Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Carter's Birth Story

A brief glimpse of our happily ever after.
Wednesday February 5th: After tossing and turning (my usual) all night, I woke up at 4:30a to what I thought may have been water breaking. It was different than how it happened with Reagan, this time it wasn't a big gush, more of a "did I just pee a little?" scenario. After talking it over with Cody, I decided that indeed my water had broken and that we needed to get the ball rolling and head to the hospital.
We had scheduled the induction for Wednesday night, so of course my water breaking was a total curve ball. Cody got on the phone with his Mom, to make the trip over to be with Reagan. I called my Mom, who had already planned on driving over later in the day to be with me.
I had been crampy with slight contractions every 4-5 minutes apart. I remember waking up throughout the night feeling the contractions but I didn't think anything of them.

I arrived at the hospital at 5:30a. I got admitted and checked, I was already 4.5-5cm. Wow. Considering I had only been 1.5cm at my last doctors appt, I was making progress fast. I texted both Cody and my Mom to let them know what was going on, and that the nurse estimated we would have a baby by noon at the latest. 
I got hooked up to the iv, had my blood drawn and was left to rest a bit. The nurse let me know that anaesthesia was in a meeting until 7:30a, but that I could get my epidural after that. Whoo hoo! Even though I wasn't in a ton of pain, I was starting to get to the uncomfortable stage. 
I rested and waited for Cody to join me.
It was 7a when the nurse came back in, I was having good contractions each one increasing in intensity. She very gingerly let me know that the lab had informed them that my blood platelet level was too low for me to get an epidural. I was shocked, confused and horrified. What does that mean? Why? And most importantly, how was this baby coming out without an epidural?? 
She was the best nurse I could have asked for, she reminded me that women have been having babies "naturally" for hundreds of years. I quickly told her that I didn't like that term, "natural", I didn't get pregnant with the intent to have a natural birth. I didn't decide along the way that I wanted a natural birth. And I certainly didn't drive to the hospital this morning wanting to push this baby girl out with no epidural. 

I wanted the drugs.

  At 7:30a the shock had worn off and reality had set in, I was having this baby without drugs, and things were starting to get painful. 

Cody arrived about 7:40a and I told him what was up. Not 5 minutes later the anesthesiologist walked in to explain things a little better. Apparently this low blood platelet thing is something that happens spontaneously in some pregnant women, and the real risk when getting an epidural is:: spinal epidural hematoma. I'm not a doctor, so you can google that for yourself. Moral of the story: no way no how I was going to be given an epidural no matter how much I begged. 
So I labored through the contractions. 
At 8a the doctor came in to see where things were at. He wasn't my normal doctor, mine was in Hawaii. I'll blame him for my low platelet count. This doctor was concerned with the size of the baby, and if I was going to be strong enough to push out a 10 pounder without pain meds. So he had an ultrasound ordered. We all discussed the possibility of an elective C Section, he recommended that if the baby measured over 9 pounds that we go ahead with the C section. 
Nice. Bring on more anxiety. 

At 8:30a I had the ultrasound, the tech seemed to be a little confused with how to use her machine, she mentioned that they were new so she was still learning how to opperate it. She was also having a hard time getting a good look at Carter since she was already so low in the "birth canal".
The tech reported that Carter was 8lb 10oz. So the doctor decided the C Section was off the table. 
Back to breathing through contractions and trying to gear myself up for delivery. 
At 10:15a the doctor gave me another exam, I was 6cm. At this point he could still feel that I was carrying quite a bit of water, turns out I had a "high leak". He broke the rest of my bag so things would hurry along. 
Hurry along it did.

I almost instantly was having contractions every minute and a half apart. That gave me no time in between contractions to relax and regain myself. It was awful. 
My Mommy arrived. I remember wishing that I had the extra strength to give her a hug and a smile, but it took everything in me to concentrate on breathing.
At 10:45a in between demanding pain meds I told my nurse I that it was time, doc checked me and I was 9.5cm. They called for the catch nurse and got everything ready. 
It was all such a whirlwind. So opposite from when Reagan was born.
In the midst of the crew shuffling around I remember saying in my outside voice "I NEED TO PUSH." The nurse and Cody were still fumbling around with my legs when I declared "I'M PUSHING" it was a ready or not moment, I needed to get this girl O U T! 

It took 3 pushes. With barely time in between to take a new breath. At 11:14a She was out. 

And the pain was gone. It was the best feeling in the world! 

It was love at first sight. Our 9lb 14oz {not so} little bundle of joy had been born. It was amazing, and I was (and remain to be) so impressed with what my body was able to do. The next day as the doctor made his rounds he said "good thing that ultrasound was wrong, had I known she was this big you would have had a C Section". I'm so so so very thankful the tech was a little ass-backward with her machine. I never in my wildest dreams imagined that natural labor would be such a life changing experience. It's one of those -kind of hard to put into words- things. It truly is mentally life changing.
We spent the rest of the day loving on our new little babe. 
And the rest is history...yet to be written.

Poor babe got daddy's wide-set toes.

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