Friday, March 2, 2018

Our Birth Story

Two weeks out from having our precious baby boy, I thought it was finally time that I sit down and explain how he made his grand entrance into the world. It happened very quickly and not in a way I had ever wished or wanted but he's here and healthy. That's what matters!

On Valentine’s Day around 11:30 p.m. my stomach started cramping. I had been having random contractions a few days before so I knew what they felt like but hadn’t been having enough of them in a row to warrant going to the hospital yet.  On my appointment with my doctor three days before I was already measuring 2cm dilated. When my stomach would start cramping, it made me feel like I had to go to the bathroom so when I went to the bathroom and wiped I was completely freaked out to see period like blood. This wasn’t my mucus plug coming out because that had happened a minimum of a week before. This also wasn’t the “bloody show” because that had happened 4 days before. 

I came out of the bathroom and told my husband that I was concerned. I continued to start having more cramping and contractions. I called the Labor and Delivery line and asked them if I should come in and get checked out. They said it wouldn’t hurt. So we took our GO bag just incase and and headed to the hospital. By the time I got to the hospital, which is only about 15 mins from our house, I knew I was having major contractions. I could barely walk into the labor and delivery area. They were coming only about 5 minutes apart and they were more painful that the ones I had previously been feeling.

They got me checked into a room to get evaluated and a midwife came in and checked me. I was indeed in labor and at 4cm. It was now 12:30 a.m. and I was being admitted. The contractions were so strong and coming on quicker. I had known all along that I wanted an epidural. I know my pain tolerance and this was not something I could do without it. So they got that ordered and I was moved to the room that I would deliver in. By the time the epidural lady got there I was almost at 6cm. My husband was constantly on the phone with my mom trying to work out her travel plans. We knew that I was moving too fast for her to make it in time for the actual delivery.

The contractions were coming on top of each other and holding still for the epidural was the hardest part. All I wanted to do was rock back and forth because the pain from the contractions. My poor husband at this point could only stand and watch in horror as they stuck me with the needles. Frankly I didn’t care because the contractions felt far worse to me than that needle going into my spine. I clutched my pillow and kept my back curled. I knew that once I got the epidural the pain would ease up and I was doing all I could do to get that put into place.

Once the epidural took effect it was pure magic. I could feel the pressure of the contractions but not the pain. I was surprised that I could move my legs. I had always thought you couldn’t move your legs once you had an epidural but I was wrong because I could move my legs. Were they strong enough to stand on? No but I could move them... and move them I would. 

I don’t know what time it was but around 8cm, my nurse made a call and within a minute there was 10 people in my room. My sweet baby boy had went into distress and his heart rate dropped drastically low. They had me change positions, take deep breaths etc and thankfully it returned to normal numbers. At this point the doctors flat out told me, if this happens again they wouldn’t be able to chance it and I’d have to have a c-section. They had me sign paperwork and told me that they would do everything they could to help me have a natural delivery. I stressed to them I would rather push for three hours than have a c section if that's what it took to have a vaginal delivery.

At this point, I was also feeling a ton of pressure down there and after checking me again, I was told my sac was bulging and they were going to break my water. When they broke my water it was a moment of relief. I had been feeling so much pressure down there it was aching even through the epidural. They also placed a monitor on his head to better gauge his heart rate since we had the distress scare.

I don’t know what time but some time later around 4:45 a.m. I got to 10cm and then his heart rate dropped again. The 10 people rushed into the room again and they positioned me to try to push. I started pushing and the doctor said he was still at a zero stage and not a two (which is apparently needed). She made the call right then that I was having an emergency c-section because our baby boy needed to come out right now. I was unplugged from some machines and immediately pushed down the hall into the operating room. All the while, I'm asking for my husband and to get him as soon as possible.

I, of course was scared to death. A c-section was something I had said the entire pregnancy that I never wanted. It was my worst case scenario. The thought of getting sliced open completely put me into a panic. Now here I was being wheeled into the OR faster than nascar drivers cross the finish line. The whole time I’m asking for my husband (who they couldn’t allow in yet because they were getting me prepped and getting his in sterile gear. 

I’m laying there and now a new anesthesia guy is asking me questions and their asking me if I can feel them touch me. I could only move my head and then the curtain was put up which completely terrified me more. I laid there staring into the big circle light and prayed that I was going to be ok and so would our son. I heard the doctor say that they could slow down a little bit because his heart rate was returning to a normal number. I asked if this meant we could stop the c section and they adamantly said no, he needed to come out right now.

After what felt like an eternity my husband was brought in and he stood by my head. All I could say over and over was that I was so scared. Just a few seconds later, the doctors started talking to me telling me that I was going to feel a lot of pressure on my chest. Then our baby boy was outside of me. I couldn’t hear him cry at first so I started asking if he was ok and then the cries came. He was born at 5:06 a.m.

My husband was able to go over to where he was and make sure he was ok. Sadly he couldn’t cut the cord because he couldn’t go over there to that side of my curtain because I was still open and they had to keep it sterile. 

My husband kept telling me, he’s ok! Your ok! Then finally they brought him over to me and laid him on my chest. He seemed so big and so tiny all at the same moment. I couldn’t even raise my arm up to hold him at first. After a few minutes they had to take him to look him over and my husband went with him. 

I remained on the table as they closed me up and got me ready to go into recovery. I remember my mouth being so dry, I just kept asking for water. I was literally begging for a drink of water which they wouldn’t give me. I also asked how long I would have to lay there. I had no idea it takes so long to close you back up. I probably laid there for a good 45 minutes while they stitched me closed. The doctor did talk to me some during this time and informed me that my pelvis is very narrow and there was no way he was going to come out of me no matter how many hours I pushed.

When we got back to the recovery room they had our son in the room and a nurse to stay with me for several hours to make sure I was ok. She would only allow me gum to chew. I was fine with that, I needed any moisture they could give me. I was also still completely numb from my chest down. I eventually graduated to ice chips and then water. 

As the day went on, the medicine started to wear off and some of the effects of anesthesia started hitting me. Some of our poor visitors witnessed me vomiting in bed but I equate that to all the events of the day and nothing in my stomach. Then I dreaded it but they had me stand up and oh boy... that was rough. 

They also moved us to our room which we would live out of for 3 days. Thankfully it had a full bed for my husband and a couch for guests. We were also able to keep our baby boy with us in the room. On the 3rd day in the hospital we discovered he was having some issues controlling and regulating his sugar so we spent another 2 days in the NICU. Thankfully he started regulating his sugars and we were released on Monday. So we entered the hospital in the wee hours of Thursday and finally broke out on Monday afternoon. I was never so happy to leave a place! 

We’ve been home since then and we are both doing well!  He had his two day wellness check once we were home and he only lost 2% of his weight which apparently is a good thing. His two week appointment is next week and I'm hoping we get good reviews again! Me... well I'm still recovering from the C-section. The days are slowly starting to get better and I'm trying to move around more. I still can't drive or do a lot around the house but I'm doing the important thing like feeding, changing and taking care of our baby.