Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Birth Story

So...I never really realized I never posted my Grayson birth story. I started this post on 7/5/08 - 2 years and 1 day ago. For some reason, I never finished it. Thanks to Katie for pointing that out...so here it is, and I've wrapped it up for you guys too. I promise it won't take as long to post about Sawyer's arrival when he comes.

On Saturday, May 31st we decided to go to a movie as we do most Saturdays. We saw "The Strangers" - a great scary movie with Liv Tyler and that guy who played Ben on "Felicity". About 1/2 way through - at 2 p.m. - I had to pee super bad, so I left. Unfortunately there was a line in the bathroom. So while I waited in line squirming because my bladder was too full, I felt some definite leakage. Hmmmm. Was this me peeing my pants a bit cause Grayson kicked me down there? Or was my water breaking? I've talked to people who had the slow trickle, not the big gush when it came to water breaking, so I was suspicious. I finally got into a stall and did my business and my underwear were pretty darn wet. I sniffed them (I know...gross) to see if it smelled like pee or not...and it definitely did not. So I preceded out to call my sister to ask her how I would know difference between peeing and leaking water. She told me to call doctor. So I did... There's an answering service I leave a message with, then I sit and wait in the hall for the doc to call back. Some significant time has passed at this point so the husband comes out to see what I could possibly be doing. I catch him up on situation, and while being excited about what could be going on, he really wants to finish the movie which was just starting to get all scary and good. Unfortunately, the doc calls back and tells us it's probably best to come in so he can check and see if my water broke or not.

So...we leave for the hospital. As we are walking out through the food court, I start leaking some more. I am now pretty sure it's the real thing. As we drive to hospital I get my first crampings. I was not prepared to head to hospital from the friggin mall, so I had to call my mom and have her pick up my hospital bag from my house. Luckily I was prepared and all she had to do was pick up the bag and find the last minute items I had on a list in the bag.

Husband dropped me off at the door while he went to park and I checked in at the registration desk. Let me just tell you, for having already been preregistered, it sure took a long time to fill out more forms and get checked in. Luckily my crampings were still manageable at this point. I feel bad for those who are in all-out labor and have to wait through that.

We then went up to Labor and Delivery where we sat and wait about 15 minutes longer before there is a curtained area for us to go to. As I sat there, I leaked more and more on that poor chair and my contractions started to take my breath away. When they finally led me back to a cot to change into a gown, it fluid was running down my legs. It was such a crazy gross feeling. As more contractions came as I laid on the cot while they started my IV and such I started gushing. So so gross. It was obvious I was in labor so they admitted me and sent me on to a labor and delivery room.

I must say, I was a wus. Very shortly after I was in the L&D room I got my epidural. The contractions hurt like the dickens....I could only imagine how much worse they would've gotten. The anesthesiolgist was so my best friend when he came in. I didn't look at the needle on purpose...didn't want to see it. It was certainly uncomfortable getting it put in, but the relief was almost immediately thankfully. After that, the party started. I was at 6 cm at this point and didn't have too awful far to go.

Present for the party were my husband (duh), mom, dad, 2 sisters,brother and sis in law and niece and nephew. What a parade! (Don't worry...they weren't all in there for the main event...just for the previews). The next couple hours were quite fun as I had no pain and just kind of hung out enjoying my last moments with him in my belly. At one point I kicked everyone out of the room so husband and I could have a few last moments together before our lives changed forever. (Something I highly suggest for all you expectant ladies - in the rush of things it could be easy to miss).

By 9 p.m. I was fully dilated and it was time to push. Unfortunately, this pushing went nowhere. In the frustrating 2 hours that followed I pushed and pushed and he didn't budge. At one point his heart level dropped crazy low and they quickly rolled me onto my side and gave me oxygen to help him along. Thankfully that fixed things fairly quickly. Throughout the pushing his heartrate continued to dip low, then get too high. Not dangerously so, but enough to make me a nervous wreck. And then I spiked a fever of almost 102. Now, I don't get fevers. My temp is normally so low that a temp of 99 is high for me. So that was kind of freaky too. I could feel the fever too. I was so hot and I had that headache you get with fevers. Plus I was exhausted from pushing. They gave me tylenol for the fever, and antibiotics in my IV as a precautionary measure in case I picked up an infection of some kind. Thankfully the fever came down fairly quickly, and we still don't quite know what that was all about.

In the room at this point were my mom, my 2 sisters and my husband. Let me just say the my husband was amazing. Holding my hand, The doc came in and saw my progress had not changed in the last couple hours.

Note: This is where my 2008 draft ends, and I pick up in 2010. :-)

So...doc comes in, I'm full dilated, been pushing for over 2 hours with L&D nurse, had a fever, had oxygen issues with G. He knows that I would prefer not to have a c-section from my birth plan, and asks if I'd like some assistance. I asked what that would mean, and he said forceps. At this point, I was so ready to meet our little guy, that I would've said yes to anything. So I said "yes".

