Happy Anniversary to my Beloved


Three years ago today was one of the best days of my life. After 30 years of praying, I finally got to marry Mr. Right. And thus began the next chapter of our adventure together.


Marriage is the hardest, most wonderful, most humbling, thing I’ve ever done. To have someone know all those things I spent my whole life trying to keep a secret from the world, and even with a front-row seat to all my flaws… he still chooses me. He tells me repeatedly that his goal is to help me to thrive.


We have laughed and cried together. We’ve seen each other through lengthy illnesses (me), three broken bones (him), two major job changes, countless house projects, a difficult pregnancy and now the early days of parenthood. We’ve also had some of the most wonderful adventures, had deep discussions during road trips and late night talks under the covers.


I always knew Mr. Right would make an incredible father, and after getting to watch him in action for the past six months, it makes me realize I am even more blessed than I could have imagined. I knew on that cold January day, three years ago, as I walked down that aisle and saw the man I would marry, that I loved him.

But really, I had no idea just how much.
189511_10150109187471120_6609560_nMr. Right, here’s to three wonderful years, and hopefully 75 more.

Has she disappeared?


Y’all, I don’t think I’ve ever neglected my little blog for this long before. It is so precious to me, chronicling the stories of my life for me to go back and enjoy later. I’ve been doing it for almost eight years now (since way before blogging was cool) and there are few things more precious to me than this little corner of the world.

But one of the great lies of our age is that as women, we can be good at everything. The perfect mother who never gets overwhelmed from the crying (oh, the crying!), or fears her baby’s first fever or every once in awhile thinks that if she doesn’t just get ONE uninterrupted night of sleep she might lose her mind forever. The perfect homemaker, who bakes everything from scratch and has a hand-made wreath on her door and a gorgeous table setting in her dining room. A woman who entertains regularly in her frilly apron and pearls, who never gets frazzled or tired or stressed. Whose baseboards have never seen dust and whose drawers have never seen clutter. Oh, and throw in being an employee who beautifully balances everything while wearing the newest (thrifted) Pinterest-inspired outfit (with a scarf – there is always a scarf) and has nary a drop of spit up anywhere on her person. And, of course, she is a perfect wife who is always patient with her husband, looks just as polished when he comes home from work as when he left, who cooks him dinner every night using the groceries she bought with coupons and keeps his closet continuously stocked with freshly ironed shirts. And every night they go to bed together on freshly ironed sheets and dream of the adventures that tomorrow will bring.

presentY’all, that ain’t me. I ironed my sheets once after we got married and then realized that it was a colossal waste of my time considering after one night they were a rumpled mess. Now I’m just happy if they’re clean. And I used coupons once, but then lost interest and now have a drawer full of ones that expired in 2011. And sometimes I have a Pinterest-inspired outfit, but honestly they never do look quite the same as they do on the 5’10” 110 pound fashion blogger. I made a wreath once, two years ago, and that same wreath still hangs on my front door, faded and covered in dust and looking a bit ready to retire. And at any given moment there is very high likelihood that there is both spit-up in my hair and on my clothes. Oh, and the last time we entertained guests, well, we ordered pizza.

Being able to do it all, to have it all, TO BE ALL, that’s a myth. And that’s the main reason why I have neglected this blog. Because at this very moment in my life, in this season, my priorities are being a mama, being a wife, and being a good employee. That’s all I can handle right now. There have been many evenings where I intended to write something, but there was a baby to snuggle, and then feed and put to bed, and then a husband to snuggle, and then let’s face it, it’s time for bed because we’re both sleep deprived and an early bedtime is one of the most necessary parts of being a parent.

And so the minute I wrap up work each evening, the first thing I do is put the laptop away and shift my focus to my family. It’s what I’ve got at this very moment, and if I can only do a few things well, then I want to do wife and mama well. There are small pockets of time to craft and bake and entertain and write, but I’m trying so very hard to keep my top priorities my top priorities.

