Most of you who know us personally already know there was some drama associated with her birth. Many of you are asking for all the details....so I thought I'd blog about it, and if I remember any other details, I can come back and update as memory serves (which I'm not holding as likely). But this way, you're all in the know....if you want to be.
Wednesday night I actually had come contractions. Around 7pm, they came on fast- 11 minutes apart. All in front. I'd been a back-labor girl up until this point in my life, so I was actually wondering if it was the real thing. Anyway, I started walking around the house, squatting here and there to move her down a bit. Then, at 9pm....they just stopped. Nada. So, I went to bed at 10...but couldn't sleep.
Again, at 2am they started again. This time 13 minutes apart. This continued until 4am...and again- stopped. Like I could sleep after that.
Thursday went along like any other day- I fit in a 45 minute nap since I didn't sleep a wink the night before. I was exhausted.
I was supposed to call the Dr. on Thursday to set up induction on Saturday morning. When I called, I asked the nurse if I could be in early labor, and if I needed to even worry about induction. Once going through my list of symptoms, she decided I needed to be seen (of course). So, I went in, he checked me...Wednesday's antics pushed me from a 3 to a 3.5. He tried to strip more of my membranes, but since she was still so high, he didn't get far. He set up an induction plan for Saturday morning and wished me luck.
We ate dinner- I had left over eggplant Parmesan. It was soooo good. Shortly after that, cramps started up again. My MOPS consignment sale pre-shop was literally up the road, so I went for a walk. By the time I walked up the hill home, I know that my cramps were turning "productive." So, I gave Dave the "head's up" and started making sure everything was set for the next day- boys lunches packed, my bag packed, etc.
By 10:30, we called Matt to come over and stay with the boys. I finished packing. We were at the hospital by 11:15, admitted at 5cm by 11:30.
It was a BUSY night. I got the last triage curtain, and I got the last L&D room- and that was only because my nurse ROCKED and rushed me through admitting so I could get it before the next incoming laborer. (Who was waiting in the hallway!)
Knowing it was busy, I requested an epidural right away. I didn't want anything standing between me and the land of relaxation. I was tired already from not sleeping the night before....I was REALLY looking forward to that nap.
By 12:30, I was 6cm, my blood work had been completed, and the epidural ordered.
1am, Dr. H. came in to do my epidural. I was so happy to see him. Once I felt that catheter go in, I started counting down the contractions until my nap: 4.........3..........2.............1.......
He gave me an original bolus to get everything going, and then hooked up the pump. He hung around for 5 minutes, until I smiled at him and thanked him profusely....and he went on his way.
The resident came in and broke my water. Baby girl was still sitting so high, now that I was comfortable, they wanted to get this show on the road. I did too! My baby girl was coming!
Then....about 20 minutes later, my whole world changed.
I started feeling pain.
Cramping at first.....then I felt pain shooting down my left femur. I tried self-medicating with the "happy button." I could feel it enter my back (dang, that stuff is COLD), but never received any pain relief. I alerted my nurse who jumped on paging Dr. H. He comes in 15 minutes (15 LONG minutes) later and tried another bolus directly into the catheter.
As a matter of fact, the pain is now unbearable, I am shaking up a storm, and starting to cry.
He tried yet another bolus.
And now I can feel everything.
Oh, the pain!
But now, instead of just the front labor cramping, I now felt her head land directly on my pelvic bone, and the back labor started.
So, labor was front AND back.
And was shooting down both legs.
I was begging for help.
Dr. H came back in, and I literally
The nurse decided to check me....
I was complete.
My body was ready to push.
My pain threshold was not.
The resident said, "Chances are by the time we get you another epidural, you will have had the baby 5 minutes ago...."
So, being the people pleaser I am....I started to try to push. My body took over, really....there was no way I wasn't going to be able to push.
But at that moment in time, the eggplant Parmesan I ate for dinner was wrecking havoc on my heartburn levels, and I started dry heaving. I never stopped dry heaving.
This is the point where many things go hazy for me. My brain checked out. A few of my friends said I went into shock....I believe that. I was out. I do have a few memories, but Dave has really had to piece together the rest. Here's what I do remember:
The Dr. came in to deliver, and the birthing lights went on. I BEGGED him for help. My nurse told him that I hit "exhaustion level" about an hour prior. She informed him that the baby was posterior, but they couldn't figure out where the fontanel was to turn her the correct way. They all said I had strong pushes, but she wasn't descending. (darn pelvic bone!)
I started to hyper ventilate between dry heaving and pushing against my will...I cried, "I CAN'T BREATHE!"
My Dr. calmly said, "If you're talking, your breathing....let's push."
I started to say "I CAN'T DO THIS!"
My Dr. calmly said, "Now, that's not a very positive attitude."
Most of you would probably call him a big jerk for those comments - but God seriously knew the kind of Dr. I needed. If he had coddled me, I would have totally gone from wreck to overboard.
This way, I knew I had to suck it up....
At some point, another 5 people entered the room, and they were all talking to me. I don't remember them entering, and I didn't hear a word they said. I was dry heaving and pushing...and kind of breathing....and dealing with horrible heartburn. And a shit-load of pain.
