I have been putting off writing this for too long already so it is time to write it out before the somewhat fuzzy details get fuzzier:
Your pregnancy was wonderful. It is so so magical that you grew inside me. I hope I never forget the way it felt when you kicked, punched wiggled, turned and hiccuped... the headbutts to the cervix I wouldn't mind forgetting ; ) We had a very normal and healthy pregnancy (until the last few weeks). I am so proud of you for staying as long as you did and apologize for the somewhat early eviction notice. Since your big sister surprised us by showing up 6 weeks early we were prepared (not expecting) for you to do the same. I literally drove around with our hospital bag in the back of the car for more than a month!
Towards the end of our eighth month I started to get really swollen and uncomfortable. I assume most women would say the same however along with that my blood pressure was steadily rising. Our doctor had been on maternity leave so we were seen by other docs at her clinic. Every appointment there was increased concern about the early signs of pre-eclampsia. Dr. Munn got off of maternity leave on Valentine's Day and we were happy to have her back! She ordered some blood work and a 24 hour urine sample to see what the levels of protein in my pee was... lovely. She called me at home around 9pm to tell me that my blood work did indeed detect early/borderline pre-e and she wanted us to come into the office the following morning to have you monitored. A heart rate monitor was strapped around my big belly and I laid in a weird little medical supply room and listened to you for about a half hour... sigh* Such a sweet sound! Your Daddy was there keeping me company and playing a handheld video game : )
Afterwards we had a consultation with Dr. Munn and while you were perfectly healthy and content in there they were concerned about me. I remember her saying, "I think we should just get this show on the road." After a moment of stunned silence I said... "you mean like... have a baby?" I was almost 38 weeks along so we knew you were fully baked and it was time to get you out to keep Mommy healthy.
We came home so I could shower and throw a few last minute things together... oh yea and go to Best Buy to get a new camera because our old one seriously broke the day before. It felt so strange to be able to prepare like that. So different than our other experience! We checked in and Dr. Munn broke my water with a medical device that she described was a lot like a crochet hook. It took longer than she expected and she said she could get through one layer only to find another. It didn't hurt me at all and once it was broken there a TON of warm water that just gushed out. I had more gushes when I got up to use the restroom and walk around.
Since we didn't want a medical induction we walked and walked and walked the halls of the hospital to get things moving along. Charlotte was hanging out with her grandparents (all 4 of them) and they came for a visit. Everybody ate in the cafeteria but I wasn't aloud to. I snuck some chicken broth anyway... rebel. The more I walked the stronger and closer the contractions became. By the time they were strong enough to stop me in my tracks and I wasn't able to talk through them we headed back to our hospital room. Your Dad was timing them and also kinda driving me crazy by this point. He would know when one was coming based on his clock and was kind enough *dripping with sarcasm* to tell me to expect one in 3...2...1.... ugh!
The pain was intense and after bouncing on the birthing ball, breathing with purpose and listening to my hypnosis Cd's I decided it was all bullshit and I was more than ready for an epidural. It took the dude two times to get it right which he was very apologetic for but he was my new best friend... how could I be mad at him?! For me this was a GREAT decision. The relief was almost instant and I was able to relax and rest and get ready for when my body was ready to birth. It took awhile for sure. I half napped on one side and that side went completely numb so I was rolled to the opposite side in hopes it would even that feeling out. Daddy still there by my side, always : )
I started to get te shakes and asked the nurse about it. She said that it probably meant I was complete and it was time to push. *Yay*Exciting*Confident* She checked to confirm what she suspected and called Dr. Munn to let her know it was time. Pushing sucks... that's really all I can say about that. Pushing for about 3 hours really sucks. This is where the details are the fuzziest... you were kinda stuck behind my tail bone or something so I would get you closer and you would kinda go back where you came from. The nurse told me it was like taking two steps forward, one step back. At one point your heart rate caused concern so they put an oxygen mask on me to help you out and it did. Push, push, push, scream, curse, push, flick the brim of Dad's hat, cry, panic, push... we got you out! Your shoulders got stuck (I.KNOW!) and you were literally pulled out. Dr. Munn later told me that it was the hardest birth she has ever done... really? Me too! All the trauma kinda sent you into shock and there was a look of "oh shit" in the eyes of the doctors and nurses. We wanted to let your cord blood finish pumping, have Daddy cut your cord and give you and I skin to skin contact right away but it just wasn't possible. You didn't cry and I heard a nurse say to another nurse that you were "gray and floppy". It's so hard to even think about that moment again... crying and typing... okay. So the doctor's and nurses took you right to the little warming bed and roughed you up... and I mean roughed you up! They rubbed you with towels and patted and shook and suctioned you until you finally let out a little whimper. It may have only been a minute or two but it honestly the worst minute or two of my life. I was so worried about you! Your poor Daddy was there worrying about you too and even worse, he was worrying about me as well. I was losing too much blood and so in addition to the standard bag of pitocin they give after birth they gave me a shot in my upper thigh as well. I wasn't even kinda thinking about me... I just kept asking if you were okay... and kept being told that you were, thankfully : )
The fun isn't over yet; now I'm not birthing the placenta. It was apparently not detaching like it should and I had to really push it out... with assistance. I didn't think I had the energy left to do anything but get my hands on you. I'm not sure if it was the whole placenta thing or the fact that there two pieces of gauze that were unaccounted for but I then endured a "roto-rooter" as Jake so eloquently worded it.
Sigh... I finally got to hold you Perfect Little Angel and everything that was painful is so far gone. Everything that was scary is just a horrible memory already. You took to breastfeeding instantly and I was so impressed and filled with pride! That was something that your sister and I took weeks to learn and here you were less than a half hour out of the womb and breastfeeding like a champ.
There are probably a handful of reasons that I put off writing this out but I am glad that I finally did. You were quite the experience Little Button but sooooo worth every everything.
You complete our family Sweetheart and we all love you so much! Thank you for choosing us! I am so lucky to be your Mom.
Random things from the birth room:
I was a little verbally abusive to Sweet Daddy during Charlotte's birth and I promised myself (and him) that no matter how much I was hurting I would try to stay nice. Aside from the swatting of his ball cap I think I did pretty well! I remember telling him that I loved him so much but needed him to be the strong and silent type. AKA.. no talking : ) Anytime he said anything that frustrated or bugged me I would cut him off by saying, "strong and silent!" Haha.
After pushing for God knows how long I told the nurse that I had about 20 more minutes in me and kept asking... "20 minutes... that's reasonable... is that realistic?!" I think you were born about an hour later.
More than once I thought and surely said "I can't do this." but I did!
drum roll please...
I think that the highlight of the evening was when a nurse offered to show me what was going on down there. I was hoping that if I saw how close you were it may motivate me to push harder or something... I was clearly out of my mind by then. Dr, Munn asked if I could see your head and I replied...
"All I can see is my butt hole and it is terrifying!" the mirror was taken away but I kept whining about "my poor little butt hole"... ahhhh, jeez. You babies!! We give you our hearts and bodies... I would give you the sun, the moon and the the stars if I could.
11 months ago