All birth stories are unique. I can’t say I’ve ever listened to a girl friend’s birth story and thought to myself, “well, this is just so typical.” Being an only parent, though, I’ve come to realize that my birth story is a little more unusual than most. Before I had my son, I would’ve loved to read the story of a mom who had been her child’s only parent from Day 1, but I just couldn’t find any stories like that. That’s what prompted me to share our story.

I’ll begin with a little bit of history. You see, mine was not a planned pregnancy. Not even a little bit planned. This was a “holy geez this can’t be happening” kind of pregnancy. As my friends like to joke, I was living an episode of 16 and Pregnant, but at the age of 25. Let’s just say my son has Jack Daniels and a thunderstorm to thank for his existence. Oops.

I guess my birth story officially started when I was about 22 weeks pregnant, and I was first hospitalized for preterm labor. After that, I basically moved out of my house and into the hospital. I was living in College Station at the time, with no local support except from my unborn baby’s father. He was usually present, but once preterm labor began, he was perpetually missing in action. At some point he decided to move back in with his parents near Houston. Yes, Houston. That’s a good 2-hour drive from College Station. It was extremely terrifying knowing that I was alone, and could be having a baby at any moment. A baby that did not have very good odds of surviving. He reassured me time and time again that I wasn’t alone, and that he would help me raise our son. And I convinced myself to believe him.

Eventually, my family and friends talked me into moving back to Austin. It was a very difficult decision for many reasons. Honestly, the main reason was because I’d be two more hours away from my baby’s dad. However, I’d be in the same town as my parents. While it’s usually the husband that is at the woman’s side during extended hospital stays for preterm labor, I had my parents. My dad worked remotely from whatever hospital room I was living in. He knew more about me and my pregnancy than any father should ever have to know about their daughter, but he was absolutely wonderful. So the decision was made, and I moved back to Austin. Technically, I pretty much just moved from The College Station Medical Center to UMC Brackenridge. At least now my dad could easily sleep at his own house if he wanted to.

I was given strict orders to remain horizontal until I was 35 weeks along. After 35 weeks, my son would be far enough along to be cared for at Seton Southwest, which is where I planned to deliver. I used to think that laying around all day was the best thing ever, until I was told it was my only option. I was miserable. I was taking a laundry list of medications to halt labor, and each one had its own awful side effects. Any time I sat up to eat, my uterus would decide to kick into overdrive again. I read a few books, and watched a lot of Jersey Shore.

Finally, it happened. After white-knuckling it to 35 weeks, I was suddenly set free. I felt like Bambi when he first learned to stand. The sunlight was blinding. The fresh air was amazing. I was sent out into the world and told it was safe for me to have my baby. Then, after 13 weeks of labor, my uterus decided to chill out. So I went home, and I waited.

Story of my life: panic and then wait. My kid will never hear the end of it, trust me.

I was given a day pass from the hospital to attend my own baby shower.
About a week before my son was born, I called his father and updated him on where we were in the World of Babyness. This was the phone call when my baby’s father decided to tell me he didn’t want to be in the delivery room when his son was born. Although he was never around for all the preterm labor, he had always maintained that he wanted to be in the room when his son was born. What suddenly made him change his mind? I’ll never know. He did, however, want to be in the waiting room. Man, I sure wished I could be in the waiting room when the show started.

“Just let me know when your water breaks.”

“Uh… that might not be enough time for you to get here before he’s born. It’s a four-hour drive…”

“Well, you’re not officially in labor until your water breaks, and I figure you’ll probably be in labor for, like, a whole day. So that should be plenty of time.”

Yeah. I’ll let that sink in. This is where I remind you that I did not plan this pregnancy. Had I planned it, I promise it would not have been with someone who honestly thought a woman wasn’t technically in labor until her water breaks. Or that twins happen when people “do it” twice in one day. Yes. He thought that, too.

He was cute, ok? Also, Jack Daniels.

