Madelynne was born on Saturday, 7/30 at 8:21 AM
7 lb 10 oz
19.5 inches long
I could probably right a book for the birth story :LOL , but here's a version off the top of my head. I may write a more comprehensive one later, and I think my monitrice took notes too that will help me remember more stuff I'm sure.
Well, my monitrice was wrong about the prodromal labor -- mostly. Turns out Madelynne's head was slightly misaligned, so wasn't applying even pressure to my cervix. I think that's why my labor was starting and stopping, and once it really got going, why it took so darn long. So I had contractions on and off, starting Wednesday night. Starting Thursday evening, they started up, and never tapered off again. The going was very slow and painful due to the head misalignment, and also her posterior positioning. I worked with my monitrice at home until 11 PM Friday night, trying all sorts of stuff to get Madelynne to move into a better position -- laboring the whole time. At that point, I hadn't slept at all Thursday night, and had been awakened frequently by contractions Wednesday night, so was going on very little sleep. And things were really painful, and I was in a really bad place. My body was working so hard, but getting little done because of her position. I still hadn't effaced fully, and was desperate to find an escape -- but there was none. I desperately wanted an epidural, but I knew that would be followed by pit, and as long as her position was bad, it was unlikely I would efface and dilate completely (especially once I was confined to a bed, and couldn't work to move her). And that would mean a c-section. So I had no choice (IMO), except to go forward. I would be lying if I didn't say I was utterly miserable.
By that time I was at 4 cm, though (finally), so the birth center would take me. We got there around midnight, and when they checked me I was at 5 cm, and fully effaced. I practically cried with relief, although I knew there was still a lot of work ahead of me. At least I knew I would be getting somewhere, instead of all that pain and agony for practically nothing.
I don't remember all the times, but I dilated to 8 cm in just a few hours -- I think my body had been working at this for so long, that once all the road blocks were out of the way, I labored pretty efficiently. Except I got stuck at 8 for 2 hours, so I agreed to let them break my bag of waters (the one and only intervention in the entire labor and birth process), and I dilated to 10 cm in the next hour -- except for a tiny sliver of cervix (I was beginning to wonder exactly when things would go right for a change!!!). They tried having me push her past it, but it woudn't stay back. So it was back to waiting. The contractions were really intense and painful, but I knew I was so close to being done.
Things are a bit of a blur after that (I was utterly delirious from lack of sleep and total exhaustion). I think I started feeling pushy, but the lip was still there. So I got in a different position where the contractions didn't feel pushy anymore (just hurt like hell). After about 15 minutes there, I felt pushy again, and they checked and the lip was gone. I was lying on my back after being checked, so tried a few pushes there, but it really hurt my back. Then I tried the birthing stool, but that didn't feel right either. All the while, my contractions were a mix of dilating and pushing contractions, and still hurt like crazy. I finally got on my knees and leaned on a birthing ball. I feel like my pushing contractions never really established themselves well, as they were always mixed with dilating contractions, or I didn't feel pushy at all. So they still hurt a lot, and my body wasn't giving me the help I needed to get her out. My monitrice wanted me to do nipple stimulation to make the contractions stronger and (maybe) more pushy, but I couldn't stand the thought of increasing the pain, and I refused to do it. I decided I had had enough and that little girl was coming out NOW, no matter what -- even if I had to do it with sheer willpower. After I got on hands and knees, I had her out in 20 minutes (total time from first trying to push of about an hour). The nurses were all cheering me on and telling me what a great pusher I was.
I've never felt such relief in my life as when she slithered into this world and the contractions finally stopped! I had a 2nd degree tear and a skidmark. Also there was pretty heavy meconium staining (when they broke the bag, it only looked light, so this was a surprise). So they did deep suctioning, and I didn't get to hold her for almost an hour. They kept her in our room the entire time, though. I hated having to wait, but finally got to hold my angel, and it suddenly made the hell of the last several days worth it.
She wasn't that interested in nursing right away (I think due to the trauma of the suctioning). But latched on yesterday evening, and the bfing seems to be going well now. Her bilirubin was high, but our ped agreed to let her go home (the nurse said any other ped would have made her stay). So we came home a few hours ago, and we're sitting her in the sunlight (inside) as much as we can. Have to take her to the ped tomorrow -- I'm hoping things will have improved by then.
I am totally in love with my little girl, and think she's the most beautiful baby in the world (completely unbiased opinion :LOL ). I'd love to post pics, but don't have anything set up for that. Maybe in a little while, when things settle down. Right now, I'm trying to focus on catching up on my sleep, since I got so little while laboring over several days, and sleep is a rare commodity with a newborn as it is! I haven't had a chance to catch up with all the posts, but I hope all is going well for everyone!
P.S. Forgot to say I was utterly dismayed to find that getting in the hot tub not only didn't help with the pain of contractions, it actually made them stronger, and therefore more painful. ARRRGGGHHH! I still spent a lot of time in the water, because it helped move things along. But I was so disappointed that it didn't help with the pain. Oh well, it's all over now, although I can't exactly say it feels like a distant memory :LOL .
ETA, DH rose famously to the occasion, and was the biggest champ in the world. I don't know if I could have done it without him!
Mama to M (7/05) and S (5/08) my surprise !!!