Mandy Moore is dishing on ALL the details of her son August’s birth!
The actress and her husband Taylor Goldsmith welcomed their new baby late last month, and one week later, she recalled the experience for Dr. Elliot Berlin’s Informed Pregnancy podcast. On Thursday, her full account of bringing him into the world was released, sharing every moment from her first contractions to holding their newborn for the first time.
For starters, she admitted:
“I felt super prepared in terms of, ‘I know what I like, I know what’s going to work with me.’ And all of that just went out the window.”
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“I’m all snuggled up in bed. We’re watching re-runs of The Office. And I’m like, ‘Hm I feel a little crampy.’ And my husband sort of got wide-eyed and I was like, ‘No no no no no, don’t like jump to any conclusions.’”
The new mom had been experiencing Braxton Hicks contractions, so she didn’t expect when the real ones came on. Eventually they called their doula and midwife, she said:
“The next thing I knew, it was a couple hours later. You just lose all track of time. And then I was like full-blown, into like, early labor I guess, but it was starting to ramp up.”
Following their midwife’s recommendations, Moore shared:
“My husband got a glass of wine. We started the bathtub up. I think we were in the bath for like five minutes. I didn’t do the Benadryl. I was like, I don’t want to feel weird. What if this is really starting now? I don’t want to be out of it. I want to be in my right mind. I think I took like a sip of wine.”
Then they began playing their birth playlist:
“Music played a very, very pivotal role like initially. I started crying because, and I’m going to cry now, it was music that we like fell in love to, so there was a Dire Straits song, there was a Blue Nile song. … I’m such a weepy hormonal person right now. Everything makes me cry. It was these just really tangibly beautiful memories of us, as an early couple, falling in love and it was like, ‘Oh my god.’ I was so caught up in the moment of like, ‘Wow that was the beginning of our story and now here we are like almost six years later. It’s really wild to be here.’”
The This Is Us star’s plans changed several times. She was initially set on an unmedicated home birth, but changed to a hospital birth with a midwife present. She hoped to continue staying away from medicating, but during the “awful” 40-minute car ride to the hospital while she was “writhing in pain,” she decided to go for an epidural. But even that new plan was thwarted when low platelet levels prevented Mandy from getting the drugs, so she ended up having her original unmedicated birth anyway.
The 36-year-old’s experience of labor “was intense, it was grueling, it was harrowing.” She reflected:
“It’s like you’re on this trip. You’re on this like acid trip or something. Like, I was in my own head, doing my own thing. I could hear people—I could hear suggestions and sometimes agree with them, sometimes I was like, no, no, no, no, I just have to stay the course of what’s feeling good for me.”
Mandy went on:
“Ultimately, it was such an insular experience, which sounds silly that I guess I didn’t really imagine it. I felt like it was going to be somewhat more participatory with other people, that I would see their faces and be awake and alert and like, listen to their suggestions. and go like, ‘Okay, yeah, I agree with that.’ But ultimately, no, it was, my eyes were closed and I was on my own. … It was my own narrative, my own story and everybody else was just in the background.”
After several hours, the doctors noticed the infant’s heart rate was beginning to drop. She explained:
“It was crazy. The OB was just literally like, ‘Okay, show’s over.’ Seven people walked in and he’s like, ‘So this is a vacuum and I’m going to attach this to the top of his head. And when I tell you to push, I want you to push harder than you ever have. And I’m going to pull at the same time and your baby’s going to come out.’ And I was just like, what? It all happened so quickly. It was, one second everything was fine and then the next second it was like, this is happening. And literally I pushed harder than I had. And it went from no baby to a full body out in seconds.”
“Without even batting an eye, someone put him on my chest, he had a little hat on and it was just so unexpected. I was so confused. My husband was crying. I was like, this is not the way … I didn’t even have a concept of — this is not the way I expected to feel. I just remember going, I’m so confused right now. And quickly that transitioned into being emotional too. And I just couldn’t believe that it was over because it happened so quickly.”
The singer revealed that once she was holding her child:
“You are completely smothered in just that feeling of, I have never felt higher, I have never felt this kind of love. It was like the world stopped again and you’re not aware of anything else going on. That’s why the tearing, all of it, it doesn’t exist. It doesn’t matter. You just have your baby on you. And I couldn’t imagine anything else mattering.”
One thing did matter, though — reliving the experience! She remarked:
“I remember sitting there going like, ‘I can’t wait to do this again.’ Probably mental. … I’ve said to my husband so many times — and really anyone that has come by that will listen — I’m like, ‘I can’t wait to do it again.’ As harrowing as the journey was, I miss it. I’m sad that I don’t get to relive it or do it again or something. It’s a hard feeling to describe, but I can look back now with such affection and fondness for myself and what that experience was, because it brought me Gus. It brought me this child who is my whole world now. And I’m so grateful for it. I’m grateful for how hard it was, because now I have the greatest gift in the way.”
What a lovely story! We’re so happy for Mandy and her husband, and of course baby Gus. Congratulations again to the beautiful family!
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