Saturday, August 13, 2005

Rachel and her doggie

Ahh, the birth story. Men, children and squeemish women, you can just ooh and ahh at the picture and go now. It's not for the weak stomached individual.

Seriously, my labor went well. That's about all in the pregnancy that went well, it seemed. And DURING the labor I would have told you otherwise.

At my 35 week ultrasound that they did because of the gestational diabetes, they determined that my amniotic fluid was a little borderline low. That was weird because a side effect of the diabetes is HIGH amniotic fluid, but they told me to take it easy and drink plenty of fluids and they would monitor it. No problem. So, the following week, at 36 weeks, I went in for my regular checkup. She did another ultrasound to monitor the fluid levels, and lo and behold it was dangerously low at that point. The doctor was perplexed because of the aforementioned diabetes reason, but she said the baby needs to come out immediately, that it was no longer a safe environment for her. She told me she would do an "emergency" induction the next day.

I learned that "emergency" meant if not so many people went into spontaneous labor that they could fit me in they would induce me the next day. If not, then the following day. If not then definitely the following. So, I had to call that night to see if they had room for me. 5pm, no they don't have room. 7 pm no room at the inn. 9 pm, not even a manger. 10:30 pm, c'mon in! So, we zoomed down to the hospital, which was about 45 minutes away.

They put the medicine in my cervix to make me dialate, as I hadn't budged yet. Oh, what is that stuff called? Anyway, Bryan slept on the sofa and I slept on the very uncomfortable labor bed. I say "slept". Who the hell can sleep when they know they will be giving birth in a few hours? I should have taken the sleeping pill they offered, but I hate medicine. So, I was on about two hours sleep the next day.

I had only dialated 1 cm when they gave me the IV for the induction at 7 am. The morning went well. I thought "Hey! This is a piece of cake!" No medication. I was fine. Cramping, but, hey, I could handle it! What are these wimpy women whining about?


Owch. That's all I have to say. I had only dialated 2 cm at that point, so I couldn't get the epidural. I had mentioned I would "see how it went" in the pain department on arrival at the hospital when asked if I would like an epidural. However, after the contractions were ripping my intestines out (or so I thought) I decided needles weren't so bad. But then the hosptial staff taunted me by saying I couldn't have one because the doctor wouldn't let me have it until I was 3 cm.

What's worse is the doctor wouldn't let the nurse check my cervix until 3 pm. She said she didn't want to risk infection. At 3 pm I was only a freakin' (not the word I was thinking in my head at the time) 2.5 cm dialated. I was begging for drugs. They said no. My husband and the nurse started chatting about what was on TV and politics and religion and many other things I didn't care about at that time. In my own little pain induced world I was strangling them. But all I could muster out was a "I'm fine. Are you SURE you can't just take a peek at my cervix?" when asked.

When the nurse told the doctor I had only dialated 2.5 cm at 3pm, she told her she couldn't check me again until 6 freakin' PM. At 4:30 I begged. I mean BEGGED the nurse to check. She said she would. If I was dialated more we would let the doctor know. If I wasn't, it would be our little secret. That was a deal I would have sold my own mother for.

At 4:30 was dialated to 5 cm. She called the doctor. The doctor said we could do the epidural. YAY! Relief on the way! What seemed like eternity and several short and incomprehensable to anyone but me comments to my husband later, which turned out to be about 30 minutes, the epidural came. By 5:15 I had it. But it did nothing. I still felt pain. I asked the nurse if I was supposed to feel pain still. She said no. I said I did. She called the anesthesiologist back. He came at 5:45 PM and increased the medicine. Ahhhh. All was better. I got my wits about me again. I felt like I could think, like I could actually enjoy the moment.

Just after the increased dosage at 5:45 the nurse checked my cervix. 9 cm! At 6 pm she had me push. All I saw was a huge flood of blood squirt right for the nurse. She said "Hold on! Don't Push!" She called for the doctor, who was there by 6:15 PM. Rachel was out just a few pushes later at 6:31 PM.

I think I should get credit for having her naturally since I only got 45 minutes of pain releif. LOL. But I'm thankful that I only pushed for 30 minutes. The doctor told me I better not tell my girlfriends that I only pushed that long or they'll hate me. I'll risk it.

I got to hold Rachel for about 30 mintues when she was first born. Then, she turned blue, and the rest you've been reading the last couple of weeks.

Now that I'm home I can't believe she is mine. I know I went through the labor, but God actually entrusted me with this fragile thing? He has to be crazy! :)

Breastfeeding (men, turn away if you don't want to recognize the functionality of breasts. It does kind of ruin it.) is a challenge because she was spoiled with a lazy bottle at the NICU. I have a feeling I'm going to have a lot of sweat and tears before we get that down, but I'm determined. She latches, but her jaw gets tired. We're working on it. Meanwhile I'm pumping, and bottle supplementing, too.

Anyway, that's the whole ugly story in a nutshell. Ugly story, but isn't she THE MOST beautiful thing you've ever seen??? :)

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