Welcome Clayton James born 2/15/22

A huge thank you to Ashley for sharing her birth story with us today, and special thanks to our Christa for her unhesitating doula support. Congratulations to mom, dad and big brother!


"About five in the morning on February 15th contractions woke me up. I had been having contractions all weekend and I knew this could be it! Being ten days past your due date, I had hoped so!

About an hour later we woke up soon-to-be big brother and got him off to school. We checked in with Christa, our doula, and she gave some encouragement and things to think about before we headed in to the hospital. What’s my ideal dilation number? At what point would we not want to stay? And stuff to consider before we were hit with the questions at the hospital.


To the Hospital

We headed on over to the hospital and we were at 2cm and the cervix was still pretty thick. Disappointing, but they agreed that my contractions were strong and close together. They sent me for an ultrasound because of a deceleration or two from the baby. By the time we were back from the ultrasound I was 4cm and my cervix was thin! In less than an hour!


Determined and progressing

Next up, Christa and mom joined us as we settled into our delivery room. Dr. wanted to break my water, “No thanks!” He wasn’t too happy with that answer- angrily washed his hands and made some snarky remarks about how his length of experience should matter to us more. But we were determined to allow my body to work its way through the process in its own time. (Thank goodness I had gone over my preferences several times beforehand and I had confidence to stand my ground, would have regretted it later on if I had not!)

We called our pastor and close friend, and he prayed a powerful prayer over us and our new baby. Clayton, you are such a blessing from God and ordained to do great things for Him. Christa massaged my neck in between contractions and gave me a light tap to relax whatever part of me needed it at the time during contractions, jaw, shoulders, hands, such a huge help. We also did a side lying release through several contractions which I believe helped me continue to progress. A couple hours later a nurse came in and told my nurse to check me and start “PIT” which we knew meant Pitocin, the Dr. trying to hurry me along once again. Thankfully, I was at a 7 and my water broke during the cervical check. Added a heart monitor on the baby’s head for better readings. I’m thankful we had a great L&D nurse for working with me each step of the way and that I was staying active even with continuous fetal monitoring.


We're ready to push

I sat and somewhat bounced on the yoga ball and sure enough we’re at a 10! I had slight pressure focused near my rear end so hey... we’re ready to push!

Things certainly got interesting from here, the intensity ramped up and I got into the hang of pushing properly. During pushing my mom was supporting one leg and encouraging me through the toughest part and my husband was supporting the other, continuing his encouragement and reminders to breathe properly, as he had since the first few contractions of the day.


But baby boy wasn’t enjoying the contractions... heart rate decelerations and just plain not going down the canal! After trying different positions, pushing on my hands and knees and side, we determined we needed to get you out of there via cesarean.

The urge to push is primal at this point so to say the next 20 mins was rough is the understatement of the year. I sounded like a wild animal, sorry to scare the other ladies down the hall (and hubby!)

The only way I got through sitting up and sitting still for the spinal tap was the Lord God. As soon as it was administered I knew that was the end of the worst of it.


The doctor started before Daddy was in the OR so daddy got an eyeful but he made it up to my head while the Dr. wrestled you out and held you up above the sheet!


Beautiful Baby Boy