Sunday, September 23, 2012

A Birth Story: Brody Lawrence Part 2

Warning this is LONG!

Read Part 1 here.
Took this photo while in labor at home.  40 weeks 3 days

So where did I leave off?  I'm pretty sure I was telling Justin I was having some contractions but was going to try to take a nap.  So I slept from about 2-3:15 while Kayla was sleeping.  When I woke up, I had slept so well I was completely confused as to what time it was and where I was, totally disoriented.

Eventually I realized it was the afternoon and Kayla would likely be up from her nap at any moment.  And then I had another contraction.  I decided maybe I should time them since I was thinking this might be happening any time now.  The first 2 I timed were about 24 minutes apart, and then they started to be about 8-12 minutes apart pretty consistently.  I got another text from Justin asking how I was feeling and I told him I was having contraction at about the same intensity (not too painful, mainly just tightening) about every 10 minutes.  I think he was a little freaked out being at work but I told him I was fine.  When he got home from work at 5ish, they were still about 10 minute apart on average.

We got dinner ready for Kayla and played with her for our normal night time routine.  This routine includes us tickling her until she is in a fit of giggles.  She's hilarious.  We started her bed time routine at the normal time, and as usual, she wanted Mama to put her to bed.  I couldn't get through one line of Twinkle, Twinkle without crying.  I just knew it would be my last time putting her to sleep as my only child.  (A blogger recently wrote about how we take so much care to mark our child's firsts, but we never think about the lasts.  This really hit me hard after that.  Maybe the lasts are more important.)

At around 7:30 or 8:00, the contractions were still not terribly painful but were about 7-8 minutes apart on average.  Linda (my midwife) had asked me to call her around this point so she could get an idea of how I was progressing and so that she knew that she may have to head to the hospital.  When I got a hold of her, she told me to call back/head to the hospital if they got more painful (say a 7-8/10 on the pain scale), if they progressed to 4-5 minutes apart, or if I felt like I had to poop during the contractions (a sign the baby's head was really low and pressing down.)  She then told me again to make sure we ate something, rested a bit and maybe took a shower.  I told her I was making a PB&J sandwich as we speak.

After I got off the phone, we called my mom to tell her what was going on.  She was going to head over to "watch" Kayla while she slept so we could head to the hospital whenever we needed to.  Justin and I proceeded to get our hospital bags ready so we could just get in the car and go.  I hopped in the shower (best shower ever).  By the time Mom got here, my contractions were about 5 minutes apart, sometimes closer, but not a lot more painful.  I was hesitant to go to the hospital too early and have to sit around and labor in the bed there instead of at home.

We continued to watch the Packer game in good spirits.  I decided to call Linda again at about 10 pm and tell her what was going on.  She said she thought we should head to the hospital because she had a feeling I would "go quickly."  We headed out between the 3rd and 4th quarter of the game.  On the way, I kept getting texts from my mom, updates on the football game. :)

Walking to labor and delivery...see I'm still clearly not in THAT much pain.
We got to the hospital about 10:20 and I told Justin to just park in the garage and we could walk.  I was doing ok and the contractions weren't that bad.  On our walk in, we walked through the ER waiting area where everyone was watching the Bears/Packers game (I was wearing my maternity Packers shirt).  The security guard gave me a little bit of a "look."  I covered my shirt and said I was wearing the wrong shirt and smiled.  He smiled and asked if we were headed for labor and delivery.  I responded yes and that we knew where we were going.  (The Packers won, if you forgot or were wondering.) :)

We ran into Linda in the hallway who was surprised I was walking.  I told her they weren't really painful.  She said, "Well good, because I'm going to try to convince you to let me break your water and speed this up."  I'm not going to lie, I was really scared of this whole labor because it was so different from what happened with Kayla.  I was pretty comfortable and things weren't too painful, and I knew once she broke my water, things would get real.

We got to the registration desk, I had to sign something really quick and then they had me in a room in 5 minutes.  (Much much better than what happened with Kayla.  They clearly knew I was on my way and had all of our pre-registration info already.)  Once in the room, I stripped down and put on the hospital gown and belly band thing to keep the monitors on.  The nurse hooked me up to the contraction and fetal monitors and had to ask me a million questions since for some reason all my information wasn't on the electronic medical record.  It was ok, we joked with her and laughed through my contractions.  Someone came in to prep the "delivery table" and Linda came in at about 11:15 or so to ask how things were going.  She said she wanted to break my water and she thought that would really make the baby come quickly.  I told her I was nervous about that because I wanted a natural labor without drugs, but I was ready to have this baby.  She came back about 15 minutes later, checked me (I was 6 cm) and broke my water.  At this point, I had a new nurse after shift change, Ashely, who was super nice.  I had an IV hooked up "just in case" because my blood pressures had been high all day.  Linda thought it was just because I was in labor.  Duh.  Do people in labor have normal blood pressures? :)

