Tuesday, April 1, 2014

My Labor Story..

November 1, 2013 my husband and I went to bed around 11:00 p.m. I had slept for about an hour before I woke up at midnight (November 2, 2013) feeling a bit crampy. Not stomach cramps, but back cramps, just like I have when I'm on my period. I stayed in bed for about 30 minutes trying to fall back to sleep but the feeling just wouldn’t go away.

Not wanting to wake up my husband, I decided to go sit in the living room with a heating pad on my back. I sat with a heating pad on my back and decided to start timing the cramping I was feeling. I wasn’t sure if what I was feeling was contractions but something definitely felt a bit off. I timed them at 7 minutes apart with each one lasting about 60/90 seconds long. An hour had gone by and the cramping was very consistent. I decided to text my best friend who is a labor and delivery nurse to see what she thought and to warn her that tonight might be the night (she was going to be there when I delivered my baby). She said that what I was feeling sounded like contractions and to keep timing them and keep her posted. The cramping continued on and off until about 2:30 a.m. It wasn't anything unbearable, just light cramping that was a bit uncomfortable because it was all in my back and every time I tried laying down I would feel even more uncomfortable. I stayed up playing a game on my phone to help pass the time and to help distract the achiness I was feeling.

Apparently I was really into my game because I lost track of time and all of a sudden I heard and felt a loud POP. That loud POP freaked me out! I sat there wondering what the heck that could have been, wondering if the baby was ok, and then all of a sudden it clicked, my water, my water had just broke! I ran into the bedroom and woke up my husband telling him I thought my water had just broke. He asked me if I was leaking and I told him I didn't know I hadn't gone to the restroom yet to check. I ran to the restroom and sure enough I was leaking, slowly. I called my best friend and told her what I felt and she confirmed it was my water. She suggested we head to the hospital shortly because once your water breaks the contractions start coming on strong and you’re limited on time. I had no idea that you would feel and hear such a thing when your water breaks, I felt so unprepared.

I decided to take a quick bath, put some makeup on and get dressed before heading out. My contractions started getting stronger and closer together as I was getting ready. I had to stop and bend over the bed as each one came and just breathe through each one. My husband tried rubbing my back as each contraction came but it wasn't helping much. It was much easier for me to just breathe through each one in a bent over position. After each contraction I continued to get myself together and finish packing my last minute hospital stuff while my husband cleaned the house a bit, fed the animals, called our parents and loaded our stuff in the car. I was still leaking light amounts of water and had also started bleeding fairly heavy too. It was so hard to get myself ready because my nerves and emotions were all over the place so I had a hard time concentrating and found myself running circles at one point.

We finally left the house at about 3:45 a.m. and arrived at the hospital and 4:00 a.m. The car ride to the hospital wasn't long at all but holy cow my contractions started intensifying and some of them were starting to become back to back giving me no breaks in-between. At this point I think we timed my contractions at 3 minutes apart lasting about a minute long with a few that were back to back (those back to back ones are the most painful).

We checked into the hospital at 4:00 a.m. (1 1/2 hours after my water broke). My best friend and my dad met us there right away. They immediately put us in a room after signing a few things and hooked me up to the monitors. My contractions were about 3 - 5 minutes apart once they had me hooked up and though each one was fairly painful I was getting breaks in-between so it was tolerable. The nurses wanted to check to see if my water really did break and how dilated I was before admitting me. I was only 2 cm dilated and the nurses said my water hadn't broke. What, how was that possible? I felt my water break, what else could it have been!?!? My best friend said everything I described sounded like my water DID break but maybe it was a slow leak. Once the nurses checked to see how dilated I was the contractions started coming on harder. The nurses left the room and said they would call my doctor and see what she wanted to do. An hour went by and they still hadn't told me what my doctor said, or if they were admitting me, and at this point I was in a lot of pan! I had crazy back labor and my contractions were so strong at this point they were going off the chart. I held onto the rail of the hospital bed, trying to breathe through each one, but I could not catch a break! Just as one contraction would start coming to an end another one would start up again (back to back contractions suck!).

