Friday, December 7, 2012

Silas' Birth Story

Oh, hey! It's been too long since I've updated the blog. I guess having a baby will do that to you! I've been telling myself that it's okay not to update, I've been busy with the boys, but this blog is kind of like a baby book and I'm sure that I will forget all these things I'd like to remember. So. I blog.

Be warned that I'm going to share Silas' birth story (just in case you didn't get the hint from the title of this post). I'll spare some gory details, but there will be details, so if you don't want to read them, well...don't. I'm mainly writing so that I'll remember, but I know that I always enjoy hearing or reading people's birth stories, so I'll share.

I had my 40 week OB appointment on Tuesday, October 9th. I was one day overdue &the nurse told me that I was too perky for being overdue. I was really feeling okay, other than being anxious to meet our little boy. As the nurse took my blood pressure, she was talking to me about how I was feeling and the excitement of having a new baby. I always get a little excited when this particular nurse chats with me, apparently, because my blood pressure had been elevated when talking with her at several previous appointments and was always normal later in the appointment. This time was no exception and my blood pressure was 140/80.

After the doctor checked my cervix and it was still only dilated to 2cm (as it had been for the previous two weeks), she decided that since I was overdue and my blood pressure was elevated we should go ahead and induce labor. I told her that I thought my blood pressure would be better if she took it again, but really was just glad to know when Silas would be coming. Plus, this particular doctor was the same one who delivered Bennett and I really wanted her to be able to deliver Silas. We scheduled the induction for the next day, October 10th, when she was on call.

Since we were already in Des Moines and we had brought our hospital bags with us just in case I went into labor, we decided to spend the night in town. Bennett was already at Matt's parent's house so Matt and I went to lunch and talked about what we thought Silas would look like and be like and then stopped by Target to pick up some last minute items we needed.

Matt & I stayed at my parent's house that night since we had to be at the hospital at 6 (they live closer to the hospital and my mom was coming with us in the morning). We all tried to go to bed early, but I think I only got a few hours of sleep. I was just so anxious!

The next morning we arrived at the hospital & got settled into our delivery room. About 7:00, my doctor came in and checked my cervix (still at a 2) and broke my water. Shortly after we started the Pitocin and I think it was about 9:15-9:30 that things started to get more painful. Eventually, I was allowed to get out of bed, but because I was being induced, I had to be monitored the whole time, so I had to stay right next to the bed and by the machines. I was feeling the contractions in front and in back (he was positioned a little sideways), so I just wanted to sit on a birthing ball and have Matt push on my lower back. Every time I would lean forward, the monitor for Silas would slip and they would lose his heart rate. I was told that I couldn't lean forward. That was pretty frustrating because leaning forward was the only thing relieving the pain from the contractions. I also had to have my blood pressure monitored like every fifteen minutes since that was the reason I was being induced, but it was perfectly fine throughout my whole labor.

My nurse left the room sometime during this, too. I remember because I kept thinking that I would like some pain medication, but was trying to push myself to go longer. I had been told that second labors generally go quicker, but my labor with Bennett was about 13.5 hours from when my water broke and I didn't think it would be that much quicker, so I kept comparing my pain with what I felt when I was in labor with Bennett at that time. I told myself that I should make it to 10:30 before asking for meds and I remember the nurse coming back in sometime after that. I asked for IV medication because I was afraid to get the epidural too early and was sure I wasn't very far along.

The nurse told me that she doesn't like to check her patients very often because it doesn't really make a difference until you are fully dilated, but my doctor asked her to check me before giving me the IV meds. So, at about 10:45, I was at a 4.

The IV meds only lasted about 30 minutes this time and once again, when I was ready for to ask for the epidural, my nurse had stepped out of the room, so I tried to go a little longer without. I was definitely in more pain than I had ever been with Bennett and was remembering things from our birthing refresher class to help me with the pain. I felt myself trying to clench my hands and curling up my toes, so I forced myself to open my hands and stretch my legs out. Matt was a little confused about how to hold my hand while it was completely outstretched, but he figured it out, haha! I also started spontaneously doing that crazy breathing that you see in the movies. Hey, it actually helped a little. At some point, I had my mom call for the nurse to tell her that I was ready for the epidural.

