For the past day, I have been trying to think of how to start this and what I was going to say.
Well, the one thing I can say is that the old saying that no birth is alike, really rang true for me.
And by rang, I mean more like a blaring fog horn.
I also have to realize this is Escher's birth story. And to let it be just that.
Though it's so hard not to compare it to Ryden's.
Now to figure out when it all started. Technically, I had my first sensation of a contraction on Saturday February 18th.
At that point, I was just shy of 41 weeks, and thought, here we go. Well, we didn't go that far.
They petered out a few hours later.
They did, however, start back up the next day. Yet, they petered out again.
Though disappointing, I was at least pleased that something was happening.
On Monday, I had my 41 week appt, and my midwife Angie did a membrane sweep for me, per my request.
That got some things going, but nothing solid.
Now, fast forward a few days through a rough, and emotionally long week.
On Friday, I had my 41 1/2 week appt. By this point, I was more than bummed about how long it was all taking.
I was starting to feel defeated. I was also starting to become very aware of the fact that I was very soon to be "post dates".
So, again, per my request, I opted for another sweep.
We ask talked other "natural" forms of induction that I could consider, if I wanted to.
I decided to go to the store, after my appointment, and pick up some herbs to help move things along.
Between the herbs, walking, pumping several times, and a few other labor stimulators, I had hoped things would really get going.
So, this brings us to Saturday, February 25th 2012.
I woke up and had my breakfast as usual.
Then at 9am, I decided to wash down my breakfast with a wonderful milkshake……..
….that consisted of 2 Tbsp of castor oil, orange juice, and vanilla ice cream.
Shockingly, the OJ and ice cream did an amazing job of hiding the castor oil. It was delicious.
Then Eric and I went on a walk through the neighborhood with Ryden. I was having some Braxton Hicks or "Tony Braxton's" as Eric likes to call them.
But that was it. :)
And if there was anything that I felt was holding labor back, it was not having decided on a middle name.
Well, during the walk, we instantly decided on one. Both of us.
Shortly after I go home, the castor oil kicked in for the first time. That was at 10 am.
Then I decided to do a little more pumping, and once the BHs got a little stronger, I took one dose of my herbs.
I kept walking around, and could feel things continuing, though nothing major yet.
Eric was planning on doing some grocery shopping, so, he was getting ready to head out.
Right before he left, I was in the bathroom, and for the first time got a little contraction that I actually felt in my back.
I thought, now that is what I remember. And it made me pleased. So naive…. haha.
I told Eric, I think I might have just had a real contraction, so, he should get going.
I figured even if this was the beginning, it would be a long time, before things got serious.
I think at this point, it was some time around 11:30 am.
So, he left, I took a shower, and surprisingly, these contraction type feelings kept coming.
I started to blow up the birth tub, and get the room and myself ready for labor.
I let things go on for a good 30 mins. before I even attempted to time them.
I also called Eric to tell him to hurry cause I thought it was happening.
He had the nerve to answer the phone by telling me he would call me right back.
haha…. I was like, what!?!?!?
After timing them, I noticed that they were already 5 minutes apart and at least 45 seconds long.
This wasn't even an hour from when I first felt one.
Eric finally called back, and I told him that he needs to hurry home. I need him.
I also called Angie, my midwife, around 12:45 just to give her a heads up.
She told me to call her back when contractions were closer, my water broke, or if I though it was time.
I texted the photographer and told her today or tonight might be the day.
With Eric home, everything really started to speed up. We were able to get Ryden down for his nap, and I continued to labor. I was already having to sway through the contractions.
Just before 2, I felt things were moving really fast, and this was kind of freaking me out. I knew it meant I had a few hours before baby would be here, or I was going to have a long, hard and intense labor.
I had Eric call Angie to tell her I think things were moving quickly. She asked him if I thought she should come over.
I was so thrown off by the intensity that I said, "I don't know!" and I didn't. I knew I wanted to get in the tub, and that must have meant things were intense.
She said she would start getting ready to head over.
Right after that, I had Eric help me figure out if it seemed like my water had broken. I know that sounds silly, but with Ryden it was a huge
pop and crazy gush of water.
This was a weird little trickle, that only happened occasionally.
He saw some of the trickle, and was like, "oh yeah, that's your water!!"
So, not less than 10 minutes from the last call, he called her back to tell her we 'think' my water had broken. hah!
It was now 2 pm.
I got in the birthing pool, and had Eric call everyone else.
Contractions were intense while I was in the tub. I was having 1+ minute contractions every 4-5 minutes, with 30-40 second contractions
piggy backing them a minute later. It was super overwhelming, and I had a hard time getting my head straight.
My mom arrived first. She was shopping, got the call, and left her buggy at the store and booked it over. :)
Then the photographer, Angela.
Ryden was still napping, and my poor mom was trying to stay busy, so, that she didn't have to watch me be really uncomfortable.
At one point, I got out of the tub, walked around, and swayed through contractions.