And you want to know a little secret? I am absolutely loving this quieter, slower pace of life. My tendency is to live life as a sprint, and I feel like, much of the time (not all the time, mind you), instead these days I’m sort of meandering through this season of life, and it is so, so refreshing.

So stick with me, friends. I have big plans and blog ideas swimming around in this head of mine (of course I have extra time to think since I’m usually up at least once or twice a night feeding that wide-eyed baby of mine), and hopefully they’ll find their way onto my computer page so that I can continue to make memories for later. Thanks for waiting it out with me. It’s just a season.

A guest post by Mr. Right & a giveaway winner

Y’all, I have a treat for you today – Mr. Right has written his very first guest post! I’m trying to talk him into doing a regular guest spot, so be sure to leave him lot’s of love in the comment section. Now you can see why I love him so much.


Texas Lovely has been asking me for a while to guest write on her blog.

I have to admit that when we first got married, I didn’t quite understand women’s blogging. The blogs that I read (uncrate.com, acontiuouslean.com, blog.imogeneandwillie.com, to name a few) talk about stuff. How it’s made. How cool it is. How much cooler I would be if I would just buy it. Who needs discussion of feelings? Who needs discussions about fears and failures? I just didn’t get it.

Then I realized just how much my wife compares her life to other women. When things are really rocking along, she wants everyone to celebrate the wins in our life. When things are crawling along, she wants sympathy. The obligatory, “that stinks” answer and NOT just a “let me fix it” answer.

Is comparison always bad? Is it always fueling inadequacy? I definitely don’t think so. Over time, reading her blog I have come to understand that she can laugh about the minor defeats, cry about the big losses, but revel in the big wins. Her honesty is a chance for me to see her view. It’s a chance for me, as a reader and her husband, to say “that’s great!” Or “that stinks.”

It’s a chance to see into her life and say, I am normal. If life is great, I’m normal. If life is hard, I’m normal. A chance to see behind closed doors and church facades. A chance to not compare but to take joy in the phrase, when one part suffers we all suffer, when one part rejoices we all rejoice.

When Bethe and I got married I asked her a simple question, “What is one thing that you want to do before you die?” It took her a while but she finally replied, “Write a book.” I want to see her live that out, and this blog is a huge part of that.

Thanks for celebrating with our family. Thanks for laughing at us and crying with us. Thanks for helping me fuel my wife’s passions.

Thanks for doing life with us.


Well, friends, please excuse me while I sop up some tears. I married such an incredible man!
On a less sappy note… I’m happy to announce the winner of the $25 gift certificate to The Paisley Heart!


Sarah – I’ll send you the info on how to redeem your gift card. In the meantime, my reader friends, I have good news – we had such a good response that Brooke has offered to do a SECOND give-away next week! This time it will be on my Texas Lovely Facebook page (facebook.com/texaslovelyshop) – go follow it so you can get all the details. And, don’t forget to use your 10% discount code TexasLovely at thepaisleyheart.com. 

Back at work… And the winner is…


Reflections on my first week back at work…

1. I miss my baby girl. That goes without saying. However, I survived my first week away from her. We both made it, and each day it got a little easier. I mean, sort of.

2. Man alive, packing for a newborn and a nursing mom each morning is like packing to go to Europe. I’ve got a check list for both of us, and I think between the two of us, there are at least five bags a day, plus a bouncy seat and car seat that travels with her. Each day has gotten easier – the first night it took me an hour to pack, and now it takes us about 10 minutes.

3. Pumping at work is a bit of an adventure. It’s like having one of those “if they only knew what was going on behind this closed door” moments. Frankly, it’s strange. But I’ve started to get my system down… thanks to a hands-free pump I don’t miss a beat with work, other than a very elaborate set up-tear down if you know what I mean. The strangest place I’ve had to pump so far was in a patient room in the ER after an event.

