Sunday, January 29, 2012

It's called "labor" for a reason...

So I guess it's pretty obvious that having 2 kids is pretty time-consuming...especially when one is 2 years old and running all over the place, and the other needs to be fed every 2 hours...

ANYWAY...
...I thought it'd be good to write down my labor story so I don't forget...plus it's always interesting, or at least I think so, to read others' stories...

Tuesday January 17th 
I had a doctor's appointment that day, with one week until my actual due date. It was really depressing though when she checked my cervix and nothing had changed since the week before--still at 2cm and 75% effaced. She asked if I'd had any signs of labor, which, of course, I hadn't...just like with Wyatt. I really wasn't interested in being induced because I REALLY REALLY wanted to go naturally this time, but when my doctor asked me if I wanted to schedule a day to be induced, I caved. We originally scheduled it for January 22nd, but I called back later and asked to have the date changed to something after my actual due date. So we decided that if he wasn't here on his own by the 26th (my due date being the 24th) I'd be induced that morning at 3am. My choice to be induced mostly came from the fact that I knew he was going to be big, and I don't know about you guys (or gals, rather, haha), but I'd rather push out as small of a baby as possible, if you know what I mean...AND...I was so done being pregnant. SO DONE.
DONE, DONE, D.O.N.E.

Saturday January 21st
I didn't have to work that day, so I was looking forward to a stress-free 3 day weekend. Jeff and I didn't have any plans, which was unusual because for the past few months it had seemed like we'd been busy EVERY weekend...weddings, holidays, birthdays...EVERYTHING. Anyway, we spent the day around the house, and at one point while Jeff was cleaning, I decided to take Wyatt and go to Target. I didn't really have anything to get, but I went there with the purpose of walking around, hoping it might trigger labor. We were there for a couple of hours and when we finally came home, while I went to the bathroom, I noticed I had bloody show. Now, let me also preface this by saying that I had ZERO idea of what to expect for labor, other than what I'd read. With Wyatt I was induced and hadn't experienced any signs of pre-labor, and so again, I was completely unsure of when or if I was actually going into labor. I tried not to get too excited, but I was glad I was one step closer than I'd ever been. The rest of the day was uneventful.

Sunday January 22nd
4:30am- I woke up and remembered having a dream about an instruction class on what REAL contractions felt like. A few minutes later I realized I had woken up because I'd actually HAD a contraction. I didn't know if it was just a Braxton-Hicks contraction or a real one...
5:00am- I couldn't go back to sleep, and I'd started timing them after I'd noticed they were coming regularly--every 7 minutes, like clockwork. I got out of bed and went to the bathroom, thinking that maybe by changing my position and emptying my bladder, they might stop...but they didn't AND I noticed more bloody show. That's when I got really, SUPER-DUPER excited because then I KNEW I was in real, actual labor. I was a little confused though because I thought contractions were supposed to be more painful, but I figured I was just in the beginning stages. I didn't wake anyone up, and I started packing my hospital bag.
6:00am- I went downstairs to watch TV and write down the times of my contractions.
6:30am- I heard Jeff wake up, and he came downstairs when he noticed I wasn't in bed. We decided to watch a movie. My contractions were still coming every 7 minutes.
7:20am- My contractions were coming on stronger at this point, but not any closer. I noticed I had to concentrate on my breathing and I wasn't able to talk when Jeff would ask me questions. I decided that maybe we should go to the hospital, just to see what was happening...maybe I was dilated more? We tossed the idea around for a while, debating if it was worth it or not, and eventually decided just to go. I was afraid the hospital wouldn't admit me, so we held off on sounding the alarm.
7:45am- We called Jeff's Aunt Launa (who's family lives just down the street) and had one of her daughters come watch Wyatt, who was still sleeping. Once he woke up, she took him back to their house and got ready to take him to church.
8:00am- We arrived at the hospital. The contractions were more painful now, and I had to stop walking for one on our way in...
8:15am- I was admitted into triage where a nurse hooked me up to the heart and contraction monitors. I got and IV and had to answer a ba-jillion questions and sign paperwork before she even checked me...
8:30am- She checked me and I was 7cm dilated!!! We were completely shocked...and then we figured we should probably let our people know, seeing as I wasn't going to be sent home...
10:00am- I walked to the Labor and Delivery room and got settled in...

