Mama Cindy Maudsley shares the hospital birth story of her third baby on the Honest Birth birth story series! Cindy has struggled with infertility all 12 years of her marriage. After getting pregnant via IVF, Cindy planned on having a VBAC. She was induced at 39 weeks and after a stressful labor process, had a successful vaginal delivery!
Hey mamas! Welcome to the twenty-seventh post in my Honest Birth series! I’m excited to share another real mama’s birth story, because I think it’s so important to share our childbirth experiences with each other. My goal with this series is to provide a place for women to share their birth stories without holding anything back, as well as compile stories for pregnant mamas to read in preparation for their own childbirth experiences. Every mama is different and every birth is different, and I believe that when we share our stories we help each other.
Today I am featuring Cindy Maudsley! Cindy was born and raised in Littleton, Colorado (my hometown, too!) but now calls Bountiful, Utah home. She has been married for 12 years and has three beautiful daughters. She gets to be a stay-at-home mom, which she loves. She is also a Netflix binge watcher and an avid reader. She loves shopping at Target, dark chocolate, volunteering at church and at her daughters’ school, and spending time with family and friends. Surviving the Columbine High School shooting as a teenager, battling infertility as an adult, and knowing she is a daughter of God has helped her to to look for the good in the world and focus on the tender mercies in her life. Her passion is writing and sharing her heart and soul with others at https://infertilitees.com/. You can find her on Instagram at @infertili.tees and @cindymaudsley. Today she’ll be sharing the birth story of her third baby!
Ready to read her daughter’s story? Let’s do it!
The Birth Story of Ivy Maudsley
I gave birth to my third daughter on January 18th , 2019. She was our biggest baby weighing in at 6 lbs. 15 oz. and she came with a head full of thick, beautiful hair.
We named her Ivy and she immediately stole our hearts.
Ivy’s birth was very much anticipated for many reasons. The main one being that we had to wait seven years for her to join her big sisters. Infertility is something my husband, AJ, and I have struggled with our entire 12 year marriage.
I had out first daughter, Lyla, in 2009 after our first successful round of IUI. A little more than two years later we conceived our second daughter, Phoebe, on a third round of IUI. I gave birth to her at 35 weeks via cesarean section due to a condition I had called placenta previa.
Not quite two years after her birth we decided to try for a third baby and we went straight to our fertility doctor- thinking we would again conceive fairly easily through the process of IUI.
However, things didn’t work out according to our “our plan” and we spent the next five years trying to get pregnant.
In those five years I had three minor surgeries to remove uterine polyps from my uterus and we did 16 rounds of IUI. Yes- sixteen! None of them resulted in a positive pregnancy test.
We also did two rounds of IVF in 2015- one with fresh embryos and one with frozen embryos. They both ended in chemical pregnancies.
We took a couple years off from treatment and lived our life as a family of four. It was so good for our souls! We went to Disneyland, we learned to be content in our situation and our hearts healed–but mostly we didn’t live every moment worrying about our next fertility treatment.
In 2018 our hearts were turned toward the idea of doing IVF again. We learned my husband’s insurance through his place of employment now covered a good portion of fertility treatments. With guarded hearts and a lot of faith we moved forward with IVF in April 2018. We were able to create several healthy embryos and chose to implant one.
The day after Mother’s Day we got the news that we were pregnant! We were incredibly excited, humbled, shocked and grateful.
Soon after I was battling intense morning sickness and fatigue that lasted until my 20th week and lingered on for the duration of my pregnancy. I suffered some pretty bad prenatal depression toward the end of my second trimester and into the beginning of my third that became a trial I didn’t anticipate.
I also had the usual aches and pains of pregnancy. I had Braxton Hicks starting at 20 weeks and sharp pains in my groin that made it hard to stand up or sit down for long periods of time. And as hard as it all was, feeling my baby move and cradling my growing belly kept me excited and grateful, and I can say 100% that I would go through it all again to get our sweet little Ivy here.
Throughout my pregnancy at every prenatal appointment I would discuss with my doctor my plan to have a successful VBAC delivery. She was very supportive of that and also very conservative with wanting to make sure we did it carefully. We wanted to avoid the possibility of having a uterine rupture due to my previous c-section.
I would have wanted to be induced at 37 weeks due to my anxiety, but my doctor was very clear that it would be safer to avoid being induced when trying for a VBAC. We both hoped that I would go into labor naturally.
At 38 weeks I was dilated to a 1.5 and my doctor stripped my membranes to try and help things along. Because of that and the fact that I was having so many contractions I was convinced I would go into labor that night.
Nope. Nothing happened.
At my 39 week appointment I was one day away from my due date. My doctor then told us we could go ahead and schedule an induction because I had made it to 40 weeks.
She surprised my husband and I when she told us we could even go in the next night to be induced. She stripped my membranes again in hopes of me going into labor on my own before then, but that didn’t happen.