4. Speaking of pumping (man, this is turning into a women’s only blog, huh?), I’ve been trying to go to the gym on my way home from work (Mr. Right picks up Wrenn so I have a window of time before they get home), but it’s been blazing hot in Texas and I’ve been afraid to leave that precious milk in my car, even if it is in a cooler. And so, every night I carry my little cooler with me into the gym and leave it next to whatever machine I’m doing cardio on. Again, it’s one of those “if they only knew what was in this bag” moments.


I guess motherhood is full of secret “if they only knew” moments. Like, “If they only knew there’s dried spit-up on this shirt” or “If they only knew that I was covered in poop 30 minutes ago” or “If they only knew that I haven’t washed my hair in three days” or “If they only knew I’ve been awake since 3:30 this morning.” On second thought… I bet they do know. Whoever they is.

5. I really missed my coworkers. It was so fun to get to see them after 10 weeks. I work with some really great people.


6. I had 4,500 emails waiting for me when I returned. A week later and I’m down to just 2,000. In my defense, I didn’t have access to emails the first two days I was back, so technically I’ve plowed through 2,500 in just four days. I’m a machine.

7. Mr. Right called me Friday afternoon to tell me that he had bought me a 90-minute deep tissue massage for that evening. Like seriously, he’s the best husband ever. What a perfect way to end your first “week” (as in, two days) back at work.

8. While I was getting my massage, my masseuse told me, “I wish there were more people like your husband in this world. I agree, Ms. Masseuse. I agree. He’s obviously a client of hers too – he’s actually won over everyone who works there. I’m a proud wife.

9. I’m thankful for family who have watched Baby Girl while I worked. My sister, my mother-in-law, and Mr. Right have each take turns keeping her. And they send me pictures like this, which make it easier to make it through the day… (Wrenn with her cousin, who adores her. And do you recognize the quilt I made him? That vintage reproduction fabric is some of my favorite I’ve ever worked with.)


For the record: cute babies + my quilts = me very, very happy.

9. Yeah… not sleeping so much. Wrenn had a growth spurt that coincided with my first two days back and woke up several times during the night, and then this week I’ve had two mornings where I woke up at 3:30 and 4:00 a.m. and never went back to sleep. That makes for a long day. As I wrote on Facebook the other day, I’m making it thanks to a little bit of coffee and a lot of denial. I can’t complain when she only wakes up once a night, I just need to learn how to go back to sleep even when I only have 45 minutes before my alarm goes off for the day.

10. The best feeling in the whole world is when I wake Wrenn up in the morning, and she looks up at me with this big smile, like she’s saying “Oh hi mama – I’m so glad to see you!” I get the same smile when I see her after work. Oh my goodness, how it makes me melt.


One week down and we’ve all survived. I think we’re going to make it.

By the way – thanks to everyone who left the sweet comments on my last post. I realize I’m not the first – or last – girl to be a working mama, and it helps to have friends who have walked that road before me, and stay-at-home friends who have offered to fill in whenever we get in a bind. I am truly a very blessed girl – thank you.

I’m so excited to announce the winner of the Be Still print give-away.

be still - winner

Congrats Kelly! Email me at bethe@texaslovely.com with your address and I’ll drop your print in the mail. For anyone else who wants their own copy, it’s available in my shop as an instant download here. That means you could have it in your hands TONIGHT. What a great reminder to all of us to “Be still and know that I am God. I will be exalted among all the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” Psalm 46:10

PS–I’m very VERY close to getting my 30,000th hit THIS YEAR on the blog. When that happens, expect another give-away. Tell your friends and maybe it will happen even sooner!

The Latest, The End of Maternity Leave, & A Give-Away


Sometimes I worry that all folks pull from this blog is that motherhood is hard, that baby has colic, that life is hectic, and I’m overwhelmed.

But our life is so much more than that. And let me tell you, Month Two with my baby girl has been So. Much. Fun. It’s like we woke up around Week 5 and everybody understood each other (I think the fact that we also started sleeping more has a lot to do with it). We have found a routine. She smiles and coos and is so cute I can barely stand it. She only wakes up once a night (PRAISE THE LORD, HALLELUJAH). And we’ve found some ways to help soothe the colicky spells – not totally eliminate them, but GREATLY reduce their frequency and duration.

