Friday, February 22, 2008

The birth of...

It was the morning of June 7th & I was going in for my weekly OB visit. I was 38 weeks & getting pretty uncomfortable, ready for baby to show up a.n.y.t.i.m.e!! The visit was the same old same old. Heartbeat, exam, you know the drill. But then my kooky doc decides to get clever and show baby the exit. Pokes her finger up there & says "baby, here's the exit. Come on baby, be nice to your mom." OUCH!!! Ummm, baby be nice? Hellooo, how about the dang doctor!! I loved that doc but I was a leeetle annoyed with her clever procedure.

Fast forward several hours.

We were having a family dinner that night with both my sisters & their families. Margaret was going to cut my hair before dinner. Mom was making one of my favorite dishes, spinach & cheese manacotti, & I could just start to smell it.

I get up to go get something out of my room & while walking down the hall I suddenly feel...well, kinda wet. And with each step I feel more of it. Hmmm, could it be? No, it couldn't, prolly just a squished bladder thing. There it is again - OH MY GOSH I THINK MY WATER BROKE! Ewwwww, that's kinda gross, now I hafta tell somebody.

I call my doc's nurse & she tells me to meet them at the hospital.

I tell my parents. Mom's excited, Dad's a bit grossed out, no surprise there.

I head for the hospital & call Chris to tell him to meet me there but can't get him on the phone. I call, and call, and call, and call. What the heck is he doing, doesn't he know I need him? Finally I call the office to see if they can find him. He was working on something loud & could not hear the phone. They go get him & tell him to get his butt to the hospital cos, "your wife is in labor!"

Meanwhile I get my room & they give me the latest in hospital fashion to wear. I start to settle in & here comes Chris, practically skidding into the room, convinced I'm going to have the kid before he gets there . "You're in labor? Why didn't you call me sooner?" "No I'm not in labor, my water broke you dope!"

I'm reeeeally hungry at this point. I'd been thinking about that manacotti they were eating in my honor back at the house. So the next time a nurse breezed by I grabbed her, explained about the dinner & asked if I could eat something. I mean, my water broke but I'm not in labor or anything, pleeeease? The nurse has to have like, a conference with 900 other people about it and with only a half hour more of thinking about the food, they tell me I can eat a little bit. Hooray! Get my mom on the phone PRONTO, I'm gonna have me some manacotti!

A nurse checks me & takes a sample to the hour goes by, waiting for results & eating my yummy dinner (thanks mom!)...yup, amniotic fluid, my water did indeed break.

Years hours later the doc gets there & starts ordering stuff for me. She informs me I'm going to be induced since my water broke. Now, hindsight is 20/20 & I wish that I would have told her I wanted to think about it. But I tend to be intimidated by authority figures like docs etc so I just went with it.

They get me hooked up to all the stuff & give me pitocin. I reacted right away to it and discovered that, YOWZA, I don't like contractions one bit!

I think it was about 7-ish when my contractions started, & they went on in the usual way for a few hours. I take some kind of narcotic to take the edge off the pain but it really doesn't help much, just makes me feel kinda fuzzy. So at about 11 I asked for my epidural, none of that natural stuff for me, thank you very much, I'm a huge wimp & breathing was NOT working anymore. They finally got it in place around midnight & ahhh, sweet relief! I loved my epidural, life was good, I could rest & let my body do it's thing.

Except that my body started doing strange things. Once the epidural was in place my contractions pretty much stopped. They had to give me more & more pitocin to get things going again & I ended up on the highest dose. My contractions came back but were very long & weak, which was the case for the rest of my labor.

Suddenly in the middle of a contraction the nurse slaps an oxygen mask on my face & urgently makes me turn on my left side. She told us that baby's heart rate dropped & I had to to that to give baby the most oxygen possible. This became a frequent occurrence - my family looked pretty worried & got no sleep at all that night. The nurse was reassuring but looked pretty intense every time did it. I was not worried at all which is strange for me. Usually I would completely stress myself out over something like that but I just went with the flow. God knew I needed to be calm & rest as much as possible.

