Wow! I can’t believe it’s already been three weeks since Sophia was born! She really does soak up all our time. But it’s okay. I wouldn’t trade this time with her for the world. Even the sleepless nights, poopy diapers, and sore nipples (yes, even those…). She and all her cuteness make it oh so worth it!

Sophia’s birth story is actually kind of funny now that I look back on it. It all began on the night of April 16th when I felt my first contraction. Earlier that day the doctor stripped my membranes. Seeing that the doctor did this the week before and nothing happened, I figured that I could expect the same result. That, however, was not the case. After about an hour of mild contractions I decided to try some of the tricks the books said would lessen the pain. I took a nice hot shower, which helped a little bit—enough for me to get a few hours of sleep until they came back with a vengeance. As I felt the contractions coming closer together, Daniel downloaded an app onto our phone to time the contractions. Around 4:00 AM they were one to two minutes long and about four or five minutes apart. I was starting to feel that it was time to go to the hospital. Daniel, however, worried that I was still experiencing false labor and that the hospital would just send us home, so we waited until the contractions became even more regular. It was excruciating; nevertheless, we pressed on and endured the pain. And when I say “we,” I really mean “I.” If I was asked to describe what the pain felt like I would tell you to imagine yourself trying to poop out a seven pound bowling ball. That would pretty much sum it up.

At about 5:00 AM I told Daniel that I really wanted to go to the hospital. My contractions were becoming more painful and frequent as time progressed. He told me that we should wait at least another hour to see if they become more regular. Sometimes the frequency was off by a minute or two, which made him think that it was still false labor. I told him that it doesn’t matter, as long as they are happening every five minutes or less. We debated for a while, until he convinced me to wait another hour. By this time I was pacing the apartment and groaning with pain. I developed a pattern of bouncing on our exercise in between contractions and then pacing when they started back up again. It helped a little but I could feel that the contractions were definitely getting worse. It was around 5:45 that I insisted we go to the hospital. Daniel still reluctant and said we should wait a little longer. I said “No! We need to go NOW!” So after finally convincing Daniel, we make our way to the hospital, which to our advantage was only two minutes away. We get to Labor and Delivery and they lead us to a room and told us they would send a nurse to check and see how dilated I was and determine whether I was having true labor or not. In my mind I was thinking, “Of course this is true labor! How could someone feel this much pain and have it not be true labor?”

When we got into the room I had absolutely no shame and immediately stripped down and put on that hospital gown as fast as I could. I was ready for them to do whatever it took to make the pain go away. As we waited in the room (which felt like forever) the pain got worse and I began to panic and wonder what was taking the nurse so long. When she finally came, I was in tears and could hardly control myself. (Just thinking about how much pain I was in makes me want to cry even right now.) The nurse snapped on a rubber glove and proceeded to find out how dilated I was. “Wow, you’re already at 8 cm! It looks like you’re having your baby this morning!” the Nurse said. I turn to look at Daniel and just glare at him. If we would have went to the hospital when I wanted to, it would have saved me a lot pain. But no, he wanted to stretch it out and wait till I was dilated to 8 cm! I then ask the nurse, “So, when do I get the epidural?” That was all I could think about next.

This  is me after the epidural kicked in.

Once I had the epidural in me everything was wonderful! I was completely ready to have the baby. The nurse said that once my doctor got there we could start pushing right away. It seemed so surreal to me that I would soon get to meet our baby girl. When Dr. Andrews arrived she got me in position to start pushing. "Dad, grab a leg," she says to Daniel. Then the next part was like in the movies where you have your legs all up and you’re huffing and puffing to push the baby out. The only difference was sometimes in the movie version the mother would be screaming in pain but for me I could hardly feel a thing. (Maybe a little out of breath here and there, but that was it!) There was actually a point in between contractions that we were all having a nice conversation about where the best places are to get sushi in Provo. The whole process was super chill. After about 30 minutes of pushing, we began to see the head. My Doctor pointed out that she had a good amount of hair which was a little shocking to Daniel and I, seeing that we were both pretty bald babies. I guess that old wives tale about having a lot of indigestion during pregnancy equating to baby having lots of hair proved to be true after all. After about an hour and 15 minutes of pushing, our little Sophia came into this world. At 9:35 am they plopped her down right on top of my stomach. She was a purplish tint, wet and crying and my heart was pounding faster than ever! It was so crazy to finally see this little human that had been growing inside of me for the past 9 months!

After letting her lay there for a few minutes Daniel had the honor of cutting her umbilical cord. I was actually a little shocked, because Daniel normally gets skirmish around blood and I wasn't sure he would be able to handle it. But he did it, and afterwards said that it wasn't that bad after all!

After a moment, the baby nurse (who happened to be Daniel's aunt!) took her to clean and weigh her. Her lips were so big and puffy. She looked like Janice, the lead guitarist of Muppet band Electric Mayhem. Sophia weighed 6 lbs 13 oz and was measured at 19 inches long.

Happy new Daddy!

After the nurses left and things calmed down, all three of us just snuggled together. It was such a special moment. Daniel and I couldn't take our eyes off her! I felt such an overwhelming wave of love for her! I feel so blessed to be a mother to such a sweet, precious baby girl!