But more about little Wrenn in her Two Month post, which will be soon. This post is just a hodge podge of what we’ve been up to.


I’m back at the gym and loving it. Because my pregnancy was so darn difficult I hadn’t worked out a bit in 10 months, which meant that those first few workouts were humbling. Like, the first time I tried to do crunches and push-ups I could barely do five (those poor stomach muscles had been stretched to the max). But it’s amazing how quickly your body gets strong – each day I feel more and more like my old self.

I’ve never been one to love working out, but now going to the gym has become my “me time” and something I actually enjoy. I still haven’t figured out how I’m going to fit it in after I return to work, but we’ll take it one week at a time.


In addition to working out, I’m also trying to eat healthier to drop the last 15 pounds of baby weight that I’m still holding onto. Mr. Right, his parents and I are doing the My Fitness Pal app on our phones, which tracks your fitness and food intake. I’m a fan because I get an extra 500 calories a day from nursing – which certainly helps when I feel like a little splurge.


We took another roadtrip last week, this time to Midland to celebrate our niece and nephew’s birthdays (she’s four, he’s one). This time we felt like pros, knowing what to pack (and packing lighter), and Wrenn did great in the car. The only bad part was when she puked ALL OVER me (dripped down my shirt and gathered into a pool in my pocket) and Mr. Right was gone with the car and hotel key and I had to wear my vomit-soaked clothes for three hours. Yep, rookie mom mistake. I’m learning.


Mr. Right and I have managed to have several fun date nights without Wrenn. As much as I love my baby, let’s face it – mama loves her date nights. I think Mr. Right kind of enjoys them too! Now that they’re less frequent, they seem to be “bigger” – we’ve done dinner at Reata (my fave) and Texas de Brazil (his favorite), as well as a night at a movie tavern (I think dinner WHILE watching a movie was invented for nursing moms who live in three-hour chunks of time).


Speaking of nursing… (boys close your ears)… I’m now taking a few supplements because Little Miss has suddenly become a VERY good eater and frankly I’m having trouble keeping up. One of my vitamins makes you smell like maple syrup. All. The. Time. It’s like the International House of Pancakes over here in our home. But I guess there are worse things to smell like then my favorite kind of breakfast. (If you’re wondering, I’m taking Fenugreek and Mother’s Milk tea, along with chugging gallons of water.)


I’m headed back to work tomorrow. I’m a little sad to leave Wrenn (a lot sad, actually), but also excited to see my work friends. I’m not really sure how the morning routine is going to go, and I’m pretty sure it’ll take me an hour to pack both of our bags tonight, but we’ll figure it out. I know it will get easier… but in the meantime you won’t waste a prayer on me this week. I’m determined not to cry!

be still

In honor of another transition, I’m holding a give-away for a free “Be Still” print in my shop. All you have to do is leave a comment on this post – it can be encouragement about going back to work, a motherhood tip, or just a random “hi” – whatever it is, just leave it and I’ll hold a drawing on Sunday.

PS–Mr. Right has added a few of his own creations to the shop – leather goods! Go check it out – I’ve used one like this one for almost two years now and LOVE it.


Other places you can find Texas Lovely:
On Facebook: www.facebook.com/texaslovelyshop
On Instagram: texas_lovely
On Etsy

I think she looks like…

In case there is any doubt who this baby girl looks like… see for yourself.

Mommy… (man, I was a chunky monkey!)

Bethe baby - compare

Or daddy…
Will baby-compare

Yep… she is definitely her daddy’s child. Luckily I’ve always been a sucker for his big brown eyes and am really excited that Wrenn’s going to have them too.

Our weekend get-away


I’m a bit of a gypsy at heart–I have a NEED to travel and explore and get away from my everyday responsibilities. But a difficult pregnancy meant that the only place we travelled in the past 10 months was a 2-day anniversary get-away (where I was still mildly nauseous). So we were due for a trip, I was off work with maternity leave, and we weren’t going to let a little challenge like traveling with a newborn stop us.

