I was really hoping for a boring birth story this time around, but when it comes to me and medical issues-it is never boring!
Tuesday August 26th I went in for my bi-weekly ultrasound and non-stress test. The ultrasound looked great. But the non-stress test, not so much. I could tell immediately that something was wrong, they kept asking me to move, and repositioning the monitor. At one point the nurse said she thought the monitor was picking up on my heart rate. I told her my resting heart rate is usually 60-70 bpm, that's when she got the doctor.
After a little bit more monitoring the doctor told me he was going to send me straight to the perinatologist for a more in depth ultrasound. My doctor was leaving the island and I was a little nervous to have him gone if things were not looking perfect so I suggested he induce me :) I could tell by his expression that was tempting, but he said he wanted to talk with the perinatologist first.
I went out to the waiting room. I was feeling surprisingly peaceful about the whole thing, but I also started to feel like being induced would be a good idea (I have NEVER wanted to be induce-so the fact it sounded like a good idea was proof to me the idea was not mine). I am a worrier and given my history it wouldn't matter what the ultrasound said I would be worrying like crazy about this baby. I just felt she needed to come out. I had a good case ready to plead to my doctor when he called me back to his office. He said instead of calling the perinatologist he was calling the hospital to see if there was room for me to be monitored there and possibly be induced later today or tomorrow. He said hospitals are very picky about inducing at all, let alone before 39 weeks. But he was going to see what he could do given my history.
I was so grateful and relieved. I stepped into the hallway to call John and tell him to get his bum home. Imagine my distress when his co-worker answered his phone instead. John can't take cell phones into his office, and he was currently doing something that was in an area with zero phones, and in a location where you can't just walk in and grab someone. Yea for John's job!!! His co-worker said she would do her best to find him and have him call me ASAP, she was so sweet and said she would miss lunch if she had to to help me out!
When I went back in the doctor told me to grab my bag and head to the hospital. I never wanted to get induced, that sounded really awful. I also couldn't get a hold of my husband, or my friend who was suppose to watch Caleb. I was worried about my baby too. Low heart rate is not a good sign. I just remember taking some deep breaths, saying a prayer and being comforted that things would work out.
After a quick stop at Whole Foods (I hadn't had anything but a smoothie all day-and was too stressed to really eat so I ate a muffin for strength!) so really fast packing (like I forgot everything I needed) and a selfie, I headed to the hospital-alone.
|38 weeks! And mere hours before going into labor.|
I was driving when John called. I was really trying to stay calm about the whole thing. It worked very well because John couldn't even tell I was stressed out. In fact he told me to get to the hospital, he had a meeting he needed to get to, and then he would call me to see how the monitoring was going. That's when I let my stress sneak through a little more :) But really he told me he was very surprised I was so calm when I was talking to him given that it was a fairly urgent matter.
After getting crazy lost at every single turn (this was a new hospital to me-not my planned place of delivery) I made it to Labor and Delivery, with John right behind me. They had a room waiting for me. I asked the nurses what the plan was, they said Dr. B hadn't made the firm call, but they would start monitoring me. They said they would go call him, and I said to push the induction idea :)
They came back in and said to get ready to have a baby! I was relieved to know this baby was getting out and would be closely monitored until she was in my arms. But I was not really ready to have a baby. I really thought I had two maybe three weeks and there was a lot I wanted to get done! Plus it was finally sinking in we were going to have two kids and that was a little scary. I just had to push all that away and move forward-she needed to get out.
Getting the IV was the worse part, it took one nurse, two members of the hospital's IV team (who knew that was a thing) and seven pokes to get it in. My arm was very sore.
I met the staff OB and talked with him a little about getting induced. He said that the contractions would start in about an hour and it could be awhile after that. The ultimate goal for my doctor was to keep baby safe, but Dr. B really wanted to avoid a c-section since I have had so many surgeries in my little life.
While I waited for the contractions to get stronger and more regular I starred at my beautiful ceiling (the hospital didn't have HGTV, the only bad experience with the hospital)
Once they started they really started. The contractions were a minute and a half apart for seven or eight hours (I didn't really watch the clock so I have no idea how long I was in labor for according to my hospital report my active labor didn't start until 8, I got the pitocin around 4 and had a lot on contractions before the whole "active labor"). It was crazy!
After awhile they noticed the baby's heart rate was dropping with every single contraction. Given the fact her heart rate was already low and she wasn't moving much this was not a good thing. Because my contractions were so close together she didn't have time to recover in between contractions so she was under constant stress. They stopped the pitocin and checked to see how I was progressing. I had dilated one centimeter in probably 4 hours. I seriously wanted to cry.
The contractions were so intense I hadn't felt like going for walks, taking a shower (which I couldn't do since her heart rate had to be monitored the entire time), bounce on the ball or do yoga. But at that point I figured I needed to try something to get my body going. We walked around the floor twice before I really couldn't move or breath through the contractions. I opted at this point to get the epidural. I also vowed to never ever get induced again unless medically necessary because it was not a super fun experience!
