In honor of Sherrie’s impending delivery, I’ve finally got our birth story ready for you all. Try not to think of my lady parts when reading this, please, it makes me uncomfortable.
I’ll try to keep this short. It was a short day, after all. My water broke at 5am on Tuesday (I was born on a Tuesday!), October 7th, 4 days before my due date. Oddly, I was NOT READY! The feeling of it woke me up, even though it was only a small gush and I immediately woke up Jesse and told him my water broke. It made a bit of a mess in bed, and then on the bathroom floor. Actually, it dribbled out here and there all day. I couldn’t get back to sleep after calling the doctor and pacing and worrying and waiting for her call back, so I got up and did the dishes (with a towel under my feet). We were asked to go in sometime before 10am for a non-stress test and I wasn’t having contractions or anything, so we were in no hurry. We packed some stuff in the car and at 10:45 we got to the hospital, where they exclaimed, “There you are, we were getting worried!” My belly was strapped with a couple doodads and was monitored for an hour. I tried to do some sudoku, but was too distracted by watching the baby’s heart rate and my (small, still couldn’t feel them) contractions. We were told to go home and wait for contractions to start. We were told we’d need an induction the next morning if they hadn’t started by then and scheduled one with the doctor.
We stopped at the campus on the way home while Jesse got some stuff ready for missing class the next few days, when my contractions started up suddenly and quickly (about 1pm) about 5 minutes apart. We got home, I tried eating something (cold, naked pasta from the night before), but was distracted by the frequent pain and breathing and relax, breathe, relax, massage my back, etc.. We were trying to time the contractions, but it seemed so erratic until my husband said something about 3.5 minutes and should we call the dr? who said to come right on in. When we got to the hospital, I must have looked quite ready. I was put into a wheel chair and Jesse took me upstairs while the car was taken care of by a valet dude who seemed to be there just exactly for such purposes. We got there at 4pm, were put straight in a room (No triage, etc..), and then calmly hooked up to this and that monitor, tube, and whatnot. I let the nurse know I rather felt like pushing sometimes, so she offered to check my cervix and exclaimed that it was 9.5 or 10cm (that’s all the way) and then things went into high gear. She called the doctor, tried to get the rest of the cords and monitors and iv’s set up and then I pushed for what seemed like forever, but was about 2 hours. I started on my side, but ended up pushing on my back just like in the movies, only not, because I was gripping my knees by my ears. Through it all Jesse was completely cool, reassuring, and an amazing birth partner. He never looked below the waist, for which we are both very glad. When her head was halfway out, they asked if I wanted to feel it, and I did, and it was gross. I was afraid after feeling her head that she was going to come out weird and squishy. Elena Mae was born at 6:55pm, 6lbs, 6 oz, 19.5″ long, apgar scores of 9.5 and 10. After she was born, the doctor showed me my placenta, it was cool. I broke all sorts of blood vessels in my face and eyes and bruised the nerves going through my hips with my hard pushing. The nerve thing was odd, as it caused my thighs and knees to be numb for about a week and a half.
All in all, it was amazing! From the beginning of my contractions, the labor was only about 6 hours long. From the birth classes and from hearing other’s stories, I would have thought that the contractions are the worst part of labor, but they were nothing compared to the pain during pushing. It was all so fast, though, I think next time (hoping there will be a next time), we’ll have to go to the hospital pretty early in.