We came THIS CLOSE to booking a few plane tickets to go on a BIG adventure but then we realized that was insane, taking a big trip with a newborn. We came to our senses and came up with Plan B, a trip within driving distance with no agenda.


Y’all, packing for a 5-week-old is HARD!! Thank goodness for a strong husband and a big car. And car adapters for breast pumps.

Mr. Wright, Wrenn, Harley the Wonder Schnoodle and I loaded up and drove 800 miles round-trip to a relative’s lake house on Grand Lake in Northeastern Oklahoma. We split up the drive by staying with our grandmother outside Oklahoma City one night on the way up and back, and while there got to show off this precious baby to all of Mr. Right’s relatives.

I had a very simple to-do list for my lake get-away:


1. Drink my morning coffee on the patio overlooking the lake.
2. Go on a long walk.

I did both, and not a whole lot else. The weather was a perfect 70 degrees most of the time, and we laid out by the pool, cuddled with Wrenn, ate leisurely dinners, went to bed early, and relaxed. I was able to clear my head, come up with some new goals (like start cooking healthy again), and break out of my new mommy fog for a bit.


I came home feeling more like “me” than I have since I got pregnant. In the 24 hours since  I’ve been home I have cooked a healthy dinner, organized my home office, sewn, and taken a bubble bath.

I’m back, my friends. I’m back.


Don’t forget about my  “Fearfully & Wonderfully Made” print on sale – it’s an instant download, which means you can print it yourself – no shipping charges. Sale price is just $5. It makes for a wonderful baby gift.

Wrenn’s Birth Story: Party Three

In case you missed it, here is part one and part two of Wrenn’s birth story.


After Wrenn was born, Mr. Right and I spent about an hour with her, just the three of us. She breastfed a little, but mostly we just loved on her and savored those first few moments as a family of three. Then we welcomed back all of our family members, who had waited so patiently all day (the entire labor was 11.5 hours from the time my water broke until the time she was born), to meet our precious little girl.

Once they left, it was still several hours before I was recovered enough to move to a postpartum room. Moving me from one bed to the other was by far the most painful part of the entire childbirth process – so painful that I couldn’t sit down in a wheelchair, so they had to move me on a “people mover” – basically a dolly – and roll me down the hallway, half standing, half sitting, wrapped in a blanket at 3:30 in the morning.

Let’s just say that it wasn’t my finest moment.

I only got an hour of sleep that night because my body was still so wired from the day’s events. The next day we had visitors from around 8:00 in the morning until 10:00 that night. It was a wonderful, exhausting blur – such a joy to introduce our precious daughter to our closest friends and family (and coworkers… lot’s of coworkers since I delivered at the same place I work). I was still in a good amount of pain, but I was also able to take a shower and do my hair, which made me feel so much better.



The second night in the hospital was much harder. Miss Wrenn decided she was no longer interested in feeding, so Mr. Right and I spent half the night trying unsuccessfully to get her to latch and eat – a two person job that left us with almost no sleep.

This is the part where I should tell you that on Wednesday, while I was in labor, we found out that Mr. Right had a fractured pelvis. It was from last month’s bicycle accident – his pain had gotten worse and worse over the past few days, and he had gotten an MRI that morning (thinking I would be induced the next day), and the results came in half-way through my labor. He was in major pain but gallantly pushed ahead with the help of some strong pain medicine his doctor called in for him.


However, during a 2:00 a.m. feeding, he took one of those pain pills on an empty stomach. By 6:00, he was violently ill, so much so that I had to send him home to get some food in his system and sleep it off. I called my mom and asked her to come up to the hospital to help me while Mr. Right suffered alone at home. My heart broke for him.

