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Thursday, September 8, 2011

Birth Story 7(Diana & Melanie)

Day 4 of our birth stories. Remember the rules....

This story is from Diana on the birth of Melanie:

We were originally scheduled for a pitocin induction on Sunday morning
(12/18/2011) at 5:30 a.m., but since I’d experienced strong
contractions on Friday night and Saturday night, along with several
rounds of bloody show, I called the midwife to stall the induction.
She agreed, and we went to bed Sunday night with hopes that the baby
would be ready to meet her parents. Unfortunately, nothing happened
and Jamie (hubby) and I went in for an appointment at 9 a.m. to the
midwife’s office for a non-stress test and the test indicated the baby
was doing well. We discussed our options with the midwife considering
that this was day #10 of being overdue and after some thoughts, Jamie
and I decided that we wanted to proceed with a Cervidil induction that
morning. After leaving the midwife’s office, we checked into labor and
delivery and I was prepped for the induction. This meant getting an IV
line on my left hand, wearing one of their garments for (what I
thought would only be the) beginning of the process while Jamie went
to the car to grab our bags. In the meantime, the nurse inserted the
Cervidil (which looked like a paper tapeworm, by the way) at 11:40
a.m. and shortly thereafter I was experiencing contractions that would
make me move around. When the contractions got really close together
and strong enough to make me take my breath away, I called Meg, our
doula, for support. At 1:30 p.m., I asked the nurse to please remove
the Cervidil because of the strong contractions I was experiencing
with hopes that my body would take over now that the contractions were
strong and steady. Meg arrived around 2 p.m. and by that point I was
3-4 cm dilated and 70% effaced and the contractions were about 90
seconds apart. With Jamie and Meg, I was able to focus on the
contractions and cope with the pain of every contraction. Meg reminded
me to breathe slowly and allow the contractions to come. I labored on
Meg’s laboring ball which was propped on the bed and leaned on it with
Jamie behind me rubbing my back and Meg holding on to the ball from
the other side of the bed. The contractions were getting stronger and
the breaks were short in between. I did a lot of moaning and groaning
to deal with the pain during this time. Around 3 p.m., Jamie and Meg
came with me into the shower and I sat down to labor for a while.
Jamie held on the shower head and would move it around my body as I
labored. I remember shaking some of the time because of the pain and
the cold, but the hot water felt great on my bare skin. Jamie was
incredible and stayed next to me the entire time and encouraged me to
be strong and constantly told me that he loved me—it meant a lot at
the time! At about 4:30 p.m., our nurse checked me and reported that I
was 5-6 cm dilated and asked if I wanted to use a labor tub. I said
yes and they called in some women to set it up. Meg shared later that
it took an unusual long time for them to set up the tub, but she and
Jamie would switch sides to help me labor on the birthing ball as
comfortable as possible with massages, relaxation breathing and
reminders of my mantras that I had prepared for this moment (many of
which I got from Ina May Garner!). By 6:00 p.m. the tub and soon after
the midwife checked me and shared that I was completely dilated at 10
cm. Although I was feeling happy and relieved I had progressed so
quickly, I could not react because I was focusing on the contractions
and was feeling so incredibly tired. I hobbled into the tub, feeling
exhausted as soon as I got in, I felt my water break and was relieved
to know that it was clear. While in the tub, I was leaning forward and
leaning my forehead and chin on the side of the tub, with Jamie and
Meg keeping the hair from my face, bringing me cold water to drink and
refreshing my cold cloth on which I was leaning. This was very tough
and I remember thinking that this must be the point where many women
decide to get an epidural or pursue a c-section, as the pain was
literally taking my breath away and I had to really focus on getting
through each contraction. I knew in my heart, however, that I had
envisioned a natural birth for our baby and it was only up to me to
make it happen. And so I endured the pains and kept myself together as
much as I could. The pain at this point was sharper and I felt like
crying several times, but our doula reminded me to relax, to focus and
let the pain come so that we could meet our baby.  Our midwife
reminded me that I could push if it would help relieve some of the
pressure, which I did on occasion as needed. I did a lot more groaning
and moaning during each contraction and even bit the side of the tub
once, with Jamie and our doula encouraging me the whole time. I
remember asking the dreaded question, “how much longer?!” and in my
head I already knew that this was the wrong question to ask so I
proceeded that with “don’t answer that.” Having read all the birth
stories during my pregnancy, I already knew that this was a bad
question and should not be asked! After a while, our midwife
encouraged me to consider changing positions, as I had been laboring
on my hands and knees for majority of the time. My arms were so weak
by this point that I felt them buckle occasionally and had to lean on
the ledge to help hold myself up. Jamie was so wonderful in making
sure that I kept myself well-hydrated and keeping that annoying piece
of hair out of my face (even remembering this makes me laugh because I
was so frustrated with that piece clinging on my face while
laboring!). When I tried to get on my back, the pain was unbearable so
I felt scared about the possibility of moving to another place, but in
my heart I knew that I should do something different to welcome the
baby into the world. I remember telling myself that I needed to get up
so without any warning whatsoever, I popped up in between contractions
and Jamie had to hustle to catch me before I toppled over. He
literally heaved me out of the tub and onto the bed which was nearby.
As soon as I got on the bed, I wanted to get on my hands and knees but
the pain was too unbearable to I stayed on my back. I felt the need to
push and told the midwife that I wanted to push. She agreed and
encouraged me to hold onto my legs but I was so exhausted that I
couldn’t manage to do that alone, so Meg and Jamie helped with that
part. I remember pushing and suddenly hearing Meg say “Oh my gosh, the
baby’s right there!” and the midwife said that I could reach down and
touch the baby’s head that was still inside me. I did so and felt
Melanie for the first time. With the next contraction, I pushed again
and although I heard everyone telling me to push hard, I only listened
to Jamie’s voice and would push when he told me. I remember hearing
his voice full of emotion and excitement, telling me to push again
because the head was right there and with another push it would be
out—so I did push and sure enough the head was out! I did feel some of
the burning sensation that I read about in Ina May’s book, but it was
nothing compared to the contractions that I was feeling up to that
point! I again heard Jamie’s voice telling me to push again, to let
the shoulders out and I pushed a couple more times and the body came
out! After a total of 5 pushes, we had our baby! It felt surreal and
even more unreal when the midwife asked Jamie to announce the sex (we
didn’t know up to this point). He looks and says to me, “It’s a girl.
We have a daughter!” and the midwife placed Melanie on my stomach. I
held her and stroked her back, looking at her face in utter disbelief
that this was the little creature that was inside me for so long!
Melanie was born at 7:27 p.m. weighing in at 8 pounds and she 21 inches long.

1 comment:

  1. What a great story! And a gorgeous picture (no sight of that annoying piece of hair!)!