Gannon’s Birth Story

February 19th, 2019. My dad was recovering in the hospital from a failed attempt to remove a tumor from his right lung. Craig and I came up to see him in the hospital. The next morning we had an ultrasound to check on Baby #2 who was much much larger than expected. I was measuring 44 weeks pregnant and was told to expect a 10+ pound baby. They told me I needed a c-section as I had a shoulder dystocia with Carver at 8lbs 6oz. There was “no way” I could attempt a vaginal delivery with Gannon.

The C-section was schedule for my 39 week mark. March 4th. I was devastated. I had planned my entire life around having the baby the week of February 25th. I had work off, it worked out with my Dad’s surgery schedule, I was so uncomfortable, I begged them to take me early. Keep in mind, I was measuring 44 WEEKS PREGNANT at 38 weeks pregnant while balancing 2 jobs and a 2 year old at home. They wouldn’t budge.

That weekend we had a horrible blizzard. Roads were shut down for days. We spent the entire day Sunday nestled in on the couch listening to the -20 below winds howl. Roads were not passable. Tow ban in effect. Northeast Iowa was SHUT. DOWN.

I couldn’t sleep for anything Sunday night. This giant baby kept kicking my bladder and as the night went on I knew something was up. I started bleeding.

I was covering childcare for mom so she could stay in the hospital with Dad. I was already awake when my alarm went off. I went to the bathroom one more time and as I stood to pull my pants up, my water broke.

YES! I was going to have a baby. BUT THE ROADS WERE STILL SHUT DOWN!

I called my mom frantically. Who was going to watch childcare kids? We can’t even get out of our driveway! What do we do with Carver? How’s Dad? Is he coming home today? Oh my God this is such a mess. I’m leaking all over. Where’s Craig? No mom I’m NOT calling 911…

Oh boy…That was a contraction…


Well we did get out of our driveway. We found someone to cover childcare. I did call 911 to ask someone to plow out our road. Contractions did pick up. No maxi pad made on this earth could contain my amniotic fluid. Craig rolled his eyes when I made him go get me a wheelchair once we got the hospital – not because I couldn’t walk but every time I took a step I leaked even more and I had new boots I didn’t want to ruin.

On our way to the hospital

They actually had to test me to make sure it was amniotic fluid. I remember laughing and laughing because DUH! OBVIOUSLY! No one in this world has enough pee in their bladder to get those two confused. Those contractions were getting harder and harder as we waited. I remember telling my nurse, “Yeah these are kind of starting to suck a lot.” She reassured me we were soon on our way to the OR.

3 hours after my water broke, in an OR suite my 8 POUND 12 OUNCE boy was born. Gannon was no where near the 10+ pounds they told us he would be.

At 38 weeks gestation, Gannon Joseph Friedman was born via cesarean section at 10:34 am in Decorah, Iowa weighing 8 lbs and 12 ounces measuring 22 inches long.

They placed him in the crook of my neck. I will never forget those moments with him. The warmth of his body against mine. His little tiny hands on my cheek. Maybe it was the morphine in my spine but it was pure euphoria.

I kept asking him “What’s your name?” We had a few ideas before we came into the hospital but nothing concrete. I could not shake the feeling that his name needed to start with a G. I kept saying the G sound over and over.

G G G G G. Craig agreed. “Grant? Graham? Gavin? I really like Grant!” We had Jennings, Gentry, Brannon, and Graham all in mind before we came to the hospital but there was only one name that clicked:

“Gannon.” I had only heard that name once before. Makinzey McKee on Teen Mom 3 named her baby Gannon and I’ve always liked the name. Plus I love first names that sound like last names. Craig agreed. Now we needed a middle name. It was pretty easy – my mom’s nickname is Jo and I want a baby named after her somehow and I don’t know if we will ever get a girl so Joseph (my mom’s name is Jo) it is!

Our WONDERFUL OB nurse showing me Gannon

In recovery we sat with our OB nurse who we just loved. (You’re so great Steph!) She helped us go through names, helped me breastfeed, checked on me and Gannon, wrote his name out on the board so we could see how it looked or if we liked it. She took care of us the next few days too. She always made sure to include Craig in the process which we both appreciated.

Breastfeeding Gannon was such a wonderful experience and I hope if/when we have a third that I will be able to do so again. I breastfed all the way to 4 months! Breastfeeding Carver was MISERABLE and I would NEVER wish that experience on anyone. I only lasted 8 weeks.

Mom and Dad were our first visitors. They stopped in on the way home from Lacrosse after being discharged after dad’s surgery. Dad wasn’t feeling well AT ALL and the visit was cut short.

Craig and I soaked up baby snuggles the entire afternoon until we had a very special visitor come…

Carver. Was. Terrible.

I mean he was just plain awful. I was so ready to see him go by the end of the visit. Granted we got a few adorable pictures but he was jumping on the couch, he wouldn’t sit still, he was so defiant, he was kicking Craig, he wouldn’t eat, he was shaking the crib. He was all the way two and a half and we could already sense the stark contrast between our two boys.

But we also couldn’t help but notice the similarities. Which one is Gannon and which is Carver?

People ask if I would have preferred a c-section or vaginal delivery. They both suck. Vaginal delivery is a lot of pain during the process. C section is a lot of pain after the delivery. I ended up in just miserable pain on day 2 post op. Kelli came and stayed with me in the hospital on Day 2 – I couldn’t even get out of bed. It’s like your legs aren’t attached to the top half of your body. Not only that, but I was still recovering from influenza and had a nagging cough which felt just super awesome with a fresh incision.

I never stopped my aspirin that I was taking to prevent gestational hypertension (no one told me to) so I bled and “oozed” quite a bit more than expected which lead to a lot of bruising.

I will say though on day 7 post op I was a new woman. I went from taking pain meds every four hours on the hour to not needing a single ibuprofen in a matter of 24 hours.

On Day 4 we were headed home! Here we are! We had the option of going home on Day 3 but I wasn’t ready at all. I was still in a lot of pain and needed help.

As you’re reading this, we are in Iowa City awaiting surgery for Gannon’s procedure this morning. The day he was born we found out his testicles never descended where they were supposed to be so we are getting that corrected today. He is also having an endoscopy to look at his stomach, esophagus, intestines, etc. to look for any abnormalities. As you can recall, Gannon has a host of health issues that we haven’t quite figured out yet.

We will again be anxiously awaiting on OR staff to take excellent care of him just like we were 365 days ago.

There you have it folks! Tune in tomorrow for a new blog post at 0530! I know you’re probably sick of reading all about Gannon (the last 2 blog posts as well) so I promise tomorrow won’t be about him! Thanks for reading!



  1. Amy
    February 25, 2020 / 12:08 pm

    Happy birthday sweet boy! Prayers sent your way today.

  2. Ellie
    February 25, 2020 / 1:14 pm

    Never tired of reading about Gannon! He is such a cute baby!

  3. Sherri C
    February 25, 2020 / 4:04 pm

    Your readers want to hear about Gannon! Hope all goes well with his surgery!

  4. mpv61
    February 26, 2020 / 11:44 pm

    Sick of reading about Gannon, or really any child? Never! And you write whatever you want to! 🙂

  5. Marty
    February 27, 2020 / 12:40 am

    We can’t get enough of Gannon! I feel like I know you all personally, like you are friends and neighbors. I’m keeping Gannon in my prayers, he is so precious and sweet.

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