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  • Writer's pictureAlex Benso


Thursday, August 12, 2021 at 1:43pm our second son, Nash Vincent, was born.

7lb 11oz 20.5 inches long

It's still surreal to me that I am writing Nash's birth story, and that I am a mom to two beautiful little boys! While I was pregnant, I reread Nico's and I loved reliving it and remembering all the little details that I had already forgotten. I really wanted to make sure I documented everything for Nash too, especially since he was born during a pandemic, crazy times!

Around 36 weeks my doctor discussed my options for Nash's birth. If I wanted to be induced again, she would be delivering in the hospital on 8/10, when I would be exactly 39 weeks. She said that it was unlikely I would make it to my due date the following week, which is when she would be delivering next. Sonny and I talked it over, and the thought of being induced a week early was a bit nerve wracking, but ultimately we decided it was best for our situation. We don't live near immediate family, and so we needed the birth planned to ensure that Nico and the dogs had proper care. Also, we really wanted our doctor to deliver me again, and if I went into labor on my own in between 8/10 and 8/17 then I would get whichever doctor was delivering that day (it still baffles me that you go your entire pregnancy with one doctor and could end up delivering with someone completely random!).

August 10th seemed to come in the blink of an eye. I was flooded with so many emotions and was beginning to feel overwhelmed, nervous and most of all just sad. I couldn't even rock Nico to sleep without getting teary eyed that my time with him was somehow ending. He had been my baby the last 21 months, and we did everything together all day every day. I was scared that he would feel left out or replaced by his new baby brother, who would require so much of my time. The day before my induction the hospital asked me to come in for preadmission paperwork, bloodwork and a Covid test. At the very end of my appointment the nurse said, "So typically this is when I would do your Covid test, but unfortunately your induction is most likely getting delayed, and I don't want you to have to do the test twice." I was shocked. I had heard of inductions getting pushed, but never really thought it would happen to me. She explained to me that there is a severe nursing shortage in Texas and that our governor was even trying to pay nurses from out of state to come help. She said that labor and delivery was just too full, and that they needed to save rooms for women who had medical inductions (ex: gestational diabetes, preeclampsia, etc) or went into labor on their own. I left feeling bummed but also a little relieved to have more time. That day Nico ended up getting a fever, and all he wanted to do was lay on me and sleep. I must have cuddled with him for hours. It ended up working out that we weren't heading into the hospital the next morning (at 6am mind you!) because I would have felt awful leaving him sick like that.

The hospital called that night and said it was official, that my induction was being pushed. They said they'd call the next afternoon and let me know when I could come in. We figured at least we would get some more sleep checking in later in the day. Well, nevermind. My doctor called the next day around 4pm, and said she was trying so hard to get me in, but I was on a list with many other women (#9 out of 12 to be exact!) and that it wasn't likely I would be getting in on 8/10 at all anymore. This is when it started to hit us that having our doctor might not be a possibility, and that kind of worried us. She apologized and said this has never happened before, and that she was going to keep trying to get me in. She booked me for an appointment at the office the following day (8/11). When I got there she checked my cervix and I was 3cm dilated and 60% effaced. I asked her what kind of progress the hospital had made on the "list" and she told me unfortunately none, I was still #9! I couldn't believe it! How many women were having quarantine babies?! Haha! She said that each day there's a whole new list of women who need medical inductions or who were going into labor on their own, not to mention the women who had been waiting even longer than me. Then she told me point blank, "I think you're going to have to go into labor on your own to get in" This worried me. With Nico, I was induced at 39+5 and I had a very positive experience. I was able to shower, finish packing, eat lunch and head to the hospital before I was in any actual pain. And once the pain did start I was already checked in, in my gown, with my IV started etc. The only other option was to be considered for a medical induction if I reached 41 weeks. That was in 2 more weeks! Sonny's parents had already flown in and been staying with us for almost a week at this point. I was starting to worry when we'd have this baby. She asked if I wanted to get my membranes stripped (I hate that term) to hopefully put me into labor, which I had heard is extremely painful. I asked her if it was, thinking she might say "It's just uncomfortable, not painful" but she flat out said "Yes, it is" Ugh! Then I asked her if her other 3 patients that were scheduled to be induced 8/10 got stripped today, and she said yes. That's when I decided those girls weren't going into labor before me! Haha!! Honestly, it wasn't all that bad, and it didn't last long either. Afterwards I asked her what the success rate was that this would put me into labor and she said only about 30%, so I wasn't feeling very hopeful that anything would happen.

