Labor and Delivery: A Spectator

Labor and Delivery: A Spectator

I thought I would also share my experience from when our son was born, so that we have a more complete record of Shaylee’s labor and delivery. However, I will warn you that this is not nearly as detailed or exciting as her story.

Early Labor

On September 15, 2016 Shaylee finally went into labor. We were pretty ready for our son to come at this point. So Shaylee was trying some techniques on her own to further the process along. I remember getting a text from her that day explaining that she had gone on a brisk walk that included curb walking, and five minutes of stairs. By the time I got home Shaylee was having regular contractions. Then around midnight we were ready to go to the hospital. It was about thirty minutes away so I remember being pretty nervous about making it there quick. I definitely had nothing to worry about though.

When we got to the hospital they took us to a triage room and had us wait an hour before checking Shaylee to see if she was progressing. It was around this time that we heard this blood curdling scream coming from another room nearby. It was probably the loudest screaming that I have ever heard in my life. I have no idea what happened to this woman, but it made me worried for Shaylee. The nurse came back and made us wait another hour. At this point I was worried that they were going to just send us home if they didn’t see enough progress. Luckily, that didn’t happen and they admitted us.


As time went on Shaylee’s contractions got harder and harder for her. I started putting pressure on her back to help with the pain. This wasn’t easy for me, because I got in a mountain biking accident the week before. I sprained my hand pretty badly and had a bunch of stitches in my arm. Obviously, I continued to help Shaylee because her pain was more severe than mine. I wasn’t really sure what else I could to to help anyway. At one point I remember asking her how I could help and she said, “Just sit there and be quiet.”

The next morning Shaylee’s mom arrived, and I was very grateful for that. She knew how to help Shaylee through this way better than I did. So, I continued to apply pressure to Shaylee’s back and let her mom do the talking. This is when the contractions start getting really bad. I remember feeling bad because I wasn’t suffering like Shaylee was. It just didn’t seem fair that I could feel totally fine during all of this, and I wanted to be able to take some of the burden of pain from her. She is a lot stronger than me so I probably couldn’t have handled it all.

The Delivery

Initially, I didn’t really want to watch the delivery happen, but it quickly became apparent that there was no avoiding it. Since this was our first child, I wasn’t really sure what to expect. In the end I was glad because it is a special moment when your child is born. I also wasn’t planning on cutting the umbilical cord, but as the doctor explained how everything was going to happen, she nonchalantly said, “and then Josh will cut the umbilical cord.” Right when our son was born, he didn’t make any noise at all. This put me into a panic mode where I questioned if he had died. That only lasted a few seconds before he started crying. I then cut the cord, and I was glad that I did. It made me feel like I was more a part of the delivery.

After our son was born I felt a huge increase of love for Shaylee. I was so amazed with how she handled this, and the sacrifices that she made to bring our son into the world. I also began to feel a much greater sense of gratitude for my own mother and all the sacrifices that she made for me.


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