Her Arrival

It all started on Friday May 15th. I was starting to get uncomfortable, and being two days away from my due date.. i was definitely anxious and READY. Up until that day, I really hadn't had that "I AM SO DONE BEING PREGNANT" feeling everyone describes. So, that night we tried everything. We went to dinner (helloooo spicy food) and we headed home to go on a LONG walk. We walked our neighborhood and the whole time i was curb walking. One step on the curb, one step off. I was in good spirits and Ammon and I were laughing and joking the whole time. It was a perfect night for being one of our last. After our walk we headed to Sonic to get our half-off shakes for the night.. which ended in tragedy because the lady forgot to add the raspberries and cheesecake to my raspberry-cheesecake shake. Talk about a let down.

The next morning, I woke up incredible sore and feeling sooo crappy. I was miserable. I was pretty desperate and thinking that if i had to have another day of feeling like i did, I didn't think i could make it. I had an appointment to get a massage, and totally lucked out because the lady at Massage Envy was trained and specialized in prenatal massages. I told her my due date was the next day, and she showed me different pressure points that could potentially induce labor. There was one particular spot on my shin that she massaged and said 'well honey there is just nothing there (like tissue or fluid or something).. my guess is you are going to have this baby veryyy soon." I tried not to get my hopes up because my doctor had been saying that since my 37 week appointment. That night we went to La Hacienda with my family and i was SO miserable. I had lightning crotch worse than ever, and could hardly walk. I felt so much pressure and shooting pain up and down my back at the most random moments. They weren't contractions but my mom was convinced they were something because i was wincing and just in the most excruciating pain--and it came on so suddenly. I worried that the baby was just dropping lower and that the end was no where in sight. We headed home and hung out in bed watching Netflix for the rest of the night.

I woke up around 2:30 to a contraction that started at the base of my lower back. I fell back asleep because the pain really wasn't bad. I wasn't even totally awake. This kept happening every hour for the next 2-3 hours. Around 5:00 I was more awake and aware that I could potentially be going into labor and started to time my contractions. I kept falling asleep between each one, but figured they were about 15 minutes apart. At 6:30 I rolled over and told Ammon what was happening and he started to help me time them. Again, the contractions were NOT painful at this point.. just tightening in my lower back that gradually moved to the front of my lower belly.. they would last like 10-30 seconds depending on the contraction. At 7:30 I decided I should shower and get ready because I figured that baby was coming--I am vain and wanted to have my hair and make up done before we went to the hospital. By the time I finished showering, my contractions had stopped. So I blow dried my hair, and went back to bed. I woke up a around 10ish and the contractions started again. This time.. way more painful. The contractions were coming about every 10-15 minutes and every 3rd or 4th contraction was PAINFUL. Ammon kept asking if we should got to the hospital, but I didn't feel the contractions were that bad  and that i could keep laboring at home. It seems like the next thing i knew, i was curled up in a ball on my knees trying not to cry when I finally said (mid contraction) "Let's go to the hospital". Ammon immediately jumped up and started packing up the car, and as soon as the contraction was over, I sort of regretted it. My next contractions were so bearable, and I just knew that we were going to get sent home from the hospital. I was also bugged with myself because I hadn't done my hair or my makeup and i already felt like crap, and not being 'ready' just made it worse. (Yes i am one of those people that likes getting ready.. it makes me feel prepared for my day and whatever is ahead of me.. so not being ready just made me feel like dirt). On our way to the hospital i reminded Ammon that most first time mom's get sent home from the hospital on their first 'labor visit' because things arent as bad as they need to be in order to get admitted. We talked and decided that if nothing else, knowing where i was at dilation/effacement wise would help me get through more laboring at home. We were very set on getting sent home.

