Suddenly I See

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Ellie's Birth Story

The birth story of our beautiful daughter is a bit of a saga but I want to write it all down (not that I will probably ever forget but I want to remember the timing and the small details).

Saturday August 1st I woke up early (after a restless night, it had pretty much been a week of restless nights except for one blissful Unisom fueled full night of sleep) and my mucus plug had come out. It was a good sign. I wanted to go into labor so I was happy about this. I knew it could still be some time but at least it was a step in the right direction. I had also been having what felt like cramping for a few days. That cramping got much more consistent from Saturday morning, all through the day, and then at night it got more painful. We spent the day together watching TV, going in my pool, and timing my contractions. Around 8pm I thought the contractions were about five minutes apart and I didn't want to labor through the night without an epidural so we went to the hospital. I knew my doctor was going to be out of town till Monday so I would be seeing someone else. 

When we got to the hospital they checked me and I wasn't even dilated to a one. I was disappointed. I had been in so much pain I thought for sure I was further along. They told me I could stay for a bit or go home. I decided to go home. On the way out the doctor told me that my doctor was back so whenever I came back she would deliver my baby. That was good news.

Rodger and I went back home stopping at the grocery store for Benydryl which the doctor said I could take to help me sleep. The contractions were still painful but I was hopeful I could get some rest. That didn't really happen. I spent the whole night back and forth between bed and the shower just working through my contractions. I couldn't believe how painful they were. I think the Benydryl may have taken some of the edge off but not much. I was getting scared about how bad it was going to get and I couldn't sleep because I was just waiting for the next contraction to come. It was finally morning and I thought I had been calculating the contractions correctly and that they were about four minutes apart. 

When we got back to the hospital they checked me and I was only at a one. I found out I had been calculating the contractions incorrectly but they said I could stay and admitted me. We got moved into my room and I labored through the morning. The nurse gave me two Phenol shots throughout a few of the morning hours. ( They said I couldn't have an epidural until I was dilated to a two). Those were such a relief. The pain from the contractions was so bad. I breathed through it all day thanks to the helps of Rodger, my mom,  my aunt, Vickie, Jenn, and Rodger's sisters who all took turns helping me.  It meant so much to Rodger and I to have all these people help us. 

Throughout the day they checked me and I hadn't progressed at all. I was still at a one and not effaced and the baby hadn't dropped at all. Around 3pm or 4pm the nurse told me I should get some Petocin. This made me nervous because i have heard terrible stories about it but the nurse assured me it would just be a small dose and it wouldn't be too painful. So I went for it. By then the contractions were so bad and when the Petocin set it they didn't get more painful but they were much closer together. The nurse could see that I couldn't take much more and said that I could have an epidural. This was such a relief to hear. I hadn't slept since Friday morning really and I was exhausted.

I got my epidural around 6pm. They don't let anyone in the room with you so it was just me , the nurse, and the anesthesiologist. He was a nice man and explained everything to me. I was nervous but just wanted relief. It wasn't too painful and I held on to the nurse. It was over pretty quickly and the relief was immediate. Rodger came back in right away and I told him that it was a miracle drug. I was so looking forward to getting some sleep. The doctor also gave me some medicine for my stomach. 

We were getting some rest and the nurse came in and said that the baby's heart rate was too high. Rodger had asked her about it earlier because it kept shooting up but she said it was fine. But I guess the nurse decided it was too high. They said it can go up because of the medicine they gave me for my stomach and the medicine they gave me for low blood pressure. So I felt terrible about that. The nurse gave me an oxygen mask to help with the baby's heart rate. Rodger and I were up for the next couple of hours just watching the heart rate machine. It was the scariest part of the day. It finally went down and we both got some sleep. They checked me throughout the night and said I was at a three and 100% effaced.

The nurse came in Monday morning and said the doctor would be in later that morning to break my water. She checked me again and said I was at a two, so apparently never was at a three and still 100% effaced but only at a negative two station. When the doctor came in later she broke my water and said that there was meconium in the fluid so that would mean I would have to deliver within a certain time. She said she would give me until 6pm to dilate more and then we would have to decide if I needed a c-section if things hadn't progressed. This was due to the meconium as well as I would have had the petocin and epidural for 24 hours by then.

