Welcome to Returning to Birth! I share the amazing ways childbirth can teach us more about ourselves. ALL women deserve a positive and empowering birth experience, and I’m here to help make that happen.

I Didn’t Know I Was Pregnant

I Didn’t Know I Was Pregnant


  • Name: Mary Raskob

  • Baby Name: Michael David Raskob

  • Weight: 7 lb 10 oz

  • Legnth: 21 inches

  • Birthday: 1/18/15

  • Gestation: 39 weeks?

  • Time of Birth: 3:45 pm

  • Location of Birth: Western Maryland Area Hospital (Cumberland, Maryland)

I didn’t think I was pregnant because I’ve never had regular cycles and had period like spotting through out what I later discovered was my pregnancy. I dealt with PCOS for most of my life and at age 18, my doctor told me it was not impossible but very unlikely I would ever get pregnant.  Now looking back at pictures, I can see that I was showing but my belly didn’t stick out very much.  His positioning made it seem like I had just put on a little weight, not that I was pregnant.

So not knowing I was pregnant, I apparently started labor Wednesday night after a basketball game.  I had incredible back pains that kept me up that night but I made it to work Thursday. I could barely get through the day and immediately went home and laid in bed. I couldn't get up Friday morning thinking I had pulled my back (I have a bad back - it could have happened) so I just laid in bed all day. Saturday I had to stat a pair of basketball games, so I called my boss and asked if I could just show up 20 minutes before the game and then leave immediately after. So that's what I did and went right back home and laid in bed. I had to keep getting up and moving around because the pain in my back was EXCRUCIATING. I had all back labor, apparently, because I didn't have any contractions in my belly.

Sunday I had to feed my friend's dog, so I got up around 9 am, fed the dog, went to McDonald’s and got a breakfast sandwich because I hadn't be able to eat at all.  I finished about half of it and then got nauseous. Around 1:00pm, I called my friend Sean and asked him if he had been drinking yet because I needed a ride to Urgent Care. He hadn't (thank God!) and he and our friend Brian picked me up and took me to Urgent Care.  The whole way they were joking that I was in labor. After about an hour waiting to be seen, thinking it was kidney stones at this point, I finally got back to see a doctor who did a quick ultrasound.  That’s when I saw Michael and heard his heartbeat for the first time and he told me I had to go to the hospital NOW. I could either get an ambulance or take my chances with the boys driving me. The better choice was ambulance so I waited about 15 minutes for the ambulance and took the 15 minute ride to the hospital.  

I got to the hospital between 2:45 and 3:00pm and was checked into a room.  The doctors and nurses where immediately having me push - he was on his way! So I pushed for just about 45 minutes and Michael was born at 3:45!! BUT! He wasn’t breathing.  Since I didn't know I was in labor, he had swallowed all of his meconium and was in great distress.  They were able to suction it all out and get him breathing but he was in bad shape. I wasn't able to hold him or see him.

About 10 minutes after he was born, I was able to call my mom and tell her what happened. She was shocked, to say the least.  She and my dad got in the car and made the 4 hour drive to be with me. While they were on their way, I had to consent to put Michael in an ambulance and send him to a NICU in West Virginia, about 45 minutes away to get the best care available to him.  I got to see him in the traveling nicu before he left but my parents weren't able to get there in time to see him before he left.

We ended up spending 10 days in the NICU and he came out as healthy as a baby born with no complications! He is now as healthy as can be and he thriving!

This whole crazy experience really taught me that I am a lot stronger than I have ever given myself credit for. There is a survival mode that kicks in and once I was through just surviving I have really been able to thrive in my new life.



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