I have had a whirlwind of a pregnancy. First of all, it was a complete surprise. I found out I was pregnant after an emergency move from a location that kept raising our rent and wouldn't write a contract, plus I had lost a significant amount of students, meaning loss of income. It was like Heavenly Father was testing us to see how much we could handle. After months of hard work, we were accepted to Medi-Cal so we could have some help paying for the baby. My 2nd trimester went smoothly. During my 3rd trimester, I started measuring particularly big. At 32 weeks, I was measuring at 35, so my midwife had me tested for gestational diabetes, informing me that if I tested positive, I would have to deliver in the hospital rather than at home as planned. Thankfully, the test came back negative. Back to square one. At 34 weeks, I was measuring at 40 weeks and found out baby was in a transverse lie (faced diagonally) and if he stayed like that, I would have to have a c-section. I was given a homeopathic remedy and told to change my diet so he would move to the right position. At 35 weeks, he was back in the right position and I was measuring right on time. A home birth after all! At 36 1/2 weeks, he was in an unstable lie (not staying put in any one position) and I had to transfer care to an OB/GYN (an awesome one at that) to try to move the baby to the correct position. Now a hospital birth. The day after transferring care, I had an ultrasound with said awesome OB/GYN and found out it's more than an unstable lie, that he is in a position that if tried to move, might break my water. Meaning, a scheduled c-section at about 39 weeks. After waiting for over 2 weeks for them to tell me the date of the c-section, at my 39-week appointment (Friday, 9/9), he was head down and I was told I could make the decision to go into labor myself and see if the baby was still in the correct position and if he wasn't, I would have a c-section. More agonizing. I thought long and hard, weighing the pros and cons and decided to go with the c-section after all. Doc told me that we would do some scheduling after the weekend. Well, the office called me Monday morning (9/12) and asked me to come in to talk about options. We had another ultrasound and found out baby was still head down and made the decision to go into labor on my own since he was likely to stay that way. I had my membranes stripped and was sent home. Tons of cramping that night. Tuesday, I lost my mucus plug and started some pretty intense contractions every 15-20 minutes that kept me up half the night. I had been having Braxton-Hicks contractions for weeks, but very mild. These intense contractions were quite painful. Wednesday and Thursday, more contractions, especially when lying down, but nothing consistent. After more contractions keeping me up Thursday night, I browsed around online before attempting to sleep again. After lying down at about 4am Friday, contractions became more consistent (around 8 minutes apart.) I'm thinking "Finally!" so I got up to take a shower at about 5:30am and they went away. So frustrating! I attempted some more sleep and finally called the doctor when the office opened at 8:30. He told me to drink lots of water and wait it out. Then I get a call from the office about 20 minutes later telling me there are insurance problems and I can still deliver at the hospital, but maybe not with the same doctor. Ok, so this is the day before my due date after being in early labor all week. Awesome timing! I wasn't even sure if the baby was still head down at that point since he had been moving around so much. I called the office again later in the afternoon to see what the final verdict was and to see if I could get an exam to find out how close I was and to see if the baby was still head down. They told me to come in and they wouldn't charge me. (Told you he was awesome.) So, the doc checked me out and found out baby was head down, I was 100% effaced and 4 centimeters dilated. Um, wow. He told me I was pretty much ready. He gave me all the paperwork to transfer doctors (again) AND I had to switch hospitals from my #1 choice to my last choice since they could only find one doctor available who took my insurance. At least the new hospital was closest. Contractions continued through the afternoon and evening. Since I had not slept at all that day and had maybe 3-4 hours of sleep the night before, I decided to attempt sleep again. Since the contractions were strongest lying down, I had to sit up on the couch. Still no sleep. Around 10pm, they started to get a little more regular, about 8-10 minutes apart. I tried not to get too excited just in case it was another false alarm. I got up and walked around to see if they remained consistent. They were still coming, but not as close. But, at least they didn't go away completely. At about midnight, they started about 10 minutes apart and every time the baby moved, I had the worst cramps. Since he was moving around so much in between the contractions, I was in constant pain. I finally called the hospital at about 