I wrote this back in August 2012, so some stuff is out of date (like my son is obviously no longer 10 months old lol) but everything else still applies.
On September 24, which was a
Saturday, I woke up to pee for the 8,956th time overnight at about 4am,
and noticed I was leaking a little bit. I had been leaking randomly,
contracting randomly, etc for weeks (TMI, sorry) so I paid it no mind
and went back to bed.
At about noon, we were getting ready to
head out to my parents house because Hubs had promised my little brother
a driving lesson, when I got a really sharp pain that seemed to
envelope my entire abdomen. That wouldn't have been a big deal, since I
was used to random evil pains at this point, except this pain lasted 30
minutes straight. I was crying by the time it was over. I decided we
should stop in at the hospital before we went to my parents, if only so
they could assure me I was having my 48th false alarm before we went on
with our day.
Lo and behold, my water was broken. Well, not broken. "Ruptured". Trickling.
And I was dilated a whole 1/2 cm.
was immediately super excited and terrified, though excited won out in
spades. We called our parents, and of course EVERYONE came over right
I was admitted, and put on an external monitor. The pain
was pretty bad, to the point that my dad had to get up and leave because
he couldn't stand to see me like that. I was checked a couple of times,
and I remember thinking I was going to die during the cervical checks.
Literally. I was making my peace because I was certain the pain of those
checks was going to throw me into shock and my heart was going to
suddenly stop beating. The labor was nothing compared to those checks.
wasn't progressing, so at about 7:30pm (having been in labor for over
15 hours at this point), the nurses inserted something called Cervadil
in "there", after much resistance from me (I wanted ZERO intervention if
at all possible, and EVERYTHING the nurses suggested was met with
resistance, FYI). It was basically a piece of paper with hormones in it
meant to help my cervix dilate (open) and efface (thin out) over 12
hours. I was told to get some rest (yeah right) because tomorrow, I
would be able to start pushing and I needed to conserve as much strength
and energy as possible.
When I woke up the next morning (I say
"woke up" loosely, I didn't sleep much thanks to the damned blood
pressure cuff trying to murder me every hour and the random nurses
walking in and out of the room to adjust the monitor). I was checked
again, and I was only 1cm dilated. 12 hours of Cervadil got me a whole
1/2cm. I was told that I had to get on Pitocin, regardless of my
protests, because it had been over 24 hours since my labor started and I
had to help the baby (ha!) in order to avoid a c-section, which is my
absolute greatest fear. So in goes the Pitocin.
I tried to nap
since I slept so crap the night before, but I was woken from my nap to a
nurse half yelling at me that I needed an internal monitor because they
lost the baby on the external. BEGIN PANIC. I was terrified not only of
the monitor, but the fact that THEY were so panicked about the baby.
The contraption was so painful and uncomfortable, imagine a huge long
spatula IN YOU then laying on your thigh. That's
how big this thing
was (Bu STILL has a scar on his head from the monitor, btw, and he's 10
months old now). They finished rupturing my bag of waters to put it in,
and the party really got going.
I had more cervical checks. I
have to say, now almost a year postpartum, I don't remember what the
pain of the labor OR the checks felt like, but I remember the screaming.
I remember hearing myself scream and being so delirious that I was sure
it must have been someone else because I couldn't even scream like
that. It's incredible the things the mind remembers (and forgets) in
order to protect oneself.
At some point in the late morning/early
afternoon of September 25, I had some sort of epiphany. I said to
myself "you're scared, and you're letting the pain take you over. You
need to take over the pain, or you'll never get through this. Do it for
the baby." So I started breathing. Mind you, I never took a single labor
class (maybe I should have), so I had no basis for what to do. I just
did it. Every time I felt the wave about to hit me, I barged into it
instead of fighting it. I spread my hands in front of me, requested that
no one touch me, and I just breathed. I was deep in concentration, and I
hadn't realized that the contractions had more than tripled in strength
according to the monitor.
I started to really feel like I was
kicking this labor's butt! I felt strong and powerful. 38 hours into the
labor, I was checked again, and I was so thankful to hear that I was
now 3cm dilated and completely effaced! It was working! It was slow
going, but it was working! I was on the right track! And still no pain
meds! I would meet my baby soon, and he would be alert and recognize his
momma immediately and everything would be perfect. I asked the
how much worse I could expect the contractions to get, and they told me
that based on what they saw on the monitor, I was having
transition-like strength contractions already. My body was ready for
delivery with the exception of my cervix (a pretty important bit LOL) so
I shouldn't feel much worse at all.
I felt a second wind come
over me! It wouldn't get much worse than this, and I was making
progress! I was Wonder Woman! I just kept breathing, with my husband,
mother, and grandmother in awe that I was doing so well considering the
wreck I'd been for so many hours prior. I got a new nurse (my 4th or
5th, I believe) who was schooled in natural deliveries and minimal
interventions. I felt this was fate encouraging me and I knew I was
doing better than anyone expected, so I was relieved and ready to fight.
44 hours, I had another cervical check. I hadn't moved one centimeter.
Not even half a centimeter. In 6 HOURS. The 6 hours where I was feeling
like this labor was my bitch. I felt so defeated. As if that wasn't bad
enough, my doctor walked in (the doctor, by the way, was second to last
on the list-of-doctors-I-hope-will-deliver-me because she always seemed
so clueless and incompetent during my office visits with her. The only
doctor UNDER her in the list was a fat-phobic asshole who was an
absolute nightmare both as a person and a doctor) and let me know that
she'd waited long enough and I needed to have a c-section. I threw up.
nurse came in and tried to put me in different positions (I had labored
sitting the whole time because I couldn't take being on my back), but I
was already defeated. I felt like the hospital was just toying with me
now, to teach me a lesson (I was delirious, ok?). I was already doomed
to a c-section, what could I possibly do in the next hour
that I hadn't already done for over 40 that would allow me a vaginal birth?
barfed again on the way to the operating room. All over my cute custom
delivery gown. I remained in that gown for the delivery, FYI. So I was
covered in barf when my son was born. Cute.
I was shaking and
crying the whole way to the operating room, and telling literally EVERY
SINGLE PERSON I came in contact with that I was "SO SCARED". Some people
tried to reassure me, others ignored me because they had work to do
(probably for the best), but I promise not ONE person in that operating
room was spared an "I'm so scared! ::SOB::" and there are a LOT of
people in an OR for a c-section. They gave me a spinal (so I ended up
with an epidural anyway) and I immediately felt my toes go numb, which
scared the hell out of me (even more). I realized I could not move my
toes, and I started uncontrollably shaking. I'm talking
have-to-be-held-down, violent shakes. My husband was allowed into the
room and he sat next to me while they did their thing. I heard the baby
cry, and the doctor say "It's a boy!".
My first thought? "I know."
Ugh, I was so out of my mind.
Then I saw him. And I cried. My husband turned to me and said "It's our little boy!"
And I vomited. On his bare foot. Never wear flip-flops into an OR, people.
know looking back I was really lucky that I got that doctor because she
was a bit of a pushover, and every time I argued that I wanted another
hour, and another and another, to see if I could do this naturally, she
allowed it until the last possible moment. If I had gotten either of the
2 doctors I was hoping for, I would have been on the operating table
just hours after being admitted, not days. It can be argued that I ended
up on the operating table anyway, but it was MY CHOICE to have such a
long labor, and she allowed me that choice. I couldn't be more grateful
to her for that.
And so, the absolute light of my life and reason
for being came into this world 3 days after I entered the hospital, after
46 hours of unmedicated labor. It's definitely a story, and an
extraordinary experience. And believe it or not, I wouldn't have had it
any other way.