Holly’s Life

Triumphs and Tribulations of moi

A Baby Story

Filed under: Daily — March 18, 2012 @ 4:54 pm

Remember that show on TLC? Is it still on?
Anyway, I wanted to blog Heath’s birth story for the annals of hollyslife.com history.

I had my weekly OB appointment on Tuesday, 3/6. I had Chris come with me as I knew that since I was approaching 41 weeks, they’d want to schedule an induction. I wasn’t crazy about the idea of inducing so I was wanting to talk through all our options. When my OB took my belly measurement (fundus), I asked how it looked and she wanted to take the measurement again to check because, as it turns out, my belly had grown 8 cm in a week (a lot). Because of the rapid growth in one week, she wanted us to have an ultrasound (yay to seeing him again!) to check and see if the growth was all baby or if it could be excess fluid.

They know that ultrasound weight/size measurements can be 20% high or low, but she wanted to use it as an indicator of his size. The ultrasound showed that my fluid levels were normal, so that showed that the growth was all Heath and she came up with a measurement of 9 lbs 12 oz. (or high 8 lbs or low 10 lbs with margin of error).

We met with the OB again and between the rapid growth in one week, the ultrasound size, and how big she felt he was through other poking and prodding in my exam, she recommended that we consider a scheduled c-section. Of course this immediately put us in a bit of a tailspin. Any question you might have pop into your head about why (why not induce now and see what happens? Why wasn’t his size monitored before to give us the option of inducing early for a more natural birth? Women have big babies all the time, why is this different? etc. etc.), we certainly asked and we felt that the OB had satisfactory reasons for all of them. I won’t go into detail about all of them, otherwise this post would never end :) . The biggest concern she had was the possibility of shoulder dystocia, where the head is able to come through the birth canal, but the shoulders cannot, potentially causing some big complications for baby and mom both.

We decided to think on it for the afternoon and get back to them. We did a lot of talking to family, trying to think of every question we could, and weighed the pros and cons and ultimately decided to stick with the OB’s advice. Any potential risk of a c-section was less of a risk than the other potential complications of a vaginal birth we were told about.

So, long story short (too late for that :) ), we decided to schedule Heath’s c-section for Thursday, 3/8. This was quite the agonizing decision for us (and obviously, for me in particular), especially since I recently attended a midwife conference and had all of their opinions and mantras floating around in my head - “Your body can birth the baby it makes” (which I don’t always think is true) among other things. But we made peace with it and I felt comfortable moving forward this way.

So, armed with our new decision, we were just waiting for Thursday morning! Come Wednesday afternoon, around 3:00, I stood up from the couch and felt like what I thought could be my water breaking and then I realized I also lost my mucous plug (again, TMI, but this is my blog :) ). I called the OB and they recommend that we head to the hospital. So, off we went. For the next several hours, every nurse and doctor we saw talked about a new computer system that everyone was having a hard time figuring out; it became a running joke with us. Because of that, they didn’t actually admit us, b/c they couldn’t really get into the system, but of course they still checked me over. A test showed that the fluid was not amniotic fluid so we were sent back home (false alarm!).

Then we were in bed, trying to get our last full night’s sleep for a while when 12:30am (Thursday) my water REALLY broke. Like, in the movies broke. We went back to the hospital and after a lot of time (new computer system!) and passing the amniotic fluid test, we were put in our room. I also started contracting right when we got to the hospital, around 1:00am. It didn’t help matters that the nurse who admitted us and checked me over asked if I wanted to try vaginal birth - don’t put that seed back in my head when we’ve already made our decision! So we stuck, again, with the c-section.

For some damn reason, we were told around 2:30am that my c-section would be scheduled for 7:00am, when a doctor shift change happened, but if my labor progressed quickly, then they’d call the doctor in earlier. I wasn’t in too much pain so I agreed. And really, time went by fast until about 6:00am when the contractions got much stronger. 7:00 rolled around and we were told that we were essentially bumped b/c of an emergency c-section; which is fine, can’t help that; and we were told it’d be about another 45 minutes. Then 8:00 came (after several painful contractions) and we were bumped again by a mother who was having her second c-section. I lost my cool at this point and said the last thing I thought would happen when my water broke at 12:30am was that I’d be in labor for 8 hours before getting a c-section. But, what are you going to do. They gave me some pain killers to ease the pain a bit and finally around 9:30 they got us and we headed to the OR.
The room was bright and freezing and full of about 10 people milling around doing their respective jobs. I got my spinal block, they let Chris in (they actually started the cut before they let him in) and Heath arrived at 10:10am.

Of course it was all very surreal, we had about a day and a half to mentally prepare for a c-section. But, he was here, and big (10 pounds, 8 oz, 20″ long) and perfect. His little cry was and is precious. We did it, we became parents, life will never be the same.

The last 10 days have all been a whirlwind with and family and friends visiting, trying to figure out nursing and the frustrations that go along with that (he finally latched on Wed the 14th! It took many lactation consultants, patience, and my milk fully coming it to make him happy), trying to sleep, worrying about what he’s doing when we are trying to sleep, and just generally trying to take everything in. It’s wonderful and tiring and emotional and we love our love bug.

So that’s Heath’s and our story. It’s all worth it.