When I woke up on Monday I seriously considered skipping my Dr appts. I had 2 of them scheduled and just didn’t want to deal with either of them. The first was with a Dr in my midwife’s practice; I hadn’t met this one and wasn’t really looking forward to it. The second was for a BPP at the diabetes doc. I get to the first appt and meet Dr K. I don’t get the impression that she likes me. I do get the impression she’s already heard enough about me to be annoyed. How dare this fat girl want any sort of say in her care!? I agreed to a VE and learn that I’m making progress. For 2.5 weeks I’ve been dilated to 2cm and not effaced at all. Monday I was at a 2 and 80% effaced. That was enough for me. Clearly, those bh ctx were doing what I needed them to do! I agreed to the Thursday induction secretly thinking there’s no way I’ll be there!
Then I head over to the MFG (diabetes doc). The first thing I hear is “I cannot believe you’re still pregnant!” My appt was good, baby passed the bpp quickly, which was nice; the week before she had been a little sluggish for my liking.
Everything was fairly uneventful Monday evening. I headed to bed early just in case... I had a feeling that Tuesday was going to be a very, very long day. At the same time I was almost certain that Tuesday (21st) was not going to be my baby’s birthday.
Tuesday I woke up around 3am. Still having regular bh ctx (every 5ish minutes, some sooner) but they still didn’t hurt. Levi had woken up around midnight and couldn’t get back to sleep, so it was kinda nice that we could sit and chat. I spent a good deal of this time on a birth ball and it really seemed to help. I told him I was pretty sure this was the real thing, but we’re looking at a marathon not a sprint. He should probably go on to work. If things got too intense then I’d give him a call around lunch time and he could come home then.
Around 6am I made a voyage to the local Kroger. Wow. That was kinda a nightmare tons of contractions, and very few breaks between them. Today is definitely going to be a long day. I send Levi off to work then lay down to take a nap. An hour, maybe 2 later I’m back on the birthing ball. All I wanted in the world was to see my chiropractor. Like I NEEDED an adjustment so bad I didn’t know how I was going to labor for another 24+ hours without one! By some miracle Reya had an appt scheduled for Tuesday morning. I had totally forgotten about it, and the cab arrived. It was like divine intervention! We show up and they take pity on the laboring mother I get seen too. I’m explaining to doc that the ctx are only 30 seconds long and about 3 minutes apart. Obviously, they’re not doing anything. I need them to be longer and more spaced out. He agreed that I wasn’t in a great pattern for laboring and it did sound like things would happen soon. Less than 10 minutes after my adjustment the ctx changed. Instead of feeling them in the top of my belly, I started feeling them in my cervix. I was impressed to say the least.
We made it home around noon and I turned on Lifetime and watched a rerun of Grey’s Anatomy and tried to take another nap. I dozed in and out for an hour; then I couldn’t lie any longer. I had to be up. I started to get a little discouraged. I was starting to work through the ctx, but it still didn’t feel real to me. Probably because they were still pretty short and every 3 minutes.
Around 4pm I started to panic. I NEEDED to space out these contractions. I was already tired and couldn’t sleep through them. I posted to my ddc that things were happening, and I expected another 12 hours of labor (but please don’t be another 24!). In hindsight, Lila was born 11 hours and 40 minutes after I made that post! I really wanted Levi to come home. I needed the birthing tub filled and I knew there was no way that I could do it myself. He was home an hour later. Due to my poor planning we then learned that the hose didn’t fit onto our sink. Poor Levi and Reya were boiling water on the stove while I tried not to freak out. That didn’t actually go all that well. I was probably unnecessarily mean to both of them. At the same time, neither of them realized that I had been having ctx every 3 minutes for 2 days!
After the tub was filled Reya heated a lasagna that we had premade and fed everyone dinner. I just wanted yogurt and cantaloupe for fear of vomiting later. I figured that would be easier than lasagna!
Levi went to nap (Remember he was up at midnight! This was a long day for him too.) and I spent the next few hours in the tub. At some point (10? 11?) I started crying through the ctx. I was also very angry that L was asleep. Hello!? You told him to go nap! We woke L up and I cried through a few more contractions. He said all the right supportive things and asked what I wanted to do. Was it time to go to the hospital? I don’t know. I didn’t want to be in charge of this decision. If I said yes and I was only at 4cm I was totally screwed. If I said no and we had a baby at home, he would have not been thrilled! I called Amy for another pep talk. She listened through a few contractions and gently suggested that I should probably wait. I wasn’t totally falling apart and who knows how things will go once I get to the hospital. I got off the phone and cried some more. I felt a slight wave of nausea and decided “eff this” we’re going.
The ride to the hospital was not fun. Ctx were around 60 seconds each and every 2 minutes. That doesn’t give much time to rest between them. At the same time I was actually OK between them as long as I didn’t think about the one that was coming next. We got to the ER and they took me straight to L & D where they checked me and declared I was 7cm dilated and 100% effaced! Woohooo! I’m convinced as soon as my water breaks I’m having this baby.
