Jillian's Story- Start to finish

I’m exhausted. Despite that, I figured if I don’t write this, then soon enough I’ll completely forget- along with what day it is, where Jillian’s binky is, and the last time I actually ate or slept.
So here it is, to the best of my ability, Jillian’s birth story:

Monday July 18, 2011 Doctors Appointment:

Well it looks like we can go ahead and set up an appointment on Wednesday to get you induced! So you'll call early Wednesday morning and they'll tell you if they have room for you to come in. Last week I did have three ladies call and they weren't able to get in, just so you know.
There has to be room. I don't feel like I can do this anymore. I'm SO uncomfortable.

Tuesday July 19, 2011 Due date.

Hi! I'm just calling to let you know ahead of time that we have a pretty full schedule for tomorrow. So there's a good chance you won't be able to be induced. There are 5 rooms available for first time moms to be induced, and you're number five on the list to be called, but all of them are currently full. We'll give you a call tomorrow. If you don't hear from us by 10 am, give us a call.


Wednesday July 20, 2011

9:23 am

Hi this is the charge nurse from Utah Valley Hospital. I'm calling to let you know that unfortunately we won't be able to fit you in today. We'll go ahead and set up an appoinment for you to come in tomorrow for a stress test to make sure that the baby is doing okay.

Super suck.

Later that day:
Well James, let's make a lot of plans tomorrow, since clearly this isn't happening anytime soon. Let's make a list:
-clean bathroom and vacuum
-call Melanie about broken light in dining room
-get my car checked
-James' eye appointment
-Stress test at 1:30
-Buy batteries and air humidifier for down stairs

Watch, now that we have a ton of stuff to do tomorrow, she'll decide to show up.

Thursday July 21, 2011

3:23 am

Ow. …Ow. Ugghhh. Time to change positions again. Okay body, here we go. Sloooowwlllyyy rollllllll over…OW. Big belly bblleegghhh. Okay. Ahh. That’s slightly better.

3:29 am

That didn’t help. My hip hurts. Egh. Again? If these are false contractions again that’s going to suck. Are they real contractions? I dunno. What IS a real contraction? Whatever. I’m going back to sleep.

3:34 am

OOWWW. These feel like cramps. Are these different than the other night? Should I wake up James? Nah. Not yet. Let’s not get our hopes up here. Oh, should I be writing these down? Eh. We’ll see if they go away this time.

3:39 am

Cramp. Cramp. Cramp. Are these getting worse? Contractions are supposed to get worse right? They feel the same so far…And Dr. Nance said the first stage of labor can last 7-8 hours…so, I guess I have a while if they’re for real. Back to sleep.

3:45 am

Ooooo gotta sit up. I think I have to pee? Maybe. OUCH. CRAMP CRAMP CRAMP. Okay. Maybe I should start timing these things. They seem close together already. Okay here we go…45 seconds. Hmm, these are definitely longer than the other night. *Digs out a neon green pad of post-its and pen from nightstand. Why do I even have post-its in here? Oh well. I need a watch…I guess my phone will work.


Okay. These are regular…well, sort of. Regular enough I guess. Will sitting up help? No. Okay I’ll try standing. No. Walking? Slightly better. Is someone literally pinching me from the inside? No, not pinching…GNAWING ON ME with spiky metal teeth?

James. I think I’m having contractions.

Okay…are you timing them?

Yeah, they’re pretty close, like 5-6 minutes, some are 4 minutes. But I don’t really know if it’s a contraction.

Doesn’t it say in your book thing?

Oh yeah…let’s look. …. Umm, I guess it could be a contraction? It says that the first stage of labor can last for hours, so try to get comfortable. But these are already pretty close.

Well, I guess keep timing them.



OOOO. James, these are getting pretty bad. I can’t sit down.

Should we go to the hospital?

I don’t know. What if they’re not real and they just send us home? I’ll feel so stupid. OOOWWWWWW.

Okay I think we should go to the hospital.

Okay. Go wake up my Mom and tell her.

[At this point James went into complete “go” mode.]

James, where’s my bag? I have to put my last minute stuff in there?

It’s in the car already.

Wait, what? Why? I’m not ready.

Mom: It’s okay, I’ll get it and put it in there.

I guess I should at least brush my teeth. I wanted to put on mascara at least and deodorant…I don’t care anymore- this HURTS. I need to go to the hospital NOW.

