Sunday, June 7, 2015

Zoey's Birth Story

Last I left you, because I was officially post-dates, had only reasonable fluid levels, and my OB was concerned with my platelet count, we arrived at the hospital at midnight Monday night/Tuesday morning for an induction.  Already this experience was different than Camden's birth story, but I had no idea just how different it would ultimately be.

When I announced Zoey's arrival on Instagram and Facebook, I used the words "fast and furious" to describe it.  This is why.

We got checked in and settled, I was dilated 2-2.5cm and by 1am the nurse has started the pitocin drip.  I tried to rest as much as possible and Ryan made himself comfortable on the couch.  I couldn't get comfortable on the damn hospital bed and kept switching positions, causing the baby to move and the sensors/monitors strapped to my belly to not pick her up.  Contractions started around 3:30am.  Needless to say the nurse was coming in constantly to check my drip and vitals and reposition the monitors, so rest I did not.

This is where I get a little foggy on the timeline of things.  The really sad part is that my best reference are text messages I was sending to Tiff, Rachel, Cara, my mom, and Ryan's mom - updating them on progress.  Thankfully, the timespan is pretty short.

5:15am was when contractions started getting strong and requiring me to really focus on breathing through them, but I was still laying in bed.  Around 6:00am I got out of bed and started laboring by standing and swaying and bending over the bed.  It was around this time that I told the nurse I was ready for an epidural - knowing that they would have to check my platelet count before administering it.  (For the record, my OB was right to be concerned about my platelet count.  It had dropped over 20,000 in the last four weeks and 8,000 since checking into the hospital.)

They drew my blood and contractions were really picking up.  My mom called Ryan just before 7am saying that she was just getting Camden to daycare and would be to the hospital shortly after.  Rachel and I had been texting and she was going to be on the 6am ferry, arriving to the hospital around the same time as Mom.

At 7am, right after Ryan ended the phone call with my mom, shit hit the fan.  I was laboring (swearing, crying -- the goods), standing/leaning over the bed, and I felt fluid running down my legs.  Thankfully, my OB was just starting her rounds and was able to check my progress.  I was 5.5cm and she broke my water. A little bit of meconium was in the water, so they made sure there would be respiratory doctors and nurses on-hand when the baby was born in case she swallowed any.

Right after she broke my water things took another (giant) step up in intensity.  I told Ryan to call my mom back and to tell her that she needed to hurry.  I have no idea how, but I sent Tiffanie a text at 7:13am that said, "5.5cm, water broke. Miserable. Waiting for epidural."

Mom and Rachel still weren't at the hospital at this point but they probably could have heard me yelling and screaming from however far away they were.  I'm not even kidding.  I was yelling and screaming in pain because I didn't know what else to do.  I kept telling Ryan and the nurses that I felt like I had to poop during contractions.  (This "telling" was really done in the form of yelling and screaming).   Mom and Rachel walked into the room at some point and I have no doubt were shocked to see me bent over the bed, screaming in pain.  The nurses kept telling me over and over that I could not push yet and that I needed to lay down.  I think this was the worst part of the whole experience - feeling the need to push but having to use all my energy not to push and to keep the baby inside.

I got into bed and was somehow able to communicate (scream) "She is coming out!"  The nurse tried checking my cervix to feel baby's position and it took everything I had to not kick her in the face.  All I was able to muster was tears and "Please, stop!" (At least I managed to say, "Please"?!).  The nurse announced that the baby was right there and I was just going to have to push her out.  Without an epidural.

I think it was about this time that something red and on the floor caught my eye.  It was my red St. Louis Cardinals sweatshirt wearing husband.  The intensity of the moment and my pain/screaming/yelling was just a little too much for him and he passed out. (He really does love me!)  A few nurses tended to him and assured me that he was fine and that "it happens all the time," but I was worried and kept thinking to myself, "what the hell is happening?!"  It didn't help hearing that it was normal because I could see him through the bed rails - twitching and making all sorts of weird noises.

So, I'm supposed to push this baby out, without an epidural, and without my husband?!  Fantastic.

In the next few minutes while the doctors and nurses were all getting into their baby catching positions and telling me not to push, Ryan was able to come around and get his feet back under him.  I am so incredibly thankful that Mom and Rachel got there when they did because I don't have the slightest clue what I would have done without them and Ryan on the floor.

It was time to push and Rachel has told me that my face totally changed from "screaming and yelling in agony" to "game time."  I grabbed the top bar of the bed to brace myself and pushed once to get her head out.  Pushing against the contraction actually gave me a sense of relief, believe it or not.  The second most horrible part of this whole labor was waiting in between that push and the next contraction.  The "ring of fire" is real, people.  Thankfully, the next contraction came quickly and I pushed with everything I had left to deliver a 7 lb 6 oz, 20 inch Zoey Grace at 7:36am. 

Holy shit.

I was looking at Ryan, Mom, Rachel, and this baby with nothing but "what the effing hell just happened?!" racing through my mind.  There was certainly some happiness and joy in there too, but I was in major shock over what had transpired in the course of 30 minutes.

The crazy part is that almost (almost!) immediately after she was out, the pain I was in was gone and I stopped screaming like a crazy person. So I (almost!) immediately started apologizing to everyone that I made eye contact with for all the screaming and the crazy that had just transpired. Everyone assured me that I was fine and normal and not crazy, but holy hell I was embarrassed - even though I was acting and reacting in the only way I felt I possibly could. 

So, let's recap.

12am: Check into hospital
1am: 2-2.5cm, start pitocin
3:30am: Contractions start
5:15am: Contractions getting strong
6am: Ask for epidural and continue to labor
7am: 5.5cm, water broken
7:36am: Zoey is born

Is that mind blowing?  Or is it just me?  I'm a big believer in pregnant women educating themselves on birth and all that can happen during labor and delivery.  I think it's great to have a birth plan, but I think it's extremely important to remember that it's just that - a plan.  I didn't write a formal birth plan this time, just because I was planning on having another medicated birth and was completely happy and satisfied with that.  The joke is on me, I suppose.  Thankfully, mother nature took it's course and my body knew what it needed to do to get this lady born.

Sorry Zo Zo - things happened so fast that no fancy Nikon camera was brought out to capture your birth and post-birth.  Just the old, loyal iPhone. I swear, the girl's not even a week old and she's already getting the second child shaft.

Ryan picked Camden up from daycare that afternoon and brought him to the hospital to meet his baby sister.  He took a little peek at her but otherwise wasn't super interested and was much more excited by getting to play with Grammy's iPad.

Fine by me.

So, there you have it.  It was a crazy, amazing experience that like Camden's birth, I will never forget.

Take Luck,

1 comment:

  1. love love love this!!!!! and you! can't wait to meet that sweet little lady!


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