Monday, March 24, 2014

Rosie's Birth Story

My little girl is turning 2 tomorrow! I'm absolutely gobsmacked that I have a 2 year old. I just had her!

Part of the reason I got this blog was so I could actually record stuff like this, so here we go!

WARNING: THIS WILL HAVE ICKY OOZY STUFF. But no pictures of said icky ooze. Just adorableness.

When Nate and I first got married, we'd planned on using NFP to give us about a year to sort out being married. The fact that we'd bought a short sale meant that we didn't close until we'd been married for over 2 months...and spent most of that time living with his parents in a guest room right next to theirs. That certainly "helped" with the abstinence phases. However, after a few months, we shrugged and went into "meh, whatever" mode and pretty much tossed charting out the window. A few months after that, we went into actively TTC mode and I, at least, got more and more frustrated with every month passing and not having a baby. Some of it was poor timing - Nate had a kidney stone that had to be surgically extracted during a fertile time - but most of it was just bad luck. It was right before our trip to Europe that we ended up conceiving, and it was on our one-year anniversary a day or two after our return that I got a positive pregnancy test.

"Nate Nate Nate! I something to show you!" "Ugh, can you just tell me?" "No, you have to seeeeee it!" - real conversation at 5:30 am, July 23, 2011.

Now, I've only been hungover once, and it was about 2 months before I got pregnant, and it was so awful that I swore I would never do it again. I kept that promise, but the first half, really, of the pregnancy was like being perpetually hungover. I lost weight from all the puking (every day at least once, sometimes twice); I was nauseated till about noon (on more than one occasion, I pulled a trash can over to me while I was teaching and said that I wasn't feeling well and that this would be for "just in case," half the time, the kids would scootch away, and since this was a 95% male class, I would giggle inside as I told them that I was very definitely not contagious); I was exhausted and just wanted to sleep and would actually pass out on the couch after dinner (which was usually something like frozen pizza because I had no energy to cook), wake up around midnight, drag myself upstairs, pee, and go back to sleep until my alarm went off, and then I'd wake up to do it all over again. Frankly, I felt like I was run over by a Mack truck all day, every day. I never really got the energy surge I was promised in the second trimester, and by the time I got to about 8 months I was done with pregnancy. I hate hate hated it.

I knew from all of my reading (I'm a research fanatic when it comes to new experiences - I REALLY don't like surprises) that, as a first timer, I would probably go past my due date. The one from the confirmation ultrasound was March 28, the conception date was March 27, and the 20w ultrasound was March 24, so I was psyching myself up for an April baby just to make sure that I didn't drive myself crazy if I passed all of them.

EDD: 3/28/2012. Also known as "we just shot a dart at a board and this was what we got."

On March 23, I went to "Wind Lit Class" - really, a band director drinking group - and a fellow preggo told in utero Rosie to be nice to me and come out soon. I laughed and went home, not really thinking much of it, especially since my doctor's appointment that week hadn't revealed anything interesting (maybe 1 cm dilated?) and we'd gone walking around the Tidal Basin to see the cherry blossoms with zero issues. That night, I stayed up a little bit on my computer and Freya, instead of going upstairs with Nate like she usually did, stayed with me. It was a little weird, but I didn't think much of it.

So warm that month that the cherry blossoms were out in force on March 19 and a pregnant lady was wearing a tank top to walk around.

I think she knew something I didn't, though, because at 5:30 the next morning, I woke up, went to the bathroom, and saw spotting and some watery discharge. I woke up Nate and told him we might have to call the doctor. After an hour of me kind of freaking out a bit, even though I felt zero contractions, I decided to make myself breakfast (scrambled egg and cheese sandwich on toast and chocolate milk) and call the doctor while he took Freya on a walk. Dr. Pereira was on call and after she heard my description, she said, "Well, the only way to know for sure is if you come in and we test it."

Hmm. "Well, ok. Can I take a shower first?"

"Of course!"

So I took a nice, long shower and took advantage of the opportunity to shave - if I WAS going to have to give birth, I was going to make sure I was at least presentable. Nate and I packed bags, even though I was almost positive we were just going to be sent home, and loaded up the car and headed to the hospital. We called our families and told them, "Hey, just to give you a heads up, we're heading to the hospital. We're probably going to be sent home, but we just wanted to let you know."

I don't necessarily remember what was on the radio while we drove over, but I do remember saying, "No! This song is awful! I don't want to remember driving to the hospital to have my baby with this song playing!"

We parked and started walking to the hospital. It was cloudy and starting to drizzle (it ended up storming later). We made our way to L&D, rang the buzzer, and when the nurse answered and asked why were there, I responded, "I might be in labor?" Clearly, we were going to be laughed at and sent home.

