October 02, 2008

I did it all by myself...

Early Sunday morning I went into labor. Just a couple weeks early (I was exactly 38 weeks)...and as it turns out perfect timing (Harry was a whopping 8 lbs. 12 0z).
I was sleeping on the couch, the only cool place in the house. It was 3:30am and I had only been asleep for an hour or so. I was startled awake by a kick and a popping feeling...and instantly knew that my water broke. I took a fast shower and woke up Jay. The contractions came on pretty fast and strong...which terrified me. With Clark everything was much slower...and I was worried we would not get to the hospital in time to get my epidural. We only live about 30 minutes from the hospital, but it felt like an hours drive. Clark was laughing and giggling in the back seat...he can be such an early bird, he did not care at all that it was 4:00 in the morning. We FINALLY got to the hospital, checked in, gave Clark to Auntie Carol (who graciously volunteered to watch Clark for us, and drove all the way to the hospital to pick him up...she is the best!) The triage nurse treated me like a idiot, and asked me 50 times if I was sure my water broke..."um no, I just like to walk around peeing all over the floor" (please note April in labor= not very nice). She checked me out, verified it did break (yea, I already knew that) and said I was dilated to 4. I started to panic a little, with Clark I only got dilated to a 3 before I got my epidural and I was so determined to do things the same as I did with Clark (I am a creature of habit). I got my IVs, I gave my history, I apologized to the nurse that I yelled at when I told her I KNEW my water broke, and I settled into bed. My contractions were coming about every 3 minutes, and they were strong. By this point I had already told 5 people I wanted an epidural and asked my nurse when I should be expecting the anesthesiologist. Well, and I could tell by her tone it was bad news, he just went in with another lady for a c-section so it would be about an hour. Seriously! I can do an hour I thought, it was about 4:30am, and I labored with Clark for 8-9 hours, I thought I had plenty of time. That rational thinking only lasted about 15 minutes... My contractions were getting really strong, and I was trying not to cry or yell at anyone. Every one kept telling me to breath, or pretend dumb things like I was blowing out birthday candles or trying to keep a feather blowing around the room (seriously...seriously birthday candles?). First of all, I am not a breath through it type of girl, I know it helps blah blah blah, but I like to squeeze my eyes shut and hold my breath...well that made everyone (including little Harry) crazy. It was about 5:30am, it had only been 2 hours since my water broke, I was asking like crazy for the epidural man and all I was getting was excuse after excuse why he wasn't there yet. (BTW, why in the world, in a hospital as big as Tripler-the biggest on the island- is there only ONE anesthesiologist for the entire Labor and Delivery floor...don't they have some one on call. GEEZ!) The pain was getting worse, and they told me they can give me something to take the edge off (um....why they did not tell me this an hour ago, we will never know, maybe they thought the whole blowing out the birthday candle advice would actually be helpful). I can't remember what they gave me, they just put it in my IV (I plan on finding out what the drug was because I think I had a bad reaction to it, and I plan to never take it again). She said it would make me a little drowsy and help take the edge of the contractions. This is when all hell broke lose. I am not sure if it was just me, or a normal reaction to the drug...but I passed out. I could not talk, focus my eyes, or really do anything except cry. I felt like all it did was intensify my contractions. I would fall asleep (or pass out) and then 2 minutes later wake up to the most excruciating pain, cry and try to ask for help....then pass out again. I felt this intense panic in the air, and I felt out of control. I have no idea how much time had passed, I only knew I was still being yelled at to breath and someone was trying to flip me from side to side like pancake. I was checked again, and I was dilated to an 8 but the right side of my cervix was not opining all the way. Up until this moment I still thought I had a chance to get my epidural, but the nurse assured me I would probably deliver before the anesthesiologist could get there (where the hell was he coming from, California?) I couldn't focus enough to talk, and I was trying to tell them I needed to push. For some reason I could not open my eyes, and I was panicking cause I couldn't find Jason. Harry's heart beat was erratic because I was holding my breath and denying us both of oxygen...we were both in distress. I started pushing. They all started yelling at me that it wasn't time, but I couldn't talk to tell them I did not have a choice. I was still passing out in between each contraction and then waking up to everyone yelling at me. I knew the epidural man was never coming, and I just couldn't take the panic all around me anymore. So, I decided it was time to get him out, whether they wanted me to push or not. The doctor came in, I was completely dilated except for that right side again...they were trying to tell me not to push because I could rip my cervix and then have to have a surgery. Well, too late he was coming fast (Harry), and I was not about to tell him to slow down. The doctor did something, some fancy stretching thing, and I was finally given permission to push him out. It only took two contractions and he was here. I remember forcing my eyes open and seeing the back of his head (he was freaking HUGE) I was calling out to him trying to touch him, but they wouldn't let me. (How come in tv shows and movies people are always allowed to hold their baby after it comes out, but in real life they whisk them away? I did not even get to see his face.) Jason was with Harrison while they were cleaning him up, and making sure he was all in one piece. He was having a little trouble catching his breath so they gave him oxygen, but other than that he was as perfect as can be. I was laying in bed waiting to see my baby, cursing the nurse who said the worst was over (obviously see never got stitches in her hoo-hoo, whatever they injected me with that they said would numb me was working as well as the stuff they said "would take the edge off"). I couldn't believe I just did it...my worst nightmare come true (ok, I am just a little overly dramatic). When the doctor was done working on my downstairs, a long 30 minutes later...I was finally able to see and hold my little baby. He was precious, so chunky and lovable. It was love at first site. The whole mornings events just melted away. It did not matter how he came into the world, just that he was finally here. The Happy hormones kicked in, and I suddenly forgot to yell at all the nurses and doctors (although at my next appointment I will have a list of questions about what happened and why). Got to love those happy hormones...
Recovering
I did it all by myself! I never thought that I would be able to go through a natural childbirth (well, I knew I could do it if I had to but I had no desire to ever try to), and for such a chunky baby. Would I do it again? Nope...I don't think I would. Clark's labor and delivery was so calm and peaceful, I was alert, I could communicate and think straight. Harrison's delivery was scary, there was an air of panic all around me and I felt out of control, I wouldn't have been able to make a decision to save my life. Sure, the recovery with Harrison's delivery has been much quicker, but I don't think a few days of faster recovery was worth the way I felt for those 3 hours (Can you believe I was only in labor for 3 1/2 hours...that is crazy). The important thing is that he is here, and I have been blessed with two of the most precious boys a mother could ask for.