So the next night we left for the hospital around 9 PM full of excitement and anticipation, and before we knew it, we were checked in, I was in a hospital gown and hooked up to the monitors and receiving my IV.
My doctor didn’t want to start me on Pitocin right away. She inserted what we call “the balloon thingy” that they fill with saline that is supposed to help expand the uterus so the cervix can dilate on its own. It wasn’t too painful- just uncomfortable. Soon the contractions started to get stronger and painful. I knew it was a good sign and hoped that it meant for a quick delivery.
A couple hours later our nurses came in and told us that the baby’s heart rate was continually going down with each contraction. They were concerned about it but wanted to monitor it. I asked why it was happening and was told it could be because the baby was laying on her umbilical cord wrong, it was around her neck or she just didn’t like the side I was laying on. So I was alternating being on my left and right side quite frequently trying to regulate baby’s heart rate.
They then suggested that if I wanted an epidural that I should have it then in case they needed to send me in quickly for a c-section.
The epidural is something I definitely wanted and I just pushed away any anxiety about it because I knew it had to be done. I held my husband’s hand and the anesthesiologist went to work. At one point my husband got super light headed and felt like he was going to pass out just from watching the doctor and not actually seeing the needle in my back. The nurses told us that was pretty common!
After my epidural it was a waiting game. I couldn’t sleep even though it was well into the evening/early morning. Every half hour or so our nurses would come in and update on our baby. My doctor was at her house but had access to the monitors at home and she was also aware of what was going on.
Around 3 AM they took the balloon thing out and that’s when my water broke. I was also dilated to a six at this point–it had done its job and I was in active labor. There was some miscommunication and I was then given Pitocin for a couple hours even though my doctor did not tell them to give it to me. Once she realized it, she made them stop because it was making me have really strong contractions (which we wanted to avoid because of wanting to avoid uterine rupture).
From about midnight to 7 AM the nurses put me in different positions to try and get the heart rate to stop dipping down. They gave me an oxygen mask to wear and that seemed to help a lot.
During those hours I was a nervous wreck worrying about our baby.
During this time I was convinced that I just wanted to do a C-section again. I wanted her out and didn’t want to wait for her heart rate to be in danger. We told the nurses that we were not at all opposed to a C-section and that we would prefer that if we needed to.
Around 7 AM the baby’s heart rate and oxygen were continuing to decrease with every contraction and I was still only around 6 or 7 cm dilated.
They also discovered that although she was head down, she was posterior–meaning she was facing up.
They put a giant peanut shaped Styrofoam pillow between my legs and had me lie on my side for a couple hours. This was supposed to help her turn face down.
By 9:30 AM nothing had changed with her heart rate and I was feeling super scared and nervous and just wanted her in my arms. AJ and I decided that we were going to push for a C-section at this point because we didn’t feel it was worth waiting it out to see if she would improve.
The charge nurse came in shortly after and asked how I was doing. I burst into tears.
I was exhausted and worried. We told her that we just wanted to have a C-section. That we were worried all night about her heart rate continuing to dip and it wasn’t worth it to us to have a VBAC at that point. The nurse was very understanding and told us she would advocate for us to our doctor to get started with a C-section.
But first, she said, she needed to check me to see where I was at.
She then excitedly told us “actually you are having this baby now!” I was at a 10 and the baby had turned face down.
I couldn’t believe that it was actually time and we would be meeting this little miracle that we had waited so long for in just a matter of minutes.
Within ten minutes our doctor was in the room (she even beat all the nurses) and we began to prep for pushing.
There were about four or five nurses surrounding me, one held my left leg and my husband held the other.
Pushing for me is so hard.
I couldn’t catch my breath, my oxygen mask kept getting in my face (looking back we should have just taken it off) and I was so tired. The nurses all cheered me on- telling me how awesome I was doing. And that morale really helped. After about ten pushes in under ten minutes she was almost here!
I was losing steam though. That is until one of the nurses told us her heart rate was not good and I had to get her out right then. And with that motivation, I gave a final push and our sweet baby girl was born.
I couldn’t catch my breath for a minute but as soon as I did I took in the miracle baby girl we had created and prayed for, as they laid her on me. She was screaming but it was the most beautiful sound ever. After waiting for her for so long it was the most incredible feeling to hold her in my arms. Both my husband and I cried tears of joy, happiness and relief.
She was here and she was worth the wait.
Wasn’t that so inspiring? I love Cindy’s story, her faith, and her story! Infertility sucks and it’s so common. It’s important to remember that you’re never alone in your struggle, and there’s always hope! Thanks so much to Cindy for sharing her story on the Honest Birth series! Make sure you follow Cindy on her blog https://infertilitees.com/ and on Instagram at @infertili.tees and @cindymaudsley. And check back next month for another Honest Birth post!