Saturday, January 26, 2008

Welcome, Cecilia Clare!

I am finally getting around to writing Cecilia's birth story, so I will back date this post to reflect the actual date she was born...

I was having contractions off and on for a few days... Thursday, and then all day Friday (my due date). They were easy for me to work through and would be consistent for a bit and then fade away for many hours. Friday afternoon, my brother Tim came over from Berry, where he is a student. He was "on call" to come stay with Caroline when we were ready to go to the hospital. He came by to visit and could see that my labor wasn't really going anywhere... if I was even in labor at all at that point. We talked, relaxed, and I made myself some hot chocolate, which I craved (and indulged in!) throughout the end of my pregnancy.

That evening, contractions picked up again and stayed consistent at 10 to 15 minutes apart, but they were still really easy to breathe through. I got into the bathtub around 10:00 to see if that would slow them down. It didn't, so we thought maybe this was starting to be the real thing. They didn't get any worse, so we called Annette, our doula, to put her on standby. Then we went to bed to try to get some rest. We dozed between the contractions quite comfortably, waking every 15 minutes with a contraction for awhile. They slowed down a bit, and then I woke suddenly at 1:15, 30 minutes after the last contraction. The change was huge - I was suddenly having a very difficult time getting through these hard contractions!

I got up and onto the toilet, where I continued to have extremely difficult contractions every 2-3 minutes! Chris called our doula, and she said she was on the way. Then he called Tim. Chris helped me to the den, where I sat on the couch and tried to get through the contractions alone as Chris put our bag in the car. They were coming so fast - I really felt out of control, having gone from such easy contractions that were widely spaced to these intense ones that were right on top of each other!

I told Chris he better call Annette and ask her to meet us at the hospital instead of coming to the house. Tim arrived quickly, and he seemed to be able to tell immediately that I was in a much more serious state of labor than I'd been when he saw me earlier. Chris helped me to the car and we were off.

After an uneventful ten minute drive, we pulled up under the covered entryway. Chris parked at the curb, and he went in to get a wheelchair for me. Apparently I am unable to make it to the hospital in time to walk in on my own - it is always far too intense once I get there. This time I had really wanted to not be pushing it so close to the wire, but it was really out of my hands! A security guard escorted us to the elevators and up to the maternity floor, where Annette had just arrived.

We went into the triage room despite my protests of, "I'm ready to push!" [I had skipped triage last time around because they just wanted to get me into a room pronto!] But this time they checked me in triage and said I was at 9. Okay, I thought, almost there - pretty good! It was really uncomfortable having to move onto the bed and then off again, then back onto another bed when they took me to the delivery room.

We happened to get the "new" delivery room... they'd only had ten rooms and then recently added this one to give them eleven in all. It also had a new bed, which was of a different design than the other delivery beds. The nurses attempted to break the bed down, and it basically fell apart on them. They were joking about how they could never figure this bed out. I remember vaguely that I thought it was funny... unfortunately, not much else they did was funny.

I kept telling them I really thought I needed to push, and they were trying to get me to sign paperwork. They even had me sign a waiver declining the baby's Hep B shot, which I thought was a little annoying since the baby wasn't even out yet - although she sure wanted to be! When Caroline was born, I skipped all the paperwork, so this was irritating that they couldn't wait this time. Then they hit me with a huge surprise: "We need to start your IV since you tested positive for group b strep." They had not told me this after my test at the OB's office three weeks prior, so I assumed I had tested negative. I was concerned because I hadn't had time to research group b strep at all, so all I could do was consent to the IV.

When I insisted again that I wanted to push, a nurse checked me and said, "Oh no, honey, you're only at 8." Annette suggested that I lay on my side and try a very little push, which is the position in which I wanted to try pushing, and get checked again that way. The OB who was on call, Dr. Jarvis, checked me this time and said I could push. Apparently my change in position made it easier to feel that I was in fact fully dilated.

I began pushing, which came easier than it had the first time... I remembered what to do the second time around! Chris stood next to me, and I used him to support myself by wrapping an arm around his shoulder. I felt like I really needed that support and wouldn't let him move to catch the baby. A nurse was supporting my upper leg, and I remember yelling at her a few times to hold my leg better, ha ha... she wasn't giving it adequate support.

With one push, Dr. Jarvis told me, "Now, you look like you're going to tear here, so I ca cut it to control the tear bettter... nevermind," as I pushed and tore. It was just the little spot that had healed badly from my first birth, not a big tear at all.

Twenty minutes of pushing and out came Cecilia... with one push she was crowning, and with the next push she was born up to her ribcage. It was 3:25 am. She came out screaming and was placed on my chest, still screaming. Chris cut the cord. She screamed for a long while before she settled in to nurse and cuddle. So pink, so round and pudgy! A beautiful little bundle of perfection!

A couple things to remember but that I don't want to dwell on... all the postpartum rooms were full, so we had to spend about six hours in the delivery room (and that delivery bed was NOT intended to be slept on!). None of the nurses remembered to dry Cecilia off after the birth, so her body temp dropped and they insisted she go under the heat lamps for a couple hours rather than just staying skin-to-skin with me. Overall, I was not happy with a lot of the hospital staff. They were much more friendly and accommodating when Caroline was born there three years prior. If blessed with a third baby, I'm wanting a homebirth!

Welcome to the world, Cecilia Clare Lewis!

1 comment:

mom0ktdid said...

I just saw your blog link on facebook. I didn't know you were blogger! I am catching up on all your blogs and hadn't heard all about the birth story and all. This would have been about the last time I saw you..ha ha! She is beautiful and they are both growing up to be such sweet girls it sounds like. I will look forward to keeping up with your blog now. If you click on my profile you will see I have eh..about 6 blogs, but most of them are just for very specific things. Our 'main" family one is "Thoughts, Ponderings, Musings"
I had fun reading your entries!