He was sick ALL DAY LONG. Around noon we started to wonder if instead of a bad reaction to his medicine, maybe he had picked up a virus or food poisoning. Here we had a two-day-old newborn, we were scheduled to be discharged from the hospital, and I possibly had a contagious husband at home. We started thinking about Plan B, and Plan C… would he go stay with his parents? Would I take Wrenn to my parents? Could we coexist at home without exposing baby girl to germs?

I broke down and cried. This was NOT how I planned things. I so wanted to go home to my house, with my husband to help me. I’m sure the hormones and the fact that I hadn’t slept in two days didn’t help.

I’m so thankful for Wrenn’s pediatrician. I explained everything to him at her discharge visit and he told us that even if Mr. Right had a stomach virus, he wouldn’t spread it to her unless he kissed on her. He said it would be fine to go home and have him there with us. My sister offered to spend the night and help care for her so that we could both get some much-needed sleep between feedings. Mr. Right was finally okay enough to pick us up at the hospital and drive us home around 5:00 that evening.




This is where I should mention how thankful I am for my mom and my sister who so kindly helped us out during this unexpected mini-crisis. My family, along with Mr. Right’s family, helped us so much during those first few days so that both of us could get some rest – something I just couldn’t get enough of.


Poor Mr. Right couldn’t hold his brand-new baby that entire day. We decided it was just too risky, so he waited until Saturday morning, 24 hours after his symptoms had arrived, to get to cuddle that sweet baby of ours. He spent the entire morning with her sleeping on his chest, soaking her up. It was the sweetest thing to watch – he is such a loving daddy.




The past three weeks have since been a blur of around-the-clock feedings, sleepless nights, visits from friends and family, and trying to find a rhythm to this new life of ours. I will admit that I have cried almost every single day (I hear it’s the hormones – I’ll be so glad when they level off again), but I have also felt such overwhelming moments of joy. After the first week we started venturing out – we had our first family date night, I took her out by myself for the first time, I ventured out for some “me time” without her for the first time. Each “first” brought satisfaction that this is our new normal as a family of three… that we can do this parenthood thing, even though at times it’s a bit messy (like when she screamed… and screamed, and SCREAMED at the store last week).



And through it all, I am more in love with Mr. Right than I ever knew was possible. Watching him take care of both of us… taking shifts so that I could sleep, encouraging me to get out of the house alone so I could have a break, calling the lactation consultant when I became discouraged. And watching him love on his first daughter and seeing him as a dad for the first time is the sweetest sight for these tired eyes of mine.


We are so in love with that beautiful baby girl of ours. I don’t know what we ever did without her.

Wrenn’s Birth Story: Part Two

For part one of Wrenn’s birth story, see this post.

A few hours after I got my epidural, Mr. Right, my parents, and sister were hanging out in my room, we were enjoying a good conversation, when all of a sudden my pain level spiked. I buzzed the nurse to tell her I needed a “boost” on my epidural, and when she came in she said she’d go ahead and check me to see how dilated I was. The last time she had checked me I was around a 6.

We ushered my family out of the room, and in that short amount of time I started to shake all over from pain. It was my first time all day to be in extreme pain, and I became desperate for the anesthesiologist to come back and make it better. The nurse checked me, and her voice nervously shook as she said, “Well, looks like you’re an 8… or a 9. We’re going to go call the doctor and get everything ready… things are moving VERY quickly.”


The hour or so after that was the worst part of the whole day. I started shaking from what I found out was a combination of pain and adrenaline. I was in the famous “transition” stage, where your body is almost ready to deliver, and as several people have put it, things get “real.” The anesthesiologist quickly came and boosted my epidural and eventually my shaking started to subside. My doctor quickly appeared and told me that she was going to let me lie there and rest for about 30 minutes in order to save some energy for pushing.   She turned out the lights and left Mr. Right and me alone to wait.

That was the hardest part of the day – my belly hurt, my lower back hurt, and the shakes came and went. I got relief from having Mr. Right rub on my belly and wipe my forehead with a wet washcloth, and I got really nervous about what I thought would be several hours of pushing. In the midst of worry, I was also overcome with thankfulness that my labor had progressed exactly as it was supposed to and that I was going to avoid having a C-section. I asked Mr. Right to pray for me, and cried and tried to gear up all my bravery to tackle the biggest part of the day.

