Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Birth Story - 3 Years late

I'm a slacker I know.


Just kidding.

I was laying in bed last night, and I have wicked "baby on the brain" syndrome right now. Which is very unlike me. I haven't even decided yet if I want 2 kids. Actually I should correct that. I do want 2, I just don't want to deal with having an infant again. Rowan is almost 3. She's potty trained, sleeps through the night, and heck, she can even kind of get herself dressed now.

I have part of my freedom back.

And that is a very hard thing to give up.

But alas, I don't want Rowan to be a single child. And the thought of her being alone some day after Barney and I pass on (into heaven of course) makes me sad.

And so, I want Rowan to have a sibling.

Unfortunately, that means I must have a babe... a crying, screaming, pooping, no sleeping needy babe.

And that my friends, is a scary scary thing.

But as you all know, I am currently without work. And we plan a big move up north where I shall be able to stay home with Rowan for a few years. So... I guess right now is sort kind of the right time to spit out another babe.

I have no real excuses. And the older Rowan gets, the harder it will be for her and this new babe to be close to one another.

As it stands, right now they'd be almost 4 years apart. And that gap grows everyday.

I have a few goals first... my main one being to lose 40 lbs. I'll still be pretty hefty, but I'll be back to the weight I was when Rowan was born.. and I guess I'm ok with that.

Anyhoodle. By thinking of all this baby stuff, I started reminiscing about Rowan's birth.

Rowan was conceived sometime in July. By October, we had moved into our condo.. and a whole world of changes had come about. I'll never forget the day we moved... I was in the bathroom unpacking a few odds and ends whilst my hubs and family moved in the heavy boxes... (being pregnant rocks while your moving).

I felt Rowan move.. a tiny little flutter... ahhh... its real.

My pregnancy was relatively easy. No morning sickness, no major health issues other than the usual "can't poop" and one nasty bout of the flu during which I couldn't' stop pooping. So you see, it evened itself out.

Rowan was due April 17th, the Monday after Easter.

The weeks dragged by of course, like I'm sure they do for all first time parents. And then the Friday before my due date, things started to change.

I had a tightening twinge in my belly that morning. And these non painful tightening continued on until lunch time. I met up with a few friends for lunch that day at the OG (Olive Garden). There were a couple of us that were all pregnant together and we'd go to the OG for soup salad bread sticks and of course, large deserts.. or you know, just desert.

I was the farthest along in the group, my due date only days away. We were all chit chatting and I finally mentioned the fact that I thought I was having some mild contractions..

I believe Elissa nearly fainted, and I know Ryry almost pooped herself. The fact that I was having a baby soon... made them all realize that they too, indeed, would have a real live baby eventually.

We all laughed lunch joking about how I probably wouldn't make it to the next one we had... or maybe I would, but it would be with baby in tow.

Once I got back to work I started tracking my "contractions". They were every 10 minutes or so, but again, not painful yet.

My boss swung by my desk, saw my little hand written chart and asked what it was. As soon as I mentioned "possible contractions" she said, and I quote, "oh my God, get the hell out of here." She was a funny lady.

So I packed up, took a good look around my desk thinking I'd not return for the next couple of months.... and I was right.

That night the pseudo contractions stopped once I lay down. The next morning they picked back up again.. they still didn't' hurt, but they were getting stronger and more persistent. Again, once we headed up to bed, they stopped.

Easter Sunday, I woke up excited to spend the day with family. And like clock work, the contractions returned as soon as I got myself up and out of bed. However, today, they were different. Today they started hurting a bit.

Not hugely mind you. More like menstrual cramps. They were still coming about every 8-10 minutes or so. They lasted straight through Easter dinner at Barney's meme's house.... and all through the late afternoon.

By the time we got home and relaxed on the couch, they were coming about every 5 minutes consistently.

Poor Barney was pacing the floor.. he was eager to get to the hospital. But I knew I wasn't ready. Finally around 6 or so, I agreed to go with him. Simply so he'd shut up.

We got to the hospital and were put into a "waiting to be admitted" room. A nurse came in and asked me about my pain... ha! I told her I was a 7 on the pain scale.. oh how naive I was. She had a doctor come check me, and I was only 3 centimeters. But heck, that was pretty darn good and I was excited that I was actually dilating.

They had us walk around the corridors for an hour and then rechecked me... still 3. They gave me some pain meds so I could sleep, and sent us home.

By this time, the contractions were pretty painful, I attempted to go to bed without the meds but there was no way. I eventually got up and took them... and I slept restlessly.

