Monday, February 27, 2012

Alice Harli Farr

I know it has been a while since I have posted but we have been a little busy loving and taking care of our new arrival. Alice is finally here! It took me a few days to write her birth story but it's done. Here it is:
It all began on January 30, 2012. I had decided that I would start my maternity leave that day since I had two doctor appointments. Shane had work, but not until 2. We first had a non-stress test at 11 at IMC. We went to the appointment hoping I would have consistent enough contractions to go to the hospital. Luck was not in our favor…I had hardly any. But, Alice’s heartbeat was great and my blood pressure was good so we weren’t complaining. After the NST we went home and had lunch then went to the ultrasound at Riverton. Our ultrasound tech Anne told us that everything looked great and that as far as she could tell we would be having a 7 ½ to 8 lb. baby. After the ultrasound we went next door to Southridge to see if Dr. Bowman wanted to induce me the next day or not. She wasn’t there so we left a message and they said they would call when they knew. So Shane dropped me off at my parents and he went to work. Shortly after he left my mom and I went to pick up Kelci from the high school where I got a phone call. It was Melissa, Dr. Bowman’s MA telling me that Dr. Bowman wanted to induce me the next day and that I would need to come into the hospital that night to have my cervix ripened. I called Shane immediately and we both got super excited. We were going to have a baby! 
 I kept myself busy at my parent’s house (dinner, making valentines for Dallyn) but I was pretty anxious not knowing how the next few hours would be. Shane had to get off early and came to pick me up and we were off to the hospital at 8:15. By 8:30 we checked in to labor and delivery. They sent us to a room and told me to change into a gown. We weren’t sure if we were staying the night or not, so we just waited for what seemed like forever. Then a nurse (Vicky) came in and told us we were staying the night. She asked a ton of questions and put my IV in. It took a while because the first vein she tried didn’t work so she had to do it again. It was not comfortable, that’s for sure. After the IV, they put Cervadil inside to ripen my cervix. This was around 11 o clock and we were in for a long night. The Cervadil started my contractions and they were pretty painful. The nurse (Missy) gave me a very small dose of Morphine to take the edge off but it was still pretty bad. Because of the pain, we both barely slept. We tried to watch How to Train Your Dragon, but it wasn’t working very well. So from 12:00 till about 7:00, we endured and tried to be patient. By 7:00, our new nurse (Gayle) came in. My cervix was ready so she put me on Pitocin. Pitocin was meant to speed up the labor and contractions and it did its job. The contractions came on hard core and I was in pain. It felt like knives stabbing my insides every few minutes. I tried to hang on for as long as possible, but after two hours I was done, and had Shane get the anesthesiologist. Dr. Petersen came in and gave me the medicine. Gayle and Shane helped me, but I mostly just had to sit still. After the epidural, I felt so much better. It was instant relief. A little weird, but I could still move my legs which was nice. However, our January 31st was just beginning,
With the Pitocin and the epidural I was hoping that Alice’s arrival would be just around the corner, but we still had a ways to go. We found out that Alice was in a posterior position (head facing my right hip)which is why my labor wasn’t progressing. Dr. Bowman and Gayle would check about every hour but there wasn’t a whole lot of change. Dr. Bowman said that we may need a C Section and we were pretty bummed. Not that we didn’t want to get Alice here safely, but we really wanted to do it vaginally. Gayle could see our discouragement, so she told us that she guaranteed we would have a vaginal birth and she was going to help get us there. She has been a nurse for 38 years and knew what she was doing. So they increased my intake of Pitocin and Gayle had me lie on my side and switch it every hour to try and get Alice to move. But all of a sudden the monitor that was tracking Alice’s heartbeat suddenly showed a major decrease in her heart rate. It was so scary and Shane and I were freaking out. Gayle came in and said they would need to get me off of the Pitocin to try and get her heart rate steady again and I had to be put on oxygen. I will never forget what Shane did to not only help me, but Alice too. He started humming hymns to my belly and her heart rate stayed in perfect sync with Shane’s singing. I knew Heavenly Father was in the room helping us all. But Shane, my wonderful Shane, knew exactly what to do and how to relax his girls.
Alice’s heart rate eventually got back to normal and me turning every hour seemed to really move the labor along. Eventually, she moved and the rest of the labor seemed to progressively get faster. Dr. Bowman and Gayle both checked my cervix to see how far I was dilated and effaced. We were so happy to hear that the time to push was at hand. I had started to feel a little nauseous since I had only been able to eat slushees and ice chips since early that morning and ended up throwing up everything left in my stomach. I felt so much better afterward though. Then, I got worried. With the epidural, some of the drug can wear off overtime but I had a button I could push if I started to feel the contractions or pain. I had only pushed the button one time previously but I felt like now I needed more medicine. Only there was one problem: the bag with the Fentanyl was almost gone and Gayle told me it was time to start pushing. I might not have medicine for my labor! Shane and I let Gayle know and she said if she had to get more medicine she would. Until I got more medicine I could feel some of the contractions and it was not fun. I got more medicine and it kicked in just in time for labor. By about 2:15 in the afternoon, Gayle told me it was time. Now Gayle was not only my nurse, but also took on the role as labor coach. She and Shane were so helpful and encouraging. I don’t think I could have done it without them. As soon as I started pushing, Alice started to emerge. Gayle could feel her head and said she had lots of hair. I touched Alice’s head of hair and swear that was a big motivation in the rest of my labor. With breathing and pushing techniques, soon Alice was just about here. Gayle told me to stop pushing and called Dr. Bowman to get into our room stat. Dr. Bowman suited up and I was pushing at every contraction. I did have to get an episiotomy otherwise Alice would have torn right through me. Within 30 minutes, Alice was out, and Shane got to cut the umbilical cord. Our baby girl was born at 2:47 p.m. I got to see her for a second, and then she went to be cleaned, weighed and measured. She didn’t come out screaming but was making a cute little goat cry while they cleaned her. She was 6 lbs. 15 oz. 19 in. long and absolutely perfect with lots of black hair. I then got to hold her for the first time. Shane and I were so happy and relieved to have our beautiful daughter alive and well in our arms. After 14 hours of labor, the pain didn’t matter. We finally had our little Alice. 
Me and Alice the day after she was born

Ready to head home!

Shane taking her in the house

First Bath

Taking a nap

These pics should have been first, but this is Shane and I right after we got to the hospital

Minutes after Alice was born

Getting checked

Tuckered out from labor

My two loves

At home- this is one of my all time favorite photos of her

Shane and I like to call this photo, "Stop! In the name of love!"

This face cracks me up. Why so serious?
She will be four weeks old tomorrow and we can hardly believe it. She had her two week check-up and grew two inches and gained almost a pound, but that was two weeks ago! She is growing so well and is such a good girl. She only wakes up once in the night to eat so Shane and I are pretty spoiled. We absolutely love her to death and are so grateful Heavenly Father trusted us with one of his precious daughters. 


  1. Congratulations Erin! She's beautiful!!! :)
    And that part about Shane singing and humming hymns to you two... brought me to tears. Sounds like you have a pretty wonderful family!

  2. That's awesome that she's sleeping so well at night! Thanks for posting her birth story. Sorry I haven't brought you dinner or come by! Maybe I can bring you some treats soon. I haven't been feeling the greatest and now have a cold again so I better keep away for awhile. So happy for you though! She really is a beautiful baby.

  3. Erin&Shane,

    Alice is beauftiful! Congratulations. :)

  4. What a beautiful little girl! Congratulations, I'm glad things went well and that she's sleeping! I hope mine ends up like that :) Good luck with everything!