I got home from my appointment around 12pm, ate lunch and put Nico down for his nap. I felt crampy like I was on my period, which she said was to be expected. Around 3pm I told Sonny that the pain was a little more intense than I had expected, and that it was coming and going like contractions (not like a consistent menstrual cramp feeling). I decided to open my pregnancy app and use the contraction timer. The rule was if they are 5 minutes apart, lasting 1 minute for 1 hour, then you should go into the hospital. I started timing mine and they were about 5-7 minutes apart, but only lasting 40 seconds, and the pain was not very bad at all. I told Sonny he should probably pack his hospital bag just in case. I called my doctor's office to see what the protocol was at the hospital, and what it would take for them to admit me. She said they would check my cervix when I arrived, and then hook me up to a contraction monitor for 2 hours, then recheck my cervix and if I had dilated at all then I would be admitted. After hearing that, I pretty much convinced myself that I was not having contractions or going into labor, because that process seemed like such an ordeal, and the thought of driving into the hospital and doing all of that just to be turned away was pretty annoying. Sonny's mom made us dinner and I went about my normal nightly routine of folding laundry, feeding the dogs, giving Nico his bath etc. I felt the contractions every few minutes but they weren't "super" painful (like I remembered with Nico's birth) so I just went about my night. When Nico went to sleep, I took a shower and started contemplating what we should do. They were still about 5 minutes apart and getting a bit more painful. I talked to my Mom and decided that I would try to go to sleep, and that if I could then great, but if the pain was was keeping me up/worsening then we would drive in.

We went to bed and Sonny fell asleep pretty quickly. I think since I was laying down and completely focused on the contractions, they felt worse than I thought. I tried switching from side to side and closing my eyes but I couldn't fall asleep with the pain. I was so conflicted if I should wake Sonny up. I kept saying to myself, "I'll wake him up after the next one" and then it would come and go, and I'd say, "Ok the next one". I was conflicted between not being ready to give birth, and worried about staying home too long in pain. Eventually they were starting to get pretty bad, and I didn't want to get to the hospital too late and be in too much pain. I woke him up around 11pm and told him I think we should head in. We both got up and finished packing our hospital bags, and prepped everything for Nico and the dogs. By the time we were loading up the car I was having to pause and take some deep breaths during contractions, which assured me that I made the right decision to head in. The entire drive to the hospital we were pretty quiet. I think we were both a bit nervous that this was actually happening. You spend 9 months pregnant and then the big finale comes and it's a little nerve wracking! Not only going through labor/birth, but the fact that your life changes forever from here on out. You go in just the two of you, and you leave with a baby that is completely dependent on you (and you have a toddler at home too!) Haha!

We got to the hospital around midnight, and it was a complete ghost town. We actually had to press a button for security to let us in and there was no staff at the front desk. At my hospital labor and delivery is on the 3rd floor which is kind of funny (not!) to be in labor and walking up several flights of stairs. There's an elevator somewhere, but I just wanted to get checked in ASAP at that point. A nurse took us back to triage which is basically a bunch of hospital beds and contraction monitors separated by curtains. I changed into a gown and she checked my cervix and said I was 3cm and 80% effaced. At that moment, I got really nervous. I told her that at my doctor's appointment at 12pm (12 hours ago) I was 3cm. I couldn't believe I had been having contractions all day, but hadn't dilated (only effaced). She hooked me up to the contraction monitor and asked my pain level. I said 7 but really I was starting to feel like it was getting a bit unbearable. She said that "sometimes membrane sweeps can cause these contractions" and that I might get sent home if they don't see progress in 1-2 hours and then she left. I looked over at Sonny stunned. We were really supposed to sit here for 1-2 hours with contractions coming every 4-5 minutes at a pain level of 7? I started to worry that if we got sent home, I wouldn't be able to take the pain. It felt like after she left my level went from 7 to 10. With every contraction my body was shaking (on it's own). After an hour (1:15am), Sonny could see how much pain I was in and said he was going to find a nurse to get us admitted and that this was ridiculous (Hubby to the rescue, haha!). I never want to cause a scene, so I said to my stomach, "Nash, you're going to have to break my water or else they're going to send us home!" and I kid you not my next contraction was double the length/pain and I felt a gush of water. It broke! He listened! I was instantly so relieved because when you're water breaks that is an instant "in". We wouldn't be sent home!

