Tuesday, December 1, 2009

The Birth Story

So please bear with me in the retelling of this because frankly, I was in a lot of pain for a majority of it and so times may be a little fuzzy.

We were told to show up at the hospital at 7:30am and to eat breakfast. I was impressed because this was the third time I had to be induced and the previous two times I had been told not to eat after midnight. As a side note, during my other inductions I wasn't allowed to eat and was only allowed ice chips, not even water. This time they brought me toast when I asked for it and I was allowed all the grape or apple juice I could desire. To say I was impressed would be an understatement.

Anyways, so we got up at O dark thirty and stopped at Village Inn for breakfast. I cried during breakfast and before we left the house. I'm going to own that right now. I was crying because I was scared. Induction is not fun and my induction plan (personally) did not include medication. The reason I chose not to plan for medication was because my epidural failed so spectacularly with Lizzie that I just couldn't do that to myself again and decided I would mentally prepare for an unmediated induction.

So we get to the hospital and it takes about an hour to get my hooked up, settled in the room, and my IV started. My midwife shows up and confirms what I had found out the day before, that I was 2 centimeters dilated and "soft". I almost came off the table during that check and every one after that. They also informed me that while my baby had been facing Posterior (sunny side up or his face was facing my belly button) he was now sideways but still head down. This was good news and we prayed as a group (midwife and both nurses included) that he would turn to be face down or facing my back. It's an easier way to have a baby. I delivered Lizzie sunny side up and it's what made my anticipation of labor anxiety riddled.

At about 9am (I think) my Mother In Law, Leslie showed up at the hospital. Micah started his nap on the couch.

Between 10am and 11am (I think) they started my Pitocin. They started it out slowly and the plan was to jack it up in intervals of 3 (I can't tell you 3 what though) every half hour. Within about 30 minutes of starting the Pitocin I started having menstrual cramps.

Let me stop here for a second and tell you, if you've never labored without Pitocin, you are lucky, lucky people. Pitocin is ROUGH and jacking it up hurts. I knew this going in. I dealt with it when I had Lizzie and while I had some drugs in my IV with her I did okay overall with it. But it hurts.

Micah goes to get Kylie from school around 11am. Things were slow going and I decided we should get her then before all the chaos of birth were to happen. Kylie gets there and promptly falls asleep on the couch until 5pm.

My Midwife broke my water sometime around 2pm. More Pitocin. I was allowed to sit in the rocking chair and was offered to sit on the birthing ball. I chose the rocking chair.

Also, at some point I mentioned to my midwife and my nurses that I wasn't planning on an epidural because mine had failed last time. They suggested I talk to the anesthesiologist if I was open to the idea of it because in all her years of practicing, my Midwife had never seen an epidural fail with this guy. His name was John.

We spent some time discussing why my last one had failed and he gave me some possible reasons and explained how he does the epidurals and how to prevent the failure of them. I decided to think about it.

From here the contractions continued, we watched a lot of Law & Order on the TV in the room and Micah sang to me during contractions. My mother in law talked to me some but what helped the most was Micah singing to me. This was a new preference for me as in previous deliveries I wanted silence during a contraction. This time during the contractions I would breath and lean into my husbands neck and he would sing to me. I just wanted the noise to distract me from thinking or dwelling on the contraction.

At about 4pm my midwife checked me and I was at 4 cm. I wanted to die. I had been on the stupid Pitocin at that point for 6 hours and had only gotten an extra 2 cm dilated. My nurses assured me that getting to 4 was the hardest part and now it should speed up.

At about 8pm I was starting to cry when the contractions would start. Because they hurt, if you didn't know. I was still on the Pitocin and it was crazy high and they just kept increasing it and now my water was broken and it just felt like every contraction was going to kill me. Didn't help my moral that I wasn't dilated very far. My Midwife had put on some lavender aromatherapy for me and we had dimmed the lights and she had electric tea lights all over the room and that was lovely and amazing. My mother in law had rubbed my very swollen feet but I was just crying through the contractions and the singing was starting not to help anymore. I asked for the epidural.