After about 30 minutes, the doctor and a few nurses came back and set up equipment in the room for the delivery and for the baby. Everything seemed to happen quickly, and all of a sudden my doctor was talking to me, coaching me on how she wanted me to push.

She asked me if I wanted a mirror to watch everything. Now, I may have worked at a hospital for ten years, but I am absolutely terrified of blood. I knew if I saw any I would lose my nerve. I told her no, and she and the nurse kept encouraging me to get the mirror anyway. That’s when my husband, in his infinite wisdom, finally said, “Trust me, she does NOT need the mirror.” It was those little moments when he took control that made me love him so much more, and made me thankful that I had an advocate and partner who knew me well. (And let’s face it, after watching me deliver a baby – from the foot of the bed – he REALLY knows me well now.)

My doctor asked for a trial push through a contraction, and I pushed as hard as I could. My epidural was so strong I couldn’t feel a pushing sensation at all – I just pushed the way I knew in my head I was supposed to, and other than feeling like my face might explode, I couldn’t feel anything. Amazingly, I felt absolutely NO pain.

Apparently I’m a really good pusher (add that to the resume). Two more rounds of pushing and just a few minutes later, and Wrenn Olivia was here. It took less than 10 minutes and suddenly I was watching them pull her out of me, I could hear her cries, and I watched them suction fluid out of her little stomach, quickly wipe her off, and then she was lying on my chest, cradled in my arms.



I started crying the moment I saw her, and didn’t stop for a long time. I cried so hard that both Mr. Right and my doctor asked if I was crying from pain, but it wasn’t pain at all – it was just the biggest wave of emotion that I have ever felt in my life. My baby girl was here, and I was her mother, and I had delivered her. I did it. We did it. It was the most overwhelming, wonderful feeling.

(I’m crying now as I type it… reliving that moment all over again).

labor 3


My baby girl was absolutely perfect… 7 pounds, 2 ounces, about 19 inches long (we’re not completely sure because five days later my doctor measured her as 20.75 inches long), born at 10:04 p.m. My doctor later told me, after everything calmed down, that Wrenn had come out with the umbilical cord wrapped tightly around her neck… twice. Everybody else had known (including Mr. Right), but because I had warned them before the delivery that I wanted to be on a “need to know basis,” they wisely didn’t say a word until everything was okay. I think it was all God’s doing that she came so quickly, because it meant that the cord did no damage to her. It’s just another example of God’s protection and grace during this pregnancy.

The rest of the story, which includes a very sick husband and a major change of plans, to come soon…

Wrenn’s Birth Story: Part One

It was Wednesday morning, July 10. We were scheduled to be admitted for induction that evening at 7:00. I’d been on bed rest for high blood pressure for a week, and finally decided it was time to get off my couch, do some last-minute things around the house, and make sure everything was packed and ready to go before we left for the hospital.

The night before I had suffered a bit of a pregnancy meltdown. I was so tired of being stuck at home on bed rest – I was lonely, extremely uncomfortable, and also terrified of the induction. I cried frustrated tears to Mr. Right, then went and took a bath and sobbed and sobbed until I couldn’t cry any longer. He came in and asked me what I was worried about – I realized it was stupid to be both so READY to not be pregnant anymore but also so TERRIFIED of the childbirth that was required to get her here.

The crying wore me out, I popped an Ambien and slept for ten glorious hours. Wednesday morning Mr. Right cooked me a big breakfast, then left me to get some work done and run last-minute errands before baby got here.

So back to the chores – after putting away all the laundry and finishing my bag, I started feeling really sick… and hot. I climbed onto my bed to rest, thinking I had overdone it. A few minutes later… woosh – my water broke. As soon as I felt the sensation, I jumped off the bed, and water spilled on the carpet. Thankfully none got on our bed.