It was about 8:30 and I was exhausted. I had woken up at 5 am to do Barre, and hadn't eaten anything but a smoothie, muffin, cake (I thought it might make her move :) and broth all day. I was only four cm after hours of labor (I was a three at the doc that morning) I wanted a nap! I started to doze off when I wet my pants, or my water broke-I wasn't really sure. I called the nurse in and was relieved it was my water, because the other would have been really embarrassing.
That started things moving a little faster. Since I had gotten to the hospital my heart rate had been really low-like 40 bpm. Despite being off the pitocin and having the epidural to calm me my heart rate and oxygen stayed low, so they gave me the oxygen mask. I could tell with time the nurse and doctor were getting more anxious about how I was doing. They kept coming in to check on me and asked a lot of questions about how I was feeling. They said if I ever felt even the slightest urge to push to call them immediately. I started to will my body to have this baby because I didn't want a c-section after all I had been through.
After another hour or two I asked the nurse if she could help me to the bathroom (I don't get the full strength epidurals, I like to be able to feel when I need to push and be able to move my legs, I just get enough to take the edge of the contractions). She started laughing and told me I didn't need to use the bathroom I needed to have a baby! They were all excited and called my doctor to get down there.
As soon as he got in the room and looked over all the baby and mine stats he said this baby needed to get out! I overheard him ask the nurse if the room had a vacuum. Blah, I didn't want another vacuumed baby, but I did want an alive baby so I guess I needed to trust my doctor.
Only part of my water had broken earlier and he said there was no time to waste. So he broke the rest of it (and it got all over him, I still feel bad about that). As soon as the water broke I started gushing blood-like a lot of blood. When I started bleeding during delivery with Caleb I thought that was normal, I have since learned that is not normal, and had close to 20 tubes of blood drawn this pregnancy to try to figure out why I bleed during delivery.
Even though my doctor was totally calm and in control the whole time I also knew he really wanted this baby out. He told me to start pushing whenever I felt like it (for the last hour my contractions were every 30 seconds or so, so basically it was one long contraction). I started to push and everyone in the room cheered me on like I was at the Super Bowl! I don't know if everyone in the room realized I needed to get her out really really bad, or if that is just the Aloha Spirit.
After a push or two my doctor asked for the vacuum. I was too worried about the massive amounts of blood with every push to care. He hooked it up and told me to push again, and out she slid.
But she didn't cry and looked blue.
So I started to cry, really really hard. I honestly believed she was dead and it was the worse feeling in the world. Everyone kept telling me she was fine and I kept telling them if she was fine she would be crying and I wouldn't be bleeding like I was, they told me it was fine.
After a minute or so she started to cry (the cord had been around her neck, also there was poop in the fluid, pretty much when you read "What to Expect" and it talks about complications in delivery, every single one happened in one delivery). That was the best sound in the world. I cried even harder.
At some point the placenta came out. My doctor asked if i wanted to keep it, I told him no, and he said good because it was in really bad shape. The placenta had detached and there was a blood clot on it (that explains my massive bleeding when they broke my water as well as the strong contractions back to back). My doc still isn't sure why or when it detached, when I asked him that night why placentas detach he told me "usually cocaine use by the mother" with a smile. I am guessing the other doctor (who I think was a resident) had never seen such a thing because they studied that placenta for a long time, and every minute or so Dr. B would look at me and say "I am so glad we induced you and got her out today."
They didn't bring her over right away after she started breathing, I guess they wanted to make sure she really was stable. I made John go take pictures with the phone and show me. And I immediately loved that little thing!
Finally I got to hold her! She is about the most perfect thing in the world. Just the cutest little baby. I still can't believe she is ours!
|The nurses took such good care of all of us that day!|
She was born on August 27th at 12:04 AM, 6 lbs 13 ounces and 20 inches long. I had made a bet with Caleb months ago that she would be born on the 26th, I was so bummed she didn't make that!
It was quite the day! But it was one of the most amazing days of my entire life! I am in complete awe that she came out healthy and happy after all the complications (OK I am still in complete awe that I got pregnant. My doctor told me many times throughout this pregnancy that I really am so lucky given my history). I look back at the whole pregnancy and think we really should have used "miracle" as her middle name. She is nothing short of a miracle in every sense of the word. I am so grateful to my Heavenly Father for watching over her for nine months and helping her grow and develop so being a little early wasn't as big of a issue as it could have been.
John was just the most supportive husband. He wouldn't eat in the room because he knew I was starving. He was so supportive and encouraging that I really could do the whole childbearing thing. And he kept his iPhone in his pocket the whole time (expect for pictures and updating family) so that he could just focus on me. I love him!
I am grateful to have had an amazing doctor, even though the whole thing was crazy and really stressful it was a very calm and peaceful experience giving birth to her. I know a lot of that was a blessing from God, but some of it is I know we were guided to Dr. B, he is an amazing doctor and his personality matches perfectly with what I want in a doctor.
Miracles really do happen, and we are so grateful for every moment this miracle has been apart of our life.