Thursday, 12 April 2012
40 weeks & 3 days pregnant with my first child, a boy, I waddled myself into Labor and Delivery to prepare to evict this little alien from my body. This would be trip #6 that I’d made to the hospital during my pregnancy and I was NOT going to leave this time with an occupied uterus.
My pregnancy had been nothing except exhausting. Not only did I manage to survive 9 weeks of constant puking, and when I mean constant, I mean CONSTANT. I was unable to lift my head from the toilet for more than 5 minutes at a time it seemed, and everything made me sick, especially poultry. I remember sitting at Thanksgiving dinner, taking a bite of the delicious turkey that I had been anticipating for months (Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday—a day of nothing but eating and football for no other good reason besides we can? HECK YEA!) and immediately saying “Oh s***!” and taking off running toward the bathroom. That was the moment I knew something was up. 1 week later, I gathered up my courage, went down to the local drug store, bought the cheapest Home Pregnancy Test I could find, called up my best friend and did the most awkward thing I had done to date… peed on a plastic stick. Three minutes later I was designated pregnant and puking again.
I wish that I could say that the story of telling my husband (who was at that point just my “Significant Other”) was all jumping up and down, hugs and kisses. It wasn’t. In fact, it was the total opposite. I blindsided him. Considering that I was 19 at the time and that he was 21, this was NOT in our plans. In fact, we had just discussed marriage and children in the previous weeks and decided that it was something that we both knew was coming, and okay with, but something we wanted to do the “right way”, you know, “First comes love… then comes marriage… then comes a baby in a baby carriage,”. Not the other way around. We were diligently practicing safe sex and using prescription birth control, so Seth was just a baby that we determined to be! Me telling my husband went a bit like this….
Me: “So, I took a pregnancy test today because I haven’t been feeling that great, and it’s positive.”
[Insert awkward silence and blank stares]
Him: “WHAT?! HOW DOES THAT HAPPEN!?”
Me: “Do you really need to ask that?”
Him: “Well I KNOW how it happens! But I mean, the pills, how did it… But they… WHAT THE HELL?!”
Me: “ I know. The chance is like 1% when used correctly, and I DID use it correctly.”
Him: “WHAT?! 1%?!?! I NEVER GET INCLUDED IN 1% of ANYTHING, EVER! WHY DO I GET INCLUDED IN THIS!?!?!” (This is said as he stomps around the house much like the child that is growing in my womb will do in years to come.)
Most women would probably be PISSED that this is the reaction they got. Not me. I actually found it kind of funny considering the circumstances. At this point I directed him upstairs to his office to spend some quality time thinking about the situation. Of course I eavesdropped on the conversation with himself saying, “Oh my god! This is HUGE! Like really huge. Like I’m going to be a dad. Holy Crap. I’m going to be a dad.” In the end, hugs and kisses and happiness came. You get there eventually.
After the initial shock, and the 9 week lease I contracted with whatever toilet was closest to me, life got easier for about 1 minute. The day I woke up and didn’t need to puke was AMAZING! Best day of my life thus far, until a week later and I woke up in the middle of the night with extreme pain. This became hospital trip number one of five I would have before my induction. Doctors didn’t know what was wrong. They knew the baby was fine after some ultrasounds and a lot of monitoring but could not figure out my pain. Every test, every lab came back clean. Nothing was wrong but I couldn’t function beyond screaming in serious pain and because of being pregnant they were wary to give me any meds until they knew exactly what the issue was.
For almost 16 hours I laid there bawling my eyes out and it wasn’t until the following evening that they were able to determine that the stress of the pregnancy on my body had caused one of my kidneys to shut down and were able to give me something more than Ibuprofen for the pain. That IV full of that sweet, wonderful Nubain was the greatest thing on earth to me and I flew high on that stuff for about 2 days until my kidney recovered and I was sent home. Unfortunately, that was not only time it happened. 4 more times I was admitted for my kidneys and the last two times the stressed caused pre-term labor, that thankfully… (and by 36 weeks I was deeming unfortunately) was able to be stopped. Being pregnant was NOT fun for me. At all.
That’s why when I hit 40 weeks and had stayed 4 weeks at 2 cm dilated with 75% effacement and each week my doctor saying, “I bet we will see you in there any moment!, that I said, “GET THIS CHILD OUT!” and demanded an induction. I wanted to go all natural and have that cute “Oh no! My water broke!” moment, but even more I wanted that child evicted. I was done with Braxton Hicks, I was done with swollen ankles (that were so swollen that people actually pointed and stared at them as we walked through the mall in our attempts to get labor going.), I was done with being pregnant.
