MY BIRTH STORY
At 6:30pm on the 16th of May, I had a Big Mac and fries from McDonald’s. Little did I know that would be the last thing I would eat until I was allowed a liquid diet around 8am on Saturday the 18th. I tried to go to sleep around midnight but the baby was extremely active for some reason. All night long he just kept tossing and turning. It was painful and I couldn’t get comfortable. Around 3am, I noticed that my contractions were picking up some in intensity and they seemed pretty close together. When I started timing them, they were consistently 3-4 minutes apart. This didn’t concern me too much because I had been having contractions for months. Just one day prior to this, they were 4 minutes apart for over an hour and then they fizzled out.
|Last picture of me before baby was born.|
Here it was, after 3am, and I hadn’t had a lick of sleep. I was becoming so angry. I decided to take a Benadryl and a Tylenol in hopes of getting some sleep. I slept off and on and ended up with maybe one hour of sleep before I decided that we should head to the hospital. I showered and got ready with the contractions consistently 3 minutes apart. We took the kids to the neighbor’s house and headed to the hospital just before 7am.
When we arrived around 7:30, they hooked me up to the monitors and everything was going great. I was so excited that this would be the day (or so I thought). When the doctor checked me, he said I was about 3-4cm dilated. I wasn’t happy about that since I walked around for 2 weeks at 3-4cm dilated with my last child. But, my doctor told us that we wouldn’t be leaving without having a baby since the contractions were so steady. I tested positive for group B strep during my last pregnancy, so I was automatically treated for it during this one. They began the IV and ran a bag or so of fluid through me before they started the antibiotic. The Penicillin really burned as it was going in. I was really upset to learn that they would have to administer it every 4 hours up until I the time the baby was born.I had an IV in my left arm, pumping in fluids and Penicillin and then a nurse did a blood draw on my right arm and left a horrible bruise about the size of a baseball. It became swollen and burned terribly. Having two burning arms made it harder to focus on breathing through my contractions.
My parents came to be with me and they had stopped and picked up our boys on their way down. I wanted my boys to be the first ones to see the baby after he was born. Then we had more visitors, all anxious for his arrival. There was my mother in law, one of my best friends, Trish and her fiance and another one of my best friends, Sharon, and her children. When Sharon stopped in to visit, I asked her if she would stay with me. She was very honored and gladly stepped in and helped my exhausted husband coach me through the contractions. She did so much for me. I will be forever grateful.
Hours passed and I was barely making any progress. I had no concept of time. I only know that I had been in labor for a long time! I was completely exhausted and starving. The contractions continued to get stronger, but when the doctors checked me again, I was only at a 5. They wanted to break my water to help speed things up. After thinking about it for a long time, I finally decided to go ahead and let them. The hospital doctor came in to do it. After his first attempt, he thought he might have had a defective hook. He got another hook and had the nurse pushing down on my stomach, but he was still unable to break my water. This experience was terrifying for me and I didn’t understand why it wouldn’t break.
Later, my doctor came back to check on me, and he was able to get my water to break. It was actually more like a slow leak, but apparently that’s what the doctor wanted. After more waiting, the contractions actually seemed to be dying down. This was so disappointing to me. I wanted to cry. Maybe I did cry. I don’t remember. The next time the doctor came to check on me, he started mentioning Pitocin. This was another scary thought because there is a higher risk for uterine rupture with the use of Pitocin after a previous c-section. My last child was an emergency c-section and I really hoped that this baby would be delivered as a V-bac (vaginal birth after cesarean). In fact, I thought sure that God would answer that prayer. Having another c-section was such a fearful thought; especially in another emergency situation.
I reluctantly agreed to Pitocin. They started me out at the lowest possible dosage and it didn’t take long at all for the contractions to pick back up again. The increase in contractions was very short lived; in fact, labor seemed to have fizzled out altogether. I couldn’t believe this was happening. The doctors suggested that we go ahead and increase the Pitocin dosage and once again, I agreed, even though I was hoping that wouldn’t be necessary. When they began to increase the dosage, labor kicked in fast and hard. I couldn’t handle the contractions on my own any longer. I felt completely depleted, so I asked for an epidural (something else that I really hoped to avoid).
Once the epidural was in, the anesthesiologist allowed me to have a grape Popsicle. It was the first thing I had to eat in about 32 hours. I was so happy when the epidural kicked in. It seemed to take longer than it did with my other two boys. I was finally able to rest for a few minutes, but not long enough. My baby’s heart rate started to drop. My last son’s heart rate also started dropping soon after getting the epidural, but his heart rate wasn’t bouncing back up. This baby’s heart rate was at least recovering after each dip. At this point, I still had the peace of God on me, but it was as if Satan was whispering fear in my ears and I had to fight it with everything in me. My doctor came back in because he noticed the baby’s heart rate dropping. He said to me, “Lets go have a baby”. And I simply said, “okay”. Although I had prayed for my whole pregnancy against having another c-section, I had been through so much and was so depleted that it was almost a relief to me just to know that it would be over soon.
They shaved me and started getting me ready for the OR and they handed my husband the scrubs that he would have to put on. Next thing I know, they are wheeling me away. I felt scared for the baby so I prayed in my head all the way to the OR. There was a huge team of doctors and nurses in the room, but it seemed like it took forever for my doctor and my husband to get in there with me. Once they got me on the operating table and put the curtain up, I started feeling like my chest was caving in, making it harder for me to breathe. I told the anesthesiologist about it and he told me it was just an illusion and to focus on trying to breathe from my stomach. Yeah, how do you do that when you are completely numb from your shoulders down?
Finally, my doctor and my husband came in. I was so happy to have my husband by my side. I was scared from the feeling in my chest and also from some strange pressure I was feeling in the temples of my head. The doctors told me that it would only take about 5 minutes to get the baby out. They were right! At 2:41 on Saturday morning, they held my little, bloody, screaming, blue monster up over the screen for me to get a quick look before they took him over to get him cleaned up and assessed. Although I loved to hear his awesome, powerful cry, the way he looked really freaked me out.
As the doctors were sewing me up, someone brought my baby over for me to look at again. I was very relieved to see his skin turning red and to see him looking like a normal human.
They took him to the nursery and then I was sent off to recovery. I was shaking from the medication. I was relieved that it was all over and I knew that we were both healthy. They brought the baby to my recovery room and he immediately started breast feeding. Focusing on him really helped me to stop shaking. My husband went to get my other two sons to meet the baby. After resting in the hospital waiting room all night, they were so happy to see that their mom and their baby brother were okay.
I’m Amanda and a Christian homeschooling Mom to 4 awesome boys from ages 4 to 19.
I have an amazing, supportive husband, a passion for encouraging others in their faith, and helping new homeschoolers find their way through their journey.
Thank you for stopping by and getting to know me better.