Morning Star

Morning Star Babies & Birth Stories

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Clayton Allen Hoffman

10 lbs. 3 oz., 23 in.

My husband, Nathan, and I were due to give birth to our first baby on May 24, but our baby seemed to have found it very comfortable inside!  We tried many things to get things started such as raking the lawn, walking, etc.  I was approaching 2 weeks beyond my estimated due date and at my "last" prenatal appointment, Paula recommended that on Friday, June 6, we go to Red Cedar Medical Center for an ultrasound and bio-physical profile to determine how the baby was doing and if there really was any room left in there!  She also suggested that we try nipple stimulation, sex, and use Start Up, a herbal supplement.  A couple of days had passed and…still nothing!  We, along with everyone else, were very anxious and ready to meet this little one.

The morning of June 5 seemed like any other day…no signs of this baby coming yet!  I decided to treat myself to a pedicure, which felt amazing on my very swollen feet!  I then went out to lunch with my cousin and took in a few garage sales.  That evening, Nathan and I decided to give nipple stimulation another try.  Things seemed to feel very different this time and I wondered, could this be the start of something?  At about 10:30 pm, contractions started.  Nathan immediately started to time them.  We gave Paula a call around 11pm and told her what was going on.  Meanwhile I continued to walk around the bedroom, stop, walk around the kitchen, stop, to the office, stop.  They kept becoming more consistent, every three minutes, then two minutes apart, and Nathan and I thought we would be more comfortable at the birth center, so we gave Paula another call and were on our way there around 11:45pm.

When we arrived at the birth center, Erin greeted us and we headed upstairs.  I began to labor on the birth ball through the early morning and then went to the tub where I was able to get some rest.  At 10:30am, Paula checked me and determined that I dilated to ten and said that I could begin pushing if I wanted!  I remember Nathan and I looking at each other in amazement and it became reality that we could have this baby by afternoon.

Throughout the day, I proceeded to use the birth stool, got into the shower, squatted holding onto the radiator, and walked up and down stairs, but still no baby.  At one point Paula checked me and determined that the baby's head needed to be turned, so back into the shower and up and down the stairs I went.  This wasn't seeming to do the trick.  Paula had me hold my contractions while laying on each side on the exam table and after this she had me lay on my stomach, with my belly hanging over the edge of the daybed.  I then went up and down the stairs again!  Taking each step at a quick pace going down and lunges going up.  Meanwhile I wasn't able to keep anything down except for water.  Paula and Erin did manage to give me a couple of tablespoons of honey and banana though.  I went back into bed, the birth stool, the tub, and then onto the toilet where it felt more comfortable and I seemed to make progress.

At about 11pm, Paula proposed the idea to go to Red Cedar Medical Center and get some assistance with the vacuum.  After much thought, Nathan and I agreed to it.  We packed up our things and were on our way.  Dr. Feigal was our back up doctor and met us at the door.  We were then brought to a labor and delivery room and hooked up to a fetal monitor.  On each contraction, I was told to push and keep pushing through them while Dr. Feigal attempted to get the vacuum on our baby's head.  It was very painful and the baby's heart rate was affected by this.  Several more attempts were made and at one point I said, " I want to be done."  I was physically exhausted and couldn't go on.  Apparently during the car ride there, the baby's head went back up which then they didn't realize.

Our options were discussed and we decided to have a cesarean.  I was prepped and brought to surgery at 2:30 am.  Nathan was by my side and Paula was taking photos throughout the delivery.  As the nurse anesthetist talked me through it, I remember her saying, "Wow, lot's of hair.  Big, very big, Oh, it's a boy!"

Clayton Allen was born on June 7 at 2:50am after 28 hours of labor.  He weighed 10 pounds 3 ounces and was 23 inches long.  He was wiped off, bundled and immediately handed to Nathan.  As Nathan brought him up by my face, Clayton began licking my cheek.  We created this little miracle!

Even though our plan of having our baby at the birth center didn’t come, we are grateful to the entire team that helped us welcome a healthy baby boy!  Thank you Paula, Erin, Megan, Dr. Feigal, Dr. Fennell, and the rest of the staff at Red Cedar Medical Center.

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