- 3 years ago
- Wedding: February 2012
On Saturday 11/10/13 around 8pm, I experienced a sudden gush in my pants and thought my water had broke. About an hour and a half later, I went to L&D because I was still leaking but it was more mucous than actual fluid. The admitting nurse swabbed me and it turned color right away, indicating that it was indeed amniotic fluid. I was so excited and ready to give birth! But when the midwife on call came to check me, she said she could feel my water bag was still intact. Say what?? I was only 1cm and my cervix was pretty long. Ugh. So they sent me home around midnight. I had a snack and went to bed.
At 3:30am on the 11th, I woke up with some pretty bad cramps. No big deal, I thought and tried to just putz around the living room to take my mind off of it. But after an hour, I realized they weren’t getting any better… in fact they were getting worse and occurring in a pattern. Holy crap, I was having contractions and basically didn’t even realize it. So I started timing them and by 5am, they were 3-4 minutes apart. I called L&D because I didn’t want a repeat of earlier that night. They told me to labor at home as long as possible since I was a first time mom and I had my regular MD appointment at 11:30 am anyway. But I should come in if the pain got too unbearable.
So around 6am, the pain started getting really bad… I even threw up. I was still timing the contractions and was getting them every 2 minutes. I woke up DH and we decided to go in to the hospital. As I was waiting for DH to bring the car around, I had a really strong contraction and then my pants were wet. Great, on top of not even knowing I was in labor, I just peed my pants. These L&D people were going to think I’m a real gem.
I got admitted around 7:30 am. The same midwife was still there so she checked me and said my water had officially broke and I was at 3cm, 90% effaced. Woah! They asked me if I wanted an epidural and I said yes, please. Definitely the best decision of my life! I got the epidural around 9am and it was magical. I felt so relaxed and I passed out until the new midwife came to check me at 12:30pm. I was at 9cm, 100% effaced. Amazing! Everyone got the room ready because there was going to be a baby real soon!
Then I stalled out. Between 12:30pm and 6pm, I made virtually no progress, even with Pit on board! Plus LO was starting to have some decels. At 6:30pm, the OB took over and had me do a couple of trial pushes. LO would decel every time. So eventually it was recommended that I have a c-section for fetal intolerance of labor.
Ok, I was on board. They took me to the operating room and topped off my epidural. When they initially gave me the epidural that morning, I knew I was completely numb when I couldn’t feel my toes any more. But the surgeons started “testing” my numbness when I could still wiggle my toes so I knew it wasn’t taking effect yet. “Can you feel this?” Yes. “Is it sharp or just pressure?” Ooh, sharp. “Can you feel this?” Yes. “This?” No, because you didn’t do anything. =P I think they thought I might have been just paranoid because they tried to trick me. Anyway, they gave me a few extra doses of the epidural and I felt it starting to work. They were like, “ok, let’s give this another 2 minutes.” And then literally 30 seconds later, “can you feel this?” YES. Jeez, this is why I hate surgeons. SO impatient. Not to mention I was shivering/shaking so violently from the extra doses of the epidural.
Long story short, they did not wait long enough and started cutting. I yelled out I CAN FEEL YOU CUTTING ME. Finally the nurse anesthetist had be like, “Hey guys, she’s in pain!” before they took me seriously. They apologized and said sometimes the epidural only affects one side (apparently I was numb on my right but not on my left). They decided to top me off with a local and were running around to get that going. Later, DH told me they couldn’t even find the right drug and were having problems. But I know they found it eventually because the next thing I remember is…. TRON.
That’s right, ladies and gentlemen. I went from staring up at a blue drape, shivering uncontrollably, and thinking about how they are cutting me open… to blackness. Then a neon grid of squares started to appear. I was TOTALLY STONED off of whatever drug they gave me (later found out it was morphine). So I was staring at that and then I heard the calm, friendly voice of the nurse anesthetist in my ear saying, “Look to your left Mrs. Bijou. There is your son.” I turned my head and the blackness sort of shifted as the bright lights of the OR came into focus. I saw people standing next to a warmer holding something up. Then I realized there was a baby crying. It was so loud and strong! That’s when everything came rushing back. I was having a c-section, and that was MY baby.
The rest is basically a blur of me fighting against the drugs and trying to see my baby. I know DH was holding him while they stitched me up. And at some point, I reached out and grazed LO’s cheek. It was the softest thing I had ever felt. The next thing I really remember is holding LO in the recovery bed as they rolled me into the PACU. But even then, DH and my mom were holding him for most of the time because I didn’t have the strength to keep my eyes open. I also kept going apneic so they started me on a nasal cannula.
Looking back, I think my birth experience went from super ideal and easy to traumatic the second the surgeon started cutting. Before that moment, I was ok with everything that was happening to me. But I’m really upset about how the morphine affected my birth experience. It disconnected me so much from my son – even more than what a routine c-section normally would. And I will be honest. There was no magical feeling of love that rushed over me when I first saw him. I was just so out of it. I think my first thought might have been, “He’s so puffy. He doesn’t look like me or DH”. That makes me feel so sad, and even a little guilty.
The only thing that gives me peace is that first night in my post partum room. My mom went home around midnight. DH fell asleep soon after. By then all of the anesthesia had worn off but I was still bed ridden. I asked the nurse to dim the lights, and arrange the bedside tables so that everything was in reach. I created a mini fort of pillows around me and then I started to get to know my baby. We breast fed, we changed diapers, we did skin to skin. We spent 5 blissful uninterrupted hours staring at each other and started to fall in love.
How could you not love this face?? Calvin, born 11/11/13 @ 8:27pm. 7lbs 13oz, 20.75 inches long.