(At some point my family arrived...but they were quickly sent away because my contractions started coming much stronger and my nurse was SURE that I'd deliver him quickly..)

Soon after I'd arrived in L&D, the doctor on-call came in and broke my water, and that's when I started losing track of time. After that, my contractions were incredible. HOLY.WOW. My L&D nurse was really nice and super supportive. I had mentioned that I wanted to try and go without an epidural, just to see if I could do it naturally. She was a great coach, along with my Mom and Jeff. I don't know what I would have done without them all! I tried all sorts of different positions to help with the pain--on my side, on my knees, on the birthing ball, standing and leaning on Jeff--and it seemed like nothing helped! My nurse kept telling me, "Just 5 more contractions, you'll be ready to push...just a little bit more, and you'll be ready..." but every time she checked me I'd still only be at 8cm/9cm. A few times I begged for the epidural, but everyone kept telling me it was too late. Eventually though, (after a few HOURS of this) when my nurse could see I wasn't progressing, she offered it to me...and I rejoiced. Literally. I had never been so happy to see a needle in my entire life. Those contractions were THE WORST pain I have ever experienced. Thankfully though, throughout this whole process, Logan's heartbeat never dipped at all, which was one of the reasons my nurse tried for so long to get me to progress...the biggest issue was that he wasn't coming down...

1:07pm- I got the epidural. The nurse told me to take a nap.
1:20pm- The epidural kicked in. Oh, sweet relief. I really LOVE epidurals--I can still move my legs around (it's limited, of course) and I can still feel my contractions, I just can't feel any of the pain! Kudos to you women who can go through labor all natural, you amaze me. Truly. Maybe one day I'll try again. Maybe...
2:15pm- They started prepping me for BIRTH!!
2:20pm- I loved how casual everyone was while they were getting ready...it was really calming. Everyone was real chatty and when the doctor came in, we started talking about how we were going to take it nice and slow...
2:25pm- I'd only pushed once, and that was enough to push him down and almost out...the doctor kept telling me to push slower...what?!
2:28pm- One more "slow" push, and Logan Peter Downs was born! 9lbs and 21 inches long! AND ABSOLUTELY NO TEARING!! (Can I tell you how amazed I was?? My recovery has been minimal, and the strongest painkiller I took was a few IBprofen...A.MAZ.ING.)

So a few things to note: After Logan was born, the nurse told me there were a few reasons why I wasn't progressing: ONE: I was constipated. Hello. Yes, I was. And apparently that made it hard for him to come down...blockage, anyone? TWO: He was face up, instead of face down. While I was pushing the doctor flipped him around and apparently he came really quickly after that. THREE: He was 9lbs!! Wait, so you're telling me my body doesn't accommodate the size of the exit for the size of the baby?! Someone needs to fix that problem...

So anyway, I guess I might have been able to do it naturally if all or some of those things had been different...or so my nurse tried to convince me. I'm still thinking an epidural is the way to go though, haha!







But he's here and he's healthy and we love him so much already!

3 comments:

Noelle @ Mesa AZ Photography said...

Yay Rachael! You may not have finished without the epidural, but you still spent a lot of time working withouht it. Most of which was in the painful transition phase.

No we didn't send invitations because we figured it was mostly just family anyway. I told you about the party once, but when Baby Logan came I figured there was no way you could come with a one week old, so I just didn't mention it. I still love you though.

Buck and Whitni Watkins said...

Hoyl Moly girl you and the mister make big babies! 9lbs. OUCH! Good Job btw any woman who gives birth natural or not rocks!

Curtis and Dani Welton said...

Great story :)