Katie had everything planned completely. Her mom, Kathy, and best friend, Kirstie, would take her to the hospital and her friend, Jessica, a photographer, would take pictures throughout the delivery. Her brother would watch Ryder. Her bags were packed, and she had been ready for weeks throughout her numerous Braxton Hicks episodes. Katie would close her eyes and imagine the scenerio: her hair clean and shiny, her make up in place as she handed over Shane to Adam and Nikki after a short and completely natural delivery. Katie had spent hours going over it in her mind, scripting each moment.
“Finally the time is here!,” she thought! It was right before 8pm and her contractions had been regular, coming every five minutes. Katie dilgently wrote down each contraction to ensure she really was in labor. She called Nikki to let her know, and then called her mom and Kirstie. Katie continued to monitor it all until 11pm when she decided to go to the hospital.On the drive there she could not believe Shane was almost here. It was time!, and she was ready.
Nikki and Adam were at home preparing everything to leave for the hospital. Adam was at a church meeting when Nikki called him to share that Katie might be in actual labor. They were excited and hopeful that the time was here for Shane’s arrival. On the way over to the hospital they prayed and talked about meeting Shane for the first time and their hearts were racing with expectation. They arrived at the hospital directly in front of Katie who was with her Mom and best friend. Quickly Nikki snapped a picture of Katie as she got out of the car and then hugged her tightly. The look in Katie’s eyes was determination and excitement because Shane’s birth was finally happening.
Once Katie was hooked up to the monitors and checked she saw the look on the nurses’ face.” “Oh No!” she thought, “they are not going to keep me.” Although she was in active labor her body was not responding the way it needed to. Her cervix was only dialated one centimeter and she was not effacing well at all. Katie was so disappointed it was hard for her not to cry. She knew she was strong and just ready to have this little boy. Katie also felt like she was letting Nikki and Adam down, but in her heart she knew they cared about her and they understood that this was in God’s time.
So Katie put on a smile, and they all left to go to an all night diner not far from the hospital. It was like a team of support all there for Katie and Shane. Before this moment they had not been in the same room at the same time. Kathy, Katie’s mom, had not met Nikki and Adam before tonight so this gave them a chance to talk. Kathy was proud of her daughter for being so strong and and chosing adoption for Shane. They sipped on their coffee and shared stories, trying to ease the anticipation. At 6 am Katie continued to contract steadily and they left to go back to the hospital. One way or another Katie was determined that Shane was coming.
At the hospital again, after another hour of contractions and monitors the nurse checked Katie and there was no change in her body. “How can this be?”, Katie thought. She begged the nurse and doctor to please break her water in hopes her body would respond. A large delivery room had opened up and everyone went inside. Once Katie’s water was broken her contractions felt stronger and she worked hard to breath through each one. Katie decided to work through her contractions in the shower. The feel of the warm water running over her neck and lower back was soothing. She also tried bouncing on a medicine ball, but the shower was the most helpful. Katie worked hard to help her body respond to the contractions because she was determined to have a natural birth. Nikki and Adam helped Katie by rubbing her back and legs. Nikki would sit on the side of the bed or on the stool next to Katie encouraging her gently. Although the atmosphere was calm everyone was anxiously waiting for labor to progress. Finally a decision to use pitocin was made, the IV was started and the contractions ramped up quickly and were intense. Katie made a decision to have an epidural. She had tried for hours naturally and her body was tired. Katie was disappointed but knew her body needed help as the contractions intensified and the pain became numbing.
As they waited for the anesthesiologist to come by for the epidural Katie was given a narcotic in her IV. Suddenly she became agitated and Katie could feel the anger exploding out of her head. She told everyone they were lying to her and yelled at them to tell the truth. Nikki and Kathy knew this was not their Katie! She appeared to be hallucinating and was delusional. Throughout the intense contractions the words and demeanor of Katie made them all laugh…..but beneath it all they were scared. The medication needed to work its way out of her system and the anesthesiologist needed to get the epidural set. The wait went on forever until finally Katie had an epidural. “She is exhausted”, thought Nikki, as her admiration for Katie grew. “She is doing this for Shane and us”, reflected Nikki. “We are so blessed. Lord, please let this little boy and his mom be healthy and well.” Katie’s labor continued hard and fast but everyone was relieved to see Katie not hurt as much.
Nikki worked diligently to not show concern every time Shane’s heartbeat would drop and the nurses would run and flip Katie over to lie on her side. One time Katie saw Nikki’s face and started to worry, so Nikki was trying very hard to not show her emotions. There was a moment when the doctor came in and Nikki wanted to scream out to him, “That’s my son; you have to do something to help them! ” Nikki knew then that Shane was her son; he was part of her soul as well as part of Katie’s. “He will be so loved”, she thought.
When the doctor came in after the nurse had checked Katie there was a concern for Shane as his heartbeat continued to drop. The doctor announced they wanted to do a C-section. Although Nikki wanted to be supportive of Katie’s wish for a natural vaginal delivery she was so worried about Shane and Katie’s health. After 32 hours of labor there was an audible sigh of relief when Katie agreed to the C- Section. Katie’s fortitude made Nikki and Adam admire her even more as she readied herself for a procedure she had been determined not to have.
As Katie was being prepped for surgery she turned to Nikki and asked her if she was ready to be with her in the operating room and help deliver “their baby”. Nikki held back a tear as she began to put on the paper gown the nurse had given her and caught her breath in awe of Katie’s gift to them.