Hmmm. Where should I start?
Do I start this post at the exact moment I went into labor? Or do I go back a couple of days and work my way up to the moment?
How about we start a couple of weeks back. Yeah let’s start there. Back to when I was 38 weeks and very pregnant.
At my prenatal appointment my midwife examined me and I was 1 cm dilated 80% effaced. My first thought: yay! Let’s get this show on the road! But in reality: This means absolutely nothing. Baby could come early… or not. She’ll come when she’s ready.
Another week goes by.
No water breakage.
At my 39 week check up (Wednesday) I was examined once again. This time, 3-4 cm dilated and still 80% effaced. The excitement returned. And then my midwife reminded me again… baby will come when she’s ready. And apparently she was not ready. We decided if nothing happened by my next appointment, we would do a membrane sweep – not a fun procedure but a better option than having to be medically induced.
So I did what any pregnant lady who was being pregnant would do… I hoped and wished for my uterus to go into labor. Like right away.
I spotted a little bit the day after my doc appointment, which can be normal after a pelvic exam. But I was soooo hoping it was my mucus plug. Because then that would mean I could go into labor soon!
The weekend came.
And then it went.
Still no baby. 😖
Sunday night I went to bed but had the hardest time falling asleep because Baby was doing some major kickboxing in my belly. Kicks, jabs… I swear it felt like she was trying to claw her way out. I thought maybe I might go into labor!!! But then it all stopped just after midnight.
So… Monday, life went on as normal. Hubby left for work. Ella and I went about our daily routine – play, eat, play…and played some more. At about 3-ish, Ella and I snuggled up in bed for our nap. At 5-ish, I woke up to the same dancing act in my belly that kept me up the night before. Ella was still asleep so I just laid there and rested and let Baby beat me up from the inside.
And then I felt a pop.
Did my water just break?
I didn’t move. I just laid there. Waiting. For what? No clue. I never experienced my water breaking when I went into labor with Ella. In fact, my water didn’t break till right before I had to push. The doc had to break it. So I waited. Not long after, I felt myself wet my pants involuntarily. Either I really had no control over my bladder anymore or my water did in fact break.
I got up and ran to the bathroom. My undies and shorts were completely soaked. But I thought, if my water did break…wouldn’t there be more fluid? Like what you see/hear about in the movies? So I wasn’t sure.
Looked at the time and it was almost 6 pm. Called the hubby, who was on his way home from work but stuck in traffic. He arranged for his brother and sister-in-law to come get me and take me to the hospital. My brother-in-law took Ella home with him while my sister-in-law drove me to the hospital.
We arrived at the hospital about 7 pm. At this point, I still wasn’t 100% sure that my water broke – denial at its finest. The nurse taking care of me told me they’d check me out. If it did break, I’d be admitted. If it didn’t, I’d be sent home. My sister-in-law stayed with me till the hubby arrived. The midwife came in and examined me. Turns out, my water did break. And I was still 3-4 cm dilated. I felt zero contractions. But once they hooked me up to the monitors, it showed that I was indeed having contractions. I guess I do have a high tolerance for pain.
So here’s the deal with having your water break well before you are in active labor. There is a small window in which the doctors would like to have the baby delivered. The main reason is because there is a huge risk of infection that could lead to complications for me and the baby. That’s when they asked me if I wanted to try to hurry my labor along with the help of Pitocin or if I wanted to try and see if my body would let labor progress naturally. I opted to try the natural route instead. They gave me about 2 hours to see if anything magical happened.
At around 9 pm, I was examined again. By then I was experiencing stronger contractions. Not too painful. But I had not dilated at all. So we agreed to start the Pitocin. I had been on the fence about getting the epidural up until this point. But after realizing how late it was and that Baby P #2 was not going to be born any time soon, I said yes to the epidural. I chose the opportunity to rest and sleep through the night so that I’d have the energy to push at the end of it. I remembered just how exhausting it was when I had Ella. And I was not looking forward to being completely sleep deprived before the newborn stage even started.
So they pumped me up with fluids and started the Pitocin. About an hour later, the anesthesiologist came in and got the epidural going. The contractions came on strong once that Pitocin was in my system. And once I got the epidural, it was instant relief. And I tried my best to get some sleep. I don’t think I slept much. I guess I was just too anxious. But I got to relax through all those contractions.
At 6 am my nurse examined me and said I was fully dilated and wanted me to do some practice pushes. After a couple of pushes, she had me stop because there was still some cervix. So we waited.
At 7 am there was a shift change and I got a new nurse and midwife. My new nurse didn’t try to hurry things up. She wanted me to “labor down” (let baby make her way down the birth canal) so that I wouldn’t have to work so hard to push. I was totally fine with that. So we waited some more.
It was some time after 9 when I was given the go to start pushing. Totally different experience from the last time for sure. I didn’t always feel the pressure of the contractions with the epidural. So my midwife and nurse both had to coach me on when to start pushing when a contraction I didn’t feel would come on. It didn’t seem like I was pushing very hard because I couldn’t feel much, but they assured me I was doing an awesome job. After 3 rounds of 3-4 pushes (about 15 minutes), Everly Rose was born.
I was totally relieved I didn’t have to push for 4 hours like I did with Ella.
And thank God I had chosen the epidural route because guess what? It wasn’t over yet. I bled. A lot. They couldn’t stop the bleeding. The midwife was all up in there doing everything she can to make sure everything that needed to be out was out and that everything that needed to be stitched up was stitched up. But the bleeding wouldn’t stop. I shudder at the thought of having to endure that without the epidural.
Anyway, I tried my best not to freak out when she called for the OB that was on staff that day. But before the OB showed up, my midwife finally got the bleeding to stop and was able to finish me up. And then, of course, I spiked a fever. The risk of infection we tried to avoid happened anyway. I was put on antibiotics immediately and because of the fever, I was not allowed to go home 24 hours later like I should have. But at least Baby was fine.
And there you have it, folks. My birth story. Finally. It only took me 4 months to write. LOL
I still cannot believe I pushed out a 9 lb baby!!!
Evie – skin to skin bonding with Daddy
My entourage, my coaches…
Little Sis meeting Big Sis for the first time…