Alexandra Grace finally made her appearance!
I was admitted to the hospital on 7/31 to begin the induction process with Cervidil. I was hooked up to monitors that night and the nurse said I was experiencing contractions, which I could barely feel. I thought to myself, If this is what labor is like, I can totally do this!
HA! My water broke at 5:30AM on August 1 and then the contractions really started. I was calling for the epidural after about an hour of laboring naturally. The pain was really distracting and I just couldn't focus enough to remember breathing, positioning, or anything! So much for "going natural" lol. Unfortunately, the epi didn't take evenly, so I still felt a lot of discomfort.
I was placed on Pitocin shortly thereafter. Baby didn't tolerate it well so it was alternately turned on and off to give my uterus a chance to relax and Baby a chance to recuperate. Baby also didn't tolerate any positioning changes on my part very well, so I would spend hours on my left side, which would cause my left leg to go completely numb while my right remained active and able to experience senstation. Positioned on my right, vice versa.
When my water had broken, I was still about 2cm dilated, which is just about how I had entered the hospital. At noon, I had still only progressed to 3cm. The nurse had told me getting to 4 usually took a long time, but after that, I could expect to dilate 1 cm/hr. I was so disheartened! I didn't feel I had the strength to go on for hours and hours like this. DH and I prayed for strength, and it helped.
Around 2pm, DH went to call our families to let them know of my progress. The anesthesiologist visited and suggested increasing my pain medicine and adjusting the epi for more relief, which I agreed to. It did help, thankfully. After that, a nurse came in and checked me... AND I HAD DILATED TO 8 CM!!!!
Yes, in the span of just 2 hrs I had gone from 3 to 8 cm! There was quite a flurry of activity after that. My poor DH had only been gone a few minutes, but when he came back, the room was full of people and clearly the mood in the room had changed from patiently waiting to anxiously preparing. Baby was still experiencing some stress from the Pit, so that was again dialed back and I was given oxygen and (carefully) repositioned. The nurse told me that since the anesthesiologist had just upped my pain meds, I might not be able to push effectively, and since Baby was in some stress, a c-section might become necessary. I was so scared after that! I really wanted to avoid a c-section if at all possible. The nurse told me the OR was ready for me and even swabbed my abdomen with sterile solution "just in case."
After about an hour, Baby had stabilized enough and my Dr. recommended I try pushing. I pushed with all my might and my Dr., who is usually very stoic, said, "Wow! I'm hard to impress and you impressed me! You really are a good pusher! Let's have this baby!" So, I set about to pushing and 4 (!) contractions later, Alexandra Grace made her appearance. We were blessed with a happy, healthy, 7lb 20" baby girl.
We've had a few challenges since birth (breastfeeding challenges, then I had two more episodes of SVT at 3 and 4 days PP and had to go to the emergency room, which further exacerbated the BFing issues, then milk quality issues, so we've decided to FF, and now Alexandra is doing much better) but overall we are all doing well. As I said, we are truly blessed!!!!