Monday, 09 April 2012
My gut instinct was telling me that I should pack a hospital bag, in July of 2008. My daughters due date wasn't until between Aug. 24th and Sept. 1st (doctor and ultrasound couldn't agree). I had been measuring smaller than normal, so my doctor kept sending me for ultrasounds to make sure everything was okay. I also had low amniotic fluid levels, which was a concern, and it was determined I needed to have fetal assessments every week until she was born. That ultrasound, that made it necessary for the fetal assessments, the tech couldn't even find the head. The head was too low. She said, "Are you dilating yet?". I had no idea.
Prior to that, I had been feeling "different". I remember telling my sister that I felt like there was more "pressure" and I thought maybe she was really low. When I went to the doctor, I told her what the Tech said and she checked me. Mind you, this is roughly 7-8 weeks too soon. Sure enough, I was 2 cm dilated. I was sent to triage, for monitoring of contractions, put on a medication to stop contractions and put on strict bed rest. Bed rest may sound wonderful, but it's not! A week later, I had my first fetal assessment. Again, amniotic fluid was low so I wondered if maybe I had a leak. I also had a doctor appt. that day and, of course, my doctor was out of town that week. The nurse did a check to see if I had a leak and it showed that I did, so back to triage I went.
This time, I was a nervous wreck, crying in the waiting room... not knowing what was going on. I was really scared. I went back, got hooked up and the nurse said she needed to check me. I was now 3 cm dilated and, when she pulled her hand back, I saw blood. Then I really started getting freaked out. I didn't really WANT to give birth this early and I figured I'd just be sent home and back to bed rest. Then a doctor I never met came and told me what was going on. There was some dipping of my daughters heart rate. The machine would ding or something every time it happened. He just said it was better for her to be delivered now, that some babies do better outside of their mothers. So, I was wheeled back to be induced.
I was scared to have my water broken, but it didn't really hurt. Then I was put on pitocin and asked if I planned on having the epidural, which I did plan on. I met with the anesthesiologist who said I could have something in my IV until I got to I think 4 cm or something, I can't remember. It was crazy how fast it all happened. I just remember thinking, as my water was being broken, how I wasn't ready for this. lol. I was scared out of my mind, I had no idea what the pain was going to be like. The drugs made me feel rather loopy, but I could still feel all the pain. So, for the next several hours, that's all it was. I just breathed through all the contractions. Unfortunately, my husband had to sit on the other side of where I was facing, cause I was facing all the dumb machines, I was a little ticked off at that. But I was so focused on what I was doing, it didn't really matter all that much.
After a while, I got to a point where I was in so much pain I couldn't take it. I was breathing like the classes said too, but my husband could only say, "Don't hyperventilate. you're okay". All I could say to that was, "I'm not. I CAN'T DO THIS! IT HURTS". I don't know how many times I said that, it hurt so bad. Thankfully, the anesthesiologist was on his way for my epidural. Oh my gosh, let me tell you...
Having to sit up in bed, dealing with the contractions that were "coupling" (one right on top of another) while a doctor is trying to stick a needle in your back, is about enough to make you want to kill someone. I had a tough back, too, so it took him a while to get it done. I wanted to scream! I couldn't do it anymore and felt the need to push and, so, I did. But then it was over and the epidural was done. Less than 20 minutes later, the nurse checked me and I was fully dilated. I was probably ready to push right when the epidural was being done...
Then I spent the next 20 minutes pushing and I couldn't feel much, besides the sharp pain in my back, to let me know I was having a contraction. I was really exhausted at the pushing, but thankfully it didn't last long. She was born at 6:52 on July 22nd, 2008. I didn't get to hold her until about 24 hours later, as she was rushed to the NICU being 6 or so weeks premature. It was hard not having here there. After getting all stitched up and throwing up anything I ate or drank, I stared at the wall for the next several hours...
My entire labor only lasted 5 and a half hours. I do remember someone asking the nurse, "how much pitocin did you give her?". It was quick and, for that, I'm thankful. It's also amazing how, after almost 4 years, the whole experience is fresh in my mind, like it was yesterday! That's one experience I'll never forget!
She weighed only 4 lbs and 13 oz. She was a tiny little thing!