Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Along Came Bug

I have finally put together the birth story for Bug! Please enjoy it.

I was planning on having an unassisted childbirth (UC). But, to stay on the safe side, I continued having my prenatal appointments with an OB. I never did tell the doctors in the practice that I wasn’t planning on having my baby at their hospital. I was afraid they would refuse to see me, and I wasn’t prepared for an Unassisted Pregnancy (UP). But my heart yearned for a peaceful birth. I believe it is possible to have a good birth in a hospital, but not a peaceful birth. I believe a peaceful birth can only happen at home.

On Wednesday, April 30th, I had a regular, routine prenatal checkup at 2:30pm. My hubby decided he wanted to go with me to this one (maybe because I had been having prodromal labor for a week already!) Although the only other appointments my husband went to were my first appointment and the ultrasound we had done at my 20 week mark (IT’S A BOY!). I did all the basics for the appointment. You know, pee in a cup, stand on the scale (Are you serious!?! 40lbs!!!), strip from the waist down and put that nice little piece of paper over your lap. The doctor said I was about 2cm dilated. I seriously thought it was more than that with all the contractions I had been having for the past week, but I guess that was just wishful thinking! Then the Doc checked my little baby’s heart rate. We heard some irregularities, like a little, extra beat every now and then. Of course, Doc wanted to do a Non-Stress Test. So, they hooked me up to an external fetal heart monitor and contraction monitor. It wasn’t too bad, because I got to sit in a recliner. But I don’t know why they call it a “Non-Stress Test”, because I’m obviously stressing over what is wrong with my baby! The nurse that hooked me up told me to keep an eye on the machine’s light. It was supposed to stay green. It just wasn’t cooperating. Apparently, the monitor wasn't picking up the baby's heart rate well enough, so the Doc wanted me to go over to the hospital for an ultrasound....STAT. So, off we went (and I was so glad hubby had decided to come with me to that appointment!)

We got to the hospital and found where we were supposed to go. Of course, I wasn’t allowed to wear my own clothes. And I had to sit still again for another Non-Stress Test. By this time, I was feeling pretty hungry, because I hadn’t eaten since my lunch at noon. But, then I was transported to have the ultrasound done. Yes, transported...like, in a wheel chair. There is nothing like a hospital for losing your dignity. The only thing I could do to keep from crying was giggle the whole way. We finally get to the ultrasound room, which is NOWHERE near the OB floor, and I get that goop spread all over my big, pregnant belly. It was nice to see the baby again. He looked so wonderful. He moved a lot, but his heart was still beating to a different tune. The poor little guy didn't score all the points he was supposed to for the "test" they were doing. Basically, because of the score of the baby on all the tests, and with how far along I was, it was medically advised that we go ahead and deliver. This wasn't what we wanted, because it meant having the Doc break my water, having an internal fetal monitor, and having the baby in the hospital. It was a long way away from the homebirth I had been planning. But I didn't feel comfortable leaving and not knowing if the baby was ok. So, we talked and prayed about it. I cried. The on-call OB was very nice. She let us take our time as we thought this through. Finally, we decided we were going to be having this baby!

I was able to get a Priesthood blessing (thanks to hubby, dad, and father-in-law). Lots of family, both mine and hubby’s, came to visit us. We spent some time talking. Finally, I felt prepared enough to begin this journey. We called the doctor in and she broke my water. That was nothing like I had imagined it would be...there is a lot of liquid in there!!! The doctor also hooked up an internal fetal monitor. So it began. It was around 9pm, and now I really felt like I was starving. This is the time that I say I started labor...but my mom says it doesn't count until it starts to hurt...which means I really started labor around 11:30pm. But, in the meantime, my family came back in to talk with me for a while longer. My mom always has me laughing, and that was especially fun now that the membranes were ruptured! Every time I laughed it felt like I was peeing my pants!

Soon everyone left, except hubby, my mom, and my two younger sisters. The contractions were starting to get really rough; this must have been 11:30pm, according to my mom!! And according to mom, I was really in labor. I vocalized with moaning through my contractions. It probably sounded like I was dying. But my younger sister was there rubbing my back and being the best labor support ever! Hubby was great too, but I think it was a pretty emotional time for him! I did a really bad job at keeping track of the time. Not that I should have been, I was kind of busy! But, I was impatient. I thought I was in transition one time, only to find I was only 6cm. So, I stuck to laboring away. Finally, I knew I HAD to be in transition! It was so intense, and I almost couldn’t keep from pushing. There were several times that I wasn't sure if I would be able to make it through. That feeling started through the last ten contractions before I was fully dilated. Those were the absolute worst!

Finally, I was 10cm! Hallelujah! Of course, then they told me to hold off pushing if I could, because they wanted to make sure the neonatologist was there to check out the baby once he was born. Honestly, I still pushed anyway, just not as much as I could have. At last, they told me I was able to really start pushing. Let me tell you, it felt DIVINE to push! Even with the stretching feeling, it was wonderful relief to push with the contractions. Typical in a hospital, they put me in stirrups, lying mostly on my back. I wish I could have moved around, but I was hooked up to the monitor. And I wished I could have protested the supine position and stirrups, but I was in a complete labor funk...I don’t think I could have formed the thought, let alone the complaint! So, I pushed as well as I could. And if I was vocalizing through my prior contractions, I was really making noise now! I relied on a nice, loud roars to push my kiddo out! I was starving and ice chips just wouldn’t cut it for me. I could feel my muscles exhausting, and I knew I had nothing to give them. The only thing that kept me going was the desire to have and to hold my new baby. At one point, the baby’s heartbeat dropped low, and I was threatened with an episiotomy if I couldn’t push him out faster. I can’t remember what happened, but I never got the episiotomy (thank goodness!) and I was still pushing for quite a bit longer after the threat! Things kept picking up, and after an hour of pushing (during the whole time my dear husband kept letting me know that I was "almost" there) I gave birth to our little baby at 5:23am. Once the head and shoulders were out, my husband was allowed to catch him and move him up to my chest. I could have cried right there, with that sweet baby, covered in vernix, lying on my chest. I stroked his little foot and cooed “my baby”. The cord was clamped and cut before I wanted, because they had to evaluate the baby and check out his heart. Bug had to get an EKG done to check his heart out, and they said they only picked up a couple of irregular beats, but it evened out and he is just fine. I was glad that the baby wasn’t gone long though, before he was back in my arms. I had three small tears, two of which were stitched. I pulled through all natural in the end (which qualifies me as a super hero!) It was a good birth, but not a peaceful one.

We changed his name from what we had previously picked out, which came as a shock to a lot of people! He weighed 6lbs 13oz and was 20 1/4 inches long. He is absolutely adorable, and we love him!


Scotty said...

I love you hun!

Emmy said...

Thanks for sharing your story!
And in the end the only thing that really matters is that healthy baby in your arms.
Stopping by from Baby Makin Machine.

Toni said...

As a mom of three, two born in a hospital w/ drugs and one born at home...this is a beautiful birth story.

I am so proud of you for being able to go natural...you are def. a super hero in my book!