Monday, February 20, 2017

August Edward: A Birth Story

So, after waiting exactly two months, I figured it was about time I get to Gus' birth story. I'm sure I've already forgotten more than I want to admit. Here we go.

Brand new Gus Gus.

Before I jump in, I will admit that I was way more anxious about labor and delivery this time around. I think it's because I knew what I was in for, and, to be honest, was not looking forward to going through all of that again. Not to mention postpartum recovery. So, I really bent myself out of shape before Gus was born. In the end, everything turned out more than fine and I got myself all worked up for nothing.

Anyways, the story of Gus' arrival starts the Friday before he was born. I went in to my 38 week OB visit, and I just knew my blood pressure was high. Sure enough. From there, I was sent over to the hospital for monitoring. Once I got to the hospital and all hooked up, they were never able to get another high blood pressure reading. After spending a bit of time being monitored, your dad and I were sent home and I was given strict orders to take it easy.

Saturday morning, I woke up and I still did not feel well. Called in to the hospital, and they once again told me to come in for monitoring. I was convinced that they were going to induce me then. Well, we got to the hospital, and it was deja vu. After several high readings, everything came back down. I was sent home and told to return Monday morning for a check.

Before I go any further, I should mention that my OB was exactly as pregnant as I was. Not even kidding. She had the exact same due date as me. The whole pregnancy, we sort of joked back and forth as to who was going to have to be pregnant longest.

Once again, Monday morning, I pack up our hospital bags and head to be checked at the doctor's office. This time, I was convinced I would just be sent home again. I even emailed work, just telling them I would be a few hours late. I get to the doctor's office and immediately found out that my doctor had her baby that morning! Not only that, but after having her baby, called the office and told them not to cancel my appointment and make sure I was seen. That's right, my sweet, sweet doctor just had HER baby and was still worried about mine. She's seriously the best.

So, the nurse took my blood pressure and, drum roll please, it was high. Then, I sat in that room for about 20 minutes while she called around to my doctor and the doctor on call to see what to do next. It was ultimately decided that I would be sent to the hospital. But, we still didn't know whether I would be induced or not. At this point, I was just so ready for it to happen. The blood pressure numbers were getting higher with every read and I didn't want it to get to preeclampsia.

This time, after all my vitals were taken, they found protein in my urine. This ended up being what put me over the induction edge: It was officially go time!

Matt and I were moved in to the birthing room and got ourselves situated. We knew we'd be here for a little bit. The first thing they did was place a round of cervidil. Then, we waited.

There was going to be at least four hours until they gave me another dose, and we were told that most likely nothing would happen during that time. So, for the next four hours, we just hung out and watched TV. It was glorious. We haven't had down time like that in months.

When they placed the second round of cervidil four hours later, things started to pick up a bit. My contractions weren't painful or super regular. They were just there. At one point, I received an IV with fluids because my contractions were picking up a little too much. But, still, they weren't painful. Around 11:00PM that night, I was checked and was still only about three centimeters. I hadn't made much progress during the last eight hours.

So, one of the residents said she would go ahead and break my water. This was THE most painful part of the whole labor and delivery. I guess, right after she broke my water, she thought she felt the umbilical cord slipping down. This would've been an immediate need for a C section. To be blunt, she was wrist-deep for about five minutes while she was trying to figure out everything that was going on and making sure that it wasn't the umbilical cord she was feeling. It was so painful!

The ONE picture I took during labor. Watching all the contractions come through.

Once she realized everything was ok and was able to let go, everything was fine. My water was broken and there was no meconium in the fluid. I asked our nurse, Ursula, if I could walk around a bit and for a birthing ball to sit on.

About 11:30, Matt and I did laps around the labor and delivery floor. We were walking for about 15 minutes, stopping every couple of minutes to work through a contraction. Almost out of no where, they started to get really bad. So, we headed back to the room and I tried sitting on the ball for a little bit. That turned out to be just annoying.

I began bracing myself against the sink in the room during the contractions. Matt was trying to help, so he kept turning on the water in the sink. I later found out he was trying to calm me, but at the time, it was just annoying as hell! (I know some people out there can relate: but poor Matt was just driving me crazy during the worst of my contractions. For whatever reason, I hate being touched during them and just sort of need to do my own thing. Even the poor nurse was trying to rub my back, but I really didn't want anything to do with that either.)

At this point, things were getting painful! Like crazy painful. I had asked for an epidural right after they broke my water, but they wanted me to wait to make sure the contractions would get more intense. I had a feeling things would pick up quickly, and they did.

It felt like forever until that amazing anesthesiologist walked through the door. Once he got there, I really had to give myself a pep talk in order to sit still while I was given the epidural. Sitting still during that time was one of the most difficult things ever! The doctor administered the epidural, which I could barely feel. Then, a few minutes later, I felt the relief just flood over my body.

I was able to lay down comfortably while the resident checked me again. Seven centimeters! I had gone from like 3 to 7 in a couple short hours. It was about 2:00 AM at this point. I felt so much better since having the epidural, but I could still tell that it was almost time to push. I did have some crazy labor shakes, too. As hard as I tried, I could not stop the shaking. I had that when I was laboring with Callum, too.

Right about 2:30AM, I told the nurse I was pretty sure it was time for me to push. She checked me and agreed! After two pushes, she decided it was time to call the doctor in. I pushed a few more times, and then they wanted me to wait to push anymore until the doctor arrived. Our little man was coming fast!

A few minutes later, the doctor arrived and I continued to push. I could feel the pressure, but there was no pain. Thanks to the epidural, pushing was a breeze.

Then, right at 3:00 AM on the dot, our August Edward arrived. He came out and went right to my chest. Our sweet, sweet boy barely made a sound. It was like he was so ready to enter the world, and him arriving and laying right on my chest was just what he needed.

As I was basking in this magical moment, the doctor casually mentioned that she was ordering a hemorrhage kit because there was a little more blood than she usually likes. I did my best to relax and enjoy sweet Gus, even though I was sort of freaking out. A few minutes later, the doctor gave the all clear and said everything looked alright. Thank goodness! I needed a couple of stitches, but otherwise, everything was great.

He's here!

Gus was so calm and quiet during this time, I was almost worried. The doctors and nurses assured me that he was fine, just more of the strong, silent type. He was cleaned off and weighed and still barely made a peep.

Being weighed without crying.

After a little bit of clean up, we were all moved upstairs to a recovery room. This was the one time in my life I managed to stay up all night, and I still felt amazing. Pretty hungry, but I did not feel tired. It's crazy what that adrenaline can do to you. My body felt really, really good, too. I was actually amazed. Honestly, no real pain or soreness. I definitely think it was because of all the barre classes I took just about right until baby arrived. My body was strong and ready for this.

Right around 8:00 AM, Callum and Oma came to meet you. It was probably one of the best moments of my life: seeing my two boys together for the first time. It was a moment I had waited almost a whole year for. Gus Gus had finally arrived and we had officially begun life as a family of four.

Meeting his brother.

First family photo.