Around 4am I woke up in a lot of pain and when I went pee I lost my mucus plug, it was disgusting.

We both showered and went downstairs to start timing the contractions again. They were still about 4-5 mins apart but were definitely far more painful. I had no doubts this time that I was in early labor. I had big hopes that I had made some progress over night.

Around 6 am Barney insisted we go back to the hospital. So we did.

They stuck me in the waiting room again, and had a doctor come check me. I was only 4 centimeters.

We were both bummed I hadn't made any progress, but the nurses had us stay. We walked around and around the hospital for a few hours. Got checked again around lunch time. Still 4 centimeters!

I was pretty frustrated at this point, as you can well imagine. I was in a lot of pain, but wasn't even dilated enough to be fully admitted.

We spent the rest of the day walking the corridors. Finally at around 6 or 7, they checked me again... and I was still 4 centimeters. The nurses were kind enough however to let me stay over night in the non admitted room. They gave me morphine and a sleeping pill so I could rest. It was blissful!

I woke up early the next morning... in a lot of pain again. The contractions were even stronger. They checked me and finally I had gotten to 5 centimeters and was admitted and allowed to stay.

So off to our fancy room we went. Barney had called my family in that night... they drove the 1 1/2 down to our condo and had spent the night there. My mom and sister showed up mid morning to spend the day with us.. they were going to be present for the birth. My poor Dad sat in the waiting room all day.. he was quite patient.

This is the part of the day that starts to get blurry for me. By early morning my contractions were getting pretty painful and I was definitely in active labor. Nothing was changing with my cervix though; I was stuck at 5 centimeters alllll day.

I had a midwife, whom I had seen many times at my OB office.. she was quite kind, but not as aggressive as a doctor would have been. (I later found out she pushed for 12 hours with her first born.. good Lord!)

I remember she broke my water sometimes in early afternoon. An hour later, she checked me again and nothing had changed. She asked me if I wanted to go home.

HAHAHAHA are you kidding? No I snapped.

I'm not sure when the decision was made, but I guess they decided to induce me. The contractions weren't doing anything on their own, and at this point I was getting frustrated and exhausted. At 4pm that afternoon, I was given the pit line... and in went the lovely and exhilarating pitosin.

It was hell fire in a bottle.

My contractions went from painful to unbearable in about 2 minutes. I can't even explain to you the pain I was in. And with pitosin, you don't get the normal breaks you would in un-induced labor. They're constant... The start, they peak, they wane, they start again.

Only because I was so delirious with the pain, did I not ask for an epidural. I wouldn't' have been able to control myself long enough to sit still to get an epidural anyhow. So I went through a pitosin induced labor without medications.

Although I lie.. I had stadol.. more to come on that in a bit.

The time that elapsed between receiving the pitosin, to the time I started pushing was only 3 1/2 short hours... 3 1/2 hours to dilate 5 centimeters more.

I remember when I started getting the urge to push. They called in my midwife to check me. I was only 9 1/2 centimeters. She manually pushed my cervix back over Rowan's head so that I could push without injuring myself. OH MY F'ing word did that hurt... and I wont' repeat what I said to the poor midwife.

The urge to push wasn't what I thought it would be either. I was in the middle of a contraction and pushed a bit to see what it felt like, and it actually alleviated the pain. So pushing for me was a coping mechanism more than anything else. It made it stop hurting. So I kept doing it.

Once my midwife had finished with my cervix she started getting all geared up in her splash proof outfit, and we set about the task of pushing a baby out of my tiny vagina.

I pushed with all my might. There were some points where my body would take over by itself and push on it is own... hard and low... almost like a convulsion.

I pushed and pushed.... at one point everyone started marveling at how Rowan had hair.. lots and lots of hair. I had two nurses with me. A young training nurse with fire red hair that was soo sweet. And another older nurse that was training her. I didn't like the older nurse.. she was curt, and not mothering or kind. The younger nurse was a nurturer...

Anyhow, the older nurse kept telling me to reach down and feel the baby coming out. I had nooo desire to do this. I was on a mission. I was pushing... please don't distract me I wanted to say.

So she just grabbed my hand and put it there. And I felt a rock hard egg shaped object coming out of my cooch.. it was gross.... and I'll never look at my vagina the same way.

The worse part was that I now had slime and goo on my hand.. so when I snapped my hand away to grab a hold of my leg again, it kept sliding off, which pissed me off to no end.

