After almost 48 hours of consistent ten minute or less contractions and 7 hours in the hospital, Scarlett Christine made her entrance.
So, birth story fun: First I must preface this by saying that my goal from day one was to go med free and....I actually did it!!! And when I say I did it, I really mean I DID IT, BITCHES!!!...I'm a bit excited.
(Remember the fine print at the bottom of the page that says you don't judge me? Me either, but if I had one, I'd direct you there now.)
I'm typing this up because, not gonna lie, I'm a little proud. Not in a superior "Oh it's the only way to deliver" sort of way, just in a "major life goal/challenge accomplished" kind of way.
Ok, here it is, super looong version of birth story. Major props if you actually make it through:
So, on Wednesday I went to the doctor, feeling pretty good because I'd had some light contractions the day before and I was hoping for a little progress. Whoooommp Wahhhhh. Negative. Doc wasn't even able to get a decent check, but said he was pretty sure I was at least at 1cm. Same as the week before. He started talking about even if I go past 42 weeks, it was cool. He was really awesome about rolling with me and my goal. Of course hearing "maybe another 2 weeks or more" is hardly what any 40 week pregnant girl wants to hear, so I decided to ramp up my efforts to evict this baby. I was a walking a couple miles a day, popping evening primrose oil with every meal, drinking water like it was my job and compulsively bouncing on a yoga ball. Good times. Finally on Saturday contractions picked up. Sporadic in the morning, but at 6pm on the dot, they went to consistently 10 minutes apart. I called my mom and sister to let them know that I was pretty sure miss lady would be here in a few days. I went to bed and barely slept as things got more painful. Sunday! I got up, took a long walk and went to Mass. While at Mass, I scared the hell out of the sweet old lady next to me because I sat the whole time, breathing through contractions. She asked if I was sick and I quietly told her that I was in labor and I was fine. Her face was uh-mazing.We came home and watched the Super Bowl and thennnnnn shit got real.
I called my mom again and let her know that I was pretty sure Monday would be thee day! I tried to sleep again but at 2am contractions woke me up and kept me up for the rest of the day. I timed, took a bath, did some last minute packing, ate a big breakfast and finally, when I hit the noted 5-1-1, woke Eric up at 4:30. I thought we should be going soon, but he asked me if I could wait longer, reminding me that I had wanted to stay home as long as possible. He was right so I agreed to wait til 6. Time distortion took over and suddenly, it was 8am and Mom and Jen were walking through my front door. We watched TV, ate a bunch of snacks and waited for things to pick up more. Around 4pm I had one contraction hit me hard and made me finally decide that it was time to go. After some more buzzing around and eating a quick dinner, we loaded up and made the incredible 2 mile journey to the hospital. I was deathly afraid of getting sent home.
At 5:30 I entered triage praying for progress. ANY progress. I had been telling myself the whole time at home that I was only at 1, maybe 2 so I wouldn't get my hopes up. So when I heard, "Oh honey.....you're at 6 and you're not going anywhere," I cried. Things were actually moving!
|7cm. Still calm, still relaxed. About 1 hour away from "Eff that, I'm having back labor" o'clock.|
Now, Eric and I didn't take any birthing prep classes. I read a couple of books, talked to some people and we giggled through a a video together (because we're super mature like that), but that's it. And he was AMAZING. Seriously, I'm considering buying him a cape. A few weeks ago I told him that at some point, I would look at him and tell him I that I couldn't do it and that I would possibly ask for meds. What I needed was for him to tell me no. At the time he just said okay. In the delivery room, he was my saving grace. He talked me down when I told him multiple times that I couldn't do it any more. When I crawled half way out of bed while going through a crazy contraction, he scooped me up and held me through it. A few of the nurses asked him who our instructor was that we had studied with and they were super surprised when he told them that we didn't. He just knew what to do and I will be forever grateful that he was there to get me through it.
Around 10:30 I told the nurse that I needed to push and she just said go for it. Sweet. So I pushed. And pushed. They brought in a squat bar. I pushed some more. I was quite a sight to see. My eyes were rolling in different directions. I passed out twice. It was only for a split second, but it felt weird. Thank God for time distortion because if I knew that I would be pushing for 2 hours, I would've flipped. I did notice every time the nurse prepped something else. The doctor's table, the check up station. Finally after one monster push, my nurse looked at me and said, "She's got some dark hair!" She flipped the lights on and I heard, "Doctor and tech. NOW!" Sooo much relief! I knew my little girl would be here soon. In came my doctor and I was so happy to see him, I wanted to kiss him just for entering the room. Game on. With my husband, my mom, and my big sister around me and actually physically holding me up, I got through a few more major pushes and I heard the sweetest sound I'd ever heard. Scarlett Christine came into the world, eyes WIDE open and screaming her cute little head off. 8lbs. 13oz. 21 inches long with a 14in. head. Ouch baby, very ouch.They gave her to me and it was instant tears and love at first sight. Easily the most beautiful moment of my life.
My dad surprised us and drove the hour and a half to be there when the baby was born. He came in the room once I was all put back together again. It was indescribable to introduce my parents to my own little girl. One of those things that just blows you away. We all took her in. So much peace and so much pure joy.
Real quick, I must rave about my hospital and the staff. My L&D nurse kicked ass. Seriously, I loved her. I had typed a birth plan just in case and I never needed to get it out. As soon as I got there the nurse who checked me in asked for my preferences and if I wanted to decline anything. I told her what I was hoping for and that was that. I asked for a saline lock and no IV. Done. They gave me a huge cup of water and told me to drink up so that I could avoid needing an IV. I said no drugs and no one offered me a thing. There wasn't an "Are you suuurrreee??" or "Well, just in case..." or "This is your last chance...." Nothing! They let me be even though I know it meant that my nurse needed to stay and keep a closer eye on me. My nurse never BSed me or tried to make light of things. She was a straight shooter--love that. I asked to change positions a few times to see if it helped with the pain. As long as she could monitor the baby, she let me try. When they didn't work for me, she didn't say a word. I've loved my doctor from day one and he was fantastic during delivery, even though I was screaming like a banshee into his face. My recovery nurses were saints--super helpful and gentle. They noted my appreciation for a good chocolate pudding cup and kept me stocked. I was put on a list of in-house Catholics and a minister from the church was sent to our room both mornings of our stay so we could receive Eucharist. We were so blessed with such a pleasant experience. I couldn't have asked for anything more.
And now we're home. It's chilly outside and raining. Scarlett is happily passed out post-feeding and is snuggled up next to her daddy. I've already had to wash a ton of blankets and burp clothes and outfits. We're going through stuff fast! This is our life now. It's oh so blessed.