The afternoon went on and one of the main things I remember is that my left leg was freakishly swollen. I got more rest. I was so hungry and thirsty but was only allowed some ice chips in case I had to have a c-section. Throughout the afternoon the nurse checked me and I had gotten to a four. She kept telling me that a lot of times in first labors after the water is broken things can move quickly. The nurses were all so encouraging. All afternoon I wavered back and forth between wanting a vaginal birth and just wanting to get it over with by having a c-section. I was so exhausted that I didn't know how I would ever push for what could be hours.

At 6pm the nurse came in and checked me. I was at a five although I think she was just trying to make me feel better, I don't think I ever progressed past a four. She called the doctor and the doctor said she would give me until 7:30pm and if nothing happened they would take me for a c-section. Rodger and I talked with my family about a c-section and how that would go. So I was semi prepared. Truly from the beginning I figured this would be how it went so I wasn't surprised.

At 7:20 the nurse was in my room and the doctor called her and told her to check me. Nothing had changed so the doctor said she would come in for the c-section. They started getting me ready. Rodger and I were pretty scared at this point but I just wanted it to be over and to hold my baby. The nurse gave me a liquid to drink for my stomach and a ton of paperwork to sign. They told me many times how everything would go and I met with the anesthesiologist d I felt like I was in good hands. They gave Rodger scrubs to change into and they took me into the operating room to get me prepared. They gave me more drugs to numb me. I was so sick to my stomach and I threw up all over myself. My doctor came in and talked to me and Dr. Grady who I had seen for an appointment the week before when my doctor was out of town assisted her with the operation. 

They finally let Rodger in and I remember it was very important to me that he knew I threw up. I really didn't know if they had started the operation as I couldn't feel or see anything but I knew they were working on me and I could hear them talking to each other. I kind of felt like I was still waiting for them to get started and all of a sudden I heard my baby's scream. She screamed right away and very loudly. It was such a relief. I just cried and cried. I was so happy she was out and healthy. And that I wasn't pregnant anymore and was actually going to get to meet our daughter. She was born at 8:13pm.

We didn't get to see her right away which was disappointing. They were cleaning her up and weighing and measuring her. Around this time things started getting really painful for me. It was so much pressure and I felt like I could feel everything. It was an out of body experience and I felt like I was coming in out and of it. But during one of the times when I was awake I was in pain and screaming. Rodger stayed sitting next to me trying to help me. They finally brought the baby over to us and showed her to me. The nurse saw me and said "that explains the light hair". I guess she had only seen Rodger up until then. They told Rodger he had to go into the recovery room with the baby. He felt bad leaving because I was in so much pain and still screaming. 

Before they showed me the baby I had heard the doctors talking about my ovaries and my doctor asked me if I had ovary surgery previously. This was so odd to me and the whole time they were sewing me up I was worried that I had ovarian cancer. When they were finally done sewing me up the doctor came over to me and said that I had a very narrow pelvis and I wouldn't have been able to give birth vaginally. Next time I could just schedule a c-section. I asked her what was wrong with my ovaries and she said that I was missing my right ovary and my tubes were closed at the end.

After this they took me to recovery. I was still in so much pain but not too much so that I could still tell everyone I saw that I only had one ovary. The nurse had to push out the blood clots which made me scream out in pain. They gave me more medicine and over the next hour with each dose the pain slowly went away what felt like a layer at a time. It was still painful but was at least bearable.

Rodger told me everything that had been going on in recovery and told me that the baby had the cord wrapped around her neck twice. when they took her out. This made me feel like it was the right thing that I had a c-section. 

I finally felt strong enough to hold the baby. It was a great moment and I was so happy to finally get to hold her. I wish I hadn't had a c-section if only for the fact that I would have held her right away and wouldn't have been so out of it when I met her. But as long as she was safe and healthy that was more important. I was so happy for me and my husband to be together holding her. It was love at first sight.

The nurse said our families could come in a few at a time since they were going to move us to my room and visiting hours were over. It was good to see everyone but I was still pretty out of it.

I am still processing this experience as I find myself still having new feelings about it. But regardless of how she was born my feelings for her are just so strong. I love her so much. And I love my husband. I am so in awe of the life we created together. We are so blessed to get to be her parents.

Before Epidural

After Epidural

Big Foot

Baby Long, born August 3,2015 at 8:13pm, 7lbs 11ounces, 19 inches long
First family picture

Finally holding my baby

1 comment:

Jenn said...

Thanks for sharing this. So great to be able to have it all written down so you don't forget the details.