January 30, 2013

When Mel got home from work the evening of the 29th Jan I suggested that thought the baby would come tonight. He laughed.

I headed up to bed at around 10.30. Around 11.30 I started to feel what I can only describe as odd. At 11.50 I asked Mel to come up to our room. He asked if I was in labour. As I didn’t know he suggested that I come downstairs so we could sit in the living room and monitor this “odd feeling” I was having.

Once I was sitting in the living room I had what I could only describe as a contraction. A few minutes later I had another one. So I went into the kitchen and finished putting together the food pack I wanted to take to the hospital. With Mackenzie we’d been hungry after all the work of labour and the hospital didn’t have much to offer that I wanted to eat and of course didn’t offer anything to Mel.

Mel started going over the details for his sister to take Mackenzie to his skiing lessons the next morning and setting up my skis for her to use. Mel’s older sister Christy had generously been staying with us so that if we had to dash off in the middle of the night we didn’t have to disturb Mackenzie’s sleep.

At 1.00 am I looked at Mel and said “I think we’d better go to the hospital.” The contractions were quite strong, though not necessarily long and at this stage they were intermittent between 4 and 8 minutes. It had been recommended after Mackenzie’s birth that we not wait to go to the hospital as his birth was quite quick for a first child. I said that “I’d prefer to go and have them say “You’re not ready yet, go home” than get caught here or in the car.”

I bled after Mackenzie and my Dr had recommended that it would be safest for me to be given a Pitocin shot to help my uterus contract and expel the placenta so that I would be at minimum risk. We planned to go drug free with this baby as we did with Mackenzie. The Pitocin shot being the only drug that we requested prior to entering the delivery room.

We left the house by around 1.15am and got to the Hospital at 1.35am, I had 4 or 5 contractions along the way. We got checked in and I had 2 more contractions while at the check in counter. The nurses got us into a triage room, and I went to the bathroom and changed out of my clothes. They strapped on the baby monitor. Which I immediately hated as it sat tight on the spot that the contractions pulled at.

A nurse gave me a vaginal exam and said that I was already 5cm dilated. We got a visit from a 4 year medical student, a resident doctor, the attending doctor and met Kaitlin our birth suite nurse. We where then immediately moved to a birthing suite.

Kaitlin asked if I’d prefer to walk or if they transfer me via wheel chair. I decided to walk and discovered the contractions coming so closely that it wasn’t possible to comfortably walk so they took me down in the chair.

Once in the birthing suite I couldn’t find a comfortable position, until Kaitlin offered the fit ball. Sitting on it and leaning on the side of the bed was about as comfortable as I got. Every contraction felt like the baby moved further into the birth canal. I was often asked if I could feel any pressure on my backside. I didn’t at any point feel pressure in my bum but did consistently feel as though the baby moved down with each contraction.

Kaitlin continued to want the baby monitor on my belly and it continued to annoy me. After a while Kaitlin wanted me on the bed as surprisingly I kept bumping the monitor off the best spot and she couldn’t get a good read on the baby’s heartbeat and when she did was concerned that our baby wasn’t reacting they way they’d like to see. Our baby seemed to be sleeping through the contractions.

I got up on the bed, by this stage it felt like the contractions didn’t pause. I had barely enough time between then to catch my breath. It was so physically intense; I looked at Mel and said “I don’t think I can do this!” He squeezed my hand and said “You are doing so well. Big breaths!” We looked at each other and both remembered that when you get the “I can’t do this stage” it means you are at the end. I looked at the clock, though I can ‘t remember what time it showed, and thought it is way too early for me to be there yet! (Mel said afterward that he thought the same thing). I was lying on my side and suddenly felt the urge to push; I remember grunting, Mel says he didn’t hear me grunt. Kaitlin offered me some gas, which I accepted.

I said “I feel the urge to push.” Kaitlin jumped up and dashed over and asked me to lie on my back and let her know when I was finished the next contraction so she could give me an exam. As my contractions where so close together it wasn’t really possible for the exam to be between them, so it was extremely painful. She told me I was 8 cm dilated.

I still had the urge to push so Kaitlin called in the doctors and another nurse to assist. The 2nd nurse gave me another exam, also really painful, and told us that I was fully dilated. Kaitlin said “but I just checked her and she was 8cm. Wow.” I was still lying on my back; the nurses started giving me instructions as the doctors put on their gloves “In a the next contraction we want you to hold behind your knees and pull your legs back and push. We might ask you to stop so we can make sure you don’t tear and check that the baby is ok.” The 2nd nurse said “You’re almost there! I can see the top of the head.”

The doctors barely had their gloves on, when I pulled my legs back and pushed. I pushed again and felt the head start to clear, the doctor asked me to wait. The nurse stuck my leg with the Pitocin shot. I tried to wait, it was a minimal pause then I pushed again and the felt the head and shoulders clear. A fourth push and the doctor held my baby in his hands. I asked “Mel, is it a girl or a boy?” The Dr said “You don’t know?” Mel said “No”

“Well, in just a moment we’ll put HER up on you stomach”

Mel and I looked at each other and said “It’s a GIRL. We got a girl.” Samara was put on my stomach and Mel cut the cord. We cuddled and admired our baby. Then I delivered the placenta and they began “massaging” my stomach to make sure the bleeding stopped and the placenta was completely delivered. The “massaging” hurts A LOT!

Then Kaitlin and Mel took Samara over to the heat lamp and did all the weighing, measuring, checks and medical requirements. While the Doctors continued to “massage” my stomach. The massaging is required for me as I have a tendency to bled (hemorrhage) after giving birth. The “massage” helps my uterus contract and avoid hemorrhaging. It would have hurt a lot less if I’d relaxed my abdominal muscles instead of fighting against the Doctor.

Samara arrived in 3hrs and 45mins from the time my contractions started. The resident and the attending doctor then had to explain to the medical student that this was NOT a standard birth.

Welcome Samara – Hospital Birth
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