BIRTH STORY PART 1
(Pre labor and delivery)
At my 38 week appointment I was 1.5 cm & about 50% effaced. I was super anxious at this point and begging to get on the induction list. Sadly, our hospital was so backed up due to a staffing shortage and a huge amount of demand that it was looking like it wouldn’t be an option until 39-40+ weeks.
Oddly enough, a day later, I lost my mucus plug which then was followed by what I thought was the bloody show. However, by Saturday, the bloody show turned into heavy bleeding and baseball size clots. I have never seen anything like it and was horrified. We rushed into triage where they told us they didn’t know where it was coming from but the baby was perfect and there were no signs of distress or placental abruption. They discharged us a couple hours later when the bleeding slowed. I wasn’t even home an hour when I started bleeding again this time heavier. We headed back in again for the second time where it was a repeat of our first trip there earlier that day. The blood slowed, the baby was fine, and they sent us home around 2 am.
At this point, I was so sick of being dismissed and just wanted to sleep. Well sure enough I woke up again to more blood and I called them now a third time, but they told me to stay home this time. So that Sunday I checked little man a thousand times with my Doppler as I laid around crippled with anxiety that something was going to go horribly wrong. It was the longest 24 hours of my life. Monday morning came around and I called again and they had me come back to triage. This is where things turned around and turned around quickly. (To be continued…)
*We didn’t get to take a final bump photo so this is the last one I have*
BIRTH STORY PART 2
Around 1:30 we were brought up to L&D where they prepped us for our plan of pitocin, break water, possible epidural, get to 10 cm & then push. They also warned us that due to the bleeding, there was a good chance we would need to do a c-section. At 2:00 we started Pitocin & by 2:30, they broke my water which seemed so scary because they use a long hook but it actually felt painless to me. Quickly after, the contractions were coming on strong every 1-2 minutes. I went in with a mindset to get an epidural or not get one, whatever I felt in the moment. That said, I did have a goal of hitting 6 cm before getting it if that’s what I decided. I hit my goal of dilation and due to the pitocin I wasn’t getting a break in between contractions and it was killing me. So, I made it about 2.5 hours of contractions before I asked for the epidural, more like begged haha
Getting the epidural itself was easy (people made it seem scary so I was nervous for that) other than sitting through a couple contractions while needing to sit still. Once it was in, labor was much more enjoyable, I honestly couldn’t even feel the contractions anymore. Prior to that, the pain was a 10 out of 10, nothing I have ever experienced. I couldn’t be talked to, touched, or have anything sensory around me like music or the TV.
Something that helped me progress the labor was using something called a peanut ball. Whenever I had it in between my legs I dilated/progressed much faster. I included a picture of it, I highly suggest asking for it during your own labor and delivery!
Soon after, I started to feel a little warm & then I spiked a fever, all the while little man’s heart rate started to increase. We were warned that it could be something called Chorioamnionitis. I had never heard of this before but Chorio, is an infection of the placenta & the amniotic fluid. They pumped me full of 2 liters of fluids & it didn’t help so it was confirmed I had Chorio.
BIRTH STORY PART 3
Once we confirmed I had Chorio, I was told not to Google it. Luckily, after some antibiotics, my temperature went down and Callum’s heart rate decreased back to normal. At this point it was around 10pm, & they did another cervical check and I was only at a 7, so they brought the peanut ball back out to help me progress again. By 11, I could start to feel pressure in the back but due to the epidural I didn’t realize that the pressure meant babe was coming soon. Finally close to midnight, I told them the pressure was pretty intense so they did another check & I was at 10 cm and the babe was already making his way out. They rushed and got the doctor and told it was time to push.
The flood of emotions, terror, excitement, anticipation, was intense. I have never been so scared in my life I just kept saying I wasn’t ready to push as my body violently started to shake. This is when I received a text from a friend I met on here that delivered only 2 doors down 2 hours prior to us and told me the pushing wasn’t as bad as she thought it would be. Thank god she text me because it helped me relax.
Due to Chorio, we had an extra team in the room so between the doctors, nurses, residents, pediatric docs it was quite the audience. The tone in the room was fun, we were all joking and it felt relaxed even though I was freaking out about pushing. This was something that surprised me about labor, it really was just a lot of just hanging out shooting the shit with the doctors and nurses.
Back to the labor & pushing part. First I was told that pushing could take 2+ hours and second, I had not watched Youtube or taken any birthing classes so I had no idea what the heck I was doing. I had to ask them to teach me how to push. So when it came time, we did a practice push and that’s when they shockingly saw the baby’s head already & immediately had me stop pushing so they could prepare for the baby. To be continued in one last post tomorrow..
Ps I had my blankie all of labor”
BIRTH STORY PART 4
The final push and delivery. Dr. Kleinberg was very surprised by the practice push, they all scrambled to prepare for babe. Finally, it was really time to push. The first contraction, I pushed 3 times while Collin counted out 10 seconds for each push & then the second contraction, we did the same. This is when the entire room was all cheering for me to keep going that he was almost there. So, I started to push as hard as I could during the last push, I saw stars & almost couldn’t release my breath, Collin had to tell me to let go. Then boom the pressure subsided & he was half way out. They asked if I wanted to pull him out, um HECK YES I wanted to Kourtney Kardashian him, & this is when I grabbed his arms & pulled him out, it was the most magical experience of my life. Right away, he cried & this is when I could breathe for the first time in 10 months.
Crazily, the total push time was short with only 2 contractions of pushing, which they said is very rare for first time Moms so in response to the doctor when he said that, I threw out the Mean Girls quote, “it’s not my fault I have a wide set vagina and heavy flow” The entire room was laughing and enjoying this as much as we were.
Post baby, they birthed the placenta & had to stitch me up because I had a 2nd degree tear. Due to having an epidural, I didn’t really feel any of this, in fact I didn’t really even feel pain when I pushed him out. Now, I know next time if I am blessed to have a second, that I won’t be so terrified of the pain part.
From here, we only had him for an hour due to Chorio, so we soaked up that hour with him before he was taken. We were sad but also grateful for the hour we were given before they took him for the night. Thank god he ended up being ok & returned to us only 8 hours later.
Lastly, we still have NO idea where the bleeding came from. We realize how lucky we are that both myself & the baby were safe and healthy after the torturous 3 days of heavy bleeding. We had a scary start but a beautiful ending & we are so freaking grateful for that.”
For more of Cate’s journey follow @waitingforababe