Monday, July 14, 2008
Henry Michael was born July 8 at 9:59 p.m. He weighed 7 pounds 10.5 ounces and was (and is still) 21.5 inches long.
My water broke Monday night at 11 p.m. But I wasn't having contractions. We called the doctor who said to take our time coming in, so we ordered pizza (carbs! yeah!), packed up all the last minute items and took a nap.
Still no contractions when we got to the hospital at 5 a.m. The midwife and residents immediately mentioned starting me on pitocin to get things going. But I really wanted to go naturally, so I asked to be allowed to walk for a bit first. My awesome doctor said that was fine.
Our doula Dawn arrived and we walked the hall for about two hours. Still no effective contractions and my doctor said it was time to start the pitocin. So my hope of going all natural died then. But, I did want to get things going. I was afraid that if we waited too much longer, I'd end up with a c-section.
The thing with pitocin is you have to be hooked up the fetal monitor at all times. So, I couldn't use the bathtub or shower to relieve contractions, which are also supposed to be more intense on pitocin. I can't compare to non-pitocin contractions, but I'll just say that they were strong enough! And I didn't end up feeling the really big ones. In the beginning, I was able to get off the bed and use a birth ball and rocking chair. The chair was great. I was totally in the zone for a while. Until Henry started going in and out on the monitor. Then they wanted to have me stay on the bed to be in the best position for the monitor. This was late afternoon, I think.
The bed was a bad place for me to labor. The contractions were so much more intense there than on the chair. I just couldn't do it. This sweet young doctor, maybe another resident?, with the best curly hair stopped in and asked how my epidural was. I told her her I didn't have one but asked if I wanted one, would I have to wait long? She looked at me and said I could have it whenever and that I shouldn't feel like a failure or less of a woman for needing it. I wish I could remember her name ... I think it was Dr. Silversteen ... I want to write her a thank you. That little pep talk really helped. I told G that I couldn't do it and he was so supportive, telling me that whatever I needed was fine. And my doula also told me I was making the right decision since my labor was lasting so long.
I knew I made the right decision as soon as the drugs hit me! I zoned out for the rest of the evening. So when the nurses started setting up the room w/ the baby table and the tools, I thought they are being overly optimistic. But the amazing night nurse Rachelle came in a little after 9 and told me I was ready, I didn't believe her. My doctor didn't believe her either, but she examined me and pronounced that I was indeed ready. From there everything went so fast. They got me in position. G and Dawn grabbed my legs and they told me to push. Luckily I didn't have a problem pushing (sometimes the epidural can make it difficult). The baby didn't mind waiting around all day, but in the end he practically flew out! Only about 20 minutes of pushing.
Sigh. And then he was there on my chest and I just kept saying "baby, baby, baby" and kissing him.
It was a good day.
Other things I want to remember about that day: Much earlier G heard the cries of a baby being born and got all choked up. After his car accident six years ago, he didn't think he'd have a normal life and there he was sitting in the hospital waiting for his son to be born. Whenever I think about him saying that and how happy he was looking down at our child, I just bawl.
Ok, that's a start. I'll probably keep thinking of things to add, but I wanted to get this written down before it becomes too fuzzy in my mind.
Now, I've got to get back to that adorable baby, who's been rocking with his dad for the past hour.