So I'm finally getting to writing up a little birth story. I figured I'd share all the gory details here, then write a more public refined one for my blog a bit later... haha. Too many non mom's read there and I don't think 13 year old girls want to hear how their vagina's go crazy just yet. ha!!!
So it all started when I posted here on Saturday (29th) morning around 7am. I woke up to little contractions but didn't think too much of it as I had been just starting to get Braxton Hicks a few days earlier. They continued on and off throughout the day. As most of you know, I live with my doula (long story if you don't). I casually went upstairs around noon and told her that I was having BH during the morning hours. Supposedly, I was acting very quiet and refined at this time. She says she knew immediately I was going to have a baby within the next day because I was acting a bit differently (I didn't notice at all!).
Things continued all day and I didn't really think about them. I timed them on and off, but there would be one or two random ones (not exactly 4 minutes apart, for example) so I would just write the whole bunch off. I really didn't think I was having the baby in September. It got to be dinnertime and I was still hopping and skipping around with her children. The contractions were noticable, but I really didn't think it was it. Mostly because I wasn't feeling any pain, any nesting instict, any anything. Around 8 or 9pm, I decided to go lay down for a bit... but when I tried to rest, I kept getting woken up. It was pretty irritating over all, but again, not painful.
I walked upstairs, kind of grumbling... and chatted with my doula again. She made me sit down and time them with her... they were 1-3 minutes apart and lasting about 60 seconds from first sign of tightening to loosen again. I was still talking through them no problem, but she decided we should go to the hospital because she thought it was labor. I casually went back to my room to pack a little bag (I still seriously doubted it was real, so I'm pretty laid back at this point still) and met her upstairs.
When we arrived at the hospital 45 minutes later, the nurses looked at me funny when I came waddling in happily and talked to them with no pain in my voice. It was pretty obvious they doubted I was in labor as well. Finally, my doula convinced one of the nurses to check me in the very least (they were trying to send me home). To my (and her!) surprise, I was 5cm dilated and 80% effaced. Haha. We hooked me up to a monitor to see the contractions and they were strong!! Here's what they looked like:
This made me laugh, because they looked SOOOO intense on the screen and yet I was hardly feeling anything. I got dressed in a few hospital gowns which fell QUITE large on me and started walking around the quite bland hospital hallways with my doula.
Things still weren't hurting at ALL for me. I was walking straight through contractions, not even really thinking about them. I was laughing and giggling with my doula and midwife. My midwife came in straight away and was just relaxing with us... it was so cool. It honestly felt like the chill atmosphere of a home birth because my midwife was soo lax about everything. Finally, at 3am, I had a bloody show. My midwife checked me (to my request) and I was 7cm! Still feeling nothing?!?! I was pretty weirded out that there was absolutely no pain yet...
She asked me if I wanted her to break my water and I shrugged and said, why not? Immediately after the first gush of water (totally gross sensation, BTW), I began feeling EVERYTHING. haha. The contractions got rediculously intense. I tried all sorts of positions all over the room, but I was really having to concentrate. My doula was SO great... she was talking me through them and doing everything absolutely right. I couldn't have asked for a better support person...
I sort of thought about labor logically... and boy, was that a mistake. I figured all the baby books would be honest when they said 7-10 happens fast... It may happen fast when you are in your right mind looking at a clock, but my god, it does NOT feel fast when you are working through contractions!!!
My doula says I was impeccably quiet and calm in my face the entire time. I would almost swear by the fact that I was yelling at everyone in the room and complaining out my pants... but I guess it was all inside my head. hahaha. The midwife checked me again, and I was only at 8cm... When I heard her mummer this to my doula, I was devastated. I felt like I was going to burst into a bunch of tears and never see my boy.
At the point, my son's heartrate started dropping steadily... the attending doctor was called in, then the C section people were called in, then NICU was called in... the lights were turned all on super bright and tables and operating equitment was flying everywhere. Everyone was rushing around me. An oxygen mask was put on my face and everyone started doing things without asking me. I guess you really know it's an emergency when people stop asking you "if it's okay". It was so hard to hear what anyone was saying because of the dumb mask and I felt like I couldn't breathe because it dried out my lips and mouth instantly. Some doctor with bright blue operating gloves was talking to me and telling me what he was going to do, with a knife IN HIS HAND (I don't think he realized this) and I couldn't hear one word, but I sensed that they were about to cut my son out of me...
Boy, oh boy, I turned into an animal at this point. I was SO determined NOT to be cut. I wanted a vaginal delievery so much... My midwife this whole time was focused fully on me. She and I looked at each other and I think she knew in my eyes what was going to happen. I was not engaged at this point and only 9cm dialated, but 100% effaced. I pulled my knees as far apart as I could and started pushing with everything inside of me filled with passion. She did such a good job of stretching me open (only one teensy tear right on my inner labia) and within seconds I was crowning. The C-Section people were literally trying to get me onto their operating table. I just kept pushing with all my might. It took about 5 super intense pushes to get this kiddo from above my pelvic bone to in my arms. My midwife and I pulled him out together. It was 6:21am when he was born (3 hours of actual laboring in my mind).
Almost immediately, before I could even place him to me, he was taken away by the NICU doctors... he wasn't breathing and has swallowed a bunch of fluid into his lungs. After about 10 minutes of him on oxygen and them doing everything they could to save his life, he stablized just a bit... Enough for them to put him on my chest for just moments before carting him upstairs in NICU to work on him further... This is the first time I ever held my little Nico...
It was almost two hours before I saw him again... It was so so so rough, but I'm even more glad that he's fully healthy now. For the next 48 hours, he was kept on an oxygen monitor in my room and it would beep really loudly and scare the crap out of me if he dipped too low. Each time a bunch of nurses would come in and take him away for a short time to stablize him. But everyone really was trying to keep him with his mommy as much as possibly safe.
Here are some pictures from the hospital:
Since then, we've been home for a few days... I cannot believe how in love I am with him. It's absolutely incredible. I feel absolutely healthy and honestly, not like I just pushed a child out of my vagina. Haha. Nico is incredible too. He hasn't had any problems since his oxygen issue and has really come around. It seems to have been just a transition time for him into the world. He's taken to breastfeeding much more quickly than I ever imagined a newborn would (esp one that didn't get to BF until later in the first day) and he sleeps almost all the way through the night with only one or two little hiccups.
He was so small, by the way... 18.5 inches and 6lbs 15oz. He barely fits into newborn clothes and diapers. hehe. I started carrying him around today in my little wrap pouch and I couldn't be happier with the way things are. I think I have taken over 100 pictures of him...everyday. hahaha. I LOVE HIM SO. And it's so...so...nice to have a family.