Thursday 3/26 I had contractions all day at about 30 minute intervals. Good deal, I knew we were making progress. I did notice they seemed to be in my back and uncomfortable. Thursday night, sleeping was sporadic at best through the pain. Friday day, relatively regular contractions in the 15 -10 minute interval range. Kept working through it though, as it was a bit of distraction. Though, I suspect it wasn't my best work day.
That night at 7pm we spoke with my midwife who said it sounded as though I was in labor and to wait to call again to come in to the birth center when the contractions for 4 minutes apart for 1 minute each for at least 1 hour. I was up all night with random times - 3 minutes apart, 15 minutes, 6 minutes. Nothing regular but each one was all in my back and spectacularly painful. I tried to get poor DH to sleep but he wasn't good at leaving my side. The next morning, he had about 3 hours of sleep under his belt, and I none. 7am, my water broke, and all of a sudden my contractions were 3 minutes apart regularly. We were told to meet at the birth center at 9:30am. How exciting - things were moving along and soon this pain would be over. Also, it was MIL's b-day and she had asked that we have her then so they could share it. I told her I'd do my best!
The ride there was not great - I hadn't anticipated pot holes + back labor (our baby was positioned posteriorly). Not fun. I've never seen DH drive with such care though. He was amazing.
Got to the birth center. First internal 100 % effaced and 5cm along. Back labor continues. Two hours of the contractions later I was 5.5 cm along. Back labor continues. The birth tub of water was indeed highly helpful but the pain was something as well. They had DH using counter pressure which helped a good deal, but the pain was becoming overwhelming. They offered me injected sterile water drops in my back. They inject 4 small shots in the small of my back, the pain they cause - an extreme burning for 40 seconds overrides any pain sensors and your back pain is diminished significantly for hours. I hesitated at first - but gave in. The shots were exceedingly painful, but I survived and it really did help for a while. Next internal revealed I was around 6cm dilated.
Let's fast forward through many more hours of back labor, walking, doing stairs, etc. 4pm I was at 6.5 dialated and going nowhere. I was completely exhausted having not slept in days from the pain and no end was in sight. The midwife said, I am going to recommend we go over to the hospital across the street. We did. At that point, I wasn't remotely upset about not having the water birth. The Hospital was fantastic, much to my surprise. The staff was incredible, but my midwife stayed with me the entire time. They administered an epidural mid-contaction, "Veghead, don't move." DH wasn't allowed in the room then and my midwife had to hold me through it. I vaguely have a memory of her kissing the top of my head as the wave of contraction washed over me and they dispensed the epidural. I never felt the administering of he epidural, the contractions were too strong for that. But holy moly the pain stopped so quickly, it blew me away!
Excellent, its 5pm, I can rest a little then push this little one out. 7 cm dilated. They tell me they must administer pitocin, as my uterus isn't contracting strongly enough to get the job done - my body was tired. Though, my spirits were good. My family and ILs were there and came in to chat and that helped a great deal.
7pm, 7 cm dialted.
9pm, they cervix is about 9 cm in front and only 7 in back...not opening evenly. Midnight, same story. They decided to wait until 4am to check again. DH tried to snooze a bit in the exceedingly uncomfortable chair in the birthing room - poor guy.
Let's fast forward to 6:30am when then the pitocin amount has been upped to 14 (started at 3) and they say, it's time to push. My midwife was there the whole time she kept the room dim and was quiet and gentle. With the epidural, I wasn't feeling much, but she and the nurses assured my I was doing a great job. The OB on staff (who I adored) came in at 7:30am for a consult. Apparently things still weren't going well. DH told me later he heard the OB say, "Keep the residents and interns out of here." and knew something was up. I was completely oblivious until she leaned over to me and told me there were 2 options, my pushing was great, but my contractions were just not strong enough. Either they vacuum the baby out or I get a c-section. Vacuum it was. 2 pushes and the vacuum on her little head and out she came.
You'd think we'd be in the clear. You're wrong. She wasn't breathing. Instead of on my chest, she got taken to the warmer. NICU was called to hold a bed for her. They massaged her for 5 minutes, as they sewed me up (small tear). DH stood with her, coming to me in intervals to keep me calm. Finally, we got a feint cry from her, then a more robust one. They handed her to DH and continued my sutures. She was healthy, safe and ours. It was 7:53 am 3/29.
Blessed with a girl on 3/29/09, welcome to our family Anastasia Jaina.