Tuesday, January 11, 2011
Brooke, Daddy and Sprocket are all napping so I finally have a minute to put our birth story down in writing [typing].
We went in to the doctor on the 30th, which was right at 40 weeks, and there was no further progress so our fabulous doc set us up with an induction date of the 3rd. When I heard that my heart immediately stopped beating and I thought to myself, "What have we done? I know nothing about babies. Let's keep her in there!!"
Early in the morning of the 3rd I lost my mucous plug and contractions started, so I was hopeful that we wouldn't have to do an induction at all and she would be coming naturally. I labored at home all day and although the contractions got to ten minutes apart they never got stronger or closer, so at 11pm we headed to the hospital.
By the time we got there my contractions were stronger and three minutes apart, so they didn't give me the pitocin as originally planned. I labored throughout the night, but by early morning I still wasn't progressing so they hooked me up and away we went!!
From 7am to noon I had strong contractions but they kept checking me and I hadn't progressed past 1cm dilated. They concluded that the scarring was preventing me from dilating so they upped the pitocin hoping that the stronger contractions would break things loose. Unfortunately, the contractions got much stronger but the only result was that no one could 'find' my cervix. Each nurse called someone else in to check, but after a parade of medical professionals they said that my water was bulging and my cervix was just too thin to measure. They called my doctor in and he broke my water and announced, "There - now she's 5 centimeters!"
By then I was exhausted and in extreme amounts of pain so I was beyond thrilled that the anesthesiologist was there waiting to give me an epidural. I didn't necessarily plan to have drugs, but after 24 hours of contractions I was ready for some relief! Corey was absolutely amazing during this time - he held my hand, talked to me during each contraction, and fed me ice chips. I wouldn't have been able to do it without him there.
My parents had arrived during this time and the nurse announced that I was 9cm so we were getting close to showtime. I was so relieved that it was tangible! Right away my doctor came in and explained that we were going to be pushing. While I was excited to get her out I had a small problem - not only did the epidural give me pain relief, I also could not feel ANYTHING. I couldn't feel my legs, move my toes, or even imagine how I was going to push. But, no one seemed to care.
They gave Corey one leg and my mother the other one and told me to push. All I could do was pretend I was doing pilates and apparently that is the same group of muscles because everyone announced that I was doing fabulously! The pushing phase didn't last long at all - maybe twenty minutes, and then my doc announced that it was time to get the baby out. I wasn't sure if something was wrong with her or if she was just that close, but either way I knew I had to push harder than I had before.
To Corey's horror the doctor started putting on galoshes, laying down paint plastic, and donning some kind of crazy parka. We thought he was joking around until he said, "It's going to look like a crime scene in here!"
Before I knew it I was pushing, and there was this enormous feeling of relief. Out she came!!
The rest was really a whirlwind - Corey cut the cord and they placed her on my chest. I remember thinking she was huge before they tore her away from me and the doctor started the stitching - and stitch he did. I had a third degree tear - and yes that hurts as bad as it sounds - and the sewing took much longer than the pushing part of labor. I felt like he was going to be down there forever and I was incredibly relieved that I'd had the epidural because I couldn't bear the thought of feeling the needle at that point.
She was wonderful and healthy with 9s on her Apgar, and Corey didn't leave her side from the second that she came out.
When they handed her back to me to breastfeed she looked right at me with huge dark blue eyes and my head spun. Had this little person really come out of me? Is she really part of me? These thoughts still haven't stopped flying through my head a week later.
Recovery has been a lot more painful than I expected, probably because of the tear, but also because Friday night I had to return to the hospital because of an infection and a bowel obstruction.
Honestly, my hormones have been running like crazy and I love kissing her and holding her, but I also alternate between those and moments where I am completely overwhelmed and scared about being completely in charge of this little life. She is so beautiful and trusting and I want nothing more than to make her life perfect in every way.
Corey is the most amazing dad I could ever imagine - watching him watching her sets my heart on fire every day.
This is such a poor version of the events, but it really is impossible to even put into words everything that happened a week ago. It feels like it has flown by, but each hour also has its own challenges and learning opportunities. Sometimes she eats well and sleeps well, and sometimes I have no idea why her head is spinning around in circles.
The exhaustion isn't really anything new for me, but Corey is having a bit of an adjustment period. Luckily, she does nap a lot so I can park it on the couch and try to recover if he needs to nap or sleep in.
Speaking of which, Daddy is napping and Brooke is hungry so motherhood calls. Wish me luck!