Finally at 6 a.m. after not hearing from any of the nurses, and not knowing if they were admitting me, I said "I need something for this pain, I can't handle it any longer". I sent my husband out into the hallway to flag down a nurse to find out what the heck was going on. When the nurse finally came in I asked her if there was anything she could give me for the pain. She asked what level of pain I was in from a 1 - 10 and showed me a chart and I said “10”. She asked me if I wanted an epidural and I said "yes, anything to relieve me of the pain". She said she needed to call my doctor to see if my doctor was ok with admitting me (ARE YOU KIDDING ME, I thought they were doing that hours ago). Come to find out those nurses were getting ready to go home for the night. Their shift was almost over so they were basically being lazy. After asking for an epidural they finally called my doctor and admitted me. They said it would be another hour until I could get an epidural as they needed to hook me up to an IV first and have me sign a few things.

A new batch of nurses came in and boy were they amazing! I couldn’t’ have asked for a better group of nurses. I was informed that my Doctor had fallen and injured herself and would not be able to deliver my baby. I was so disappointed because I felt so comfortable with her and had grown very close with her over the course of my pregnancy. At some point during my labor my doctor called my hospital room to apologize that she wasn’t going to be there. She told me that I was a very special patient to her and that she wished she could be there. She promised me that she would set me up with someone GREAT to deliver my baby and boy did she : )

The amount of pain I was in was so bad I couldn't even talk anymore. I was shaking uncontrollably, I was super hot and sweaty and I was throwing up with each contraction. My husband sat there fanning me with each contraction (the one thing I wish the hospital would have had or I would have brought is a hand held fan. The nurses set the air on super high for me and I was still sweating like crazy) and my best friend held a pan under me as I threw up. She also continued to put cold wet washcloths behind my neck which helped tremendously (Thank God for one heck of a best friend and one heck of a husband).

The nurses came back in to hook me up to an IV. I asked to use the restroom first. I could hardly walk to the restroom because the contractions were so intense. I sat on the toilet trying to go to the bathroom but it was so hard because the contractions wouldn't let me catch a break. I was finally able to go and when I looked into the toilet all I saw was blood.

Immediately after walking out of the bathroom the nurses had me walk across the room to sign a bunch of paperwork (I honestly had no idea what I was signing because all I could think about was the amount of pain I was in). I had 3 really big contractions just walking over to sign everything and had to stop and bend over a chair just to get through each one. As the nurse was explaining everything to me it was just going through one ear and out the other. There was no possible way for me to focus when I was having contraction after contraction.
Once I signed everything they hooked me up to an IV and began prepping me for an epidural. By the time I got the epidural it was 7:30 a.m. To my surprise the epidural was painless. I had all this anticipation built up that it was going to be painful and all it felt like was a small prick in my back. It was instant relief, thank god!

Shortly after the epidural I had a room full of people, my husband, my mom, my dad, my mother-in-law, my grandpa and my best friend were all in the room with me. Everyone was talking and joking, and I was trying so hard to rest up before it was time to push, but it was so hard because I felt sooo good finally and everyone was full of excitement. How is one supposed to rest when feeling so excited?? I was also starving!! I hadn't had anything to eat since 6 p.m. the night before. I knew the hospital wouldn't allow me to eat so I packed some snacks and my best friend snuck me handfuls of the cheez-its I brought. How is one supposed to have the energy to push without food lol.

Eventually I told everyone to go about their morning so I could rest. I expected to be in labor for many more hours so I wanted everyone to go about their day. Everyone except my dad left. My husband went out to the car to get our overnight bags. The nurses came in to check me again and said I was 6 almost 7 cm dilated and 100% effaced. I had progressed super quickly but knew things could easily turn around. Being the excited over exaggerator my dad is, he immediately texts everyone to come back, telling everyone I can have the baby at any moment and that the doctor’s could see her head lol. Everyone runs back to my room all excited when I had to tell them what my dad said was very much so exaggerated and that things could still change at any given moment.