So I went into triage and the nurse came in, gave me a gown to change into, hooked me up to monitors, and checked me. She said that I was only about 2 cm dilated and about 90% effacted, but I was actually having contractions about seven minutes apart. Really?? I couldn't really feel them! This labor thing was going to be a breeze! She also took a swab for the test and left to take it to the lab.

Nate and I sat, twiddling our thumbs, until Dr. Fisk came in and said, "Well, the swab tested positive for amniotic fluid, which means you get a pass to stay." Wait, really? Hmm...

At this point, it was probably close to 9:30 and I was starting to get hungry and kicked myself for not eating on the way over. As we got set up in our new room, the nurses were saying that there were a few of us with leaks in, possibly because of the weather. We called our families back to tell them we were being admitted and could you please go get Freya and take her to your house? We also called or texted some friends.Throughout the day, my family, his parents, and my whole group of bridesmaids ended up coming and visiting, which was very nice. My sister did laps with me to try and get labor going faster, including a bizarre little dance at every other corner, and at 12:30 I was practically begging the doctor to let me go till 5:30 pm, the 12-hour mark, before having to go on Pitocin. I'd wanted a natural birth and I knew that the only reason there would be a risk of infection for ruptured membranes is if I kept getting checked, but since I'd been checked multiple times already, I was kind of between a rock and a hard place.

Nate was between a cranky pregnant woman and a mirror. And sleeping. Frequently.

5:30 came. My contractions were no stronger and I was still at only 2 cm. Pitocin it was. I somehow managed to convince them to not crank it up as much as they were supposed to until there was a shift change, and the new nurse kept upping the dosage and told a horror story about how she was pretty much dying during the birth of her own kid and they had to bring in a crash cart. Thanks, lady. Just what I wanted to hear while in labor.

For some reason I didn't like March 24 as much as March 25, so when midnight rolled around, Nate and I watched the clock flip over and I was kind of happy that Rosie had held off coming, though still wasn't happy about having to deal with the Pitocin.

Of course, the contractions were getting stronger and closer together (thanks, artificial oxytocin!), but Nate was fading. On more than one occasion, I remember going through a contraction and practically slapping him awake. He also had to take off his ring because I was squeezing his hand in such a way that I was seriously hurting him. I had some pretty awful back labor- I felt like I was being stabbed right through my spine - and the nurse suggested I go into a position on all fours with my butt in the air to try and help. It didn't. By 3:30 am, I was only at 4-5 cm, and I couldn't take it anymore, but didn't want a full epidural, so they offered a drug to help take the edge off. It didn't dull the pain at all - it just made me hallucinate. I remember a contraction coming and thinking, "Oh, this is the cowboy one," and having some kind of weird correlated chart (like, 5 elephants, 6 clowns, 7 frogs, 8 cowboys - I'm telling you, that drug didn't help at all).

About 15 minutes later, my water broke. I was lying in the bed, Nate dozing off, when all of a sudden I felt like I'd popped a joint in my back and stuff just started GUSHING. I hit the call button.


"Something's wrong! Something's gushing!"

So a nurse came in and said, "Oh, your water broke."

"I was told my water had already broken!"

"You probably just had a small leak and the baby's head plugged the hole. Now it's actually broken."

At this point, I was fed up and wishing I'd just kept my mouth shut and stayed home longer. I was tired and cranky and in pain so intense I'd thrown up twice (not that it was anything more than gross popsicles and apple juice). So I gave up and asked for an epidural. The anesthesiologist came in probably 30-45 minutes later and somehow managed to get the line in between my intense shaking.

I have to say, that epidural felt great. I was able to relax and take a nap, which was awesome since it had been about 24 hours since I'd slept. Nate was able to rest without a wife resenting him, too, so that's a bonus.

Around 6:15, I woke up. I rang the nurse.


"I feel like I need to poo, which I'm pretty sure means I need to push."

"Ok, I'll be right there."

She came in and said, "All right, the next time you feel the urge to push, go ahead and push and we'll see if it's effective."

I didn't realize that would mean that she would stick a hand up the hoo-ha to check. Let me just say that having something going up there when you're trying to get a baby out is...unpleasant.

Good news was that the pushing was indeed effective, so she went to tell the doctor. Soon afterwards. Dr. Fisk came in and everyone started getting things set up for the actual birth part.

About an hour later, at 7:34 am on Sunday, March 25, 2012, roughly 26 hours after I woke up, little Theresa Rose came screaming into the world. Dr. Fisk actually started everyone singing "Happy Birthday."

Very first picture of Rosie ever.

There are more little bits from after the birth ("How many stitches are you putting in?" "Uh...we don't really count for things like this...") that were kind of funny or interesting, but this has been a long enough entry as it is.

Happy Birthday, baby girl.

1 comment:

  1. Seriously, so much like John Paul's birth! And Dr. Fisk even delivered him! Happy birthday to Rosie :)