Anyways, after Linda broke my water, things definitely got real.  I was still laying in bed being monitored.  I was really having to focus on breathing through the contractions.  I was squeezing Justin's hand like crazy.  I told him I was afraid I wouldn't be able to handle this much longer.  Linda came back in and I told her I wasn't sure how much more I could take.  She suggested some Dilaudid  through the IV to "take the edge off" without having to get the epidural, not to mention the anesthesiologist was with a c-section birth at the moment so who knew how long it would take to get there.  I agreed to the Dilaudid.  I asked if I could please stand up and get out of bed, because laying there was really not helping the pain.  I was able to get up and stand next to the bed.  Ashley raised the bed nice and high so I could lean on it and rock back and forth.  This helped a little but not much.  After about 4 contractions, I started to feel a huge urge to push and that I had to go #2.  I was making noises I didn't even know I could or wanted to make during the contractions and begging Linda to do something.  She told me to push "gently" during the contractions if that helped.  She finally said after one more contraction maybe I should lay back down and she should check me again.  After another one, she asked if I could wait one more, I said no please let me lie down and push.

I managed to get back in the bed.  Honestly, things happened so quickly that I remember her checking me and saying I was 8 but I'm not sure when exactly this was.  But when I laid back down, she told me to grab my knees and push with the contractions.  She said to listen closely and if she said to push for 2 seconds and then stop pushing and blow, it was because she was trying to help me not tear.  All I felt in the next 10 minutes was the famed "ring of fire" and that I literally wouldn't be able to push this baby out of me it hurt so bad.  I grabbed my legs with Justin's help and pushed with all my might but felt like nothing was happening.  Everyone kept saying Baby was so close and that I could do it, although I didn't feel like it.  I think I pushed for about 10 minutes and then Linda pulled out the baby and held him up so we could see the sex.  It's a boy!  It's a boy that is peeing on me right after I pushed him out of my who-ha.  :)  He was very swollen and VERY big.

See how swollen and bruised he is...poor little man.

This is what I look like after a fast and furious drug free labor and an hour and 15 minutes of getting stitched up...not good.

Me with my baby boy.
From the time Linda broke my water to the time Brody was born, it was about 45 minutes.  Maybe an hour.  I think I only had like 7-8 really really painful contractions.  Thank God because I'm not sure how much longer I would have lasted.  I never slept that night (he was born at 12:32 am).  I was on some sort of high.  I could not believe I just delivered an almost 10 pound baby without any medication.  I felt like super woman.

Remember when I told you in part 1 that Linda told me she thought the baby was 8-8.5 pounds?  She lied.  They finally weighed Brody in at 9 pounds 14.6 ounces.  Then I hear Ashley say, "You were right on Linda!"  Apparently she was super close when she guessed the weight.  I said, "Wait you told me 8 pounds!"  She said she lied and she didn't want to scare me.  LOL.  I really love having her as my care provider.

The downside to this whole situation was that Linda was super successful in helping me not tear externally while delivering an almost 10 pound baby, which is amazing to me.  But something odd happened internally and I had a very large ring like tear and a hematoma had formed.  Linda called in the OB from her practice that was on call that night to stitch me up.  It took them 1 hour and 15 minutes, the OB had to cut an episiotomy after the fact to stitch inside, I got about 5-6 shots of local anesthetic, and remember that Dilaudid I was supposed to get during labor?  Yeah, it was too quick.  I got in during the stitching up instead.  That was probably the worst hour and 15 minutes of my life, but at least Justin got to hold Brody, even though I wanted him to hold my hand.  So he did both.  He is my angel.

So happy to be a family of four now!

Up all night :)


I had to take a bunch of pictures.  We had a lot of time just the two of us. :)

He's a really good cuddler.

Kayla meeting her brother for the first time.

Little elf.

I think he's going to be a pretty clam, easy going his dad.
Side note:  The first time I called to get a hold of Linda from home, the guy who answered had a series of questions to ask.  When he picked up I said I was calling to get a hold of Linda since I thought I was in labor.  One of the questions he asked, "Are you pregnant?"  Um...yes!

Another interesting note...Brody's head shrunk 8 centimeters in 3 days!  No, I'm not kidding.  The poor kid was so swollen and bruised from the fast and furious delivery.

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