At one point, I stopped, and BEGGED the Dr. to help me get her out.
She wasn't descending. I was spent.
He asked, "Do you want me to use forceps?"
"GET HER OUT!!!!!"
Forceps went in, and she was turned.
I grabbed both side rails- my body was shaking so hard that I was afraid I was going to shake off the bed.
I felt Dave wrap his strong calloused hand around mine and squeeze hard. He actually squeezed so hard, it hurt me. But this was the only way he could connect with me...so I let him squeeze.
It was that moment that could actually FEEL that my husband was praying for me. I felt his prayer. If I wasn't in so much pain (and dry heaving), I would have dissolved into a pile of tears.
At that point, the Dr. grabbed my attention with a stern voice and told me that I had to push to deliver her with the next contraction- no matter what. He said, "Push HARD."
Yeah...you know that "ring of fire?" I totally thought homeboy had a blowtorch down there.
That's all I remember of that moment. The blow torch.
At 3:58 am, Baby L. was born.
Dave said they put her on my belly. I don't remember that.
They quickly gave him the scissors to cut the cord.
She was purple.
She wasn't moving.
She wasn't breathing.
They whisked her over to the isolette where they started working on her.
The room was quiet.
It took me a minute to realize that there was an absence of cry in the room.
"Why isn't she crying?" I asked.
"She needs some help, they're working on here now." My Dr. calmly said.
Dave left my side, and stood in the background watching them work on her trying to give me reassuring smiles and nods.
They bagged her, suctioned her....I'm not sure what else.
Her first apgar score was 3.
It was about 5-8 minutes before I heard my daughter cry.
It was a tired, weak cry...but it was a cry.
I said a prayer of Thanksgiving.
They kept suctioning her for a while and took some vitals- I kept dry heaving.
I told my Dr. I felt like I was about to loose consciousness, and needed some anti-nausea meds.
They were concerned because of the level of blood I was loosing- it was uncontrolled.
And by this time, my heartburn had become the most hideous air-trapped gas pain in my upper abdomen- trapped right under my rib cage. It was so distended that I looked like I was about to give birth to twins. Anyone touching my stomach made me gasp, shake and SCREAM. There was so much pain.
The baby started to pink up- her second apgar score went up to 8. But she was still having issues regulating her body temperature. So, no bath for her yet. They bundled her up and told Dave to hold her close. I was so weak, I was afraid to hold her. I thought I was going to drop her.
Dave asked me if I wanted to call our parents, and I declined. I was exhausted, and wasn't able to hold a conversation. I could barely understand what he was saying. So, he called the parents....and I dry heaved.
My hemorrhaging continued for the next 2 1/2 hours. Their prodding on my stomach continued too. Oh, the pain! At that point, the resident came in and decided to stick her hand "up there" and scrape for clots herself. I cannot describe how badly I wanted to kick her in the face. (Those of you that know me know I am not a violent person....but it did hurt THAT bad).
My skin tone had turned gray, and the Dr. was legitimately worried about me at that point. I was given phenergen for the nausea - and probably to shut me up too....cause it did allow me to rest a tad. But the gas pains were so strong, I couldn't fully relax.
It wasn't until after I got into my postpartum room that a new resident came in and diagnosed me with bad gas and put me on a GI cocktail that I actually had hope of healing fully. The pain was so great, it broke through Motrin 800, 2 vicodins, and partially broke through IV Dilaudid. Who knew gas could be THAT painful?!?!!?
Once in the postpartum room, they took the baby to the nursery to warm. She still wasn't holding her body temp, and her original blood counts were off. They wanted to check those again as well. So, they drugged me up, took her away, and Dave went home to shower and change. My pain levels and subsequent accelerated heart rate and high blood pressure earned me a one-on-one nurse for the afternoon. Awesome.
Thanks to the IV dilaudid, I was able to get up out of bed late Friday night and walk some laps. That was marginally helping the gas...so I just kept moving as much as I could.
Baby Girl got a hold of her body temp and regulated it like a champ by the late afternoon. Her blood sugars held steady, and her ph must have returned to normal, because we didn't hear anything about it since delivery. She does have a heart murmur - from a hole which normally closes at birth when babies take their first breath, but since there wasn't a first breath, it didn't close. So, now we watch it and see if it will close on its own - which it should in time.
I sent the baby to the nursery for the night and asked for a good night of sleep. The nurse promised to only wake me for pain management....which they were keeping a strict regiment of to keep me moving. I slept so hard that night.
The next day was amazingly better- so much so that I got up, took a full shower, blew my hair dry, and applied make-up. My day nurse had to double check that I was the same post-partum mom she saw the day before. She said that the difference was amazing. The Dr. came in to do rounds, and offered me early release.
Get that! From dealing with a potential extended stay less than 24 hours later- to early release? YES! Prayer works and God is so good!
So, Saturday night, D and I took baby L. home!
So...here she is!
6 lb. 11 oz.
18 inches long.
Both of us are home, recovering.
Hearts are full of love.
God is soo good.