Eric would push on my back to ease the pain.
Oh, the pain! It was really starting to freak me out. AT some moments, I was truly doubting my ability to it this time.
I remember thinking... What was I thinking doing this again?!?!
Right around 3, I think, Angie and her assistant midwife, Mary, arrived.
She watched me for a few contractions, and asked how I felt.
I had no idea. It was so intense, but so early, I didn't know what to think.
She then asked me if I wanted to be checked. I was so pleased, because I didn't know if she was going to once I was in active labor,
and knowing my waters might have broken.
I said, "YES, please!"
This is when you start doubting everything. I was so afraid she was going to tell me I was maybe a 4 or 5.
I was at 3 the previous day.
Well, good, crazy news was headed my way.
I was a really stretchy 8!!! And super effaced. Holy shit, I thought.
This is happening!
I got back into the tub, and with the next contraction or two, started to feel my body bearing down. I couldn't help it. And, oh man, was
it overwhelming. I had not felt this level of intensity with my last birth.
I yelled out to Angie that I felt like my body was pushing, and I didn't know if I should, but I couldn't handle the pain otherwise.
She said it was ok, that I was really stretchy. I was worried about causing a lip or something.
At that point, I had to get out of the tub, and go sit on the toilet. I tried standing, but that was a no-go.
I think I was in transition. Probably around 3:30. A mere 4 hours after the first feeling of something big.
I ended up on the bed, and tried pushing. Not real pushing, more of working through the contractions cause that was
the only way I could deal with the pain. After a little while, I don't know, maybe 30 minutes of being reclined, Angie suggested
I get up, cause Escher did not like me on my back. It was affecting his heart rate.
So, I stood through some contractions, squatted, was on my hands and knees leaning over the birth ball, and a few other positions.
Eric and the midwives were super encouraging, but at a certain point, Angie felt that these weren't doing enough.
I was trying my hardest to push, but just wasn't pushing hard enough.
Angie had been so good at monitoring Escher's heart rate, and had decided it was time for me to sit back, upright, on the bed,
and really get down to business.
Nothing but straightforward calmness from her.
Man, this was the hardest thing I had ever done.
They put an oxygen mask on me in between contractions, and really guided me with pushing through contractions.
I'm not quite sure of the timing, but I'm thinking after maybe 10 or 15 minutes of this, Escher was making his way down and out.
Finally, after a lot, and I mean, a lot of burning, Escher's head finally came out. I was so happy to see him, and could see that his head was blue.
So, now I had to blow through the burning, until the next contraction came.
Eric was having a really hard time here. He could see his head, and that there was also the cord around Escher's neck.
Unlike Angie, Eric did not know that this was fairly common. His cord was still intact (and not clamped), so, he was still getting his oxygen.
With the next contraction, or two, out slid the rest of him.
Unlike Ryden, I didn't get him immediately.
I heard him make a peep right when he came out, so, I knew he was ok. Even though he wasn't crying yet.
Angie flipped him over and patted on his back quite a few times, and after doing this, he was crying loud and clear.
Music to everyone's ears. :)
Though, I believe a minute too long for Eric. I feel so bad knowing how he was processing this on the inside.
Once he started crying, Angie handed him to me and started to suck a little fluid out of him. I was so happy to have him!!!
I didn't realize it, but everyone else knew he was big. I asked how big, and they were like, definitely 10 lbs.
I could not believe it! Although it did make sense with the pushing being so hard.
Oh, sweet baby!!!
After the birth, they started to manage my third stage, and I was brought some juice and Shepard's pie. :)
Angie had to give me some pitocin for the bleeding (technically, enough to be considered a hemorrhage), and monitor me.
The same thing happened to me with Ryden's birth.
Then my mom brought in Ryden to meet his baby brother. He was SO happy to meet him.
I couldn't believe how happy he was.
After getting me mended, and cleaned up, Escher was finally weighed.
11 pounds and a whopping 2 ounces!
Seriously, are you kidding me?
We were all in disbelief and amazement!!!!!
Over the next several hours, I held my sweet baby, nursed him, ate carrot cake and a roast beef sandwich, was monitored, got two bags of fluids (low blood pressure to begin with plus loss of blood equals extra low pressure), and finally got tucked into our bed.
It was after 10 pm, and the midwives were finally on their way out.
And we were a family of four. Sweet happiness.
I think back to how everything played out, and couldn't be happier with the decisions we made.
Had I been with an OB, and not my patient midwife, I would have definitely been pressured to induce.
For size, and for going late.
That would have been such a harder labor for Escher, especially considering how his cord was, and possibly a section.
Not the end of the world, but honestly, not nearly as gentle as how things turned out for him.
I am so thankful for everything, and so thankful it is over… hah!
And I couldn't have done it without every one involved.
Though, I am a bit sad because my baby boy is already four days old.
Time stood still for weeks, and now the days are flying by.
Stay golden pony boy. :)
us plus one