The Story of Leif’s Birth

Guilty blogger here! Baby Leif is now 10 months old, so this film is long over-due! My apologies. I put this together in honor of his upcoming birthday, and it felt only right to share it with my amazing blog subscribers.

We named our baby Leif, which is an old Nordic Viking name. The Danish pronunciation is Life. I sort of love that. We tried for many years to create Life, and now Leif is here.

I want to thank you for the love, encouragement and hope you gave me during the most trying time of my life — the hours, weeks, months and years leading up to his birth. THANK YOU FOR WALKING THROUGH THIS JOURNEY WITH US. Thank you for praying for Martin and me. Thank you for supporting and inspiring us. I’m not sure I would have survived and triumphed over my infertility without all of you.

His birth was painful, long and absolutely wonderful, all at once. I basically received everything on the menu that a hospital can or must administer to a laboring mother. At 7.5 cm dilation, I was encouraged to get an epidural, but it took three epidural attempts by three different anesthesiologists for them to get it in the right place. During that trial, I suffered a dural mater puncture, which put me in the high-risk category for a Post-dural-puncture headache (PDPH), caused by a leak in the spinal cord. Sure enough, 4 days after his birth, one day after arriving back home, I got the terrible migraine. The cure for it was another epidural, only this time, it would be a blood patch (using my own blood to patch the holes in my spine that were leaking fluid and causing terrible headache pain). It worked like a charm, and I was better within a few hours.

After laboring for 22 hours, I was rushed into the operating theatre for a level 1-cesarean section. The baby’s heart rate had dropped, I believe to almost nothing. I didn’t get to hold him immediately after birth, as they had to work on him for a little while. Initially, he wasn’t crying or making much sound. I never banked on the c-section, but I was completely on board when they literally RAN me out of my room and down the hall to the OR. I knew they had a good reason to make the call. The team in charge of my care were fantastic, professional and honestly fully committed to saving his life. They treated me with honesty and dignity from beginning to end.

This team watching over me knew how hard we had fought for the pregnancy, so they didn’t take a single chance. In fact, I believe they scurried around, huddling together in a specialists’ “team meeting” many times throughout the 24 hours, always consulting back with me. They knew how sacred this baby was, and they rallied hard to bring him home to us safely.

THANK YOU AGAIN.

(BTW, Leif is the most magical, delicious, chubby and squeezable baby. We couldn’t have lucked out more. He smiles all the time, at everyone. In fact, he’s the kind of baby who smiles first, when he sees a face. Any face. We couldn’t possibly love him more. We are blessed with Leif).