Hello! I’m so excited to finally be back and blogging again. It’s been a while, but I promise I have a good reason. Pregnancy. And childbirth. And all that jazz. I’ve had a few people ask about my experience this time around, so I figure writing a post about it is a good way to jump back in to blogging. Also, I suck at baby book record keeping, so this is my way of keeping a record for posterity and all that. So without further ado, here is Ezra’s birth story….
First a little background for you. I’m a c-section mama….it’s not by choice, but I am very grateful to live in a place where this operation is available. I have an abnormal pelvic arch that makes a vaginal delivery unsafe and unlikely to be successful. With Sam, I had a scheduled c-section at 39 weeks. It went smoothly and when he was born weighing 8 lbs 4 oz with a head in the 95th percentile, I was confident that a c-section was the right decision. So, this time around, I knew that I wanted to have a c-section again and my OBGYN agreed that it was a good plan.
Fast forward to week 36…I was miserable and huge. Like seriously huge. Swollen and gaining weight like you wouldn’t believe. Every girls favorite thing, right? I had been having some irregular braxton hicks, so the doc decided to do a cervix check annnndddd big surprise…nada. Talk about depressing….three more weeks of pregnancy for me. And then….week 38 hit. I was seriously so done with being pregnant and only had one more week left. Around 3AM on Monday, April 18th, I woke up needing to go to the bathroom as pregnant women often need to. After climbing back in bed I realized that my back was hurting more than usual. I grumbled in my mind about it and tried to go back to sleep. After half an hour or so, I realized that the back pain was coming in waves and began to wonder if maybe I was actually have contractions! Because I had a c-section with Sam, I had never experienced contractions or labor, so I felt a little unsure about what was going on. I was pretty tired and decided to quickly download a contraction timer app to take the work out of timing. It ended up being a good thing I did, because it turns out, I was actually in labor. Being able to see that the contractions were getting closer and lasting longer definitely helped me to feel confident about being in labor. By 7AM, my contractions were about five minutes apart and lasting close to a minute. About this time I realized that I could very well have a baby today! So, despite being really really hungry (at this point I hadn’t had anything to eat in about 11 hours), I avoided eating. Fasting is recommended before a c-section, so I figured better safe than sorry. I went ahead and woke Jimmy up as well to let him know what was up. At this point we started packing the hospital bag (yep, I didn’t have my bag packed ahead of time) and putting a bag together for Sam….mostly I was trying to kill time until my OBGYN office opened so I could call and let them know what was up.
By 9AM, the OB nurse called back to tell us to go into the hospital to get monitored. Before heading to the hospital, we headed into town to drop Sam off at Jimmy’s parents house. We also took a quick family picture as a family of three (it turned out awful…go figure). From there, we headed over to the hospital and maternity triage. Within about ten minutes, I was in a hospital bed and hooked up to the monitors. It was really satisfying to what the contraction monitor and see that the contractions were coming consistently and even more satisfying to watch them peak and come back down. After 45 minutes or so, the nurse came in to do a cervical check. After several minutes, the nurse informed us that she couldn’t reach my cervix, but that it was soft, which is a good indicator of labor. She also told us that the reason neither of my babies have dropped is because their heads literally cannot fit into my pelvic bones. Awesome, right? And, apparently all my back pain during contractions was because our sweet little boy was face up. I wouldn’t wish back labor on anyone….it was seriously painful. After the check, the nurse said to hold tight while she called my OB to see what they wanted to do. Warning….this photo of me is truly humiliating. In my defense, I was having a contraction and losing at rage when Jimmy took this photo.
After another hour or so, she came back to say that she hadn’t heard back from the doctors office yet, but that we would definitely be having a baby today! This was around 11AM. In another half an hour or so, my doctor showed up to check in on me. She said everything looked good for delivery and that they would start prepping me for surgery. Awesome!! Jimmy was given the disposable scrubs to put over his clothes and shoes….and being the funny man he is, he had a lot of fun position the scrub cap in silly positions on his head. And then…..someone needed an emergency c-section, which meant mine got pushed back. Not too big of a deal. Until it happened twice more. At this point, it was 1PM and the contractions were reaching the point of seriously painful. And because I was going to have a spinal during the c-section, it meant that I couldn’t have any kind of pain drugs. Which sucks, because I’m kind of a fan of not feeling tons of pain.
I was more than happy when around 2PM they came into my room and announced that it was finally my turn to have a baby. They wheeled us around to the OR and this is where Jimmy and I parted ways. Basically, they only want hospital staff and mom in the OR while they administer the spinal and get everything set up. Jimmy continued being the funny man on campus and entertained the nurses with his endless jokes. After they were all set up in the OR, Jimmy got to come in and hang out by my head while they delivered sweet baby boy.
During a c-section, the doctor will tell you that you’ll feel some “pressure” as they pull baby out. Pressure is an understatement. It doesn’t hurt, but it is slightly uncomfortable. It was amazing how I could literally feel a little (or really, not so little) foot dislodge from my rib cage as they yanked him out. As they pulled his head out, my doctor said, “Wow! That’s a big head!” I laughed and said something about Sam had a big head too. At this point, Jimmy stood up to watch Ezra’s birth. The next words out of my doctor’s mouth were, “Wow! That’s just a big baby!” I could hear the nurses moving over to get a better look. Jimmy told me that he looked great and was definitely a big guy. True and funny store, the poor kiddo came out peeing. And screaming bloody murder. That will be a story to tell as he gets older! We were also informed that there was meconium in there. Which means that even though he arrived ten days before his due date, little guy was definitely ready to get out.
After they pulled Ezra out, they wrapped him in a blanket and let Jimmy hold him and show him to me. I would love to say that it was nice and peaceful, but Ezra chose to continue his hollering for all of us to enjoy. Despite the hollering, it was a beautiful moment. After several minutes, Jimmy and Ezra went off to the nursery to get checked out and I stayed in the operating room to get put back together. I was so exhausted from the day, that I basically fell asleep while they finished up. It was kind of nice, to be honest. I did wake up when the phone rang and the nursery called to let us know his stats. He was a whopping 10.0 lbs and 20 inches! The doctors and nurses were impressed. And I suddenly felt a lot less wimpy.
After surgery, I went back to a little recovery area, where I met back up with Jimmy and Ezra. I had the chance to try nursing while the nurses did some post-op monitoring and such. One thing that was different this time, is that I was given some pain medication that I had never had before. One of the common side effects is itchiness. I didn’t notice anything at first, but then my nose started itching. And them my cheeks. And pretty soon all of my face. I literally couldn’t stop rubbing my face. There was a nursing student monitoring me with the head nurse and I’m fairly certain I freaked her out a little bit. (The itching set in when the head nurse had stepped out). After a little bit of time, we were finally sent to our hospital room and got settled.
A little while later, Sam and the rest of the family came up to visit. It was so wonderful to watch Sam check out Ezra and interact with him.
Well, I’m 100% out of time to blog right now, so enjoy Ezra’s birth story and check back in a couple days for the one month update.