4/17/2011

My Birth Story

Hey everyone! So excited to finally be writing that the baby arrived! We are enjoying our little girl, Cassandra Rose (whom we call Cassie) so much, and can't seem to get enough of her! She is a very content little girl, already going 6+ hours between feedings at night. We are very blessed!

Due to some concerns with some of her biophysicals, my midwives recommended an induction for Wednesday morning when Cassie was 16 days past her due date. I really didn't want an induction, but since there was some question about Cassie's health, I decided to go with the induction. The midwife also promised that if the induction didn't take, they would take me off the pitocin and send me home.

Wednesday morning we got to the hospital at 6AM and after paperwork, several tests, and lots of prep work, they finally got the pitocin drip started by 9:30AM. Unfortunately, the Doctor came in and said that my biophysical from that morning did not look perfect and that they were going to make sure I had the baby and not allow me to go home if the induction didn't take. I was pretty upset about that and worried that after a hard labor I'd end up in a c-section because of no progression yet again (this happened with my first).

Anyway, they started the pitocin at a very low dosage, so the contractions I was already having on my own from the night before and all morning, just continued at the same strength and length for two hours. By 11:30AM, the pitocin finally kicked in, and my early labor contractions began.

My husband and Mom were there and were AMAZING support. They got me through each contraction, and in between we all shared laughs and excitement over the fact we would be meeting our little girl soon!

Active labor started around 1:30 or 2PM and as things got intense, my support rose to the challenge, moving me to new positions, holding me up, putting pressure on my back, and encouraging me by letting me know how the baby was doing and telling me I was doing great. Also, unlike my last induction, I had breaks between each contraction, making the whole process a whole lot more bearable.

I finally got to 8cm (transition labor) by 8:30PM, and an hour after that my water broke. I was so excited that I had gotten this far already, that I had Mom take a picture of me between a contraction and I smiled as big as I could under the circumstances! ha ha!


After 3 hours of transition labor, I did not progress at all. My whole labor was back labor as the baby's face was turned upwards. The baby was not dropping far enough down, and the contractions were pitocin aggravated and not really getting me anywhere. I noticed nurses looking concerned, and my midwife was putting me in several different positions to try and get the contractions to be more effective.

At this point, I mentioned sarcastically to Mom and the midwife in between a contraction that I was ready for a c-section. The midwife thought I was serious and suggested I try an epidural instead. I caved immediately and requested the epidural. I just knew I would be laboring all night and wouldn't get anywhere, and thought I could bear that a whole lot better if I had the epidural. I could tell my midwife was disappointed in my choice, but she went ahead and called up the anesthesiologist, who came to my rescue almost immediately!

By midnight, I had the epidural and was able to cope with the pain a whole lot better. I could only feel pressure in my lower back, pelvis and legs, so the only pain I felt were the contractions I had in my upper abdomen/stomach area. It was a very successful epidural!

The midwife told me to sleep, but my body wouldn't stop shaking, and I could feel every contraction. She upped the dosage of pitocin, too, so even though I couldn't feel the sharp pains, my body was too taxed to sleep. I was checked every hour and there was still no progression. I was still 8 cm! Argh!

By 5AM there were some concerns about progression so another nurse came in and spent 30 minutes stretching me open to complete with each contraction I had. Thank goodness I was on an epidural for all of this!

By 5:30AM I was complete and the pushing began!

I pushed my brains out (and quite a few other things out) for 2.5 hours straight, and the baby was still only at a plus 1 (the baby needed to get down to a plus 5 in order to get through the birth canal to even crown). The epidural kept the pain bearable, so I had enough energy to push like crazy, and yet still the baby would not come down. She was still in the wrong position, so again there were some concerns that I would end up in a c-section.

Before a c-section, though, it was recommended I try a vacuum. I was nervous with this at first since I had heard stories of how badly this can hurt the baby, but I also really wanted to avoid a c-section. I agreed to the vacuum, and 15 minutes later the doctor was using it and the baby was finally moving!

By 8:01AM, we finally got to meet our little girl!



So I got my vaginal birth!!!



I didn't hold to my goals of no induction, epidural, or assistance (like the vacuum), but at least I avoided the c-section and now will have a better chance of a normal labor next time around!

Even though there were concerns about the baby's health, the baby was perfectly healthy. Cassie was not too big, her placenta was not deteriorating, her blood pressure never got too low, and there was only a slight bit of meconium. So even though she was 17 days late in coming, she had no problems at all!

Thank you for praying for me and the baby! Your prayers were answered and we are enjoying a beautiful, happy, healthy baby girl!