I hadn't had a bad contraction since the one at the house until we were walking into the hospital. There I was, waddling into the women's center and it hit me. I hunched over and grabbed the cement pillar just before the doors. I remember a cute older couple walking in behind us, and i was sooo embarrassed that they had seen me like that. I laugh thinking about it now. We walked in, and by miracle one of my best friend's mom was working at the front desk. She checked us in, and assigned herself to be my nurse. SUCH A BLESSING. We were taken to the room, and i had a few more 'bad' contractions.. in between all the bearable ones. She hooked me up to the machines, helped me breathe and explained the process. Around 1:00pm she checked me to see if I could be officially 'admitted', and to our surprise.. I was dilated to a 4-5, 100% effaced, and the baby was sitting super low! I will never forget the look on Ammon's face when we realized we were going to be staying! He was so excited and just shocked that baby girl was coming. He kept saying "babe! You're doing so good! She is gonna be here today!" Cutest husband ever. Julie (my awesome nurse) hooked me up to an IV so if I wanted the epidural I had the option... but like i said, only 1 out of every 3-4 contractions was painful so I felt like i could manage it. She also mentioned that she thought the baby was posterior  (meaning she was head down, but looking up) and that they were going to have to try to get her to rotate, but that if it came down to it, i could deliver her that way. Posterior labors are usually longer and harder, but i was hopeful that we could get her to turn.

Around 4:00 I decided that I was ready to have the epidural. Ammon helped me make the decision by explaining that I had no reason to wait, and that I didn't need to prove anything to myself. For some reason, i kept thinking I wanted to see 'how far i could make it' with out the epidural.. which is funny because i was so exhausted and miserable, that more than anything else I wanted the epidural so I could sleep. I was so tired from not really sleeping the night before (little did i know the tiredness i felt was only the beginning!). The anesthesiologist came in explained everything, and began to prep for the epidural. All during my pregnancy i was so worried about the epidural because I hated the idea of not feeling my legs. When the time came.. i was so scared. I curled up into a ball, tears of fear streaming down my face, held ammons hand, and prayed. Prayed and prayed and prayed. i just kept praying that it would go well, the I would be safe, and that i could hold still while he put the needle in. Apparently, i had a pretty big contraction while he was in the middle of inserting the needle, but i didn't feel it at all. I know for sure my Heavenly Father was watching out for me. As soon as he was done, Julie looked at me and said "you're having a big contraction.. can you feel it anywhere?".. to my shock.. I couldn't feel a thing! IT was GLORIOUS. I was happy because i could still wiggle my toes, and move my legs (to a certain extent). My doctor came to check me at 4:30 and I was dilated to a 7. He broke my water and the waiting game began!

The rest of the night was pretty slow moving. My family came to visit and brought Ammon dinner, Harmony (our photographer) came in case anything were to happen, and Ammon's sister and her family came, while the rest of his family was on their way up from St. George. The nurses didnt='t check me as often once they broke my water because the risk of infection goes up. We were still trying to get baby to rotate, so I was laying on my side with a huge peanut shaped exercise ball between my legs. I would rotate sides about every hour. I quit dilating at this point because baby was stuck and not turning. So at 9:00 they really upped my dose of pitocin. Around 10:30 I started feeling SUPER nauseous. Also add in the fact that I had the 'shakes' super bad.. and basically.. I felt like crap. My jaw was shivering so bad it was hard to talk, my hands were shaking.. my body quivering..and i felt light headed like i was going to throw up. They asked me if I wanted some medicine to help with everything, and I easily accepted. Before I knew it.. I was DEAD asleep. Dang medicine was a sedative i swear! (come to find out one of the main side effects of the medicine they gave me was 'sleepiness')

I remember the nurses checking me at 11:00pm and telling me that I was fully dilated but that the baby hadn't rotated. I couldn't keep my eyes open (seriously so tired) so they decided to wait another hour to see if she would turn, and so I could sleep to gear up for pushing. Honestly I was extremely out of it I hardly remember this part. At midnight, i remember Ammon gently shaking me awake and saying calmly, but excitingly, "babe! You gotta wake up! It's time! You ready to push?... wake up! you need to open your eyes.. baby girl is coming!". I tried so hard to open my eyes... and at times.. i was successful, but the lights were just so bright that it made me even more tired. I started pushing and between every contraction, I was falling back asleep. The nurses and ammon were holding my legs up, and the nurse kept saying "haley you need to lift your head off the pillow".. haha! I felt like i was pushing so hard, and that no progress was being made. It seemed like an eternity! I did have a little burst of hope when one of the nurses said "Well! she has lots of hair!" And i looked at Ammon and he smiled so big and confirmed her statement. At 2:15 I started having a shooting pain up my hip and back anytime the nurse would move my leg to get ready to push. I could feel it through my epidural and i kept hearing a popping sound coming down from my hip. It really started freaking me out! I was so tired, my body was exhausted, and frustrated, that I really sort of lost it at that point. Tears were streaming down my face and I was so embarrassed that I was crying, but i was too tired to care. At this point, they called my doctor and gave me a break until he came. He arrived around 2:30, and at 2:50 I pushed for the last time. She was here.