In my pursuit of a induction that was low intervention, I opted to start with Cervadil, a drug that thins the cervix, and in many cases, helps start labor. Thankfully, this was the case for me. Approximately 4 hours after putting it in, I went into active labor with steady contractions. My Dr was nice enough to set me up with a bit of pain meds at this time so I could get some sleep during early labor and have enough energy for later, and admittedly after 9 months of no drinking, the instant drunk was kind of nice! I slept the whole night and woke up around 8 am wondering what the heck was going on and why the hell this hurt so damn bad! I was expecting a child to come flying out any moment but sadly between 1:00 AM and 8:00 AM I had only progressed to 4cm.
My doctor came in right at 9:00 and decided it was a good time to break my water to help keep things going. At this point, I didn’t last about 15 minutes before I told the nurse I wanted an epidural. What can I say? I’d endured about all I could take with this pregnancy and I was ready for some R-E-L-I-E-F. I waited “patiently” (aka screaming every 2 minutes with a contraction that I wanted my epidural) for the anesthesiologist to show up and a short 45 minutes later he was sticking, not jamming, the needle in my back and giving some of that sweet juice that made me ask him to marry me. 15 minutes later, I could have run a freaking marathon, well of course, if it wasn’t for the fact that my legs felt like they weren’t attached to my body anymore. I was sitting up, chit chatting with family and you would have never know I was in labor until 2 hours later when the nurse proclaimed, “You’re 10! Time to push!”
Pushing in itself was an ordeal. Took a bit to get the hang of it but when the nurse said, “Well, we might have to turn off your epidural so you can feel what you’re doing,” that I said, “OH NO YOU DON’T!” and figured that process out in a jiffy. One hour of pushing in, it was time. The kid was there, but the Doctor wasn’t. Multiple calls to the doctor and “I’m on my ways” I found myself blowing and panting trying to not shoot this kid out as fast as I could. Apparently, that would have been bad, and I would have been owed a refund for the money I already paid to my doctor, and we can’t have that now can we?
This is where it really gets funny. My husband, who hasn’t eaten anything in about 24 hours because he was so nervous about having this baby, decides it’s the PERFECT time to break into the snacks I stupidly packed in the hospital bag. Here I am, haven’t ate in about 24 hours, in labor, literally about to deliver and he is chomping on gummy worms right in my face. At one point he waved at me and asked if I was hungry. If I wasn’t about to kill him, my nurse was, because her words, and I quote, “Are you stupid? Do not anger the laboring woman.” I swear I could not have written this any better than it happened. My “doting” husband then is assigned “wet rag duty” by the nurse, hoping he can’t screw that up either. He did, he totally did. He would wet the rag and put it on my head, but then would forget about it and it would slide down my face. I would adjust and it would slide down again, my husband would notice and fix it… Rinse & Repeat. 5 times over and I pulled the rag off my head and threw it across the room and lovingly assured him “Thank you, I love you. You’re awesome, but seriously, I don’t want the rag. I’m fine, please don’t put it back.”
30 minutes after being to the point where “one more push and you’re a mommy!” is a reality, my doctor finally walks in… not ready at all to end this misery. She is in a sundress, strappy sandals, and looking super cute.
Her: “Oh! You really are ready huh?!” (This is the moment I rip her head off in my imagination because her perkiness is literally more painful to me than the child who is verging in the edge of being born.)
Me:”Can’t we get this over with please? I think the child is about to attend college in there.”
Her: “Why Sure! You just hang in there one more moment, ok?”
Me: “Sure! Why not! No rush! You know what, go take a lunch, bring me back something, I’ll be waiting, right here!”
The nurse was a smart lady, she shoved and oxygen mask back on my face before I could continue.
Five minutes later I am patiently tapping my legs while sitting in the stirrups, when my doctor walks in, “OK! Let’s have a baby!”
One push later, my sweet baby boy is born. 7 lbs 2 oz of total cuteness at 1:36 PM on July 20th, 2007.
My greatest satisfaction was that my doctor didn’t take off her strappy sandals while delivering and that I managed to pay her back for making me wait by ruining them with amniotic fluid. She probably billed me for that though.
Nothing went as planned besides my little boy came into this world healthy, happy and with more in store for me then I can ever imagine. 5 years later and he’s still a pain... just in my butt, not in my kidney.