Hello all 1-3 people who might read my blog! I’m obviously not pregnant anymore…. I had a baby girl who was born 7/20/16….yes that’s right, 2 weeks and 2 days after her original due date of 7/4!!! I highly suggest if you are pregnant and especially if you want to have a natural birth you do not read this; come back to it later! I found reading birth stories during my pregnancy to be extremely anxiety inducing….but maybe that’s just me !
My midwife started talking about inducing me if I made it to 42 weeks but I was in disbelief that I actually would make it. I knew it was possible and common for first time moms to be late but I personally never knew anyone who was as late as I was. That was why it was so frustrating. Everyone kept texting/asking me if I had had the baby yet and it just got me even more irritated thinking that something was wrong with me when people were in shock that I was, yes, still pregnant. Now I will never ever EVER ever ask an overdue woman if the baby is here yet!!!! They will let you know!!!
The “is the baby here yet?” questions sort of tapered off after week 41 because people could probably sense I was getting annoyed, but then they quickly turned to “are you getting induced?” questions. This annoyed me because it also insinuated that there was a reason to induce, which there wasn’t until I started approaching 42 weeks. My midwife had the induction scheduled but I really agonized over the decision. I knew that it would be much harder to go natural with the birth like I had prepared for, and it just seemed wrong to “force” the baby out when he or she wasn’t ready. After talking to people I trusted, I decided to just go ahead with the induction on the day I reached 42 weeks. There were many pros and cons, but I honestly felt like I’d end up with a healthy baby either way and I was so emotionally and mentally ready to meet her. It may have been a selfish decision but I didn’t feel bad about it and I still don’t really after the fact.
So I went in on a Monday night after eating a large meal. The midwife started with the gel that ripens your cervix. I was already 1 cm dilated and almost 100% effaced for the two weeks leading up to the induction so I was confident that the induction would go positively. My big fear was having a c-section. I thought I would just hang out and sleep Monday night and I didn’t really think the cervadil was going to do anything, but I was wrong. I started to have contractions about 2-3 hours later, not too painful but annoying enough that I literally only got like 1 –2 hours of sleep. I already knew I was at a disadvantage going into active labor on no sleep. Can you imagine trying to run a marathon when you haven’t slept the night before?
In the morning my midwife came in and broke my water at about 7:30, she said I was about 2 cm dilated, which I was happy about cause I doubted the cervadil was doing anything. I knew that this would make contractions more painful but I was willing to do everything to avoid pitocin. I got up and took a shower and the contractions started to get a little worse, I started having to concentrate really hard during them. I was surprised that I had no back labor at all, which was what I was prepared for because I totally thought that baby was posterior. All the strategies I had come prepared with were for back labor, so I felt totally unprepared and I just felt like there was no where to go to escape the pain. The only place where the contractions were tolerable was on the toilet, lol.
I also spent a lot of time in the tub, which helped. I probably spent the majority of the day in the tub and on the toilet. I honestly wanted nothing to do with my husband, he was trying to help and rub me, but like I said my back didn’t hurt and I just wanted to be left alone. This lead to me just feeling totally alone and like I could never get through it. When my midwife came back at about 1 pm, I was asking for an epidural. I was just so exhausted from no sleep. She said she would check me and then we would talk. When she checked I was like 5-6 cm so that was encouraging, but I thought I still had to get through transition and I just felt like I couldn’t do it. So they had to hook up an IV because I needed a full bag of saline before getting an epidural.
Knowing some relief was coming calmed me down, and I spent the next hour waiting for the IV bag to drain. When she came back she said “Let’s just check to make sure you’re not ready to push before you get an epidural.” I thought yeah right, but when she checked I was 7-8 already and she said “You could be pushing within an hour!” This was at like 2:30-3 pm. I was so happy and recharged thinking I was actually going to do this!
Unfortunately for some reason I got back in the tub and the contractions kind of slowed down. I had a suspicion this wasn’t a good thing but she said sometimes before you push your body kind of slows down and conserves energy. I wanted to make the contractions stronger by moving around and squatting but it was just so hard. 2-3 more hours passed and I felt “sort of” like I had to push. She checked and said I just had the soft lip of my cervix left and that she could reach around and move it while I tried to push.
So we did….for 2 hours. It was incredibly painful trying to push with her trying to push the lip around and stuff was just not happening. I kept saying it felt like nothing was happening and I think I was right because after 2 hours of pushing I hadn’t made much progress. I felt so defeated and like I was destined for a c-section. My midwife said basically as a last ditch effort I could get an epidural and relax (I was so exhausted…it was 7:30 pm at this point) and let the baby’s head move down more. They had to hook up me to another IV and said the anesthesiologist would be about 20 minutes……
Probably an hour an half later he shows up, full of sass and wanting to read me every risk and scary thing that could happen. I was so out of it at this point I was basically just tuning him out. The process of getting the epidural was scary, I won’t go into detail. After I got it I couldn’t feel contractions but I was shaking uncontrollably and thought I was maybe going to die, lol. My mom came in and held my hand and I just remember being so scared. I tried to relax and after a couple hours I started feeling more pressure so I called the midwife in to push (it was 11:15 pm).
Finally, after two more hours of pushing (which was much easier and less painful with epidural by the way) my baby girl made her way into the word at 12:54. To say I was ecstatic I didn’t have to have a c-section would be an understatement, because that’s where we were headed after nearly 4 hours of pushing. My midwife had called the doctor she works under in and she was very motivating during the second round of pushing and I believe that is what kept me going. She kept saying she could see the head and that I was almost there. My husband was holding one of my legs and I remember him saying “You’re gonna do it!” and finally it was over! I remember her crying really hard and I asked if she was okay!
Even though it was a long and difficult labor I forgot it so quickly once my baby was here. It’s one day of pain for a lifetime of unimaginable joy! I did mull over how labor went and had some regret about how I handled it. I underestimated what kind of support I needed, I probably would have done better if we had gotten a doula. As concerned and helpful as my husband was, I think you just need a woman’s support during that time. My baby’s birth ended up being 100% what I didn’t want- induced, a medical event with lots of pain medication, but I can’t really spend too much time getting hung up on it. I did what I had to do and now she’s here. It was the happiest day of my life regardless.
So I don’t know if I am going to be doing the traditional monthly updates with my daughter. As much as I want to so I can have the information down and go back to it, I just don’t know how I feel about putting my daughter’s name and pictures all over the internet. Not saying anyone who does it is wrong, and I do feel bad because I love reading those updates on other mom’s blogs….but I just don’t feel great about it right now, so if you don’t head from me for awhile, that is why.