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Emma Grace Arias | Birth Story

This may be the hardest blog post we’ve ever published. Not because of what happened to our baby girl when she was born, but because it’s SO hard to adequately describe the emotions we felt as she was entering this world. It also hard to adequately put into words how faithful the Lord has been throughout this journey to becoming parents, and especially these last 12 days since she was born. We prayed for 9 months that God would be glorified in her birth and, through it all, He truly has been. There’s a whole lot to say and write, and this is going to be a VERY lengthy blog post, but we have to start from the beginning…

As we’ve written before and always share, this pregnancy was absolutely fantastic from start to finish. There was minimal morning sickness and food aversions and I had tons of energy throughout the entire pregnancy. I seriously felt so great throughout it all and was just so excited to have our sweet girl. Emma’s due date was June 23rd and on June 22nd, my mucus plug came out and I began to have what I thought were contractions (they ended up being just Braxton Hicks). I felt different and weird and we thought this baby was for sure making her appearance on her actual due date. We called our parents and mine came up to our house to be with us in case I went into labor. Well, June 23rd came and went, and so did that entire week and she still didn’t make her grand entrance. Fast forward to Friday, June 28th, I was scheduled for an induction because they didn’t want me to go past 41 weeks. At 2:00 am on Saturday, June 29th, the doctors gave me Cervadil, by 4:00 am that same morning my water broke, and that’s when the real fun began!

Contractions started coming in strong and hard after my water broke and we called my family (who was staying at our house while we were in the hospital) to come around 8:00 am because we wanted them there. At first I was not doing well handling the pain that came with each contraction. I would try and breathe through it but my whole body was tense and I was gripping onto my mom or Vic during each one. After hours of dealing with the contractions, the midwife checked me and I was still only 4 cm dilated. It was then that she spoke to me and told me if I didn’t relax my body and learn to ride the wave of each contraction, it would take me forever to dilate. Something happened at that moment when I asked the Lord to help me and it was though a switch was flipped and I was able to relax my entire body. So much so, that I was falling asleep in between contractions and because of this I didn’t even ask for any pain medication. Around 8 cm, I began to get the urge to push but was told that I had to hold it because I wasn’t ready yet. This may have been one of the hardest parts of labor as my body would start to shake every time I had to hold this overwhelming urge to push during a contraction. But we made it past that, and finally at 2:45 pm, I got to 10 cm and was told I could start pushing.

This began the longest 5 hours of my life as we worked to push our sweet girl into this world. Emma was flipped face up at the beginning of pushing, then my wonderful midwife Maggie was able to manually flip her face down. This little lady then decided to flip face up again but finally ended up coming out face down. Towards the end of the 5 hours I felt as though I couldn’t go on for much longer but thanks to Vic, my mom, my sister Val, and their motivation and words of encouragement I made it through. But sometime during those 5 hours and the flipping back and forth, our girl suffered some complications. Once I was finally able to push her out, she was born not breathing and I was only able to hold her for maybe 10 seconds before they took her away from us and started resuscitating her. I was so delirious and tired from it all that I honestly didn’t understand what was happening at that moment (and I partially think it was God who brought that over me to keep me calm) Our girl was taken out of the labor and delivery room and rushed to the NICU a few minutes after being born because they needed to intubate her in order to help her breathe. I was completely out of it but I know, at that moment, our family started praying and within an hour she was breathing on her own. 

We were able to visit her that night once they got her stabilized and that may have been the hardest thing we’ve ever gone through. Seeing our girl with tubes, IV’s, and monitors all over her little body killed us. We couldn’t hold her that night and we couldn’t kiss and snuggle this beautiful baby we had waited 9 months to meet. We could only touch her little arms and hold her hand when all we wanted to do was scoop her up in our arms and comfort her. That night there were so many tears shed and so many emotions felt but we held on to each other, our family that was there with us, and we clung fiercely to God knowing He is faithful and would be with our Emma. The most important thing was that she was here, she was safe, and we knew she would be getting better. The next morning we were able to see her again and actually hold her in our arms and then the doctors fully explained all that our baby had gone through. Aside from not breathing, she had ingested meconium and suffered damage to her liver, kidneys, and her gut. There are so many details but I won’t go into it too deep as to not make this the longest post in history! 

Long story short, she was in the NICU for 8 days. The absolute longest and hardest 8 days of our lives but God was glorified! The doctors and nurses kept saying that they didn’t understand how she recovered so quickly and that medically it didn’t make sense with all that she went through. They monitored her so closely for those 8 days and every time we were there, we got nothing but good reports about how well she was doing. Our girl is an absolute miracle and we cannot express how grateful we are that the Lord saved her and that she’s finally here with us! His goodness and faithfulness was made known throughout this entire ordeal and now that she’s home, she’s literally the best baby. She feeds and sleeps absolutely amazing and we cannot thank God enough for this beautiful and strong girl He has given us! We are excited to share some of the photos our amazing sister-in-law took of Emma’s birth and the moments right after including this PERFECT video of her birth at the end of this post! We can’t thank you enough Val for capturing these moments for us and we will truly treasure them forever! 

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