John appeared within moments and had me set within 10 minutes I would say. I had a spinal with an epidural chaser which means I felt immediate relief from the contractions but that eventually the spinal would wear off and the epidural would kick in. I was initially numb from my mid-ribcage down but as the spinal wore off my epidural kept me numb from about mid-belly down. Now, please, don't confuse numb with can't feel anything. I still felt pressure during contractions. Which were 2 minutes apart and lasting about a minute and had been since 10am.

I asked Micah if we could name the baby John after my epidural hero. He thought I was joking.

At about 10pm I started shaking and having a bit more pain during the contractions. My midwife checked me and I was at 8.5-9cms. They had John the Epidural Hero come back and top off my medication which was lovely but at this point I knew I was in transition and could feel the pressure of the baby and contractions.

At about 11pm (This is where my memory is fuzzy) I was complete and it was time to push. My midwife told me to give a practice push. I did. The baby was suddenly in my birth canal and I freaked out. Epidural wasn't a failure but it was done wonderfully so that I still had the urge to push and could feel the contractions. I hurt. And I refused to push anymore.

Leslie tells me that I told people not to touch me. I believe her but I don't remember it. I remember my midwife telling me it was time for the baby to be born and she had her gloves and "suit" on for it. I remember people telling me to grab the back of my legs to push and me refusing. I just refused to push. I kept telling people (I think) that I would push with the next contraction and then fighting each contraction that came along and pretending I wasn't having one so they wouldn't tell me to push. (I know now that no one was convinced)

But here's what I love. My midwife let me. My midwife didn't "make" me and didn't force Micah and Leslie to hold my legs for me or anything. She let me say no. And say no I did for several contractions.

The thing with nature and contractions though, is you can't fight it forever. Despite me telling everyone in the room I didn't want to do it and that I had changed my mind and would wait until Monday (My sad attempt at humor), I HAD to push that baby at some point. I didn't have a choice.

So I finally pushed. I don't remember anything else in the world at that point except Micah talking to me. He was encouraging and helping and holding my leg (I did refuse to grab my thighs for the most part). I pushed again. And everyone was silent. Then Micah started talking about the baby's hair and it was curly he said. Then my midwife said, "Now push his shoulders out."

I had no idea his head was out. So I pushed again and felt him slide out but am still a little shocked that I had no idea his head was out until after the fact. Essentially 3-4 pushes for that baby to be born at 11:31pm.

They laid him on my chest and we wiped him down and that child had more hair than I have ever seen on a baby.

During the birth Kylie hid in the bathroom (a pre-designed spot she and Leslie had discussed if she didn't want to witness the actual birth) but she did hear me and I remember looking over to my right and seeing her standing there staring at me and her new brother while he was still connected to my via the umbilical cord. She looked a little shell shocked frankly.

Micah cut the cord, and I asked them to weigh the baby. He weighed in at 8lbs 5 oz and was 20 inches long. The hair on that child probably added at least 2 oz.

So all in all, he took awhile to get here but when he arrived (downward facing, BTW) it was well worth it with all of the not pushing a lot and oh, no rips or tears. Meaning no stitches for me this time, Whooo Hooo!

(I had no rips with Kylie either but with Lizzie, because of the face up position, I had 2. It took me forever to recover from that.)

Nursing took awhile to get established and he had some jaundice which required him to be under the special lights for a few hours but we were able to leave the hospital Sunday early afternoon which I liked.

Overall, happy mommy, healthy baby, proud daddy and adoring big sisters. We couldn't feel happier or more blessed with our newest addition.

Here is Will, a mere hour or two after his birth.



Wow. Thanks for sharing all that in wondrous Lacy-detail. I'm so happy that Kylie got to be there too. I hope you'll share some of this with William when he's older, especially that part about Micah singing to you. So great.

And yes, that hair. INCREDIBLE! Maybe a result of the guac???


P.S. No hurry, but do we get pics of William with his big sisters?

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