Okay. We’re in the car. I can do this. I can do this. It’s not to far. How far apart are they? Oh crap. 3 minutes. What if I have this baby in the car? Oh crap. HHOOLLYY #($*&@# that hurts! Where are we? Have my eyes been closed? Oh…okay, there’s the mall, we’re getting closer. James is driving pretty fast. Good thing it’s so early and there’s no traf…SSSHHEEESSSHHHH these are no good. Okay. Definitely not fake. Not fake. Not fake.

Should I park right here? [At the front door basically].

No, it’s okay just park in the parking garage.

Are you sure?

Yes. Just park.

Let’s leave the bags in the car until we find out for sure…I still don’t know if these are real.

Wait…why are there so many doctor’s outside? It’s like 5 in the morning? …Are they grilling? Holy cow, they’re grilling. Maybe it’s breakfast…oh well. Okay. Here we go. We’re almost there. …People have got to be looking at me…am I even wearing a bra?

[On the 5th floor- Labor and Delivery]

The red phone. They said pick up the red phone in the prenatal class.

James, use the phone.

Hi uh…I think my wife is in labor.

Doors open.

Okay, what’s your name?
Whitney Houlin.
Due Date?
The 19th.

Okay we’ll get you checked in and the nurse will go ahead and check you.

Finally…HURRY UP.

[In the room with lots of monitors and a mirror.]

Oh. This is THE room. As in, THE room it all goes down in.

5:15 ish

Okay Whitney, go ahead and put the gown on and I’ll check to see if you’re dilated.


WHOA LADY, think you could shove your fingers up there any faster?
WHOA you’re fast at that.

Haha. Well, you’re 5cm, so you’re not going back home! We’ll get your IV hooked up and finish getting you checked in!

Oh…OH. It IS go time. Yikes. No turning back now.

Were you planning on having an epidural?


Okay, I’ll go ahead and call the anesthesiologist. I think he’s still asleep, but he needs to wake up anyway.

..What? Asleep? Doesn’t seem like he should be giving people drugs if he’s half asleep. OOOOUUUUCCCHHHH. Okay whatever, bring it on, I don’t care if he IS asleep. GIMME THE DRUGS.

[45 minutes later, epidural is in and working].

Wow. This is magical. It’s like, I was dying, and then I was not dying. Ahh sweet relief. This is awesome. I can totally do this. Why would anybody choose to go natural? Beats me.

Umm, I’m still feeling some pelvic floor pressure, is that normal?

Oh yeah, that’s normal. You should feel pressure, but not pain.

Oh, okay. Well, if that’s all I have to feel, then I’m game.

[A few minutes later]

Ok. This is really starting to hurt again. It feels like a contraction but I can only feel it in my crotch. PAAAIIIINNNNN. I don’t think this is working right.

This is REALLY starting to get uncomfortable. Breathe. Breathe. Breathe. I shouldn’t have to breathe like this with an epidural in…right?

Okay, I’ll go ahead and call the anesthesiologist to come check your dosage.

WOW. These hurt WORSE than the contractions I felt….Please Mr. Candy Man, come QUICKLY!!!

James: Honey, I know it hurts, but you’re squeezing my hand reeaalllyy tight.


Hello! I’m Dr. so and so. So you’re still feeling some pain?

Yes. A lot. Way down low.

Well, I’m going to give you a different drug than the first time that should be a little bit stronger.

Good. Do it.

[10 minutes later]

Ahh….relief again. Okay. We’re good. Aside from this catheter tube that is annoying the heck out of me, and the fact that I have the shakes like a seizure patient, we’re good.

Except for the heartbeat. Do they have to keep the microphone turned up on her heartbeat? It’s making me so nervous constantly hearing it. What if it just…stops? I should try to rest. It’s freezing in here. I can’t stop shaking.

James you should probably go get the bags in the car.
I’ll call my mom.

Mom! Looks like we’re staying here. When she checked me I was 5cm, and the epidural is in and working and….umm…I think my water…yeah…my water just broke! Um, I’ll call you back.

This is gross…talk about a mega gush of goop.

[Nurse checks] Oh yes! Your water did break! It has a greenish tint to it, which means your baby did have a bowel movement. So I’ll call Dr. Nance and see how he wants to proceed.

Crap. That’s the one thing I was super nervous about.

