Sorry to kind of disappear ladies. The baby was born and I fell down the newborn rabbit hole! He's nine days old today & I'm finally starting to feel a little more with it. Here's his (suuuuper long!) birth story for anyone who's interested. Hope you're all well and your pregnancies are progressing nicely!
I woke up to bloody show at 2:30 am on Friday 9/28 and the contractions started in earnest at around 4:00 am. They grew more intense and closer together as the morning went on and I was pretty sure it was the real deal. I had a doctor’s appointment at 11:15 am and by then they were three – four minutes apart and lasting for around a minute. At the appointment I was 3cm dilated & 70% effaced. The doctor confirmed I was in early labor and said I could go to the hospital or home. I was going to go home for awhile, but after some contractions at the office my blood pressure hopped up pretty high, so the doctor sent me to hospital.
We were checked in and in an L&D room by around 1:00.
Had to be on a bp cuff & the baby had to be monitored constantly. Decided to take the epidural at around 4:30 because the contractions were starting to get unmanageable while laying on my back & my blood pressure was going higher and higher with the pain.
Got the epidural at 5:30 and was around 4 cm dilated. The epi worked pretty well for the contractions, and my bp settled back down, but after a couple hours the bp went back up enough to require magnesium sulfate. The mag IV was started around 7:30 and was AWFUL. It makes you hot – like you’re burning up from the inside, nauseous, dopey/sleepy, & screws with your vision. You basically feel like you got hit by a truck as soon as it hits your blood stream.
My mom and dad were there during this part of the labor, but eventually my dad went home and my sister came at around 7:00. She, dh and my mom were there for the whole labor & delivery.
I didn’t progress much until around 9:30 when the doctor broke my water and I was at five centimeters. At that point, I started having intense break through pain from the epi in one small spot , low in my pelvis, to the right side of my vagina. Got topped off on the epi a few times and it didn’t do anything to fix it. Got a heavy top off and was basically numb from the waist down for about 20 minutes before the pain came back and ultimately spread to my entire lower pelvis. From that point on, I pretty much felt all the contractions from the hip bones down. Felt nothing from the hipbones up and my legs were dead weight for quite some time. The doctors were utterly stumped by this and couldn’t figure out why I’d have so much pain in the “key” area, but nowhere else and were basically at a loss to fix it.
After that, I moaned and writhed my way through my half contractions until around midnight when I was complete. By then the epi had worn off and I could feel my legs totally. Started pushing after 12:00 and pushed for more than three hours. The L&D nurse was an angel and she & dh totally got me through it. DH held my leg the entire time except for a few pushes when my sister took over for him. My mom was there putting cold wash cloths on my forehead. The doctor finally came in at around 3:30 when I was crowning. She gave me a small episiotomy and I pushed for her a few more times. Finally, I heard her bark, “come on!!!” to the L&D nurse – I think she had asked her for something and was in a hurry for it – but I thought she was talking to me, so I bore down like CRAZY and the baby basically flew out in one final push. The doctor wasn’t really ready for him - he had the cord wrapped twice around his neck and I think she was trying to manipulate that out of the way before he was born. But yeah, I heard, “come on!!!,” lifted straight off that bed and pushed him right out! He cried instantly. It was 3:43 am on Saturday, 9/29. He was 6lbs 8oz & 20.5 inches long.
I was actually looking at dh as I pushed the baby out and he was crying, watching him be born. When the baby landed on my chest I started crying too and we both just sobbed. He was super alert and looking at us. We were both crying and kissing each other and thanking each other for him. It was so beautiful. My mom and sister were crying and it was just such an intense, life altering moment. It’s like he was born, I saw him and then I felt like I was born. The earth moved.
After a bit they took him over to the warmer so I could deliver the placenta and unfortunately a piece of the membrane stayed in my uterus after the placenta came out. The doctor was elbow deep trying to get it out for like, 20 minutes before she finally had the nurse get an ultrasound machine. Between the two of them they located the tissue and she was able to basically scrape it out, but I was in agony. They gave me something to chill me out/relax so she could keep working, but the whole thing was just hideous. By the time they finished getting the tissue out, putting me back together and stitching up the epi, a lot of time had passed. DH went to the nursery with the baby for his first bath and all that and had been back in the L&D room for probably a half an hour before they were done.
I was super out of it from what they gave me to relax during the procedure (Phenergan I think?) and the mag drip, so I could barely even hold the baby at first. My vision was all jacked – from the mag – and it took several hours for the sedative to wear off enough that I could even keep my eyes open. I had to be on the mag for 24 hours following the delivery and it was awful. It’s like the devil’s brew! I was so dopey and my eyes couldn’t focus, like to read something you had to close one eye because your two eyes couldn’t come together to focus on a point. From the crazy pushing marathon pretty much every muscle in my body was just shot. My biceps actually were so damaged (from pulling my legs back) that they swelled up and were HUGE , like I was lifting weights or something! I basically felt like I had pulled every muscle between my neck and calves. I had to have the mag levels checked every couple of hours while on the IV, so my right arm (which has no good needle veins in the elbow) looks like someone took a baseball bat to it. They had to go in my hand & forearm in a bunch of places so the whole thing is just covered in bruises.
Breastfeeding started out rough with all the interventions and time separated from the baby. Also all the meds they had me on made me pretty useless for the first 24 hours. He did latch ok at first, but was so sleepy & lazy, he’d suckle a few times and quit, over and over and over again. He still does that now – has a nice strong latch (when he feels like it) but then won’t stay on the breast very long. We’ve still been trying though. What’s also making it hard is my nipples/breasts are just a disaster for nursing. My nips are wide, soft, flat, shallow, etc. and really hard for him to get a grip on. But, I’ve been pumping and starting to build up a decent supply. I’m the point now where I'm pumping about as much as he's been eating, so we aren't having to supplement with formula except for a few mls here and there.
All in all though, things are going really well. Will is awesome. So chill and happpy. If he's fed, dry and cuddled, he's sleeping or just happily looking around at things. He's not been fussy at all (yet...hoping that stays true for awhile!) and he's just a joy to be around. My hubs and I joke that poor kid's face is going to get chapped from how much we kiss him! My mom's been over a lot too since he's been born, helping us out and it's been really nice. She's actually here now holding him through a nap so I could take some time on the computer!
Here are a couple pics from when he was a day old: