A Birth Story For My Daughter

This labor and birth story from our founder, Anna Runyan, was so beautiful it had us in tears. We hope you enjoy it too! 

As many of you know, my journey to motherhood was a long one. Which is why I have meant to share my daughter’s birth story for a while now. We hoped for a natural, unmedicated birth and spent three months taking Bradley Method classes with Erica in Coronado, CA.  We found the Bradley Method classes were so worth the time and effort to prepare for our daughter’s big arrival.
The biggest message I hope this story shares is that labor and delivery doesn’t have to be scary. It doesn’t have to be something you dread. You can be 100% prepared and at peace with what is going to happen.
Knowledge is power, and I know as working women, getting to childbirth classes is difficult. But how your child enters this world and your first few days with them are life-changing. I look forward to hearing your thoughts and questions in the comments below about our story!

pregnancy photo - birth story for my daughter

Mom woke up at 4 am with contractions, but didn’t wake me up. So, I got up at 6a and mom said maybe contractions had started, but insisted I go to work. Mom was texting me the whole morning keeping me updated, so around 8:30 am she said plan on coming home for lunch. Then, at 9:15 am she said come home immediately!! – Dad
The birth center and midwives were awesome! I checked in and was already 8 cm dilated!  Everyone said we are having a baby this afternoon! I thought AWESOME because “transition” is the hardest part. I was so close and didn’t have an epidural yet! I knew I could handle just a few more hours without. Our dream of a natural unmedicated childbirth was coming true! – Mom
I put on relaxing music while your mom tried to get comfortable. She kept moving and I gave her food and water. The nurses filled up the hot tub and your mom got in at 3 pm. Your mom was doing so great on her own, the nurses didn’t know what to do so they each took a fan and started fanning her, which looked ridiculous. The Doula came in and was calming. – Dad
Finally, she started pushing around 6:45 pm but was still eating, drinking and walking around. Normally once pushing starts the baby is born quickly, so we were all really excited. Mom was pushing really hard and we could see your head (with all that hair!), but you wouldn’t come out!!  The midwife kept saying, “You’re gonna have this baby now! – Dad
Everyone thought that with each contraction I was going to have you out but I just couldn’t push you out.  We finally realized that you were sideways which was making it really difficult to push you out.  Later our doula said she had never even seen a baby born that way before. Luckily, your heart beat was totally normal so they let me keep pushing every 2-4 minutes when I had a contraction. Eventually I started losing strength but I kept pushing as hard as I could. It really helped to have so many people supporting me. Your dad helped by telling me he could see your head and I felt your hair too! – Mom

birth story for my daughter

Mom pushed for so long and was doing so good, but around 9:30 pm our midwife (Christine) said we might need to transfer down to Labor & Delivery (L&D) and do something else to get you out. But you were so close and mom was doing so great that she let mom push a little longer (longer than is technically legal). Around 11 pm, Christine made the call that mom needed to go to L & D.  So, mom had to roll herself on to the stretcher and get wheeled down one floor. As we left the Birth Center on the way to L&D, Grandpa and Grandma Burger were there and we later found out they had been waiting outside the room since noon!
So we all go down in the elevator together and mom is having contractions and pushing the whole time. When we get in to the room the doctor, who was a young woman maybe late 20’s or early 30’s, tells mom to “Show me what you got!” and then they would decide what to do next.  So with the next contraction, mom showed her what she had and pushed like crazy and you know what? At 11:45 pm (after 5 hours of pushing) on June 10th, 2014…you were born! You came out with the front left side of your head first and then your body followed then everyone realized that you were sideways and that’s what took so long for you to be born. – Dad
I pushed one more time REALLY HARD. No idea how but somehow THANK THE LORD your head popped out sideways and then your body slid out. I didn’t believe I was done so I continued to push even when they said you were here. Then they put you on my belly. I was in total shock and couldn’t see your face yet because the umbilical cord was too short. I didn’t have any words until they were trying to get you to cry and I started to talk to you so you could recognize our voices and start crying.
Dad was in shock too. We were both exhausted. Dad cut the umbilical cord and then you could really be in my arms so I could finally see your face. Then I could finally be truly happy and overjoyed. You were so cute in my arms and had so much hair! The placenta came out quickly and dad had to take a look. I got stitched up (ouch!) but the pain wasn’t bad since you were in my arms. You were either right osiput posterior (ROP) (facing mom’s butt) or ROT (facing transverse). They werent sure. In the end, you came out ROT. Basically meaning sideways so the side of your face kept coming out instead of the back of your head. If you didn’t come out at that final contraction, we would have had to probably have a c-section or use a vacuum to get you out.

birth story family photo

Grandma and Grandpa Burger came into see you. Grandpa was just crying and couldn’t say anything. He said, “Beautiful mom and daughter” on his way out and Grandma brought John chocolate covered berries as a present. They didn’t stay long since it was very late but they were SO happy to be grandparents. We also shared your name with them for the first time. – Mom
So they put you on mom and we were so excited to finally meet you. I got to cut the umbilical cord and we just hung out as a family for the first time. Mom and I had been praying for that moment for a long time and you were worth the wait. A little while later Grandpa and Grandma Burger came in to meet you and they were so excited and so proud of your mom. Around 2 am I remember asking if your mom needed anything and she was just so happy with you laying on her chest and you were both wide awake. That’s the last thing I remember because I fell asleep moments later. – Dad
[RELATED: Soon to be a working mom – FAQs]
I stayed up all night with you just watching you sleep and nursing. I was wide awake obsessed with your sweet birth storylittle face. – Mom
Notes from Dad:
When you smile, the world lights up! I could watch you for hours. I can’t wait to go on daddy-daughter dates with you. I am so proud to be your father.
Notes from Mom:
I am overjoyed to be your mom. I can’t wait to watch you grow! I could hold you and watch you sleep all day. I love when you look at me with your beautiful eyes.
Photography by Megan Ann Photography

Hi, I'm Anna!

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