I hung up and called my best friend to make sure she’d be willing to come be by my side with my mom when I gave birth. She, being my best friend and basically my sister, was more than willing to oblige. Sweet. I had my dream team.

A week later, it was go time. My contractions made a comeback, and my uterus was not messing around.

First stop: The County Line BBQ to get some ribs. While having contractions every 5 minutes. Next stop: Seton Southwest.

A few text messages to Baby-Daddy yielded the same response as always: “Lemme no when ur water brakes.” You got it, Chief.

A few hours, some high-fives, and an epidural later, my parents and best friend were settled in my room with me. We were told it would be at least lunchtime the next day before the baby came. My poor mom was trying catch a few hours of sleep, but my best friend and I were treating it like an elementary school sleepover. Very little sleep actually happened.

I was finally feeling relaxed when a nurse ran in and announced that the monitors were going crazy. With some assistance, I assumed the position and she checked me.

“Oh wow, you’re at ten.”

“Wait. You mean ten centimeters?! But my water didn’t break…” Oh, the irony.

They broke my water and told me to practice push. “Give it about 50%” she said. So I did. “OH MY GOSH STOP PRACTICE PUSHING RIGHT NOW!!”

In strolls my doctor, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed even though it was closing in on 3:00am.

{By the way, shout out to Dr. Maggie Landwermeyer with Hill Country OB/GYN Associates. I was really skeptical going in to meet her, but she won me over right away. That woman gets me, and she made the transition to a new doctor extremely easy and painless. And “painless” isn’t a word I just throw around, especially when talking about being in labor for 13+ weeks. I highly recommend her for all of your baby catching needs.}

One non-practice push. Then one more. Then baby. That was it. I pushed for a grand total of about 4 minutes. My overactive uterus was finally a positive thing to have.


Needless to say, my son’s father was not in the waiting room. In fact, he was sound asleep at home near Houston. He finally did arrive, several hours after my son was born. He was treated by all the nurses just like any of the other guests that came to visit my son. They knew who he was, but they also knew the decision he had made to not be there. {Oh, another shout out, this time to the L&D and postpartum nurses at Seton Southwest–those ladies handled our awkward situation flawlessly, and I love them for it.} It was about 9:00am when he strolled in, and my son’s father was greeted at the door by one of the nurses. She first asked me if I was feeling well enough to receive a visitor, more specifically the one who was 50% responsible for my current condition. I told her I was, and she escorted him in. Upon leaving us in the room alone with my son, she decided to include a little lesson for my son’s father. “By the way, we had to break her water. About five minutes before that baby came. Just thought you should know.” Sassy. I liked it.

You know, a little biology lesson never hurt anyone. I was glad I got to be the model for this one.





  1. I loved this story. That nurse rocks and your son is beautiful with his full head of hair! I’m a young mom (21) and my boyfriend of 2 1/2 years (not my daughter’s father) has been considered her daddy since I was 4 months pregnant. So I love to read anything about families that are not so average. Thanks for sharing! 🙂

  2. never knew our pregnancy stories were so similar!! minus the hospitalization part ….I guess I lucked out there. my baby daddy checked out as soon as I said I was pregnant but I think that made it easier in a lot of ways. I knew not to have any expectations.

  3. I had a dramatically similar birth story with my first. Her dad was/is slightly more supportive, but I would not call him involved. My precious girl has multiple special needs and gave my life meaning. I am so thankful for the multiple shots and poor decision-making that gave me her.

  4. Oh my gosh, I couldn’t stop laughing when you wrote that your son’s dad thought twins happened if you had sex twice in one day!

  5. Its so nice to hear so many stories about young mothers being successful. I am almost 24 and I am still 15 weeks pregnant. It has been a little more difficult since the father has not exactly been the picture, unless you consider a how are you text every few weeks “In the picture.” It has been extremely hard on me mentally to balance keeping a positive attitude while keeping my head out the toilet and still having to work. It is amazing to see so many moms doing it !


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