On August 18th, 2018 (8/18/18!) we got to meet our son, Samson Holland weighing 7 pounds, 10 ounces! Like his sister, things didn’t go as planned. “The Plan” was to walk into my scheduled C-section on August 18th and get that baby out the same way his sister did and call it a day. I was, honestly, scared of the laboring process and thought I would just go that route again with a bonus of getting to know exactly when the baby would come so we could plan for childcare for Juliette and when I needed to get everything wrapped up at work.
The day before my planned C my parents had taken Juliette to the park so that Shawn and I could go for lunch kid-free. I had terrible back pain throughout my last trimester, so when I suddenly had a minute of “I would rather die” back pain I thought it was just my regular back pain getting much worse. We set off for me to get my brows done (Jeremiah at the Brow Bar on Court Street is now an unofficial godfather of Samson) and pick up pastrami sandwiches from Mile End. My brows got done (I mean #priorities), but Shawn and I both decided that after a few episodes of me kneeling over in horrible back pain we should call the hospital. We probably should have gone sooner, however I didn’t have any contractions with Juliette and didn’t know what they felt like! So I (obviously) Googled “what do contractions feel like” and text my girlfriend, all of which said that it was incredible and tight pain in your abdomen, which I had none of, it was all in my back where I was used to being in pain. I learned later that because of the way the baby was turned all of the contraction pressure went up and down my back.
We arrived at the hospital, and just felt I should try to labor based on how smoothly my pregnancy went. I was only 1 cm dilated so I got hooked up to an epidural and also medication that would speed up my labor. After getting the epidural I felt GREAT. Shawn got me a pizza and I watched The Real Housewives of Dallas while he took a nap. My water broke at 11pm and after that I really couldn’t fall asleep because every time I would move there was just more water (gross) and I was just generally uncomfortable but not in pain.
By 6am I was at 10cm, and they told me I would start pushing in an hour. I let my mom know and unapologetically put some makeup on which my (incredible) doctor found hilarious, although I don’t doubt scores of women in NYC “put their faces on” right before they go into labor! I only had to “push” for forty-five minutes, which, even on a “low-dose epidural” wasn’t so bad and actually very empowering. When Samson came out he was the biggest, most beautiful baby I had ever seen. All of the crying, laughing, snuggling that took place immediately following will be some of the best moments of my life.
We are home, happy (although sometimes fussy), healthy (although we’ve got runny noses everywhere) and feel completely lucky to be a family of four. Thanks for reading!
Hollyn + family