I really wanted to have a vaginal birth but when morning came I started to worry it wouldn't happen. I began to pray during each contraction. God please make something happen. I don't want to deal with a surgery right now, please, please let this baby come the normal way. Please God? But God had other concerns in mind.

In the morning the nurse paged the doctor to find out what she wanted to do. She took f.o.r.e.v.e.r to call back, (I think they paged her multiple times) and finally came in around 9. The nurse was very assuring during the night & nobody ever said c-section to us. But I think she knew that's how it would end up. When my Doc got there she gently told me that it looked like a section was what we would have to do. I cried just a little & asked her if she was sure. She said they would give me a little more time but she didn't think it would help.

I silently talked a bit more with God & told him that I very much did not want to do this. But if a c-section is what's necessary it would be ok. I then told my doc to go ahead with whatever was needed.

They renewed my epidural & got me prepped to go to the OR. When they were wheeling me over, I felt like I was in an episode of the show ER. Get her to the OR - stat!! Laying there with the lights passing by overhead was a very surreal feeling!

In the OR, the doc who really runs the show is the Anesthesiologist. Chris asked the nurse if my family could be with us. She told us he'd have to ask the anesthesiologist & it just depended on his/her preference. I think we were blessed with the coolest one in the hospital cos when we asked him he said it was fine & not only that, but they could video as well. That was way beyond our expectations, we were just hoping they could get in the room! So they suited up in the hallway to wait until the OR folks had me all ready to go.

Once they were in the room things happened rather quickly. I couldn't feel a thing & it was just like they told us in pre-natal classes, lots of tugging and pulling. (My dad said later that he couldn't believe how hard they pull on the baby to get it out.) The anesthesiologist gave me a running commentary of what they were doing & told me everything looked great etc. I asked to have oxygen, my epidural was too good & I couldn't feel my chest. I felt like I had an elephant sitting on me! He told me I didn't need it but since it made me feel better he gave it to me. He was such a good doc!

Mort tugging & pulling - my anesthesiologist told me they were almost through my uterus. Then came the big moment, baby was out and Chris announced...

Samuel John is here!

We found out that God was watching over this little guy big time. His placenta was only working at 25%. That's why his heart rate dropped during those contractions - they were cutting off his oxygen to some degree. Had he been born vaginally, he very likely could have had brain damage or died. God knew the perfect way for this guy to arrive, even if it was not what I wanted. Oh, He is such a good God isn't he?


Joanne said...

My my my...God has blessed you BIG time sister!

That precious little one is just beautiful. Of course I think his name is just about perfect. Being named after a prophet, the very one who annointed King David no less!

(our youngest is named Samuel too...great minds think alike!)

May little Samuel John be blessed with a lifetime of love and laughter.

Joanne :O)

My Semblance of Sanity said...

Congrats and thanks for sharing!!

Anonymous said...

Praise God for His sovereignty! Although what a bummer having a C-section after going through all of that. But, I am sure he is worth it all. What a cutie!

Rebekah said...

Whew! I was fortunate to have quick deliveries (I may post my about my quickest one)

God took care of everything, didn't He?

mylhibug said...

What a great story and I am so glad that everything worked out so well.

He does look a little grumpy in the picture though. Maybe the cold room got to him. :)

Donna said...

It's amazing to know that our God is so awesome and that you had such a peace through it all!

My Semblance of Sanity said...


Wani said...

Thanks for sharing your birth story. If you are interested here are links to both of my sons' birth stories on my blog.
The first was supposed to be a natural birth in the hospital. But ended up being somewhat similar to your birth story.

We weren't happy with the interventions and hospital procedures that went on with our first birth and found a CNM to attend our VBAC at home for our second son. It was such a healing experience for all of us!

These are the abbreviated versions. If you're really into birth stories I have more detailed versions in word docs.

Kate said...

I just had a chance to read this--what a beautiful story it turned out to be. I am so glad that you and Samuel made it through the experience so well.

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