We are SOOOOOO excited our little guy is here! Here's the story of his arrival (minus everything I've forgotten due to lack of sleep and drugs):
My appointment was at 3:45 that Monday, March 25th. At that appointment I was dilated to a 4 and my Dr. was planning on stripping my membranes to hopefully jumpstart labor, but because I was group B positive, she couldn't. :( We set up to be induced the next week (April 1st) unless of course he came before then. Before we left I mentioned that even though I could count the "right" number of kicks in an hour, I felt like he was moving less overall. The Dr. sent us down to Labor & Delivery to be monitored. After being monitored for a while, the nurse talked with my Dr. and she said that there was enough irregularities in the baby's heart beat that if we wanted to stay and have a baby, we could.
I said yes, I wanted to stay.
It was weird because part of me knew that once my Dr. told me I should go down and be monitored, I wouldn't be going home. At the same time, I was surprised when it actually happened. The nurse gave us a few minutes to talk it over since I was sort of in shock. I hadn't wanted to be induced, like at all, and in some ways I couldn't figure out why I agreed to that. I think I didn't fully understand what I had just agreed to (which I know makes no sense), and I was also really anxious to have our baby come. Luckily it was my Dr. who was on call that night so she would be the one to deliver which made me happy.
So we gathered our stuff and the nurse walked us down the hall to the delivery room. As I laid down in the bed, the whole thing felt surreal. I couldn't believe I was really there and when I left, I'd have a baby!
At this point it was after 5pm and I hadn't eaten since lunch, so I was getting a bit hungry. I had always heard that you aren't allowed to eat once you get to the hospital, so I expected to be STARVING for a long time. Luckily, we had an AWESOME nurse who said she'd give us some time to get food before she started everything. SO NICE!
We got some Corner Bakery, ate up, and then she started me on antibiotics for the group B virus. A bit later came the Pitocin.
-Seriously though, as I continue, please note the whole night was a complete blur. I kept looking at the clock every time something happened, but I was so exhausted I can't remember. I hadn't slept since I went to bed Sunday night, and I didn't sleep more than a few minutes here and there during labor.
I'm pretty sure they broke my water around 10-10:30pm. I was really surprised at how fast the contractions became extremely painful. I thought I'd be able to last a bit longer without an epidural, but I knew I was going to have one anyway so there wasn't really a point to being in that much pain for longer than necessary. However, I was really afraid of the epidural. I don't know why specifically. I'm not afraid of needles or anything, but something about it scared the crap out of me so it was hard for me to make the decision to get it. The nurse put best when she said that when the fear of the next contraction is greater than the epidural, it's time.
And you know, it wasn't that bad. The most uncomfortable part was the fact that it numbed me up to my neck. It wasn't super numb, but I felt a little bit like I had just been at the dentist.
After the epidural kicked in, the nurse came back and put in some internal monitors for the baby's heartbeat and contractions. The resident Dr. had tried putting them in before, but she was having issues and it was REALLY painful. Though I wonder if it was just the Dr., because the nurse did it in like 2 seconds...
I was definitely more comfortable with the epidural, but I still wasn't able to sleep. Between the hourly checks and being too interested in watching the monitors, plus who really finds hospital beds comfortable, I just couldn't sleep. Despite that, MOST of the hours went by fairly quickly.
Now the exciting stuff.
After the Pitocin was started, the baby's heart rated dropped a bit. So the nurse came in and turned it off, waited a bit, then turned it back on at a lower dosage. Well, his heart rate still dropped. Again she turned it off, waited a while, then turned it back on. The same thing happened. I think this happened at least one more time. Our little guy just wasn't having it. And unfortunately, they had checked me twice and I had only dilated to a 5, MAYBE a 5+ they said. THAT was really disappointing for me and not what I was expecting at all.
Due to the baby's heart rate issues, they had turned off the Pitocin, but during each contraction his heart rate would drop. In looking at his patterns, they thought his cord might be clamped so they were going to add some fluid back in to hopefully let things float around and get out of the way. This is supposed to be super easy, no big deal. Well, as soon as the nurse turned on the fluids his heart rate dropped to 60.