When she came back in to prepare things for the epi, she told me that my platelet count was 101 and it had to be at least 100 in order to get an epidural, so I had just barely made the cut. I think that I would have lost it at that point if she had told me that I couldn't have one. I was thinking I was probably only dilated to a 5 or 6 and she wasn't going to check me. She left the room again to get something and while she was gone, I had the urge to vomit. This was totally new, too. I never threw up in labor with Bennett, so we were totally unprepared for this. Matt had to grab a garbage can because we didn't have anything else to use.

Once the anesthesiologist came in the room (around 11:45), Matt left to get some lunch. I remember the doctor was looking at a door on a cupboard in the delivery room that had come off it's hinges and said, "I can fix that." to which I replied, "You'd better come fix me first!". The epidural was awesome. I had a "perfect" epi with Bennett (couldn't feel the contractions, could still get on my hands and knees when I needed to turn him, felt an urge to push and could walk shortly after) and this epidural was the same. It wasn't long before I was feeling awesome relief.

Matt came back from lunch and my mom left to get some. Very shortly after she left, I started getting the chills. I let my nurse know and she decided to check me. Surprise! I was at a 9! It was about 12:15. I tried to call my mom to let her know not to spend too much time in the cafeteria, but she wasn't answering her phone. I also texted some family members to let them know that he would be coming fairly soon. Our original plan was to let them know when I was fully dilated and they could head to the hospital then, but Matt's mom was babysitting and we wanted to give her a chance to get things arranged to come. We had all figured that I wouldn't be ready to push until after he had gone home.

The nurse let my doctor know that it wouldn't be too much longer. I started to feel a lot of pressure and began to need to push, but my doctor wasn't there yet. I did some little pushes to relieve some pressure and eventually the doctor came in. They had me laying flat on my back and were getting my legs into the stirrups when I realized that I was going to have to vomit again. I kept telling them that I needed to sit up to throw up and they must not have heard me. Matt finally helped me sit up just in time. I was a little afraid I was going to vomit all over myself, laying flat on my back (sorry if this is TMI, but really...). I guess it was 1:30 when I started pushing and about 6 pushes and 4 minutes later, our handsome Silas was here! Much different than the hour and 22 minutes (and episiotomy) that I had with Bennett!

Mr. Silas was 8lbs, 10oz and 21" long, born at 1:34 pm on Wednesday, October 10th, 2012 with lots of dark hair, just like I knew he would have. His APGAR scores were 9/9. We spent a few minutes as just the three of us (my mom went to the waiting room) and then Bennett came and joined us. He brought me a red heart balloon that said "I Love You", was happy to meet his brother and wasn't scared at all of all the machines and everything like I thought he might be. After we'd introduced Bennett and Silas, our parents joined us and the rest of our families came up to the hospital later.

Silas' birth was quite a bit different than my experience with Bennett. For one, I was induced with Silas. It really wasn't as awful as I had worried an induction would be. Yes, the contractions were painful, but I got my epidural pretty early with Bennett, so I don't have a whole lot to compare it to. Especially since I went through transition without an epi with Silas. The nurse and I decided that my active labor time with Silas was about 4.5 hours and it was much longer with Bennett. Also, Bennett had a little bit of a fever when he was born and so they took him to the nursery before I left the delivery room for the mommy/baby floor. This time, I got to carry Silas with me in the wheelchair to the nursery.

Recovery was quite a bit easier, too! [This is a lot of information to blog, but I know I'm going to wonder about this later and I don't want to forget, so bear with me.] I did bleed quite a bit more with Silas, but I didn't have an episiotomy, so I was in a lot less pain afterwards.

I'll write about how Bennett dealt with the addition in another post soon!

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