I did have narcotics with Gavin, and I felt like it just made me tired and slowed down my labor.

My brain was arguing with itself.

“You can’t get an epidural! This is your last labor! You don’t want to go out like this!”

“But you don’t understand! I’m going to DIIIIIIIIIIIIIEE!!!”

Seriously, it was the worst pain I have ever experienced. And I was screaming. I was screaming my little head off. So much in fact, that the nurse (I later found out) thought that my c-section scar was rupturing. She lied to me and told me that she was afraid I was going to give birth in the tub, so she wanted to get me out for a little bit, check my progress and put me on a monitor. (Only 40 minutes had passed since I was checked and 2 cms.)

I got out of the tub, and was thinking that if they checked me and I wasn’t like 10 cms, I was going to demand an epidural. I was just so tired. I just wanted the pain to stop and to get some rest. Meanwhile, I was telling the nurse and the ob (who had reluctantly agreed to admit me), that I didn’t understand what was going on. “I swear I can normally handle the pain!”

They checked me.

5 cms. #iwanttopealtheskinofftheirfaces

I demanded that they order me an epidural. They got on the phones and started an IV in my hand to prep me for the epidural. It took two tries, because during the first try I started flailing with a crazy contraction and they blew the vein.

And then things got crazy.


I had two ridiculous contractions that had me screaming about wanting to die and saying things in a very {cough} colorful fashion. (One of those contractions was during the IV incident.)  My OB decided to check me again and told me that I was 10 cm.

Yup, I went from 5 cm to 10 cm in two contractions.

“No wonder it hurts so bad!” Only I said that in much more colorful language.

I got on all fours to push (something I’ve always dreamed of writing on my blog #not). An epidural was no longer an option, and not something I really wanted knowing I could push. I pushed a little, my water broke, and they told me that I needed to get on my back, because the baby’s heart rate dropped too much.

I had my eyes closed for the rest. I just remember that I was pushing, I could feel her head coming out, and then they told me to stop.

Apparently Piper had the cord wrapped around her neck. Nathan said later that her head was completely purple. The OB kind of pushed her back in while telling me to stop pushing, and very quickly and carefully cut the cord. They told me to push again, and as soon as she was out they rushed her over to the table. She wasn’t crying. Her face was dark dark purple. And Nathan and I were freaking out. I started screaming at them (there were suddenly about 10 people in the delivery room, when just about a minute earlier there was only Nathan, myself, the OB, and the nurse) asking why my baby wasn’t crying. It was all too reminiscent of Elliot’s birth.

They assured me that they didn’t want her to breath yet. There had been meconium in the amniotic fluid, the cord wrapped around her neck had stressed her out, and she had pooped. They didn’t want her to breath until they were able to suction her out. It felt like hours before she started crying, but they assured us she was just fine.

They were just about to hand her off to me, when they realized that I was bleeding far more than I should be. It turned out that part of Piper’s amniotic sac was stuck to my c-section scar and was causing me to hemorrhage. I won’t go into details, but the removal of that piece of amniotic sac involved more pain than the crazy contractions had caused. It took four hours in recovery, an ultrasound machine, some narcotics and oxygen delivered by the anesthesiologist, and me being forced to lay on my back for hours before the doctor signed off that I was going to be okay.

My poor husband. I watched his face as he first worried about the life of his daughter and then the life of his wife within the span of about five minutes.

And my wonderful OB remained super calm through the whole thing. I really need to make her cookies. What flavor of cookie says, “Thanks for saving mine and my daughter’s lives. You rock.”??

Piper, despite her crazy entrance into this world, is a very sweet and peaceful soul, much like that of her namesake. In fact, holding her reminds me so much of holding Elliot. She looks almost identical to Gavin as a baby (pictures to come, the resemblance is uncanny), and she is completely adored by all of us, but especially by Quinn who asks multiple times each day to hold her and says things randomly like, “I love my sister” . . . . . and, “Piper has a stinky butt.”

We feel so incredibly blessed to have her, and wonder how our family ever seemed complete without her in it.


Hi! I'm Lisa Longley, and I am committed to giving you simple dinner ideas and recipes that are easy to make; recipes that will fill your home with joy. I am the owner and author of SimpleJoy.com and I'm so glad that you are here.

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  1. Lauren says

    Congratulations!!! Piper is absolutely adorable and I love her name!! Your hashtags cracked me up which caused a few tears of joy for you and your family! :)

  2. Beth says

    Having lost a baby I felt every breathe you took as I was reading your blog, and every breathe you held onto…
    Great job these miracle babies are sent from God and she will be like no other. Congrats!

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5 Secrets to Stress Free Dinners



5 Secrets to Stress Free Dinners