Monday, August 11, 2008

Sebastian's Birth

Sebastian's story probably needs to start the first week of April 2003, six weeks before he was born. I was working full time (at a sedentary job) and I started noticing a few contraction-like feelings. I called the midwife I was seeing at the time and asked to be seen. I went into the office and had to convince her to check me. She said I probably wasn't having contractions and that everything was probably fine. I told her that I really wanted her to check me just to make me feel better. Sure enough, I was dilated 2 cm at 30 weeks. (Why do they doubt the Mommas?) I was then transferred to the doctor at the office and put on bedrest. No more working, no more trips to the mall or Babies R Us. I actually had to take a note from my doctor to my boss (who was the CFO of the company I worked for) that had the words "cervical dilation" on them. Could she not have just put pregnancy complications? Anyway, I had Zoe, who was four years old and she went to daycare every day. So, I would lay on the couch all day and save my "getting up time" for when she was at home. I wasn't on strict bedrest, just no unnecessary walking and climbing stairs. Every time I would walk more than just a little bit, I would start having contractions. So I laid on the couch and waited. And waited. The first week was pretty fun, just laying around, but the other weeks were very frustrating. I was very tired of laying around. I was told that anytime I had six or more contractions in an hour I was to go to the hospital. We went four different times. We had no family around, so two of those trips required friends to come to our house to stay with Zoe, only to have us return home a few hours later. While I was grateful because I didn't want a baby too early, but I was very frustrated.
On May 13, I was having very regular contractions that were actually pretty strong. I called Adam around 12:30 pm and told him to just meet me at the doctor's office. That way, when they sent me home, he could just go back to work and wouldn't have to drive all the way to the house. We headed to the hospital closest to us. I got into triage, where I actually proved that I was in labor (duh) and thought we were getting ready to move to a room. Well, then we found out that there were no available rooms at that hospital and we would need to do downtown to the other hospital. Okay. No problem. Adam will drive me to the hospital. Dr. said absolutely not. I was 5 cm dilated and contracting every two minutes. No way was she going to let a woman in active labor go in a car in 5:00 traffic. An ambulance was on its way. Great.
So the ambulance comes and I am in the back with the male EMT and the female EMT is up front with Adam. The poor man is trying to ask me questions and having to stop every two minutes for me to deal with a contraction. I was strapped to the guerney, so dealing with the contractions was pretty difficult. We finally made it downtown and were put back into triage. While we were there, Sebastian's heartrate went down into the 50's and the medical staff panicked. The doctor on call began to massage Sebastian's head to try to stimulate his heartrate! Big ouch! Finally, my doctor arrived and they shoved a consent form in Adam's face to sign and wheeled me (& Sebastian) off for an emergency c-section. Adam said that was the scaredest he has ever been. It was such a whirlwind for me. While we were in the operating room getting ready to put me completely under, his heartrate came back up! My doctor just watched him for a minute or two and then decided to let me go to a labor room without the c-section! It was at that moment that I was suddenly aware that I was stark naked and cold and begged for a blanket. They brought me one of the warm ones and it felt so nice.
So, I was sent to a labor room and allowed to just labor at my own pace. At some point, a doctor from the high risk office came and did an ultrasound to determine his weight. He weighed in at 6 pounds, 1 ounce on the ultrasound, so they said I could go ahead and have him. (Like they could have stopped it?) I didn't want any pain medication so Adam and I just labored as best as we could. It actually wasn't bad until transition so I was pretty content most of the time. While we were waiting, our friends Curtis and Shawna came by to visit. This is when we realized that both of our cars were at the other hospital. So, Curtis and Shawna went all the way back to the other hospital, took one of our cars to our house and brought the other one back to the hospital where we were along with McDonald's for Adam. (which he ate in the hall) So I labored on until around midnight. I was 7 cm dilated and my nurse decided I had somewhat stalled. My contractions had almost stopped. So about 12:40 am (May 14) my doctor came and broke my water. My contractions intensified greatly at that point. So I asked for an epidural because I was scared and starting to lose control. Transition. I also started throwing up as just additional proof of transition. That poor nurse held that plastic thing and let me throw up. Of course, I hadn't had anything to eat since that morning, so I didn't throw up very much.
The doctor comes to give me an epidural and starts talking to the medical staff about my blood work. The problem was, since I had been transferred from another hospital and almost had a c-section, in all the confusion, I hadn't had any blood work done! So, he says, no epidural for you! Which was fine because pushing was eminent. I had the most incredible urge to push and it hurt really bad. I looked at Adam and said "SH--! This hurts!" Well, I never, ever curse. EVER. I can still see him running across the floor in his sock feet to get the nurse and yelling, "I think it's time! She's cursing!" Sure enough, she came in and told me to try pushing. That felt so so good. Two good pushes and he was out. Since he was exactly 36 weeks, the NICU team was there too. He came out screaming and peed on my OB. He was born at 1:20 am and his APGARs were 10 and 10. He was completely healthy. He weighed 6 pounds and 11 ounces and was 20 inches long. Not a preemie. Totally healthy. And, the recovery after a natural childbirth was so much easier and faster and I felt so empowered!


Christine said...

I have two comments today :), change start to stark. You lose all the imagery when the word is misspelled. :)
Oh, and why oh why were you up at 5:45 am to write this piece. You're crazy! I'm not sure God designed me to get up before 7 am on a regular basis.
Christine @ Live to Learn

Triathamom said...

That was the funniest birth story I had ever read. I literally called Phil into the room to read it to him. Thanks for sharing!!!!