Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Birth Story

I am one of those blogs stalkers who loves reading about all things baby, including birth stories, and I found it reassuring to read through several before I experienced the phenomenon of labor and delivery personally. So, in case someone is out there reading and needs reassurance or is just curious, here goes. Also, I want to type out my experience before my memory blurs any more of the details, and this is my recordkeeping tool of choice.
Update: As I have typed this out and remembered our hospital time, it has been therapeutic and thus become somewhat wordy, so I'll be splitting it up into multiple posts. Again, this is mostly for me, so if you get bored easily, feel free to check back in later for cute baby pictures. :)
I will attempt to be discreet about certain intimate details, but I want to capture the gist of my experience. Basically, I'll share what I feel like sharing. Keep in mind that this is a birth story and somewhat medical, so you have been warned.
First, some background information. I said throughout pregnancy to many people (and myself) that my end goal was a healthy baby, and I trust my doctor, so since labor is a highly variable experience, we will make plans and then be flexible. With that being said, I read all about the beauty of natural childbirth, I react poorly to most medications (because of my low blood pressure), I know epidurals don't always work quite right, and my mom delivered me and my sister naturally, so completely unmedicated labor was my goal.
Then we got news of the low amniotic fluid at our measurement ultrasound, and induction at 37 weeks became a very real possibility. My fluid levels rose with modified bed rest and gallons of water, so we readjusted the plan to hope our sweet girl would be born on her own. There were plenty of Braxton Hicks, I bounced on the birthing ball, and we did all we could to naturally induce labor starting at 37 weeks. 
And then we hit 41 weeks and fluid levels were going down again, not dangerous, but definitely low. That and the fact that I had been 1 cm dilated for about a month was all we needed to know to tell the doctor that we wanted to induce. I was miserably swollen, and Husband was beyond ready to meet his daughter. So, the doctor asked when we had last eaten (1pm at Olive Garden), called the hospital to schedule an induction (we were first on the list to be called in) and explained that we'd probably get a call around 7pm to go in and receive cervix ripener overnight, followed by Pitocin in the morning. The hospital requires you to stop eating 8 hours before inducing, so we planned to get checked in, comfy, and start the process around 9pm.
Then the waiting began. My parents were at our house, so we visited with them for a while, tried to relax, and watched some TV. I was ready but bummed that this was not the way I really wanted it to go and reminded my super excited Husband (he was just so in love with our daughter already) that I needed some time to adjust mentally. With the plan for Pitocin, my plan changed to include an epidural, and that all just seemed like so much medication for my med-intolerant body to handle.
Spoiler: My labor was awesome, and God answered all my prayers. I just keep telling people that for an induction (read: not my plan), it went so well.
The end result was this beauty
To be continued

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