Sunday, March 11, 2012

Birth Story - She is Here!

Birth Story

Sorry for the delay in posting this update but things have been crazy busy

How it Started:  On Friday March 2nd we had a scheduled Dr. appointment to complete an NST (non stress test) and have an ultrasound to check the fluid levels before our scheduled induction on the following Tuesday.  This was at 10:45am.  

During the NST test we were not able to get a consistent heart beat on Annabelle because she kept moving so the Dr. said that he felt as though she was ok but she didn't pass her test.  He said we will see what the fluid levels come back as and we will decide then what to do.  We went off to ultrasound and when the tech  was checking the fluid she said that it looked like we would be heading over to have that baby today because the fluid level were pretty low.  

Jerry and I were very excited because we had hoped we could do the induction on Friday vs. Tuesday.  Off to the Doctors office to talk to him about what the plan was.  The Dr. said simply that it looked like we would be having the baby today because she failed her test.  He called over to Labor and Delivery to tell them we were coming.  I asked him if I could go get some lunch before going over there because I knew they wouldn't let me eat and he said "No we don't want you tanking up on food."  Oh man, what?!?!  Me with no food in pain is not a pretty site!

As soon as we left the office Jerry said "Oh no we are going to get you something before we go over there."  I think he was scared for his life... LOL

Shhhhh....  We ended up running to Mc D's to get a snack wrap for me and Jerry had lunch too.  Then we headed over to Labor and Delivery.

Before the heavy contractions set in
The Induction:  After changing into my lovely hospital gown and getting into my bed my labor and delivery nurse came in and had someone start an IV line for both IV fluid and penicillin as I was Group B Strep positive.  She told me Dr. Clark (who was from another practice then mine - as my office shares weekend hours) was on call but was in a C-Section so we got started with the paper work.  Jerry needed to run home to get a few things and to change and shower so I figured it would be best if he went now vs. when they start the whole process. 

While I waited for the Dr. the nurse completed the paper work with me,  I really don't know how I would of answered her if I was actually in labor (man that was a lot of questions).  Then someone came in and handed me a 6 page consent form to donate her cord blood as I agreed to donate her cord blood, again how would someone in active labor do that?

The Dr. ended up coming in before Jerry got back and her and I talked about the best course of action.  I was still at 1.5cm and the baby was still high.  Going for straight pitocin alone would of meant a long very, very hard labor (NO WAY) and using something to soften my cervix was not advised because my fluid was low.  We agreed inserting a Foli Bulb into my cervix and pumping it up with saline solution was the best along with pitocin.  Once I got to 3cm the Foli Bulb was supposed to just come out with a little tug.   I will tell you putting in the Foli Bulb hurt like HELL and I wish Jerry had been there for that part, I had no idea it was going to hurt so bad for her to put that in there. 

Jerry came back about an hour after they started the induction and he told me he did the flight of the bumble bee and cleaned the kitchen and bathroom so when we got home we didn't have to worry about it.  Did I mention I love my husband!  

We had already contacted our Doula when we found out we were being induced and had agreed that we would call when we felt like we needed her to come.

Getting Things Rolling:  You are probably wondering what does a Foli Bulb feel like, well it makes you feel a constant dull cramp like a period and I started bleeding bad with it.  The pitocin on the other hand was HELL once it really got going!!

At 7pm my nurse checked to see if the Foli Bulb would come out with a tug and it didn't (bummer).  During this time I had my new nurses come on and I got a 2 for 1 deal as one of our Nurses was new to REX hospital and was learning the REX way.  Both were very very nice and my main labor and delivery nurse was from Boston and had moved here when her husband was transferred with my company (small world).  She made a joke about "as long as you can understand my Boston accent" and I told her I was from the Boston area so that would not be a problem.

During this whole process they were having trouble getting the external monitors to track Annabelle's heart beat and my contractions.  The contractions were starting to get intense but based on the monitor it looked like nothing.  The Dr. suggested putting an internal monitor in to monitor the contractions so we did that and now my contractions were coming up correctly and I would get credit for all my hard work.

I told Jerry to call our Doula Robin and ask her to head over to the hospital because the contractions really were getting bad.

8:30pm - The nurse was having me turn on my side and move AGAIN to try to pick her heart rate up better on the external monitor and as I started to turn on my side I had a bad contraction and I felt a GUSH!  I said "Someone better check me I'm all wet something just happened."  My water had broken on it's own!!!