I high-tailed it to the bathroom (as quickly as a giant pregnant girl can run), and climbed into our bathtub as my water continued to flow out. I called Mr. Right and told him, “My water just broke,” and he was so shocked all he could muster was, “I’m on my way home,” and hung up before we could talk anymore. As I stood there, I wondered if all of a sudden giant contractions would hit me like a freight train… but they didn’t. I had been having contractions for ten days, and I didn’t feel anything stronger than I’d been feeling all along.

I was still standing in the bathtub when he got home, afraid to leak all over our house. When he got home I finally got the nerve to climb out, get dressed, grab some last-minute items and head for the car. I wore a horrendous giant black t-shirt and work out shorts with flip-flops for the trip to the hospital and fretted that I hadn’t had time to take a shower that morning (I was hoping to have my hair done for labor – so vain).

We drove to the hospital, both of us in total shock that I was actually in labor on my own, after waiting for what seemed like an eternity for the moment to arrive. We got settled into a room and hooked up to machines. There was meconium in my water when it broke, so the nurse hooked me up to a machine that would flush out all of the dirty water and clean it so that when Wrenn was born, she wouldn’t inhale it and get it in her lungs. They had trouble hearing her heartbeat, so in went the internal monitors to better hear her heartbeat, as well as measure the intensity of my contractions. I got an IV and they started pumping me full of fluids, and we waited for the contractions to ramp up.


Once we got settled, Mr. Right handed me a small, square box from Neiman’s. A push present – a gorgeous, sparkly cocktail ring. He told me he wanted me to have it before things got intense, before I was on any drugs, and before I had that gorgeous baby to gaze at. Throughout the day, as things got harder, he would distract me with admiring that gorgeous ring, and I wore it on my swollen finger the rest of the hospital stay.

labor 1

The contractions started to ramp up. Stronger and stronger, but not strong enough or fast enough, so after a few hours, they added some pitocin. And that’s when the contractions got REALLY strong. Even the nurse, whom we just loved, told me that my contractions were pretty intense and offered to give me some pain medicine until it was time for the epidural. I wanted to be tough – I could totally handle the pain, even though it was uncomfortable. And that’s when Mr. Right stepped in.

My wonderful husband, who knows me sometimes better than I know myself, looked me in the eye and told me to get the drugs. He told me that I wouldn’t get a medal for being a hero. That I needed to conserve my energy for a long day ahead. And, he knew that the drugs, which the nurse said would have a calming effect, would keep me – the queen of anxiety – from getting too worked up. He looked at me the way only a husband can do, and told me, “You need to do this.”

I’m so glad I listened to him.

I got the drugs, and it was the best thing I did all day. It gave me an opportunity to rest for a few hours before it was time for the epidural. It took the edge off of the pain (I could still feel the pressure from the contractions, but not that sharp pain that had been with them), and felt well enough to let family members take turns coming back and hanging out with us for a few hours.


I came into the hospital dilated to a 3, but there was a lot of effacing that had to be done before I could progress to a 4. What seemed like half a day later, I finally made it to a 4… the contractions were even more intense, and it was time to get my epidural.

The epidural wasn’t bad at all. The anticipation of the epidural? Now THAT was bad. It was about as painful as a steroid shot in the hiney, but sitting on the side of the bed, with intense contractions, waiting for the doctor to stick me in the spine with a giant needle was terrifying. It was one of the many moments that came during the day where I got really nervous, but I knew I didn’t have a choice, so I would just have to do it. Next time I have a baby I won’t be nervous at all – it was a non-issue.

It took a little while to get the epidural calibrated correctly to take care of the pain. It never totally masked the pain like I had hoped, but it was definitely better than nothing. The weirdest part was not being able to feel my legs. After the epidural, I continued to hang out with Mr. Right and various family members as we waited for the big moment to arrive. It was turning into be a pretty enjoyable day.

A few hours passed… and that’s when things got REAL. More on that next time…