12:30 to find out the earliest a laboring person could come in. She said I was still early but could come in if I really wanted to. At that point, the only thing that relieved my pain was rocking back and forth on my hands and knees. I couldn't stand or sit or do anything. I told Douglas we needed to go. He went to take a shower and we got last-minute stuff ready. We headed out the door at 1:30, at which point my contractions were 5 minutes apart. The cramps had gone away, so I was better able to time them, but I sure don't remember anything in between 10 and 5 minutes. By the time we reached the hospital at 2:00, they were 2 minutes apart and I could barely check in. They quickly wheeled me to labor and delivery and gave me paperwork to fill out. Seriously? While I was attempting to fill it out in between contractions, the lady behind the desk was telling the nurses on the phone that they really needed to get me a room because I had already had a couple contractions just sitting there. They quickly got me into my room, gave me a gown to change into and hooked me up to a fetal monitor and an IV. They had some trouble finding a vein on my left arm and after being poked and prodded, I head the nurse say "Gosh, darn it" over and over - very reassuring for someone in active labor. They tried my right arm with success. They also checked my cervix, which was at 7 centimeters. I was pretty much out of it and didn't realize they tried paging the doctor 3 times and he wouldn't come. (It turns out he was stuck in a c-section.) They went for Plan B, which was an on-call midwife. After about an hour of intense contractions, each one worse than the last, they told me to start pushing. I pushed maybe 4-5 times and he was out at 3:17am and placed on my chest. Good thing it went by so quick because it hurt like heck. I was praying and praying it would all be over soon because I didn't want the epidural (I don't think there would have been time, anyway) and my prayers were answered. It took a while to get the placenta out because I was so weak at that point, I could barely push. But, I was SOOOOO glad he was finally here! I had another nice tear, which required more stitches. I also got REALLY cold and shaky so they had to bring me tons of warm blankets. After a couple hours of cleaning him up, weighing and measuring and making sure he was warm enough and me LONGING to hold him, he was finally brought to me and I was able to nurse him. Also during this time, the doctor finally made an appearance, took one look at me, said something along the lines of, "I don't know her, I've never seen her before" and left. I never saw his face again. I sure am glad I had a midwife rather than the jerk doctor there for one of the most important events in my life. After everything was done, I was wheeled into my postpartum room, where we were finally able to get some sleep at about 6am. Sleep was constantly interrupted, though, with nurses checking vitals, bringing meals, etc. Nighttime was better for sleep, but it was still interrupted every couple hours. The worst part was after an awesome feeding schedule set by Mr. Mace himself, a nurse comes in at 5am, doesn't say a word, wakes him up, ruining the schedule and proceeds to draw his blood from his tiny heal, causing him to scream bloody murder. Poor thing went through so much in barely 24 hours of life. For the most part, I enjoyed the hospital experience, being waited on hand and foot. A homebirth would have been preferable, but I was too high risk this time around. I am so grateful for Medi-Cal so it will be covered. It is a huge blessing. Mace was born very early Saturday morning and we left the hospital about 1:30 Sunday afternoon. Sunday night by ourselves was interesting, having to do everything by ourselves. Claire joined us Monday evening and Monday night was even more interesting, dealing with 2 kids. Every night has gotten better, but boy, is it an adjustment getting used to having 2 kids. It really is a mental game, keeping patience and making sure both of them get the attention they need. We are adjusting quite nicely and things seem to be running pretty smoothly. Through this whole process, I have learned and grown so much and I'm grateful for my sweet little boy. What a great blessing he is!
Friday, September 23, 2011
Sunday, September 18, 2011
Posted for your reading enjoyment by Nicole at exactly 2:37 PM
Saturday, September 10, 2011
Friday, September 2, 2011
A few weeks ago, a good friend of mine threw me an awesome baby shower. If I had had another girl, I would have hardly needed anything, but since I'm having a boy, I didn't have much. Thank goodness I already had gender neutral big things such as car seat, bassinet, etc., but I had hardly any clothes and necessities. I am so grateful for generous people who gave me gifts not only at the shower, but at church and elsewhere. Thanks to everyone who made this shower so special and to all who have supported me throughout this pregnancy! I am truly blessed!
Posted for your reading enjoyment by Nicole at exactly 10:30 AM