Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Birth story

I'll to keep this as brief as possible, but I do want to share my labor story, as it's a bit different...

-Sunday, 01/27/08, 11:20 am, 35 weeks, 3 days pregnant: I'm standing in our kitchen and feel a strange sensation, rather like a little gush. Mark says he's never seen that look on my face, as I run to the bathroom saying "um, I think my water just broke."

-1 pm: We arrive at St. John's hospital, hear baby's heartbeat; I'm much relieved, just hearing that he's ok. It's confirmed, my water broke and baby will arrive sometime in the next day or so.

-Knowing that I'm a Bradley student (ie, hoping for an unmedicated labor), my Dr. suggests waiting on pitocin, to see if I go into labor on my own. Additionally, they decide to wait until evening to check me, so as to not risk infection.

-All afternoon and evening, we wait for any signs of labor. Friends visit, nurses try to intervene a little too much, telling us about medications and hooking me up to continuous fetal monitoring thereby gluing me to the bed. I am started on IV antibiotics and the liters of fluid that go with it (the routine 36 week check for Group B didn't happen, as I'm only 35 weeks, so antibiotics were given "just in case.")

- 7pm: I get my first internal exam: 4 cm dilated, 80% effaced, and aside from the very occasion Braxton-Hicks, not a contraction in sight. We are told that if labor doesn't begin during the night, pitocin will be started in the morning.

- 2 am, 01/28/08: I start to have noticeable contractions. They are very mild and every 20 or so minutes. The IV fluids make the night miserable, as I'm running to the bathroom every 1o-15 minutes and when I'm too tired to keep that up, the contractions get much more painful due to my full bladder.

- 4 am: I've had maybe 3 really uncomfortable/painful contractions with the more mild ones inbetween. Still no pattern, and as far apart as before.

- 7 am: contractions have become more intense, now 5-15 minutes apart, lasting 30 seconds- 3 minutes. No recognizable pattern makes it difficult to prepare for them, and Mark feels a bit helpless as a coach, but just having him there is exactly what I need!

- The morning nurse walks in to introduce herself during one of the worst contractions of my whole labor. I'm writhing in pain (ooops, forgot to relax during that one) and dry-heaving. She says "Oh! They didn't tell me you were laboring, they said you were sleeping!" (I think, "you try sleeping on a continuously filling bladder, contractions or otherwise!") I say nothing and try to recover from that 3 minute contraction so I can move to my bed to get checked: 7 cm, 100% effaced! Inconsistent and relatively mild though they were, my exhausting, sleepless night had produced fruit!

- The medical team decides I need pitocin to regulate my contractions, stating that even if I make it to 10 cm like this, if I get baby's head out and don't have a contraction for 15 minutes, that could be really dangerous. I see their point and consent. I also realize that pitocin means 1) more of the dreaded liters of fluid, and 2) more of those awful contractions but really really close together, and on a full bladder. Additionally, I'm pooped, having not slept all night. I begin to think that a catheter sounds better than winning the lottery, and in my rather foggy mind, that comes with an epidural (I suppose it probably goes the other way around for most women, but that's what a sleepless night left me with.)

- I get the catheter, well, first I get the epidural after which I get some beautiful sleep. I awake a couple hours later, a changed woman...actually excited about having a baby! I'm also 10 cm dilated, and Mark is able to see baby's blond hair!

- Dr. arrives. I push for about 1/2 an hour, and at 11:11 am Iain Paul Archibald meets the world!

- Mark and I are overjoyed and marvel at this little baby who has just been plopped on top of me. Someone suggests talking to him, as he'll recognize our voices. I'm at a loss of what to say, so I suggest to Mark that we sing him our song, a variation of Psalm 23. It was the same song we sang together on the way to the hospital, when I was terrified that something had gone horribly wrong. This time we sing it together with our son in a moment of absolute rejoicing! Praise the Lord!

Iain Paul Archibald! This is Iain plopped on top of me, even before the cord was cut. (Sorry about the funny cropping job; it was very necessary and I'm sure you can imagine what his other foot looks like.)
Iain under the warmer. If you look closely, you can see a golden stream heading directly for his left eye. Rumor has it, as a baby his father pulled the same stunt. Like father, like son!


Adam A said...

No way! I can't believe you caught the own goal/pee-in-the-eye shot. Awesome!!!

Alexis said...'s so good to hear your story! Congrats on a job well-done! It's never just as you plan it, is it? Love the pee-pic too - that's pretty funny!

Maggie&Suzie said...

Good to hear the story- way to go including details but not making it unreadable :D thats a gift! Love the peeing in the eye pic- that must have been quite a shock (to himself)... definitely a boy! It sounds like you did just the right thing- started out with the no drugs mentality and then accepted them when the time was right- way to go- thats also a very good balance to have! Love ya!

Meghan said...

I am so glad you posted your labor story. I was really wondering how things went, and everyone turned out great!! It is truly amazing how labor never goes like we plan in our heads. The bottom picture is hilarious- that will be a good one to show his first girlfriend!

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