Sunday, March 20, 2011
Judah Sean Hester
Judah Sean Hester was born on March 18th, 2011. He weighed 9 lbs. even, and was 21 1/2 inches long. With a big head! =) His name means "Praise God who is gracious!" Judah means praise, and someone asked where we got the name Sean. Besides being a cool surfer name, we found it by searching for names that mean God is gracious. It just seemed the most fitting description for the past year or so.
*This is Judah's birth story, so if you don't like reading birth story details, then stop reading now.**
Anyhow, as most of you know, I had been having contractions for the last couple of weeks. They would come in regular intervals, and then putter out. Each time they came back they would be stronger. It was frustrating for me, as a momma for the fifth time, to feel like I had no idea what was going on, or when it was actually "time." Not to mention the fact that I was just bigger than I had been, so my heartburn was worse, my pubic bones were killing me, and the ultrasound and the midwife were both telling me that this was going to be a huge kid with a big head. So, I was pretty ready for him to come!! We had our homeschool co-op on Friday in Oxnard, which is about 40 minutes away, and Ben said he didn't feel comfortable with me going. I felt lame, but I went ahead and called and let people know I wouldn't be there.
Well, at least twice last week, I thought for sure this baby was coming. Contractions 3-4 minutes apart, things looking good. But I knew to wait, and they would go away, leaving me with little sleep, and getting frustrated. Thursday night, though, the contractions were coming, 3-4 minutes apart, with a lot of pain in my "area", so I thought maybe they might actually be dilating me. We called Karni (the midwife), and my mom, and both came over. Ben's adrenaline was flowing, we were all excited. The baby was coming!!! But alas, after about an hour, the contractions started to space out, and then they went away completely. Karni checked me and I was 80 percent effaced and only 2 cm dilated. That was my first exam, but I knew then, that this baby had changed his mind. So we sent everyone home. Karni had an appointment in Calabasas on Friday, which she was unsure if she should keep or not. I was frustrated. I told her, this baby is not coming.
About 4:30am, I woke up and started having contractions again. 3-4 minutes apart, definitely stronger and more intense. About 6:30, they started to space out to about 8 minutes apart. SERIOUSLY?? However, they were way more intense. Ben and I were trying to decide if he should go to work. We were pretty sure he would go, except that the contractions were intense enough that I didn't think I should be alone with the kids. Since we hadn't gotten much sleep, Ben decided to just take a vacation day and stay home. At 7:30am, Ben called Karni and just updated her on what was going on. She decided she would hang around Ventura. I felt hopeless, like I wouldn't know when to actually have her come. So I prayed that either my water would break, or that God would just put it on Karni's heart to know when to come! About 8:30am, Karni called and said she was heading our way, but she would stop for coffee. We called my mom to come over as well, but we knew she had to pick up my brother's kids at noon. About 9:15am, or so, both Karni and my mom were here. I went potty, and when I wiped, there was something weird. Ben and Karni came in and we all had a good laugh, as my bag of waters was bulging out of me!! AAHH! That is weird!! But, it meant that I was basically fully dilated. My contractions were still somewhere between 5-8 minutes apart, and not quite as strong, so we were waiting and thinking about pushing. Karni broke my water bag, and then things got crazy. She had me lay down, so baby's head could clear my pelvic bone. Then, I was kind of standing near the bed and the real work began. As I was pushing his head, Ben and Karni had me go REALLY SLOW because his head was REALLY BIG. It was super painful. Then, once his head was about stretching me to the fullest point, I had to sit and wait for the next contraction, at which point I thought I might pass out. =) Normally with my kids, once the head is out, the baby just flies out! Not this guy!! He had his hand up next to his face (probably trying to suck his thumb!) and so Karni moved his hand and Ben pulled him the rest of the way out and up to me. I had so many things running through my head... This was by far my most difficult and painful delivery. But, even now, I am amazed, how when that little one is in your arms....God's grace just covers it all.
Judah Sean Hester is amazing. He is utterly adored in this household. Emma wants to hold him all the time. Even Ezra has been pretty gentle with him. Newborns, I think, are such a perfect picture of the gospel. You love this person, not because of anything they do or don't do... You love them because of who they are. We are loved because of who Christ is, and because being united with Him makes us heirs, sons and daughters. We have performed so badly, but God treats us so kindly, because Christ has performed well on our behalf, and has made us sons and daughters.
Praise God, who is gracious.