We are pleased to announce the arrival of Seth Ethan Lein. Seth was born at 10:01 am on Monday, November 24. 10 days overdue and one day before his scheduled induction. He was 9 lbs 3 oz and 20.5 inches long. Quite a big boy, though he hides it well with his tiny features and compact body. He has the same nose as the other 3 of my kids, huge eyes that instantly reminded us of Emma and a tiny mouth and chin.
His birth story is an amazing one of God’s grace and perfect timing. I know that many of you were praying for an easier labor for us, and God listened and answered. He didn’t completely change the way my body labors, which I find interesting, but rather worked within that framework to give me an easier experience.
Technically speaking Seth’s labor began at 8:30 pm on Sunday night (which if you are adding makes it identical in length to Will’s labor – 13 1/2 hours). But it is hard to count all that time since I went to bed and slept through the majority of that. I am pretty sure I was in labor, but the contractions did not really grow in intensity of frequency until the next morning. It was as if everything waited for me to get the sleep I needed before kicking into high gear. Once I did get up in the morning, that is exactly what happened. At first I thought I still had hours to go, so I let John go back to sleep, made some phone calls and just waited for things to get going. When I got up and around to get kids up and dressed the contractions started getting much closer and they were intense enough to have to breathe through. I finally got John up and Nana (Mom Lein) showed up about then as well to get the kids ready to go. It was around 7:30.
I had been planning on waiting until 8:00 and then going into the clinic to be checked before heading to the hospital. I was starting to feel desperate, so I called the clinic to see if they opened early. They did not. I called them again after 8 and for some reason they were still not answering their phones. John and I finally got out of the house between 8:15 and 8:30 and instead of going to the clinic we changed plans and headed straight to the hospital, because as I had told him, I was either getting close, or was going to get an epidural because they were so painful.
I was admitted at 8:40 and was still not obviously in hard labor as I walked back to my room myself. John left for a few minutes to take his mom’s keys back to our house as we had accidentally taken them with us. As soon as he was gone and I got into the bed I started shaking violently, my hands went numb, and I was quite desperate with the intensity of everything. It turns out that I had hit transition and was already 8 cm dilated! No epidural for me. John was back and asked if I wanted to get one, but I knew that it was really too late to do. Must have been God’s perfect timing. He must not have wanted me to get one for some reason. 🙂 Who knows? Perhaps my body wouldn’t react well to one, or perhaps it would have made it too hard to push because I struggled with that this time.
Anyway, within probably 45 minutes I was pushing. Seth was not progressing as I would have liked and I did not feel that I was accomplishing well what I was supposed to be doing. Seth’s heart rate kept dropping too, but the doctor assured us he was still fine. Finally we tried some different positions and found one that worked really well. The doctor was soon helping Seth out, another painful delivery as he was a bit larger than I expected. Seth was quite blue, so I was instantly asking if he was OK, but he was also crying and breathing, so that was a good sign. It took him awhile to get his color back, but now he looks perfect.
I can’t say that it was a pleasant experience, but I do admit that God did answer your prayers in giving me a full night’s sleep while still in labor, and shortening my transition time to make it all go a lot quicker, so I didn’t have time to get quite as exhausted by the end. We didn’t have to be induced, and I didn’t get an epidural (which even though I find that a bit disappointing, I am really quite glad of since I have never had one and do not know how I or the baby would react).
So, thank you for praying. I will try to get some pictures up later today. I will do another post later as well on our experiences since the birth and what you can be praying for now.