10 comments:

smiles said...

That is really scary! I'm so upset that you had to go through that and so glad that you both made it through. Definitely give the doc an ear full, and find out that medication they gave you.

3 hours - WOW! And all by yourself, be proud of that even though it was scary. I was too chicken to do it either time although I wanted to.

Congrats again!

JethRobyn said...

Wow, I'm glad all came out ok, and that you did it. I would have screamed at people too in that situation. You were justified. Congrats again, so cute.

Rachael said...

Wow that is so scary! When I was in labor with Gav they gave me Fentonyl shots for pain. I remember them making me so tired but not taking the pain away.
I am so glad everything turned out okay! I would have been so pissed not to get my epidural. You are seriously so much stronger then me. I would have held the baby in til it got there HA!
Love you guys!

Laura said...

AH you are so strong.....I'm so glad that everything turned out ok and i'm glad that both you and emma have kids so i never have to go through that thanks haha!!

Jenni said...

Oh my goodness April! That is my absolute worst fear---to have to push out a baby and feel EVERYTHING. Wow. And on top of that, you had to go through the adverse reaction to the drug. I am so sorry! I am so glad though that the post partem euphoria kicked in when you were reunited with that sweet little guy.

And absolutely write down a list of 'questions and concerns' you have for the doctors and nurses!

Rebeccah Mildenstein said...

OHHH APRIL! I am so happy for you he is beautiful! WOW I can't beleive they did that too you too. What was up with that hospital!!! You are a hero in my eyes. I am so excited for you and so sad we live so far away. Love you a lot Bek

Rebeccah Mildenstein said...

OHHH APRIL! I am so happy for you he is beautiful! WOW I can't beleive they did that too you too. What was up with that hospital!!! You are a hero in my eyes. I am so excited for you and so sad we live so far away. Love you a lot Bek

Nat said...

I was told second babies come fast...Elise was 3 1/2 hours as well! You are a FAR BETTER woman then I. I can't believe you did it all by yourself!! High Five and a HUGE HUG!!

Aunt Len & Uncle Pam :o) said...

I just love your stories about your baby deliveries. I can envision what you're saying; and laugh out loud at your descriptions. You are quite the storyteller.

We are so happy and excited for you, Jason and Clark. You are such a good mom and everyone is lucky to have you.

Love you, Aunt Pam

Sarah said...

You are super woman! I don't know how all those pioneers did it. I don't intend to. But you are amazing, and congratulations on such a cute little guy!