Thursday, March 13, 2014

Jessica vs Snomaggedon

 As promised, here is another installment in my series of Birth Stories as written by fellow members of my "mama tribe".  This birth story is of a first time mother and her labor during the worst snow storm of that winter. 

First time mom, 26 years old, 2013: 
So, William was born last year during snow storm Rocky. He was my first child.   Like most new moms, I took a birthing class and while I didn't really pay a lot of attention, I did study the mongolian birthing method like crazy. That book and CD's had me convinced that labor did not hurt. 

Well, it was the morning of 02/23/2013 when I went to the doctor and they said that I was dilated to a 2.  By then I was so sick of being pregnant and huge I just wanted it over with! I was severely anemic and had gained 70 lbs.  I looked like the pregnant Bella from Twilight. I continued working right up until I delivered as well as doing yoga and tons of walking in the snow.  The doctor asked me for the 100th time if I wanted her to rupture my membranes and I told her no, I had already had lost my muscus plug and the baby would come out when he was ready. She tells me that it could be a while. (yeah, great to hear considering I wasn't due for another 12 days and all the other women in my family were induced at 41 weeks, yay....)

I go home miserable. I told my husband "Lets do this, get this baby out! Lets have sex and make contractions!"  We start, but my husband freaks out and thinks the babies head is hitting his.. umm.. ok, so that didn't work. The next day I decide to try castor oil only because I had already eaten everything spicy in the house.  Caster oil is terrible and gross.  I took some and I waited and waited.  Then I waited some more.  Nothing.   By now its Sunday.  I am tired, its snowing and I am sick.  I threw up at random all over myself throughout my entire pregnancy and had to constantly carry spare clothes with me.  Monday comes and I decided to call into work.  I was exhausted and it was still snowing.  Fortunately they were closing due to weather anyway.  I am tired all day but still no contractions and no movement at all, so I get some coffee to "wake him up".   Nothing. 

I go to sleep but I woke up at about 11 pm and needed to take a bath because my back is hurting.  I did this regularly because my baby always sat right on my satic nerve.   My husband is so nice, he runs the bath for me.   I get in and sit down and suddenly I PEE!  A lot!   It felt weird though because I couldn't stop, but by that point who cares.  You pee all the time, right?  So I sit in the bath tub awhile, then I need to go to the bathroom (like number 2) immediately.   I jump out of the tub as fast as I could and sat on the toilet.  I tried to go to the bathroom, but nothing would happen, so I go back to bed. 

My back was killing me and the baby was moving a bunch (finally) so I think "Well, maybe these are Braxton hicks."  I got up thinking  "If these are Braxton hicks, I need to move and drink something so they'll go away."  I walked into my living room (which is maybe 6 feet from my bedroom) and BAM!  I doubled over and suddenly needed to go number 2 again really bad this time!  I couldn't stand up so I move slowly, hunched over, to the bath room in the hall and tried to go again.  I turned the lights on this time and I tried to go but nothing came out.  When I looked in the toilet all I saw was blood.  Like, a LOT of blood!  I was so scared.  I had just watched the mayor declare a state of emergency and now I was in labor!  i hd to decide what to do.  Do we chance the roads or do i deliver my own baby in the bath tub?  

William was coming out one way or another.  I could feel him pushing down, he knew what do and my body was accommodating him.  I woke my husband up and told him "Lets go"  He wanted to pack first, but I told him that this baby was coming out!  He asked if I had had time to count the contractions.  I told him "They are about 1-2 min apart, we need to go now!"  My loving husband drove me to the hospital, in that terrible snow storm, with me screaming the whole time.

We made it safely to the parking lot of the emergency room .  I didn't think I could walk because I was so scared the baby was going to fall out.  On top of all that, I felt like I was gonna poop all over myself! LOL We made it inside the emergency room and I listened to my birthing ipod mix and squeezed my pillow tightly.  It seemed like I had to wait forever.   When they finally got me up and checked me, the nurse said that I was a 4, but my water wasn't broken.  I told her what had happened in the tub and showed her how my bed was wet.  I asked her "Then what is all this goo coming out?" Thank God for the experienced nurse that came in to double check me.  She kept using these strips to check and see if I had amniotic fluid and they all showed negative.  I told her I felt like I should bear down  but she told me not to, but to wait for the doctor. I wanted an IV by this point and an epidural.

Due to the storm, the power kept going off and on, so my IV wasn't as effective as I would have liked. The anisteologist on call had a really hard time getting there and told me it may not spread in time, but he was going to give it to me anyway. By that point I just wanted it to all be over.  I got the epidural and I can tell you, 50% pain is way better than 100% pain!Unfortunately, the epidural did not spread on my left side.  I asked the nurses why my stomach was not hurting.  I had no period like cramping, in fact, I had no pain from my uterus at all.  The only pain I was experiencing was the WORST back pain of my life.  I mean the worst kind EVER!  No one said that my back would hurt.  But oh man did it hurt!   I think that's why I didn't know I was in labor.  Looking back now, my back was hurting every couple of hours and those were probably my first contractions. 

Anyway, I wanted to take a shower but they wouldn't let me with the IV. I just wanted a shower so bad.  The doctor finally came in now because I was at a 6 and progressing.  She said that the nurses told her that I was dialating but my water was intact.   I told her I didn't care, lets just do this.  Then she goes in to break my water and says "Umm ... your water is already broken!"  I said "I know that! I told them that. I think that pee in the bathtub was my water breaking and I am pretty sure this baby wants out."

She told me to wait a few min and she would be back.  I waited and felt William beginning to push down.  The mongolian method teaches you to relax and remember that the baby knows what he is doing.  Okay, so that's what I did.  I relaxed as much as I could.   The doctor came back and said  it was time to push.  I remember smelling something and thinking "Finally! Poop!" LOL  The doctor asked "Do you want to touch his head?"  Umm ... no thanks!  Lets get this over with.  

It's a little unnerving to hear your delivering doctor say  "Oh my...."  I asked if everything was okay?   Her response was "He has soooo much hair!  The most hair I have ever seen!" (whew!) She then asked me if I wanted to tear naturally or be cut. (episiotomy)  I respond "I don't know, whats it looking like down there? What do you suggest?"  I passed on the episiotomy and just pushed.  He came out and I ripped so bad I had 3rd degree tears and a lot bleeding.  It took a lot of stitches to get me sewn back up.   I was soooo cold.   I remember them handing me my son.  I started to cry and asked them to take him away and clean him up, then bring him back so I could nurse him.  They cleaned him up and I just kept saying "Holy shit, that's a baby!"  That came out of my vagina! He was living in there the whole time! I couldn't believe I had just had a baby.

I was shaking all over by that time and was still really cold.  I asked for some Iron tablets but they said they couldn't give me any, so I asked my husband to bring me some from home.   I spent the first couple of hours terrified to touch my baby, and I was scared to do anything with him except for letting him nurse.  I refused to be alone with him as severe postpartum depression runs in my family.  The first thing after having a baby is take a shower and I desperately wanted a shower so bad. (remember?) I got into the shower and was scared to touch my vagaina.  I didn't want to touch or see it.   I rinsed it with water and got out.   The nurses kept looking at the pads to see how much I was bleeding and they wanted to touch my stomach every so often and look at my sheets.  I stayed both nights in the hospital by myself and walked the halls. I hadn't eaten anything. The nurses questioned me about this and I explained I was vegetarian but they kept bringing things with meat.   I wasn't hungry anyway.  Thankfully I didn't need any meds for the postpartum depression.  I just sat at the window, in the light, everyday with my baby. 

It can be rough, but you will get through it.

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