Monday, May 17, 2010

A story of birth

Drew was born early on a chilly, overcast morning on May 11, 2010. I had been having irregular contractions for a few days but nothing terribly painful. The last day though, was a doozy. I was an emotional wreck. I’d finally reached the point where I had determined I would be pregnant forever. This baby felt MUCH too big to be in my belly and I wasn’t able to sleep more than half hour stretches at a time without waking up to turn over or use the bathroom.

So that night, I took a bath and started the book Zach got me for Mothers Day. I was trying to relax so I could fall asleep more easily. I got into bed around 10:30 and decided to watch a little bit of a movie before I fell asleep. Around 10:50 I felt a little pop in my abdomen. I thought it might be my water but I felt down there and didn’t feel any liquid. So I figured it was a gas bubble. But a few seconds later I felt a gush. I jumped out of bed so I wouldn’t ruin our brand new mattress and ran to the bathroom. I called to Zach and told him my water just broke and that we needed to get to the hospital.

Of course I hadn’t packed a bag yet. Zach had actually told me before I got in the tub that I really should pack a bag. But having already decided I was going to be pregnant forever I had brushed off his suggestion.

We sort of ran around like chickens with our heads cut off tossing things into our little suitcases. Luckily my Aunt Wende lives just a few blocks away so I got a hold of her to come and stay with a sleeping Franky while my mom got her stuff ready and made the half hour trip to our house.

Then we left for the hospital. I’d had a couple of painful contractions at the house that only lasted a few seconds but once we got to Bangerter highway they really picked up. By the time we reached the hospital I was contracting every 4 minutes for about a minute each time and I couldn’t talk through them.

We found our way to labor and delivery and were admitted. I remember the nurse asking me my pain level and telling her I was at about a 7 out of 10 during the peak of my contractions. By this time I was contracting for about a minute or more every two or three minutes. She got my IV started and checked me and I was dialated to a three. I was a little bummed out but knew I was getting an epidural soon and that after I was comfortable they could start pitocin and get things moving like we had with my first pregnancy.

The anethstesiologist was called and I was told I would probably have my epidural in within thirty minutes. By this time my contractions had intensified. I was at a 10 in pain for most of each contraction. I had to really concentrate to breathe and not just start crying uncontrollably or full on freaking out. With each contractions as I breathed in through my nose I would flex my feet and then point my toes as I blew my breath out. I remember this really helped when I was laboring with Franky and it was a good trick this time around as well.

Finally after about half an hour the doctor arrived to administer my epidural. He was very sweet and would say "okay, my friend" and "here we go, my friend." He made small talk with Zach while he prepped me. He actually knew a bunch of people from Zach’s home town and listening to them name drop really helped keep my mind off the intense pain of my contractions for some reason. The doc got my epidural in pretty quickly and I immediately felt the intensity of each contraction lessen. This was immensely comforting and I started to relax a little bit.

My epidural this time around was a bit different from last time. The first go round I was so drugged up I couldn’t move my legs at all and I couldn’t feel the contractions at all or where I was directing my pushing. This time around my legs were numb but I could still move them a bit and I could actually tell when I was having a contraction, although I still couldn’t feel any pain.

I was able to sleep for about an hour when the nurse came in to check my progress. She was very surprised to see that I was already dilated to an 8 and she went to call my doctor. At that point I was unable to sleep anymore because I knew the baby would be born very soon. She came back about half an hour later and announced that I was complete and could start pushing.

I pushed a couple of times to bring the baby’s head down. Zach was by my side the entire time supporting one of my legs while I pushed. It was such a different sensation being able to direct the efforts of my pushing. After a few sets of pushes Dr. Twede arrived and told me we were very close to having this baby. I pushed through two more contractions and could feel his head coming out. I started to feel very emotional and wanting to cry but I told myself I had a job to do and I could cry as soon as we got him out. So I bore down and during the next contraction our baby was born.

They put him on my chest for a minute or two and Zach cut the cord. Then they took him over to the scale and weighed him. He was SCREAMING. I don’t remember Franky screaming that loudly right after birth. It was so sad. I’m sure he was cold and he was just freaking out. He was 7 lbs 15 oz and 19 inches long. After he was weighed the nurse poked him a few times and got his footprints. As she was putting his little hat on he peed all over her. It was really funny and I remember thinking “that’s what you get for making him scream like that.”

After she got him wrapped up she gave him to Zach and he stopped crying immediately. I was still getting stitched up so I just watched them bond for a few minutes and then Zach brought him over to me. I remember before he was born worrying that I wouldn’t or couldn’t love another baby as much as I love Franky. But that was not a thought in my mind as I looked into his little face. He was perfect and beautiful and I couldn’t stop touching his hair and his little squished ears and nose.

As soon as the doctor was done stitching me up and me and baby were clean and in bed, the nurse asked if I’d like to try and nurse. I tried for a minute but he wouldn’t latch. So the nurse put her (gloved) finger in his mouth and let him play with it. After a couple of minutes he started sucking and we knew he was ready. After that he latched right away and has been a great nurser ever since.

Recovery this time around has been so much quicker and I attribute that to the fact that this time around my labor was only four hours long with twenty minutes of pushing, where the first time I was in labor for fourteen hours and pushed for nearly two hours.

Baby Drew has been a dream and we couldn't be happier.

love, ali

1 comment:

Katie said...

Congrats Ali! He's beautiful :)