In honor of my daughter’s 3rd birthday tomorrow, I thought I would share our birthing experience:
I was two days late. My husband had just left for work at 7am and I got up for the tenth time to pee, when my water broke. It didn’t hurt, it was just obvious what had happened. I continued to the restroom to pee. And things started to….gush.
I didn’t think I had to pee that bad, but oh, well, whatever. I called my husband first so he could head back home to get me. Then I called the nurse and told her I was leaking a bit, so off to “pee” again, and things were continuing to gush. I told her it just kept coming. She gave me a sweet condescending chuckle and told me to wrap up in a towel for the car ride.
Something nobody ever told me or wrote about in all of those books…when your water breaks, your body continues to produce amniotic fluid until baby is born. So, when you stand up, sneeze, cough, rotate your head wrong, you gush. Of course its not the same for everyone! This was just my experience. But, I would suggest investing in some good ol’ adult sized diapers in case you’re waiting for labor. I didn’t have anything, so I wore some black pants and wrapped up in a towel or two and we were off.
I had a birth plan…sorta. I was the optimistic, “I’m gonna do everything naturally,” mom-to-be. Some women this works out beautifully. I would just suggest to anyone that has a birth plan, keep an open mind.
I stayed strong with my plan, and went without meds for 16 hours (of course gushing the entire time). I finally broke down and got whatever med it is that “takes the edge off.” I got some sleep, then woke up to some pain.
I was at 10 cm and got the epidural. I always thought I had a high pain tolerance, but labor has proven otherwise. Any woman that has endured THAT until the very end, you are my hero. The guy giving me the epidural had his work cut out for him. Not only was I having full on contractions every minute or so, but I also have a 96 degree curve in my spine. That’s severe. The most difficult thing I have ever had to do in my life to date is not move while getting an epidural during extremely intense contractions. Luckily for me, he did his shit right the first time, so he was my savior and I got to sleep a bit more.
Then it was time to push. I pushed for an hour or so, and finally the midwife tells me she’s afraid we may have to discuss a c-section. A WHAT??!!?
Disappointed. Devastated. Failure. Doesn’t even scratch the surface.
After 22 hours of labor, being told you get to be cut open isn’t the best news. If I wasn’t as drugged up, I would have been crying through the entire procedure. As it was, I was quite medicated, so I was just trying to wrap my head around the whole thing. I suppose there was a moment of relief, knowing I was going to be done, but the strong feeling of failure still loomed over my head.
The good people at St. Joe’s were all very kind and introduced themselves before surgery. The anesthesiologist was right behind my head and made himself known, thank God.
As the doctor started to cut, I could feel it. Not pressure. The cutting. It was nearing the verge of painful. I told my new best friend that I could feel it, and he pumped me full of more meds. Any cutting or feeling I felt was now gone.
Since I had pushed an hour earlier, baby’s head was a bit down the birth canal, so they had to shove her back up to pull her out-all I felt was pressure. Then, moments later, just like that, my daughter came into this world.
I looked to my right to see her cry for the first time. I vaguely heard someone say, “She’s a red head!”
They handed her to my husband and the anesthesiologist had us pose for our first family picture. I think he was trying to distract us from the fact that they were sowing me up. It worked. It turned out to be a great picture. Looking at it, you would never know the feelings of disappointment and disconnect I was feeling toward this lovely baby girl.
**I found out months later that it’s common to have a feeling of disconnect after a c-section. That’s something I wish I had known going into it. Now, my darling girl and I have a wonderful relationship and I can’t believe it has already been three years. Happy Birthday, my Little Love.