An hour later the nurses come back into the room to check me again. This time I'm 8 cm dilated and I start feeling the contractions again but only on my right side. I could tell the epidural was slowly wearing off so I told the nurse I was starting to feel the contractions again and they upped my epidural some. All of a sudden my legs were completely numb, so numb that I couldn't even lift them or turn myself in the hospital bed without help. I started panicking a bit. Not being able to move the lower half of your body is a freaky feeling. I was afraid I was going to be so numb when it came time to push that I would have no control over what I was doing.

I tried my best to relax but 30 minutes later the nurses were back to see if I had progressed. I was now 10 cm dilated and 100 effaced but rather than have me push immediately, they allowed the baby to labor down a bit (This helped tremendously as far as not tearing too bad).

20 minutes later the nurses were back to check me and decided it was time for me to push. I wasn't prepared to push, I didn't feel that urge to push that everyone talks about, I was so nervous! I could however move my legs at this point which meant my epidural was perfect and would probably start wearing off again so if I was going to push it was the perfect time to do so. I kicked everyone out of the room except my husband and my best friend. The nurses positioned me and guided me to start pushing while my best friend counted to ten making me push for a full ten seconds each time (her counting to ten was so motivating, it truly made me push to my fullest even when I felt I was completely out of breath). I pushed twice and then the nurses had me stop because they could already see the baby's head. It was time to bring the doctor in to deliver our baby.

The doctor arrived quickly. Everyone positioned themselves and they had me start pushing again. It was only a couple of pushes before her head was out and then they had me stop pushing for a good five minutes. At this point everyone was talking about how much hair she had and the doctor sat there playing with her hair, swirling her fingers in it and styling it before she came out. Finally they had me push a couple more times and she was out! Pushing felt like I had just run a marathon, boy does it take EVERYTHING out of you. I only pushed for maybe 15 minutes before she was out but it felt like I had just gotten done running, I was breathless! The doctor that delivered my baby was so amazing. She was so encouraging while I pushed. She told me that if every patient she had pushed like me I would make everyone’s job so much easier. I think working out throughout my pregnancy helped tremendously with pushing.

They laid her on my chest immediately. It took her a few seconds before she cried but when she did tears of joy ran down my face. There is just no better feeling than seeing and hearing your baby for the very first time. After some skin to skin with my baby they measured her and weighed her - 7 lbs 4 ounces and 20 ½ inches long. We named her Atiana Nicole and she was born on November 2, 2013 at 11:58 a.m. My due date was October 31, 2013, according to my doctor. However, the place we got our 4D ultrasound at gave us a due date of November 2, 2013. Needless to say, she was born on November 2, 2013. Every detail about her that was given to us at the 4D ultrasound was accurate.

I healed fairly quickly post baby. I really wasn’t all that sore at all. I had bad sciatica pain that I had to get adjusted right away post baby and my butt hurt a bit making it uncomfortable to sit for long periods (I swear I birthed a baby out of my butt lol) but no other pain aside from that. I stopped bleeding by week two and still haven’t gotten a period yet but I’m sure that’s due to breastfeeding. My recovery process was crazy because I really didn’t even feel like I had a baby.

And that is my labor story! I didn’t have a birth plan written out but I was hoping I wouldn’t have to be induced, that I wouldn’t end up with a c-section and that I wouldn’t need an episiotomy and luckily everything went smoothly for me and none of those things needed to be done. I was terrified of labor prior to having my daughter and now I can honestly say it was such a beautiful day and I would do it again any day. I enjoyed every part of that day and can honestly say it went by far too fast. It was an easy labor and I feel very blessed.

Sorry it took me so long to get this blog post up. No one warned me how hard the first month or two of being a mommy is. Holy heck, I’ll save that for another blog post. I had lots of breakdowns and a baby that never let me put her down. She’s 5 months now and it’s gotten so much easier. She’s a whole different baby now, so happy and such an easy baby. I wish someone would have told me it gets easier after their about 3 months old lol.

I’ve been back at work for 2 months now and I finally have a good balance going on so I’m hoping to start blogging more. There are so many moments I want to blog about so that I don’t forget them!