Friday, September 05, 2008

I Had A Baby

Shortly after birth. All kinds of cone-headed.
About 1 hour old. I don't know how I did it, but my barrette stayed in my hair the entire time.

These next several posts will detail, to the best of my recollection, of the past 10 days. All will be explained. But thank goodness we are ALL finally home. Healthy, happy, tired, but together. Pictures will be coming soon. I just wanted to start getting these posts up.

25 August- 37weeks and 3 days

I had had consistent contractions since the false labor episode Friday night. Monday morning they were a little stronger, though not quite on a schedule. They were consistently between 3 and 6 minutes apart. I had a Dr. appt. at 9am. When the doc checked me, I had dilated to 3cm. Although I didn’t seem to be in active labor, my blood pressure was consistently high. I had my BP taken 4 times in the OB Clinic. The doc set me up for an earlier NST/AFI ASAP (I had one scheduled for 1pm that day) so I went upstairs. The NST/AFI came back looking fine. The Squirt didn’t appear to be in any distress, however my BP was still reading high. By this time, it was about 12 pm. I was starting to get hungry because I hadn’t eaten since breakfast at 7:30. One of the Corpsmen on duty brought me some graham crackers, peanut butter, and juice. I asked if I could go downstairs and get something to eat real fast from the Subway, but the doctor didn’t want me wandering around with my blood pressure.

The doc on duty up here decided to admit me for an initial 24-hour observation.
So, the Corpsman ordered me a tray from the galley. However, by the next time (sometime before 3pm) I was checked, I had dilated to 4cm. This threw me into the “In Labor” category and I was denied food until after delivery. My status went from a 24-hour admin. to ‘having a baby tonight’, so I called E for about the 6th time that day and said today was the day. They started an IV and decided to see how far I would progress on my own for the next 2 hours. It wasn’t much. In fact, there wasn’t any progression at all. And of course with my BP, I wasn’t allowed to walk around to help things along. I think E had gotten there by this time and they started running Pitocin.

The contractions started coming more frequently and were getting stronger, so I thought things were going well. I think it was about 4 hours later when they checked me again and I was up to 6 cm. Not as far as I would have liked and they had been upping the Pit. drip frequently. I think by that time I was maxed out on the dosage and I had to concentrate on my breathing when the contractions came on. When the Pit. started we had decided to see how things went with that and if things didn’t progress then we would break water. If I wanted an epidural, they would administer that first then break water. Considering they did the opposite when Dani was born, I thought that was brilliant. I knew that the breaking of the water would intensify the contractions 100%. I think it was around 9 pm when the epidural was given. Within 30 minutes, the doc. broke my water.

I stayed awake for a couple more hours then started drifting in and out until 1am. My left leg at this point was completely dead. I remember how odd it was that I could touch my leg through the sheet and feel a leg there, but I couldn’t feel my own touch. It was as if someone else’s leg was in bed with me. When I woke up at 1 am, the contractions were quite strong. Even the epidural, which had evidently settled on the left side of my body, seemed to barely take the edge off. I was breathing heavily through the contractions now and within 30 minutes or so, my breathing started coming out in moans. I was trying to not scream because it wasn’t that bad, but I couldn’t quite keep quiet. E was sleeping at that point and I woke him up with my breathing. He watched me, helplessly, for a while as things started feeling stronger and he kept asking me if I felt like I needed to push. Which I really didn’t. He couldn’t stand watching me in that pain, so he went to get a nurse. She came in with the doctor and I think it was about 2:10 am at that time. She checked me and I was finally fully dilated. That is when an OB team really kicks into gear. Within minutes, the bottom of the bed was dropped off, stirrups up, legs grabbed and I was pushing. I remember getting through the first contraction having pushed 3 times and thinking, “God, I hope I don’t have to push for hours because I won’t be able to do it.” I kept hearing everyone saying how good of a job I was but I was thinking that they say that to everyone. I pushed another few times through the 2nd contraction. They encouraged me some more. I pushed another few times through the 3rd contraction. E started getting really excited. I think someone said something about seeing a head. I pushed a few more times through the 4th contraction and within an instant, at 2:25, my son was born. 7 pounds, 5.6 ounces. 19 inches long.

My son, who for the past several months had been tenderizing my ribs and stretching my uterus, was here. He was surprisingly quiet, just letting the doctors and nurses clean him off and start observing him. They didn’t offer to let me hold him right away which concerned me. I could hear his breathing and it sounded irregular and struggling. Someone reminded E to take pictures, so he left my bedside and took a few pics of the Squirt, then came back to me. After about an hour, they let us hold him. I tried to get him to latch but he didn’t seem to be able to get the pattern of suck and breathe. The nurses took him back to see if they could stimulate him a little bit.
While they were doing that, E and I fell asleep. I didn’t want to, but fatigue and hunger (at some point I was given some juice and some more crackers) took over my body. The nurses woke us up around 5:30 and said that they didn’t like the way he was breathing so they were taking him to the nursery to give him some oxygen. That was the last time he was in open air for 5 ½ days.


Linda said...

Oh, wow! Congratulations! I'm hanging on a cliff...can't wait to hear what happened to Squirt. I'm glad to know the ending, at least. I'm relieved you're all at home, happy and safe.

DD said...

My heartfelt congrats to you and your family on the arrival of your son! How scary those first few days must have been for least you let us know you are all safe and at home now.