Things happened very quickly then as everyone moved into place. They also gave me a little extra in my epidural, because I sure didn't want to feel the forceps. If you've never seen them, think salad tongs, only GINORMOUS. Seriously...they are huge. Up until this point the epidural had been working nicely. I could tell when I was contracting, and it was uncomfortable, but not painful. But, as soon as he put those forceps in me, all that changed. I felt excruciating pain. I thought he was ripping me in two. I screamed and screamed and cried, he attempted to get G out and he still wouldn't quite budge. This went on for what seemed like eternity but probably was only 90 seconds to 2 minutes. Finally the doc gave me some more assistance with an episiotomy. At that point I felt instant relief and could breathe again and out came Grayson.

Now, due to the forceps he had quite the "horns" on his head. And my first thought was he looked like the aliens in Indiana Jones Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. But I didn't care, he was out, he looked healthy, he was crying, he was beautiful.

They whisked him away to clean him up, and I could breathe again. My doc told me my episiotomy was quite intense....a level 4 is I believe what they call it. Yep...that means I was snipped hole to hole. Not something that was fun to recover from. While I was getting stitched up things started to get dramatic on the other side of the room. All the sudden there was a bunch of action on the other side of the room where Grayson was and they whisked the curtain closed and called David over there. He said he was as blue as a smurf when he got to the other side. He was having problems breathing and the nurses worked to get him going again. He started breathing again, and they were going to be taking him to the NICU. I'm of course crying by now because I don't really know what's going on and I really just want to hold my baby. They consent to letting me hold him for just a few moments before they steal him away. Words cannot explain what I felt in that moment. Such love for this little dude I'd just met, such fear that he was not going to be ok, and such sadness that things were not going at all how I'd imagined.

This is the one photo I got to take with him before he went to the NICU. I hate that I don't have any of those smiling delivery room pictures with him and me and David and my family.

David got to go down with him to the NICU and was able to take a few more photos of him to bring to me to see. When he got back, I again kicked everyone out of the room and I just cried and cried with him wondering why nothing can ever go smoothly for us. It was a rough night.

As we all know now, Grayson is fine. He ended up in the NICU for 9 nights. Which was 9 nights of hell. I kept a crazy schedule of visiting him all day, then waking up in the night to pump so he'd have breastmilk. It was exhausting and we were so relieved when he finally was able to come home. You can read a few more details on all that over here....although I was quite the bad blogger when he was an infant, because I was so overwhelmed by everything. Add to that the recovery from my delivery which was just awful. In hindsight, I wish I had a c-section instead. I couldn't sit or walk or sneeze or breathe without pain for weeks and weeks. Plus I couldn't properly rest with all that back and forth to the NICU the first 9 days.

At my 6 week check up I was still in pain. Really, it was awful. Just say no to forceps is my advice.

That about wraps it up. I'm sure I'm forgetting some details as it was over 2 years ago now, but that's the basics. Sorry for the long post, but it's a long story to tell.

I really am believing that Sawyer's arrival is going to be totally totally different. It's going to be easy and smooth, he's gonna just pop right out as he's supposed to, I'm going to not tare at all (or barely) and he's going to be able to stay with me for happy pics post-delivery.

And hopefully, all of this will be happening very very soon.


Katie said...

I WINCED when you said "hole to hole." And thought, "Man, am I glad I had a c-section!" LOL!

Our birth stories. . . from the water breaking. . . to the heart decels. . . to the fever. . . to the pushing, sounded freakishly identical. Until you got the forceps, that is.

If it's a similar situation this time (and it's not gonna be, this baby is gonna fly out of there, but just in case. . .) would you opt for the c-section or use forceps/epi again?

Debby said...

I would most definitely choose a c-section this time. I know the incision site would be just as sore, but the location in my opinion would be better for recovery. Sitting and going from sitting or laying to standing up were impossible because of the weight I had to put on my bum area. It really was bad.. Plus, there are some other post pregnancy issues that are so not lovely that I will not share for reasons of tmi that have lingered due to the delivery.

Anonymous said...

Man the more birth stories I read the more I realize just how lucky I was! :) B's heartrate was also plummeting but my OB helped me out with a vacuum instead of forceps. The vacuum was easy peasy and I couldn't even feel it. B did definitely have a cone head from the vacuum though! I had a 3rd degree tear, but I healed so fast, I was sore for a week or so but back to normal within 10 days. Ahh. I just can't believe Greyson is TWO! And you're about to do this all over again! :)

Courtney H in N. California said...

as a mama of 3, all c/s, I will say that it is probably a toss-up on the recovery part. While you can sit with a c/s with little pain, try getting UP, and whatever you do DONT LAUGH!! You can't lay on your tummy for weeks and weeks. You can't drive for 2 weeks. Rolling over in bed is painful for a few weeks unless you have something to brace yourself with. But since I never had a level 4 episiotomy, I can't say which is really worse and hopefully Sawyer is born with an easy and swift delivery and you will never find out!! Good luck in the next coming days/weeks.