So Dr. Nance said we’ll go ahead and start an amnio-flush. Where basically a tube [another tube?] is inserted and warm water is pumped in to dilute the meconium.


Progress is made. Every hour I’m checked for dilation, and every hour I progress another centimeter.

11:00 am

9cm. Wow. 9 cm?! I don’t feel like 9cm…I feel like I’m on a cloud floating past rainbows and watching puppy dogs chase their tails.

You’re almost ready to push! You just have a teeny bit of cervix left that I bet will be gone with a few contractions.

Wow. Okay. Where does the cervix even go? It just disappears? Whatevs. Sounds good.

11:25 am

10 cm! Time to start pushing!
Oh…okay. Sure.

Next contraction, first push. Okay, I know I’m not supposed to push with my face. If I push with my face, I’m doing it wrong. I reeaallyyy don’t want to have them turn down the epidural. Here we go. PUSH.

Wow! That was a great push! I bet you’ll be having her within about 30 minutes!

Well Dr. Nance, I’d love to believe you, but you also told me at 37 weeks you thought I’d be delivering early…so I’ll believe it when I see it.

More pushing. On the third and last count to 10 I’m struggling to finish. Whew. This is intense. I feel out of breath.

Okay, well I need to run downstairs to sign some papers, and I’ll be right back.


It’s okay, I can be back in two seconds. You can keep pushing with the nurse.

Holy shiz balls, is he for real???

Pushing with the nurse:

Do you want to look in the mirror?

Uhhhh, I’m not sure…I guess.

[With the mirror]

Look, can you see the top of her head?

WHOA! Also…wowzers…this looks like I’m going to be in some pain afterwards. Yikes at my lady parts.

Okay here’s another contraction, let’s push!

James is being so quiet during all of this. Where is Dr. Nance?! Shouldn’t he be back by now…

A few minutes later…finally…he’s back.

I’m going to vomit. I’m shaking uncontrollably and I want to vomit.

James, get the barf bag. Just hold it by my head. If I barf I’m just turning and going, so be ready.

Uhh, okay.

12:05 pm

Okay! Here comes the head!

Holy crap the pressure. So much pressure. Something is SQUEEZING through a very small space. Even with an epidural, this I can feel. I think someone just lit a firecracker in my vajayjay. OH MY GOSH I HAVE TO GET THIS THING OUT.

Look Whitney, open your eyes!

HOLY CRAP!!! (I literally shouted). This HUMAN BEING just came out of me! What a strange, wonderful, beautiful, freaky thing. She’s here. I did it. She’s here. And I’m not pregnant anymore!!! She’s crying, that’s a good sign. James is tearing up- that’s so cute! I’m not crying though, shouldn’t I be crying? I’m still shaking a lot. I can’t believe what I just pushed out.

James, go see her! What does she look like? [They had to immediately take her over to the side with the NICU team to be checked out because of the whole meconium situation.]

All right she looks good! She didn’t ingest any of the meconium.

Whew. That’s a BIG relief.

She’s 7lbs and 7oz and 20 inches long!

Wow. She’s small!

That’s not that small, actually.

Well, I was expecting at least an 8 pounder.

Finally, I get to hold her. She IS tiny. I’m still cold and shaking. Are my legs still wide up in the air? Oh, looks that way. He is definitely going to town on those stitches- I feel like I’m being pulled in five different directions. But she’s perfect, so it doesn’t matter.

I can’t believe this is who was inside of me for 9 months. Every jab was from those knobby little elbows. Every kick was from those skinny little feet with those itty-bitty toes. How soon can I paint her toe nails? Those ridiculously painful head butts were from this currently little misshapen head. I wonder what color hair she’ll have? I just want to study her face and memorize every little wrinkle and dimple.

Wow. James, we MADE this.
I know, we did.

And she’s perfect. And I’m so in love.


  1. Haha. I think I laughed and maybe cried during this whole story (preggers hormones). I am SO jealous and she is so cute!

  2. i love this.

    that feeling? right when she came out? the 'HOLY CRAP I DID THIS?'? that's exactly how i felt. a little foggy too, because i started bleeding profusely, but i remember it all feeling so surreal.

    you did great, mama. good job!

  3. You kill me...so funny! I could totally relate to so many things you said. I was shivering uncontrollably...I think they brought me 3 heated blankets! Congrats! So excited for you! She is adorable! Thanks for sharing!


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