Let's be honest, this blog is only for big life events now. I don't even know if writing birth stories is a thing anymore, but oh well!
First, I would just like to write a follow-up to my slightly over emotional Facebook post just a few days before I gave birth. I was not in a good place for a few days after my due date. Since I went into labor on my due date with Ellie, and my mom delivered (almost) all of us on our due dates, I honestly expected to at least start labor by then. I felt like my body was broken, or that I had done something differently this pregnancy that was going to prevent me from going into labor. I was really scared. And every time someone asked me if I had had the baby yet, I truly just felt this crushing blow that again I was broken, and the fear set in again, and I would get REALLY emotional. It just wasn't good, and I needed it to not keep happening. I feel like kind of a brat for posting what I did, and part of me regrets it, because I know everyone who asked was just excited too! I know in my head that it shouldn't have been a big deal, but at the time it was. So anyways, sorry to anyone who was hurt or annoyed by it. Just try to understand the state of mind of an over-due pregnant lady. :)
NOW here is the birth story.
I had really wanted to go into labor on my own. There is something really exciting about feeling those first contractions, wondering if they are the real deal, and then feel them getting closer and stronger and getting more and more excited that baby is coming! I also wanted to have her without an epidural and I basically felt like if I was induced, that would be impossible. It's pretty hard to find positive induction experiences. Every day and night that went without contractions, I got more discouraged, until Sunday evening. By that time I basically accepted that I was most likely going to be induced. At that point I kind of wished I would have kept my Saturday induction date since I figured I was getting induced anyways-but I knew that for whatever reason, I felt strongly that she needed a few more days, which helped me not dwell on it. Once I accepted my fate, I really just tried to enjoy my last few days being pregnant. I really tried to enjoy every moment I had with just Ellie. I knew her world was about to change big time. I am SO SO SO grateful now that I had those extra few days to just be with her without worrying about going into labor and doing any last minute prep for the baby. Those days were a huge blessing.
Tuesday night, we put Ellie to bed at my parents' house, and Mathew and I went home and just relaxed and watched a movie. We woke up at 5 a.m. the next day to make sure the hospital had an open room for me, and got the go ahead to show up at 6 a.m. for the induction. We got all checked in and got to our room, and in came my nurse-a girl from my ward!! I was so happy and relieved. Now some might think that would be weird and awkward to have your nurse be someone you know, but I knew it was an answer to my prayers. I wanted a nurse I could be comfortable with and talk to openly. It could not have been more perfect. She answered a lot of my questions and calmed some fears I had and at about 7:30 the pitocin started. The contractions were super easy to bear for a while. I was just excited to be feeling them. I sat and watched HGTV and the nurse came and turned up the pitocin every 30 minutes. I was totally loving life to be honest.
About 12:45, my midwife came in to check on me. Up to this point, I hadn't been checked. I didn't really want to know if I had made progress since the contractions weren't too bad. She checked and I was only 2-3 centimeters-BOO! She broke my water-which felt disgusting-and then not too long after, the contractions really started picking up in intensity. Luckily, they didn't confine me to the bed. I knew if I was stuck in bed, I would never be able to make it through without an epidural. Both of my girls gave my terrible back labor-apparently because they are most likely face up and are turning during the contractions. Back labor is the woooorst! I labored for a bit sitting on the ball, but then the pressure got really intense and it was getting really painful to sit on it. So we moved the ball up on the bed and I got on my knees and was leaning over it.
I stayed in this position for basically the rest of the labor. An amazing nurse came in at one point and helped push on pressure points in my back to help with the back pain. It worked for a while but I started getting nauseous and shaky and really wondering why in the heck I decided to do this without an epidural. Since I was having all the signs of transitioning, she wanted to check me, and I kept crying if I was only at a 5 I was getting an epidural-no way was I going to go through another 4-5 hours with the contractions that strong. (I had been checked about 30 minutes before and was at a 4). Well, she checked me, didn't say anything, and then my regular nurse (which had changed somewhere in the story to a fabulous nurse who I had been told is amazing with natural labor-they were right) came back in and I knew I was only a 5-she said it didn't matter where I was. She helped me get out of bed and the contractions were so bad I was yelling and crying and didn't have much control at that point. I told Mathew it wasn't worth it and the nurse told me I didn't have to do it without the epidural. I told her I wanted it and she went off to find the anesthesiologist. Little did I know, she had called my midwife to let her know I was really close and to be ready.
As soon as she left, I calmed down a lot and was just holding on to Mathew doing the "slow dance" during the contractions. I was able to handle them a lot better. Knowing that relief was coming helped me relax. She came back and told me the anesthesiologist was looking at my chart and would be in soon. I could not find a comfortable labor position at this point and she said she needed to check me. I whined and told her I didn't want to get back in the bed, but she was insistent saying she needed to know if she needed to get the midwife here. She checked me, said I was a 7, pushed the call button and very firmly told the nurse station (I'd say yelled, but it wasn't angry haha, just very intense) "someone get Natalie here now!" A few minutes later, the anesthesiologist came in and they were asking me if I thought I could hold still and I was so confused and didn't know what to do, so he just left haha. Then another couple of minutes later, the midwife showed up and I was somewhat aware of a bunch of other nurses in the room setting up all the delivery stuff. I was doing everything I could to just survive the contractions at this point. The nurse got up on the bed, grabbed my knees and looked me straight in the eye and just said, "Candace, you can do this, you have to do this." In that moment I got *most* of my control back and knew what I needed to do. The midwife was only there for a couple of minutes before I just yelled, "I want to PUSH!" They all just said, "DO IT!" So I did, and then pushed through my next contraction and out came baby! They didn't even check to make sure I was fully dilated haha. Last I had heard I was only at a 7.
So to recap-water broken at 12:45 ish-2-3 cm, 4 cm at 2:15 ish, 5 cm at 2:45 ish, then somehow went from 5-10 and pushed out baby by 3:13.
After pushing for 3 hours with Ellie, it was super cool to be able to REALLY feel where to push and get her out so fast!
Then I was just in shock and shaking saying "I did it, I did it!" Then it was time to get stitched up-well of all the cool parts of delivering without an epidural, the downside is you aren't numbed for the stitches! She tried numbing me, but I guess it's hard to get everywhere so I felt the needle going in and out. It was TERRIBLE!!!!! One of my worst nightmares come true.
Moving on. I was shaking like crazy for a long time. They got me some warm blankets and I just sat and snuggled my beautiful little baby. She latched so well which was a HUGE relief after Ellie. Let's not forget the absolute nursing nightmare I was in with Ellie. We pulled through in the end though :)
All in all, I actually had a very positive induction experience. I got to do my hair and makeup before going to the hospital, I got to watch tv for a few hours and the contractions were no worse than they were with Ellie! Kayla is such a sweet and gentle baby. We seriously could not be happier!