A nurse came in and got started on my IV and also tested me for Covid. I'm pretty sure the swab touched my brain, it was super uncomfortable on top of being in labor with horrible contractions! Then they swabbed my amniotic fluid to make sure that's what it was (like they thought I maybe peed myself?) and that takes 10 minutes to get results. They were also prepping a room for me which took some time. Finally they sat me up and I walked over to the room, all while pausing for back to back painful contractions.. longest walk ever! Once I got to my room the nurse went through my charts and called for the anesthesiologist for the epidural. Unfortunately they had to wait for my Covid results before he could come. It felt like forever and my contractions were every 2-3 minutes at this point, ouch! When he got to my room (around 2:30am) I was so relieved! At first the epidural only worked on the right 1/2 of my body (this also happened with Nico for some reason), so they had to flip on my left side and gravity helped pull the medicine to my left side. I was finally comfortable! At this point it was 2:45am, so we both tried to get some rest. At 6am they checked me again and I was 5cm dilated. I wasn't on pitocin or anything, so it was a great sign that my body was laboring and progressing naturally on it's own. At that point they brought in the peanut ball to put in between my legs and rotated me on my side every hour to help keep my pelvis open and allow the baby to drop. Unfortunately they put me on a clear liquid diet, so Sonny got me some jello and chicken broth as my breakfast, yuck! I was very careful to never push the button for extra epidural, because during Nico's labor I got too numb and felt paralyzed which made me panicky. I didn't like that feeling at all! This time I could move my toes/legs anytime I wanted, but I did feel some pain, which I didn't mind!

Did you catch my outfit change? Lol! I brought the gown that I delivered Nico in for good luck, so Sonny helped me change out of the hospital gown from triage into this one. The nurses didn't check me much because my water had broken and they wanted to avoid any opportunity of infection. It was hard to just sit in bed and wonder if I was progressing or not. The hospital was doing construction and so it was very loud and we couldn't get any rest. Plus I was starting to get really hungry! At 10:45am I lost my mucus plug/bloody show so I knew that I was dilating, but wasn't sure how much. They said that my contractions had started to space back out, and that my labor was slowing down. They suggested a low dose pitocin to keep things moving along. They explained that the dose goes from 1-30, so they started me at 1 and decided to increase it every 20 minutes or so until they got my contractions back to 2-3 minutes apart (they were back to 5-7 mins at this point). They kept telling me to let them know if I felt any pressure in my bottom, or an urge to push. Around 1pm I started feeling that sensation (which I never felt with Nico because I was WAY too numb!). They brought in the on-call doctor and she checked me and said I was 10cm dilated, ready to go! Sonny was actually in the cafeteria at this point grabbing lunch for himself, so I sent him a text and he literally came running back to the room, lol! She called my doctor who was at the office and asked if she would be able to drive in right away to deliver me (we were really adamant that we wanted her to deliver me again, if possible!). She said she was leaving and would be there in 20 minutes.

From that moment, everything happened so fast. The on-call doctor laid my bed all the way back to give us time to wait for my doctor. She and the nurses prepped the delivery table and Sonny got the baby book from my suitcase for his footprints. My doctor came rushing in and was throwing her hair up in a ponytail and putting on all her PPE. I could tell she ran in from the parking garage! I am so grateful she came; and it was obvious it meant as much to her to deliver me as it did to us. When I had Nico, Sonny was able to deliver him, and we asked if that was a possibility this time around too (if all was going well/safe). She said yes! They got him a gown and gloves as well. Around 1:30pm it was time to push. With Nico I pushed for about 45 minutes, but this time Nash was already ready to go! After 1 push I could already feel his head. The doctor said he had tons of dark hair, which surprised me! It only took a few more pushes and he was born into his Dad's hands at 1:43pm. I could see him right away and instantly started crying. It was honestly so beautiful. They laid him on my chest and I comforted his cries, and I just kept asking Sonny what he looked like. We did an hour of skin to skin and he started nursing right away. I was so worried that I wouldn't be able to love like I do for Nico, but what they say is true that your heart just grows. I was instantly deeply bonded with my baby boy and I never wanted to let him go!

After an hour, they took him to the bed warmer to get his measurements and weight (7lb 11oz and 20.5"). He swallowed amniotic fluid (so did Nico) so they helped him get some of it out. Sonny was always by his side watching and holding his hand while they took vitals and did his vaccinations, it was so sweet.

Here are some pics from the first few days with our sweet baby boy. We are truly in newborn bliss and soaking it all in. Our hearts are so incredibly full. We love you Nash!

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