What to Expect When You’re Not Expecting

What to Expect When You’re Not Expecting

At 7:37 p.m. on Friday, January 19, I was sitting on my bed binge-watching “The Vampire Diaries” when I felt a flush of warm water release from my body. My water had broken. Before I could process what was happening, I looked down at my vibrating phone...my sister was calling.

In complete shock and with a racing mind, I answered the phone, “My water just broke!” Erica said, “I’m coming to get you,” and I replied, “No, you live too far away. Meet me at the hospital.”

I hung up and called my husband; Patrick was on a bachelor trip in Key West, Florida. A trip, which ironically, was planned early, so he could go without worrying about me and our baby. Patrick answered on the first ring and responded so calmly I couldn’t wrap my head around it. He said, “Okay, I’m coming home,” and moments later, I was on the phone with the hospital.

The woman I spoke with made sure, first, that I had a ride to the hospital, and then explained that once I arrived I’d be admitted and assigned a room - then, the doctors would try and slow down my labor. The goal was to delay Channing’s birth by 24 hours. This would give the medical staff an opportunity to administer two rounds of steroids, that would help strengthen Channing’s lungs, in addition to a magnesium supplement to boost neurological development.  

Once I was finally off the phone, I ran around my room, tossing things into the canvas bin sitting outside my door. Over the past few weeks, that bin is where I’d begun stashing things I knew I’d one day need in my hospital bag. I grabbed slippers, my beautiful recovery room robe from Posh Peanut, my delivery gown (the posh pusher), my favorite pottery barn blanket, and a bottle of lavender.

I sat, waiting, on the kitchen floor for my friend Laura to arrive. I wish you could have seen our three concerned pups as they tried to understand what was going on. Twenty minutes later I was leaned back in Laura’s passenger seat, breathing through contractions.  My older sis, who ran spastically out the door as soon as we hung up, Erica beat us to Northside and filled out my intake paperwork; unfortunately, our preliminary paperwork was not completed ahead of time - we never thought we’d need to fill it out almost nine weeks early.  

The next few hours were simultaneously painfully slow and ridiculously fast. Honestly, labor and delivery was a blur.  

Finally, it was my time to settle into the delivery room, and I was carted off in a wheelchair to the most enormous hospital room I’ve ever seen. I put on my posh pusher, sat down in the delivery bed and looked to the door, relieved to see our doula Pam Avery had arrived ! I was in pain, but it was tolerable. I have no idea how far I was dilated; Shanley, my delivery nurse, checked my cervix but didn’t want to give me a number in case she was wrong.  Thirty minutes later I was begging for every drug offered. I was in so much pain, and it was only getting worse. I kept thinking, why are these contractions so long. I even turned to Shanley and said, “how much more painful are these going to get?”   Between 10:30 and 11:30 p.m., I was in some sort of twilight zone, focusing entirely on my task at hand - breathing. You’d think all the yoga would have helped me with breath control, but my mouth was drier than it's ever been (Erica was spoon feeding me ice cubes), and my doula was trying everything she could to keep me from hyperventilating.  I had a cool compress on my forehead and applied pressure on my feet. I didn’t realize how much the pressure points helped until my sister stepped away to help a nurse, and I started hollering, “Don’t let go of my feet!!”  

Not long after that, Dr. Sugarman arrived. All I remember her saying is “Let me check your cervix,” and then “9 c.m.!! there's no time for an epidural.” I looked at the clock - 11:20 pm. The next time I had a contraction the sensation changed, and I felt the urge to push. This was the moment I realized most women have a bowel movement, the horror. While the pushing sensation was familiar, it was not the same and luckily I did not do the unmentionable.. I was about to push when Dr. Sugarman said, “don’t push.” Don’t push?? Later I learned the doctors have to check to make sure the umbilical cord is not wrapped around the baby’s neck before delivery. 11:29 pm, it was go-time.


With my legs in suptha baddha konasana, the delivery team yelled, “push!” I gave a little push and my doula started laughing; apparently a  three-count push is not what they were looking for. She said, “this time we count to 10,” and the delivery team moved my legs into happy baby.  Less than 10 counts later, Channing came flying into the world; in fact, she was moving so quickly, Erica called her a “hair rocket.”  With a head full of hair, our 3 pound 6 ounce bundle of joy had arrived.  I was relieved, disoriented, and exhausted. I could hear my husbands voice on the speaker phone next to my ear, and I trusted my older sister to remember everything the delivery team was telling us. . Channing and I had both survived childbirth, and all was right in the world.

 This is what labor and delivery looks like.

This is what labor and delivery looks like.

 Before Channing could breathe on her own, she used a CPAP machine.

Before Channing could breathe on her own, she used a CPAP machine.

 Look at Channing smile - this makes my heart melt.

Look at Channing smile - this makes my heart melt.

 Channing graduated to an open crib.

Channing graduated to an open crib.

 Channing is trying to wave at yall :)

Channing is trying to wave at yall :)

 I'm a proud mama!

I'm a proud mama!

 Thanks for the outfit Aunt E.

Thanks for the outfit Aunt E.

 Proud Parents!

Proud Parents!

 Channing got her own  Meddy Teddy

Channing got her own Meddy Teddy

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Carly Grace Milyo

Born in New York City,  Carly Grace grew up in Atlanta and graduated from The Westminster Schools.  Carly received her Bachelor of Science in Human Development, and graduated Summa Cum Laude from Virginia Tech in 2012. During her college career, Carly began practicing yoga as an escape from her intense ACC Cheerleading training. The rigor and requirements Carly upheld as an ACC athlete combined with the social expectations and action packed schedule expected of an Alpha Phi left Carly depleted both physically and mentally.  Before Carly found yoga, she used running, partying with friends, and restricting her diet to maintain a sense of control in her life. It was Carly's true desire to find more purposeful and authentic friendships and to invest her time in cultivating her greater well-being and spirituality that lead her to yoga. 

The creativity and physical challenge of yoga captivated and inspired Carly. Yoga was the first thing Carly practiced where the perfect-ten mentality was not required; in fact, perfection is the antithesis of yoga principles.  After hanging up her poms poms and retiring from her ACC Cheerleading career, Carly quickly found herself  invested in the In Balance Yoga Community in Blacksburg, VA.  With encouragement and affirmation from Studio Owner, Becky Crigger, Carly set out for New York City to train with Dana Trixie Flynn at Laughing Lotus Love Skool.

Yoga Alliance 200 E-RYT, Carly has studied and practiced with many influencers and teachers all over the United States.  Carly currently teaches Thunderbolt Power Yoga®;  a powerful alignment based vinyasa flow inspired by some of her greatest influencers including, Dana Trixie Flynn and Baron Baptiste.  Carly infuses creative ideas and sequencing into her classes. Her purpose as a teacher is to inspire people to move like themselves. Carly is committed to helping students be audaciously playful in both their practice and in their lives. 

You can catch Carly Grace teaching at her studio Thunderbolt Power Yoga, at off-site events such as the infamous FIT Yoga Series with Carly Grace at W Atl Buckhead, at music festivals, corporate conferences, and more!  Be sure to look out for Carly's quarterly Boombox Power Yoga® Class offered alongside a live DJ, accompanied by her pink boombox, and enhanced with a 16 inch disco ball. 

In the mean time, you can follow her adventures on instagram (@yoga__barbie) or give her a wave when you see her drive by in her infamous pink jeep!