They took the foli bulb out and checked me and I was now at 4cm.  Wooohoo!!

Now it gets Hard:  As time went on they continued to increase my pitocin and with that came more pain.  Robin got there shortly after my water broke and it was so funny I remember her poking her head around the equipment and waving and saying hi to me I was on my side and not looking at anything but the side of the bed, I could hear people talking but I wasn't focused on them.  

I wish I had a picture of contraction monitor to show you what this did to me.  I was having 4 back to back contractions with only 1 to 3 mins of a break between.  When I took my baby class no one mentioned this might happen!  To get through these I would grab the side of the bed and Jerry's hand and squeeze.  Then Robin would push on my lower back as I was having horrible back labor.  We ended up using the tens unit on my back during contractions and that really helped take the edge off the lower back pain. 

It's true I did forget how much it hurt but it was BAD!  I didn't swear once as I am what they call a "cave mom" I didn't want to look at anyone all I wanted to do was breath, squeeze Jerry's hand and stair at this one little spot on the side of the bed or close my eyes.  

After several hours of these 3 and 4 hump contractions I just couldn't do it any longer.  I told Jerry I needed something.  I talked to the nurse and we agreed to take the narcotic to try to take the edge off, NO SUCH LUCK!!  All this did was make me feel relaxed during my 1 to 3 min break but the contractions were still coming just as hard.  The nurse said I needed to get some rest.  REST?!?!  How do you expect me to rest because last I checked my uterus was going to explode and you keep poking at me for my blood pressure or to change a monitor.  

At some point during all this the Dr. inserted a internal heart rate monitor to monitor Annabelle's heart beat so we could make sure she was ok.  

My Epidural:  After finding the narcotic was just not going to cut it I said "I NEED SOMETHING".  I had held out all I could and had tried to make it through but with the pitocin continually being upped and these out of control contractions I couldn't do it.  Robin had suggested that we check and see how far along I was and then I could decide.  The nurse checked me and I was STILL AT 4cm!!!!!  As soon as they said that I was like "Get me the Epidural!"

The nurses worked fast to get things ready for the epi.  During this time Jerry and Robin helped me through the contractions.  

When it was time for the epi only Jerry was allowed to be in the room and he had to stay back and in front of me and Robin had to leave the room as only one person was allowed.  

When the first epi was put in I right away got a REALLY BAD headache in the front part of my head and my ears felt like they had water in them.  The anesthesiologist said every thing for her looked good but she would take this one out and go up one more.  The headache didn't go away but man that was nothing compared to labor pains.  

Right away I felt the labor pains start to go away.  When the nurse had checked to see how numb I was I had lost some feeling in my legs but not total, the only place I lost total feeling was in my belly right where it needed to be.  I still had control of my legs to move myself around with help.

Time to Rest:Yeah right how I am I supposed to rest when everyone comes in every 20 mins to tell me to turn on the other side or to check my Blood Pressure or try to find Annabelle's heart beat or figure out why the internal contraction monitor was not working.

Jerry was able to lay back and get some sleep though and I am glad he did so he could help me later.   

Pushing Time: Even though I had an Epi I was starting to feel a lot of pressure in my bottom, like you would if you had to go #2.  With every contraction I could feel the pressure.  I had no control over anything and the funny thing is a few times I farted and I was like "Oh man sorry guys I have no control" ... LOL  The nurse said "That's what they want to see and not to worry about it."

4:30 am the nurses had said Dr. Clark wanted them to check me at 5am however the pressure was getting to be more and more so at about 4:45 am I asked them to check me and I was 10cm and 100% effaced and ready to push.

The nurses worked to get things setup for pushing and then we started pushing.  Thankfully I was able to feel the pressure to know when to push because they were not able to monitor my contractions.  Once I got the hang of it they told me I was a GREAT PUSHER.  They did notice that Annabelle had pooped and that their would be a change of plans and she would need to go right off to special care to make sure they suctioned her out really good.

Jerry and my Doula would hold my legs when I was pushing and Jerry was right down there watching her head start to show more and more, it didn't phase him at all.  The nurses and everyone kept telling me I was a great pusher and doing a fantastic job. 

Jerry asked the nurse "When does the Dr. come in?" and she held up her hand and said "When we can see about this much of the head."  Jerry said "Do you ever have a baby come popping out?" The nurse said "That hardly happens ever especially with the first baby."

About now my body started shacking and I couldn't control it.  Everyone told me this was totally normal.  It was more like shivering and it didn't bother me much.