I didn't realize what was happening at the moment. The nurse stayed so calm and just said she needed me to roll to my left side. Right about then the resident Dr. and another nurse came rushing in. I still didn't know that something bad was happening, so I was a little confused. The Dr. came over and was down talking to me saying things like "we'll need to watch your baby very closely." "If it doesn't go back up soon, we'll need to monitor you in the OR." Then she actually did call over to the OR to tell them we would be coming. That was when I realized whatever was happening was definitely not good and I started worrying. I mean, I had this room full (at least it felt full) of people who just suddenly appeared. The nurse actually didn't even have to call anyone in, the drop was so dramatic that the Dr.'s saw it on their monitors and came in on their own. Then they're telling me they are going to give me a shot in my butt to stop the contractions and that it might make me feel funny.
The only thing funny about it was that I kept waiting to feel the shot and I couldn't figure out why they were waiting so long and then I remembered that I was numb down there. :) The shot did make me really shaky kind of like a really bad fever and my teeth were chattering which I did not like. However I did love the heated blankets they kept bringing out for me. :)
Luckily my Dr. was at the hospital already for another patient so she came in and sat with me as they were watching the monitors. I didn't end up needing to go to the OR to be monitored right then which was good. I don't know how long they were there, but Remy said it was at least 30 minutes. At this point I think it was around 2:30am.
The baby's rate stabilized so the crowd left. The nurse thought the baby might be sunny side up so she had me roll as far as possible on my left side and put my leg up in a stirrup. It wasn't bad, but my arm started getting a little sore from laying on it. So the next time the nurse came in for my hourly check I asked her if I could roll to the other side. She said sure thing and started helping me roll over. Apparently that set off the baby again because I didn't even get all the way over and she made me go back because his heart rate started dropping.
I think I dozed off for a minute, I'm not sure how long because my Dr. came in the room after that and that's when she started talking to me about a C-section. I was definitely disappointed, but at the same time I knew I just had to do what I had to do. It wasn't worth waiting it out and potentially forcing an emergency situation.
At this point I think it was around 4-4:30am. Remy called the parents, and the birth photographer we had lined up to tell them the news. I know this is weird, but it wasn't until Remy called the photographer that I started getting emotional about the whole thing. Having those very first moments captured was something I was super excited about. And knowing I would be missing out on it really made me sad. But that's another story for another time.
The Dr.'s came back in the room, my epidural was beefed up, Remy got dressed for the OR and they whisked me away. I will say I am so thankful for the anesthesiologist for telling Remy to grab the camera!
Now I usually try to see the good side of everything. I really do. But I would be lying if I told you it wasn't that bad. It was.
I was numb up to my neck, my arms were tingling, I felt nauseous (if fact I puked for the first time the whole pregnancy in the OR as they were prepping), I was exhausted, cold, shaking, not to mention the actually surgery being totally uncomfortable. Describing how I felt physically is impossible.
But when I heard his first little cry I just couldn't believe it! It happened! He was here! I totally just cried. It was just amazing.
Vash Russell Smith was born March 26, 5:33am. 7lbs, 20 inches long!
I was surprised at his cone head when I saw these pictures. I wasn't expecting that he would have one, but I guess he was in the birth canal long enough...by the time I saw him unwrapped it was gone.
When Remy brought him over, he was just beaming. I mean seriously, get me some sunglasses. And that little baby's face! He was so squishy and cute it was so hard not to be able to touch him.
(Do you see what I mean about the beaming?! His face is totally covered and you can see how happy he is!)
After the delivery the surgery took a little longer than usual due to some extra bleeding. In fact at one point I was so tired of lying there I asked how much longer and the anesthesiologist was pretty funny. He said to my Dr. "Yeah can you make it quick, she has somewhere to be." It was pretty funny, and I realize the timing just depends on a bunch of variables, but boy was I over it.
Thinking back on it I realize that to sum it all up, I just didn't feel present.
Besides feeling like crap from the epidural, being up for 24 hours, etc., they had to give me an extra pain killer in the surgery that made me drowsy. I was so afraid of falling asleep. I mean, this was my child's BIRTH for crying out loud. I wasn't about to sleep through it.
When it was finally over and they moved me back in the bed (which was a totally weird experience in itself), they asked if I wanted to hold him. Well my freaking arms were numb so I couldn't. I couldn't for while actually, which also made me sad.
But with all the disappointment the C-section brought, I was SO happy to have a healthy baby!
I also absolutely LOVED my stay at the hospital. All the nurses and CNA's were SO awesome I can't even tell you. I would absolutely recommend delivering at IMC to everyone!
Vash, we are absolutely obsessed with you and love you SO much! You are more incredible than I even imagined.