They strap me to a bed with a monitor and I freak out. I cannot lay back for these contractions. I cannot do it. I ask for a birthing ball and they told me no for whatever reason. I can’t remember why, but I promise it was stupid. I take off the monitor and the nurses leave. They’re clearly angry that I’m not doing what they want me to do. I also inform them I’m GBS+ Oops... Oh man, they did NOT like hearing that. All hell breaks loose while they hunt down some abx. Reya (cause she’s the best daughter in the world!) informed me that there was a birthing ball right across the hall in an empty room. She stole it for me. I didn’t want to sit on it. I put it on the bed and kinda draped myself over it. I have to say it helped a lot. The nurse came in and saw me; I’m surprised she didn’t pass out right then. I got a lecture about how last time my water broke I had a baby almost immediately. Uh yeah, that’s kinda the point... let’s make this happen! I agreed to get back in the bed if she’d check my progress. 8.5cm. The midwife still isn’t here, no one will break my water so I can just HAVE the baby, I’m miserable. Ctx are coming every 1-2 minutes and I’m not doing well with them at all. I’m tired and I’ve been in transition for HOURS. It’s supposed to only be 30 minutes. I kept repeating that.
The midwife finally shows up and they break my water (YAY! I’m about to have this baby!) There’s a lot of meconium, but no one really freaks out at this point. I’m at 9.5ish and they decide it’s time for me to push. ? ok? Next thing I know a nurse’s hand is inside me holding back that cervical lip. I start screaming for her to get her hand out of me NOW. She screams back “No!” WTF? So I keep screaming for her to quit violating me. They’re screaming back for me to push the baby out. F*** you. Get your hand out of me. Things stalled a lot in here. I tell them I’m scared. I’m exhausted. I don’t know HOW to push out a baby. I’m flat on my back in those medieval torture stirrups. This is NOT how I envisioned this moment. Actually, it is how I envisioned it…in my nightmares.
I ask for something to dull the pain and they gave me ½ a dose of Nubain. Someone was wise here, I was going to need the other ½ a dose later. They try to make me push again. More of the same people’s hands in me that do not belong in there. I’m still screaming at them. They’re yelling back at me. Midwife tells me “You’re keeping the baby in because you’re scared. You have to trust us.” I tell her “I know, but I don’t [trust them]” They leave me with the first dose of nubain and I try to push with each ctx. It’s not going well. I can’t feel her moving down at all. Somewhere in here I started begging for a c-section. I have to think as awful as my experience was that if I had ended up with the on-call OB I would have had a section.
At some point they decided I wasn’t going to be able to push through the rest of the cervix and they start pit to help me dilate the other .5cm I had left to go. Hummm that would have been lovely an HOUR ago before you violated me! I got a second dose of nubain and the pit started around the same time. (4amish) I can feel those pit ctx... They’re everything everyone says they are. They’re intense. They’re hard. They’re working. I can feel baby starting to move down. Sorta. It’s slow going; I’m exhausted. I’m terrified. I’m just totally beat down. I have serious doubts at this point.
Then it happens. She’s coming. This is slow. Very slow. Reya just shot out; I didn’t have time to freak out. I was really counting on baby doing the same. We worked for EVERY inch she moved. It was so hard. Then her head is out. They’re suctioning her. They say to stop pushing. (Ha!) Like I have any control over this situation at all. The pit is doing what it’s supposed to do. I was a passive participant at best. Finally, I feel her shoulder slide out, then the other one. “Oh thank GOD!” She’s out.
They took her over to the warmer to suction her a little more; it took about 15-30 seconds before we heard that first cry. While I really wanted her placed on my belly, I just didn’t care at this point. I’m not 100% sure the midwife didn’t pull on my cord. I know she did at the end when the placenta was coming out. After it’s delivered I hear “There’s a true knot in the cord” Ahhhhh, now it’s all coming together. Now I know why she didn’t want to come down on her own. I’m totally convinced that’s why she didn’t come flying out as soon as we broke my water.
They handed the baby to Levi while I lay in stirrups getting stitched up. You’ve never seen a more proud daddy.
I’m obviously not thrilled at how everything happened, at the same time; I’m not as traumatized as I was after Reya’s birth. I think a lot of it comes down to I had much more control this time. I feel like we really did wait til the exact right moment to go to the hospital. I know I couldn’t have done that without the birthing tub!
All in all it was about 16 hours of hard labor. 9 hours of early labor I couldn't sleep through. And 2 days of practice labor. 17 minutes of effective pushing and about 90 minutes of them wanting me to push and I couldn't figure it out.
She was born at 4:17 am weighing 9lbs 2oz and 21.75 inches long! On September 22 2 days before her due date and 26 hours before her scheduled induction.
Mom to Reya (13) and Little baby Lila 9/22
Mom to Reya (13) and Little baby Lila 9/22
I'm sorry the nurses were such PITAs but you did a great job! I'm really inspired as I have an induction scheduled for Sunday 10/3 and I would give anything for her to come on her own sooner. I had my first acupuncture session on Saturday and by Sunday (yesterday) I felt baby drop lower and I started feeling contractions similar to yours (frequent but not very painful or far apart). I'm going to have another session today so hopefully I'll make more progress.
Thanks so much for sharing your birth story!
Virgo- I'll be thinking about you! Keep us updated.
Mom to Reya (13) and Little baby Lila 9/22
Hope your GD has cleared up now, too. It sure feels good to not have to constantly sticking myself and wondering what eat meal will do to my blood!