Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Cohen's Birth Story

WARNING: I realize reading a birth story is not everyone's cup of tea, so feel free to skip this post. I'll post another "just the facts, ma'am" entry for those of you not interested in the details. However, I find myself being asked questions that I don't remember the answers to just because I never wrote them down, so I'd like to record a few things here.

Tues., Dec. 11 (39 weeks, 1 day)
2:45pm: At my Dr.'s appointment, I got some final "pregnancy" stats. I officially gained about 38 lbs., which is the exact same as I did with Ryan. I was 2cm dilated for the 2nd week in a row, but 70-80% effaced. Although we scheduled an appointment for the next week and a tentative induction for the 19th (40 weeks, 2 days), my doctor said she expected to see me before that. I asked her about whether it was smart to go on the service project I was scheduled for the next day and she said it was completely up to how I was feeling.

Wed., Dec. 12 (39 weeks, 2 days)
2:30pm: I woke up at 2:30am to go to the bathroom and absolutely couldn't get back to sleep. I wasn't having contractions, just basic insomnia and hip pain from laying in bed.  After laying in bed for 1.5 hours, I moved to the couch and still, couldn't sleep, so I eventually just got up at 6:30 and got ready for work.

8:00am: Worked at the office and since I didn't feel anything different (besides very tired), agreed to go on our service project.

9:30am: Left for Sioux City. Our department decided to team up with HOME out of Sioux Center to purchase food for a backpack program where kids who may not get enough to eat over the weekend get to take home a backpack full of easy-to-prepare food. We shopped at Sam's Club and Walmart for the items on our list. We always have a good time together, but I was feeling really tired and uncomfortable walking.

12:00pm: We ate lunch together at Minerva's and I joked I shouldn't get both spicy pasta AND spicy tortilla soup because with all the walking, it might put me into labor. I did have some spicy Cajun Chicken pasta and a salad and we had a fun lunch exchanging White Elephant gifts.

1:30pm: Headed to Sioux Center to drop off our purchases and pick up some signs. We swung through DQ on the way home and I thoroughly enjoyed a mini blizzard to get the the spicy aftertaste out of my mouth.

3:00pm: Back at the office, we discovered that another department had "pranked" ours by decorating the entire wing with cheesy Christmas decoration, including lots of plastic light-up characters, lights, greenery, and cowbells attached to our rolling chairs.  This was also the first time, looking back, that I had any suspicion of progression and believe that I was probably leaking some fluid. I considered calling the Dr. to get it checked, but since it stopped for about an hour, thought I was probably wrong.

4:30pm: I started feeling some very mild contractions and timed them on an app on my phone, just in case. I really thought it was going to end up being false labor or Braxton Hicks because they weren't really painful. I quickly finished up some work and packed up my things to go, as if it were going to be a normal night.

5:00pm: As I got up from my desk to leave, my water broke. No mistaking this was completely out of my control. I called one of my co-workers, Rachel, over and she quickly took my things and help me out to the van. I texted Adam and my mom and she drove me home.

5:15pm: After arriving home, we quickly made arrangements for Ryan to go to Rachel's house to hang out until my mom could get there. We didn't tell him we were heading to the hospital and he was just excited to go play with his friends. I changed and finished packing up some stuff, Adam called the hospital, and we were off!

5:40pm: We checked in, got sent to L&D, and were ushered to a room. The nurse on duty, Amber B., turned out to be one of Andy's High School classmates and I think she was surprised to see a familiar face!

In L&D
6:00pm: I was surprised they didn't make me change into a hospital gown (this is why I ended up delivering in an old show choir t-shirt- I thought I'd have to change as soon as I got there, so I just threw on the first shirt on the pile) and I was definitely feeling the contractions more  and they were between 2 and 4 minutes apart. I believe they measured me at 2-3cm when I arrived and we got an IV started.

6:45pm: After more water broke at 6:30, I got antibiotics started at 6:45pm. I had tested positive for Group B Strep. This is something everyone is tested for before delivery and is not harmful to mothers, but can be harmful to babies if it's passed on during delivery. I was negative with Ryan, but they said it can come and go. I was ideally supposed to get 4 hours of antibiotics before delivery.

7:15pm: My doctor checked me said I was 5cm and 90% effaced. I started considering an epidural because I thought this more intense labor could last several more hours. The Dr. said it would be okay at any time now. It actually crossed my mind that the baby might not be born before midnight and miss the "12-12-12" birthdate that I now realized was a possibility.  I just couldn't decide on the epidural and was fighting through contractions by standing and leaning over the bed while Adam pressed on my lower back.

7:45pm (approx.): After tons of back-and-forth in my mind, I finally said I wanted an epidural. I had been afraid of slowing down labor, afraid of the known possible side effects, but also afraid that I wouldn't react well to the medicine since there are definitely medications that make me sick/feel disconnected, etc. But, the contractions were getting almost unbearable and so close together. They quickly checked me and said I was at about 7cm, so I was glad I'd made the decision.  The anesthesiologist came in and started preparing my back. He had everything taped up and a tube inserted when my contractions basically had no break in between. As they tried to talk me through breathing, I started saying (loudly and desperately, I'm sure) that it was the baby coming!  At that moment, my doctor walked in and said, "It's possible she's complete, don't put the medicine in if you haven't." So, he never did put in any drugs and quickly removed everything so I could lay down.

8:00pm (approx.): Pushing was as painful as I remember but I tried really hard to concentrate on being productive. It was much more self-directed this time with the doctor telling me that my body would tell me when to push and when to take a break. I think I was a bit more vocal this time because I didn't get any local shot for pain but basically just blocked out everything around me. There was no yelling at Adam or saying words that I remember.

8:21pm: As the baby arrived, the doctor announced right away, "It's a boy!" and placed him up on my chest. I was really grateful to be able to get a first look and see right away that he was okay. Eventually they cleaned him up a little bit in the bassinet right next to me as I got multiple stitches. He weighed 7lbs, 15.5oz. so we decided just to call it 8lbs. He measured 21.5" long and everyone commented on the deep dimple in his chin! He has nice hair that is dark, but not as thick and dark as Ryan's was. His feet seem especially long, so we may have another tall boy! His eyes are dark blue and his skin looked perfect! No bruising or other marks. At first I didn't think he looked like Ryan at all, but in certain pictures I can now see some similarities.

We finished up in the delivery room and soon headed to a recovery room. We were so happy to have our healthy boy finally here!

1 comment:

Anne said...

Thanks for posting your birth story. The midwife in me loves to know the details and as your friend I am thrilled that it went well!! I am so excited for you to have two beautiful boys. Have a wonderful Christmas!