Then my pushing started to result in a pulling, stretching, pain feeling and my quiet controlled pushing went to pushing while saying "That hurts, oh that hurts.....".

They must of decided that the baby was coming soon now because after about 40 mins of pushing from the start and only two sets of painful pushing they called in the special care nurses and the Dr.  My nurse came up to me and told me "Just to breath that this was good for me and the baby" they didn't want me to push.  Then I looked up and saw Jerry there and the special care nurse and my nurse by my head and I told them "I'M NOT PUSHING I'M NOT PUSHING BUT SHE IS COMING SOMEONE BETTER CATCH HER!!!!"

My little pumpkin poor baby had her poop all over her
A contraction must of pushed my little peanut right out and she came sliding right out and the special care nurse jumped to catch her as the Dr. wasn't fully dressed yet.  I bet you the nurse didn't expect that when she came over to see how far along we were.  My Doula took pictures for us as things were happening so quickly.  So after only 45 mins of pushing our little peanut was born at 5:55am on March 3rd.

Jerry didn't get to cut the cord because she had to be taken right away over to the warmer to get suctioned out and cleaned up.  Her umbilical cord was so long the Dr. looked like a magician pulling an never ending string of handkerchiefs from his sleeve.  The Dr. told me that the cord had 2 knots in it (amazing), and my Doula told me it isn't often that they see one knot let alone two knots.  Shortly after I birthed the placenta and that was so easy. 

The sounds of her cries was music to my ears and bought tears to my eyes.  I couldn't really see her and everyone was telling me she had a lot of hair and was beautiful.  I kept trying to see her but it was hard as the warmer was in the corner off to my left.
Getting all checked out and crying like a champ

I love this picture!
Before taking her off the nursery for testing and to make sure she was ok they brought her over to me to say hi and let me hold her skin to skin.  Even though I look pretty beat up I love this picture of my little family.  What a great moment!!

Jerry went off with Annabelle to the nursery so she could be checked out.  She did great on her apgar score getting an 8 then a 9.
In the nursery for test
While in the nursery they wanted to give her a bath but Jerry knew that if she had a bath the likely hood she would want to nurse was slim and we didn't want her bathed until after I had tried to nurse.  So he had to fight with the nurses not to bath her.  He called down to my Doula to make sure that is what I wanted and he stuck to his guns and they agreed to wait.

Jerry kept asking them when they were going to bring her back to me and they kept saying "just one more test"  or this or that.  I didn't get to see my baby again until after they had stitched up a small tear, cleaned me up and moved to a recovery room.

Then Jerry came back to the room with our baby girl!  I was able to try to nurse her for the first time and she did great latching on.  Our Doula headed out and Jerry, Annabelle and I all spent some time together as a family for the first time.

Later that day Jerry went off with Annabelle to the nursery for a bath while I took a shower and cleaned up.  They were not able to give her a bath right away because her temperature had dropped a little and they needed to get her temp back up, so Jerry came back to the room to order some breakfast with me.  Then he went back up to the nursery for Annabelle's first bath.  I had recovered from my epidural fast and was able to walk on my own, but I still had a headache.
I am not liking this bath thing, where is my Mommy!!
This is not fun at all!
Then after the bath she was brought back to our room for some quiet family time.

Jerry was beaming with joy and he looks good as a Daddy if I do say so myself.
Daddy's little girl

Annabell and I
What a great day! I will say that my headache was the result of the epidural and leaking spinal fluid.  On Sunday evening the Dr. had agreed to do a Blood Patch in the hopes it was an epidural headache and I felt better right away when they did the Blood Patch.  That headache was the worst and my ears felt like they had water in them.  Other wise my delivery was perfect!

All ready to go home!
Home sweet home
 When we got home from the hospital from the house was freezing because the temperature had dropped greatly while we were in the hospital and we didn't have the heat on, so Annabelle had to wait in her car seat for the house to warm up.

We are in love with our beautiful baby girl.


  1. congratulations on your little ones arrival! She is too precious <3 I'm glad everything went well and hope you and your family are enjoying every moment!

  2. oh rachel, CONGRATULATIONS!!! she is absolutely BEAUTIFUL!! so tiny and precious!! and all her hair. are a champ! i loved reading your birth story. thank you so much for sharing. you and jerry look like pros and just so thrilled. i can see all the love in your photos <3
    i am so so happy for you both and wish you tons of love as you take in your new baby girl!!


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