I definitely was more awake when she actually came that I do remember most of the next hour. She came out, and immediately they put her on my chest. One of the nurses said "oh he has so much hair!"... no one corrected her so I sort of started freaking out in my head. Then she said "He is beautiful!"... and I REALLY started freaking out. That's when my doctor said "its a girl. SHE!" My heart calmed down at that point. I'll be honest, she didn't look very good.. she had a massive cone head, and her face was so swollen--like she had been in a boxing match or something.. Poor thing had been stuck so bad! Her little head was soo bruised and her face was swollen from coming out posterior. I felt really weird in that moment.. so much emotion built up and it all just felt surreal to me. Almost like an out of body experience. I really didn't feel anything, and i felt bad about that. Ammon cut the cord, and they took her over to get weighed and cleaned up. She was screaming, but it she was so congested that it was the deepest little man scream. She sounded pretty crappy. It wasn't long before they discovered that she had swallowed some meconium, and she had a fever. I also had a fever so I guess they were extra worried.  They brought her over to me and we did skin-to-skin.. this is when things really started to set in. I still didn't feel like myself and it was a very surreal feeling holding my child for the first time. I still feel bad because i seriously didn't emotionally feel anything.. i was happy that she was here, but I didn't have that "OH MY GOSH I'M A MOM" moment everyone talks about. I think the tears I cried in that moment were solely because I felt bad that I wasn't completely overjoyed like everyone talks about. I think I was just so overwhelmed that instead of feeling every emotion, i felt none of them. The nurses helped me try to feed her for the first time, which was cool and after about 5 minutes (i was so tired ammon had to help me hold her), they took her to check on her fever and do a more thorough exam. I switched to my recovery room, and immediately fell right to sleep.

The next thing I knew, I woke up to Ammon opening the door and wheeling in our sweet precious babe. Ammon explained that until just barely, she had been monitored very heavily-- she had an IV in her head (they had poked her foot and hand unsuccessfully) and she had to have antibiotics every 12 hours. They were worried about an infection since both of us had fevers, and she had swallowed so much gunk. She was doing much better and he brought her to me as soon as he could. I will never forget that moment--feeling like myself (finally) and seeing her for the first time. She was an angel on earth-the most beautiful baby I had ever seen. She had on a little hat with a bow and was sound asleep. Her skin was perfect. Her face was perfect. Everything about her was perfect. Straight from Heaven. I held her and THAT is when i had my moment. I have never felt more happiness, joy, and comfort in my life. I was overwhelmed with love for my little girl and knew that she had just left the presence of our Heavenly Father. So tender, so sweet. I am pretty sure I teared up and kept saying to Ammon "she is so perfect" like a million times. We spent the next little while admiring our daughter.. thanking heavenly father for the massive blessings she had already brought to our family, and soaking in those moments.

To be honest, I don't think we have quite snapped out of it yet. We absolutely adore our little Eden. No words will ever describe the feelings of becoming a parent. Besides my decision to marry Ammon, the best decision i ever made was the decision to become a mom. I thank my Heavenly Father every day that he has allowed me the opportunity to embrace that new title. It is the absolute best.

*All photos were taken by Harmony Barker of Photography by Harmony*** she rocks.

This picture of ammon.... my heart!

This was when I hit my breaking point.. I was exhausted and my hip was killing me.


I have to add this picture.. this was taken just moments before I saw her for the first time after the delivery. My heart exploded!
***The rest of these pictures were taken the day after she was born***

her poor little IV head..



  1. I love that you shared your story! SO much of this sounds exactly like Fin's story too. The timing of EVERYTHING, all your symptoms, sleepiness...I could relate so much to your story. Maybe it's a baby girl thing?! ;) Congratulations to everything, she is so adorable and it sounds like you are enjoying motherhood. There's absolutely nothing like the first one so soak up every second of it. Can't wait to meet her someday!

  2. on the verge of tears over here. AH, THIS IS SO GREAT!

  3. Congrats Haley! She is beautiful. It just keeps getting better!

  4. Ah I love this and it makes me wanna cry cause I can relate to so many things! It really is the best thing ever, no words can describe it. Yay for perfect sweet little babes 😊


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