Friday, November 30, 2018

Maddox's Birth Story


I'm sitting here after putting my son to bed the night before he turns 8 weeks old. I have to get this birth story written before the specific details of the most amazing day of my life, become fuzzy. It already seems like the day of his birth was a lifetime ago. I can't even imagine the time before he was ours. He's our everything.

Backstory: At my 36 week OB appointment, my blood pressure was abnormally high. As a precaution, my doctor had me walk over to the hospital (attached to my OB office), just to be sure everything was okay. They wanted to ensure that I wasn't developing preeclampsia. All tests came back normal, so I was sent home.

Over the next four weeks, my blood pressure stayed higher than normal, but they wanted me to progress more in my pregnancy before thinking about induction. They wanted me to keep an eye on certain symptoms that would indicate an issue.

I woke up the morning of my due date with a very bad headache. This was one of the symptoms that the doctor told me to look out for, so I checked my blood pressure at home. It was way higher than it had been at my doctor visits, which made me super nervous. I had made it through 40 weeks of pregnancy and I didn't want anything to put our baby at risk. I decided that I may have worked myself up, so I relaxed on the couch for a while and then checked it again. Even higher.

I went into our bedroom and woke Ryan up emotional and nervous. He told me to call my doctor and see what they say. She told me to immediately head to Labor and Delivery. With emotions running high, we got dressed and loaded up all of our bags into the car. I remember coming out of the bathroom shaking. Ryan took me into his arms and we had tears of both excitement and nervousness. 

We were doing the big time.

Snapped a quick 40 week picture on the way out the door.


We got to the hospital and they had us go into triage to get assessed. They ran all the same tests that they had done at my 36 week appointment. All came back normal. Again. For a moment, we thought we were going home and I was so relieved. I wanted this baby to come when he was ready and I was so fearful that they were going to induce me. 

Well...

The nurse came back into the room and informed us that my doctor was not going to let us go home. It was my due date, baby was fully developed, and they wanted him here to avoid any possible complications. Once I heard the words "You're going to be induced," I started crying. I had an overwhelming feeling of guilt because my precious baby was getting kicked out of his cozy home before he was ready. This was not what I wanted at all.

We were moved into a delivery room and Ryan went and grabbed all of our stuff from the car. I spent a few hours unable to shake my extreme disappointment before my doctor came in. Once she explained that the risks outweighed the benefits of keeping him in my belly, I started to feel a little better about the whole process. I know women are induced all the time, but this was not the plan that I had envisioned for myself or my boy.

Here we are as our last family picture of two.



I had been dilated 1 cm. and was 50% effaced for a couple weeks, so they gave me Cytotec at around 2:00 to jumpstart my labor. I began to start feeling crampy contractions about thirty minutes later. That stuff works fast! They had me rest and see if the Cytotec would progress my labor any further. They checked me again at 9:45 p.m. and I had only gotten to 2 cm. They went ahead and put me on Pitocin to get my contractions going even more. At this point, I was still comfortable.

My mom, Ryan and I spent time sitting around talking about how excited we were to meet our baby. My doctor's resident came in around midnight to check me again. I hadn't progressed at all. She gave me some options for ways to make the labor progress more quickly, one of which being something called a Cook's Catheter. A what? She explained that it was essentially two bulbs (filled with saline) that would open my cervix to 4-5 cm. She was honest and said that it is a painful process and could take anywhere from 30 minutes to several hours. I went ahead and went for it. Now that we had begun the induction process, I wanted to get him here as soon as possible and as safety as possible.

I was not ready for the level of pain that the Cook's Catheter would bring. I went from slightly uncomfortable contractions to full blown, breathtaking (not the good kind) ones. Y'all, it sucked.

After about 2 hours, the catheter fell out, which is what happens once you've dilated to between 4 and 5 cm. It was working and I was so relived that it was gone. The doctor said that I was progressing exactly as anticipated and that it was time to break my water. What an unusual feeling that was. I can't imagine it breaking while you're carrying on with every day tasks. So much fluid! 

They put me back on Pitocin, but took me right back off because his little heart rate wasn't responding well to it. 

At around 5:00 a.m. I got checked again and had progressed to 8 cm. This is where I get unsure about my thoughts and actions toward my pain management plan. I planned all along to get an epidural. Ryan knew this was my plan, the doctors knew that was the plan, and they were all just waiting on me to give the word. For some reason, I kept holding off on getting it. Although I had been in extreme pain, my body had been telling me to wait. I'm so grateful for Ryan because it finally got to the point where he told the doctor, "she knows that she wants an epidural, but isn't sure when a good time would be to get it." The doctor was like, "now would be good!"

That anesthesiologist came in and became my best friend. Epidurals are a magical thing.


Finally feeling good around 7:00 a.m.

They put me back on Pitocin and luckily the baby's hear rate was responding well to it. Finally, at around 11:30 a.m. I had fully dilated and it was time to start pushing. 

A little less than an hour of pushing and the most amazing miracle happened. I remember those last moments so vividly. There is nothing like having your eyes closed during a push, and opening them to the most amazing baby in front of you. His cries were the most beautiful thing that I had ever heard. They nurses immediately put him on my chest and  Ryan and I cried tears of joy. I can't express the amount of love felt in that moment. Our baby was here and he was all ours.



Maddox Michael Allen

November 19, 2018

12:25 p.m.

6 lbs. 13 oz.

20 inches long


XO,
Les



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