My sister was there, she was holding my right leg. My husband was on the left, holding my left leg. My Mom was behind me, with her arm wrapped around my shoulder holding me up as I curled around my stomach. She whispered things to me... "you’re doing good." "it’s going to be ok". I loved that part of having my mom there, it made me feel safe.

Finally, after one big push, I saw tears well up in my husbands eyes.. and he lost his composure completely. As soon as my mother saw that, she lost it too.. and I had the two of them sobbing around me, illuminated only by the one spot light in the room aimed at my cooch.

My sister is a nurse... like me, she's made of Iron. She merely watched.

The midwife said.."the head is out"... ahhh so that's why everyone was crying.

I felt NO ring of fire.

I think because I didn't have an epidural, and endured the pain of labor without medication, pushing did not hurt in comparison. It was a relief.

As soon as the head was out, the midwife asked me to stop for a second, and then once she gave me the all clear I gave on last push and felt a sucking, gooey, sliding sensation come flying out of my nether regions.

I'll never forget that sensation... I laid my shoulders and head back... and with an exasperated tone.. I sighed.."oh that felt so good."

and I meant it... it was such a release.

Here is where I discuss Stadol.

Don't bother ladies. I got it a gazillion times.. I begged the nurse for more every time she came near me simply because I hoped it would do something if I got more. But it never did. The pain didn't go away or even weaken. Instead it stoned me out so much I would fall asleep for the 2 seconds I had in between each contraction. That was all.

And because I was stoned when Rowan was born, I barely remember what happened. And I wasn’t coherent enough to absorb the moment and take her in.

They had to sweep her away as soon as she was out in order to suction her. There was mechonium in my water so it was vital they got it out fast.

And then I had pain again... eww.... why?? Wasn't that supposed to stop??? ooooh yeah.... placenta.. ick. I told the midwife I was contracting and asked if she'd like me to push.. she said go ahead if I felt the need.. so I did...and with one squishy push it plopped out into a metal basin.

The midwife inspected it like a woman observing an alien corpse. Apparently it had one detached vessel, which she mentioned was odd because normally they catch that in the ultrasound and also it causes babies to show signs of stress in the womb, which Rowan never did. I guess we lucked out with that one. The midwife was also kind enough to show me the placenta.. gag..... gee thanks.

Once the nurses were done with Rowan, they wrapped her up loosely in a blanket and handed her to me. I groped for my glasses and put them on. Only to find that my vision was all messed up. I couldn’t see well at all… I found later it was because I had popped multiple vessels in my eyes while pushing.

I squinted at her though, and I remember she looked nothing like I thought she would but exactly like she should.

She had flaming red hair.. and the nurses and doctor couldn't' stop talking about it.

Ahh Rowan.... my little Rowan.. which consequently, means little red haired one in Gaelic.

I immediately started to breastfeed. Because it’s what I felt I should do. I didn't need anyone to show me how.. it was perfectly easy and natural. And Rowan latched on like a champ...

My mother in law came in then... and marveled at her first Grandchild. Soon after I was done breastfeeding my poor awaiting Dad came in as well as my FIL.... My husband stood nearby... doting at Rowan... staring at her.... overwhelmed and in shock. He hadn't even held her yet. So I offered her to him...and I watched him gaze down at her with the most beautiful love filled watery eyes.

And that is how my not so little now Rowan came into this world.


Monica LeMoine said...

What a great post! Filled with enthralling detail! Yes, the decision to have another child, I would imagine, is fraught with conflicting pros and cons. I have a lot of friends who wanted just one, and now want two, for the very reasons you describe. Seems like a natural human instinct to me. Ultimately, I would bet that you'd manage to weave a new infant into your life more seamlessly than it might seem. At least, based on my what I've seen. On the other hand, freedom sure is nice...

*~*Lis*~* said...

Ahhhh yes - I remember that lunch. It was the first time we met actually!

Poor Brytan - I'm sure she's heard worse than you said though. And yea 12 hours! She's a hero!

Stadol is a crock of shit. I only had one dose 'cuz it fucked me up so much.

I shall have to post my birth story - I have it hand written in her baby book so it shouldn't take long. The part I remember most was that it took Chuck about 10 seconds to answer my "What is it!?!" question. He later told me it took him that long 'cuz he was a little freaked out by the fact that a person just came out of me :)

Anabelle said...

Thanks Monica! It was an interesting experience.. I look foward to doing it again.. with an epidural lol

Oh thats right Elissa.. it was for the first time huh? lol you guys all looked sick to your stomach at the mention of contractions lol

ahh Brytan. Next time i'm going with a doctor.. no all natural midwife for me.. get the damn kid out!