That he would know once we were long gone, that we took such care in choosing his name and that we loved him so much from the moment we found out we were pregnant - in the parking lot of Mullens Cheese Factory in Wisconsin.
Maverick - meaning “independent,” Maverick is distinct in sound and bursting with spirit, the perfect name for a lively little one. He’s as feisty as his name suggests, always looking for some new feat to overcome whether it’s venturing through the woods or soaring on the swingset.
David - meaning "beloved"
If you have spoken to me at all over the last 10 months you would know I had a miserable and painful pregnancy and I was counting down the days to his arrival since I was 8 weeks pregnant. I was SO not one of those pregnant ladies who loved the whole process. At 38 weeks and 4 days Jake and I went to the hospital to get checked out because I didn't feel quite right. I ended up being admitted into the hospital Wednesday night, May 19th and the journey of bringing our son into the world began.
It started by being induced because little Maverick's heart rate was dipping a little bit when I would have a contraction. Our doctor wasn't sure why, so she wanted to play it safe and have him arrive earlier than his due date since he was mildly distressed. I was given pitocin for a couple hours and then they broke my water. I went from a pain level of 4 to 15, out of 10, in all of 10 minutes. I really had hoped to be able to deliver him vaginally because I wanted him to have the best possible start to life and they say the process of a baby going through the birth canal has so many positive benefits. Not only did I want to deliver him vaginally, I also wanted to do it without any drugs. I have a pretty high pain tolerance so I figured there was a darn good chance I could make that happen. Also, I have so many allergies I was concerned he or we would have a negative reaction to the drugs.
Well, after my doctor broke my water and I went through 3 incredibly painful contractions in the span of 5 minutes, and I would still have HOURS of laboring and the pain would only get worse, I knew there was absolutely no way I could deliver this baby without drugs. My nurse told me before everything started that if I wanted an epidural I would have to wait 1.5 hours before the anesthesiologist would arrive, so to let her know what I wanted as soon as I decided. I was SO crushed after that 3rd contraction when I knew I couldn't do it naturally. I felt like such a failure and prayed our baby wouldn't have some sort of negative reaction to the epidural, that I wouldn't have any long term effects from it, AND that it would actually work for me (I haven't had good luck with pain meds in the past). There were a few contractions that were so strong I thought to myself, "So, this is how someone could go crazy from pain." It was such a defeating moment when I told Jake that I couldn't do this how we planned. He was so supportive and the nurses and our doctor were as well. There was no judgment from any of them. Just support and kindness.
The next hour and a half was excruciating as I waited for the anesthesiologist and I was so thrilled to see him when he arrived. He did such a great job and I have no residual pain or anything from it. Once that kicked in and I could calm down and let my body do its job to get our boy out, I actually dilated to 8cm fairly quickly. Maverick didn't respond well to the pitocin so they actually had turned it off. But I came to a stand still at 8cm. Maverick wasn't doing great with the pitocin but he needed to come out and they were trying to figure out solutions to get him out vaginally.
Our doctor decided to put fluid back into my uterus to provide some cushion for Maverick in hopes that they could start the pitocin again to get me dilated to 10cm. That did work and after a few hours they were ready for me to push. I tried pushing our little guy out for 2 hours but he just wasn't making any progress AND his heart rate was still fluctuating every time I pushed. Our doctor made the final decision that we needed an emergency c-section to get our boy out BEFORE anything happens to him. Jake and I were ready as our doctor and nurses had been doing such a great job of keeping us in the loop of what would be happening and what could happen if what they were trying didn't work. Our wishes had been to do everything as natural as possible with the last resort being a c-section. And to our doctors credit she really listened to our wishes and tried her best to have those come to fruition. Unfortunately, that just wasn't in the cards for us.
After our doctor told us I would be having a c-section, they gave us the run down of what would happen and thank God Jake was able to be with us during the surgery. At that point I had been in labor and trying to deliver Maverick for 21 hours. I was exhausted both physically and mentally and had nothing left to give. My deepest desire was to have our baby boy arrive alive and healthy and for me to make it through as well. They wheeled us into the operating room and moved me onto the operating table, put up all the curtains and covers and tied my hands down. I couldn't feel any pain from my chest down but I did feel pressure and could feel them doing stuff down there. Even if I had the choice, I wouldn't have wanted to know what they were doing because I had all I could do to breathe while on that operating table. I was SO swollen and pumped full of fluid I was really struggling to just be.
I was focusing on my breathing and heard them call Jake over as he was at my head talking with me. Once Jake stepped to the NICU doctor/nurses and I heard our son cry for the first time I cried tears of joy because Maverick was alive. He made it! Our strong boy, our little fighter! He ended up having the umbilical cord wrapped around his neck, body and foot. By being delivered via c-section he never had any lost oxygen or issues from blood flow being cut off.
Jake brought Maverick over to show me him and asked if I wanted to hold him. I cried and told Jake I couldn't because I could barely focus enough to breath and I didn't want Maverick to roll off my chest as my hands were tied to the table. But Jake showed him to me and I got to look at the 2 most important people in my life as the doctor's were finishing the procedure. Maverick was born about 15 minutes into an hour long procedure so there was still a lot to do before we were brought to the recovery room.
As the doctor's were putting some of my insides back inside of me and I could feel the pressure of what they were doing and as I started to feel some of the pain because the pain medicine was wearing off, the anesthesiologist was so supportive and really attentive to make sure he was on top of the pain meds. I was warned I could throw up during the procedure because they are moving around your insides but I didn't think much of it until it happened. Puking for a good few minutes while I was at my absolute weakest moments with no feeling in almost my whole body and absolutely no energy was so hard. I had only enough mental capacity left to know that we were alive and that I had to fight to finish this whole journey strong.
When I was brought to my lowest, weakest point it was so extremely humbling. It makes me so thankful for everything I have and for each role every person played to make our delivery have a happy ending.
After I was stitched up and we were all brought into a recovery room I was finally able to SEE Maverick. I was able to hold him and inspect him, give him kisses and see his perfect little body.
The worst parts were over and the recovery process is still on going. Almost 4 weeks out and I am doing so much better. And Maverick is just thriving. I think something we are not told as women is how absolutely hard, painful and all consuming pregnancy and delivery is. I was SO completely unprepared and we HAD prepared as much as we could going in. I think it just goes back to everyone's journey is so different. The first 10 days after delivery were the hardest as I was in so much pain from all the air trapped in my body that was trying to get out, breastfeeding, and the EMOTIONS. Those hormones are not to be messed with. I was a sobbing mess during that time but they were all tears of joy and immense thankfulness because we were all ok.
They have our most heartfelt thanks for everything they did to bring our baby boy into the world safe and sound.
Cheers to a happy, healthy family,
Amy, Jake, Maverick and Pippie
Blog post written by Amy Karras
For the love of travel and new adventures, we live our lives for the next dream fulfilled!