At my 36 week check up the obstetrician said I could keep my 37 week induction date or push it back a week. I decided to split the difference and scheduled it for July 7th because my favorite midwife was on call that day. They said since everything was going well because I had been induced twice already with great success, I could call the shots of how I wanted the induction to go.
On July 7th at 8am we arrived at the hospital. The midwife came in to check me. I was 2 cm and 50%. We decided to start a 12 hour dose of Cervidil and see where that took me. At 10am the medicine arrived and the clock started. I had to be on the monitors and on my back for a straight 2 hours. After that I could get up occasionally to use the bathroom.
By now it was about 3 or 4 in the afternoon. I was starting to have very mild, very irregular contractions. I was still able to eat so I had a small dinner. Contractions started picking up and for the next 2-3 hours went from every 13 minutes to every 8 minutes. We called the birth photographer and she arrived around 7pm.
Somewhere during this time the Obstetrician came in to go over the next stage(s) of the induction. She laid out 3-4 different options for me. If things progressed well we could break my water and go. If not, then I'd either need to sleep and try again in the morning, try another dose of Cervidil, try a dose of a similar drug, or start Pitocin. If I hadn't progressed my plan was to start Pitocin. (Something I never thought I'd say, but I was losing the mental game at this pregnancy the last few weeks)
I laid in bed for a half hour maybe but the fluid leaking was getting gross and annoying so I got in the shower. I spent about an hour in the shower and tub doing squats and stretching. Contractions were picking up speed and in intensity. I toweled off and got dressed in what I wanted to wear for active labor and delivery...just a nursing sports bra..and continued to labor walking, squatting, and stretching around the room.
By 11:30 contractions were 4 minutes apart and intensifying. Because I was allowed to labor without the fetal monitors on (they do a fetal heart check every 30 minutes, and then 30 minute strip every 4 hours) I had no idea how far apart or long the contractions were. I had Eric start timing. They were now every three minutes. He watched the clock and would tell me when the next one was coming so I could start deep breathing.
The midwife was in the room with me waiting when a nurse came and grabbed her for a few minutes. I was pissed that they left. Little did I know the woman next door was pushing out a boy faster than me. Minutes later the urge to push and full body contractions started. I could barely ask Eric and Lily to get the midwife for me. I just laid in bed trying to push the Call The Nurse button as I was holding back pushing out the baby. I'm not sure if I ever hit the button, managed to talk, or if it was the primal screaming that ensued but soon nurses started arriving and the room preparations were set in motion.
I was able to manage the pain and pushing by doing really deep abdominal breathing with each contraction. The "ring of fire" hit more than I remember any of the others and I felt like everything "down there" was tearing in a million pieces. I wanted to push but I could tell I was going to tear if I pushed too hard too fast. I alternated urges with pushing and breathing. This way I could slow things down until I was really, really ready to push. Once I could tell he was right there, I gave it all I had. After two good pushes I hadn't heard from the midwife. I needed to know how far away I was. She said she could see his head. This was the perfect motivation. I locked into a mental focus image (Maggie laughing) and pushed two more times. His head was out. I took a good breather and was so ready to be done that the next contraction I pushed him out.
Eric fed me juice, crackers, chicken broth, and lots and lots of water over the next hour or so. I wanted so badly to hold Nate but I just couldn't. It broke my heart but I was not well.
After the color returned to my face and I felt coherent enough the nurses let me sleep. Eric took Nathan for a few hours and they snuggled. The nurses kept me in labor and delivery for a few more hours. They were afraid to move me and didn't want to pass off my case to the recovery wing just yet.
Around 5 or 6am the nurses came in to run some tests. They told me that I had lost over a 1000ml of blood, twice the normal amount and that I was close to needing a blood transfusion. She told me I would need to eat lots of iron, protein and Vitamin C and drinks 2-3 times the water over the next few weeks to help make a quick recovery.
Once the nurses and Eric said I was looking better, and I felt better I got to snuggle with Nathan again. At the 7am shift change my recovery nurses came in to meet with the delivery nurses so that everyone was on the same page with my situation. They finished cleaning me off and off we went down to recovery. We slept for a few more hours before visitors started arriving.
After the crazy ending to the delivery, recovery went surprisingly well. I was faint for a few hours after, but by dinner time I was feeling pretty well. The next day my blood levels were safe enough for me to go home. Nathan scored well on all of his tests and we were home just after lunch the July 9th.
We are so in love with our little man!
Special thank you to Nile Women's Healthcare and Liliana Leahy Photography and of course, thank you to our parents for all the yummy food and for taking care of our girls while we met our little man.