Birth story

It’s so weird not to have baby Henry in my belly anymore. The other night, I fell asleep on the recliner and he fell asleep next to me in his swing. I woke up a couple hours later in a panic because my belly wasn’t there anymore. Then I looked over and saw him there. Phew. I was just so used to being pregnant and it felt like it was never going to end.

Wanna hear my birth story? It’s a doozy.

I checked in on Sunday, Dec. 16 to be induced. I was not thrilled to be getting induced because I’ve heard awful horror stories. The first day and night sucked. The cervical checks ARE THE MOST PAINFUL THING IN THE ENTIRE WORLD. Every time they’d come to check me, I’d literally scream in agony. It was kinda pathetic. Finally, I told mean Doctor that I’m not doing another one until I get an epidural. She told me I was only 4 cm dilated and she didn’t want to give me an epidural yet.

heartrate

During the night, I had to pee every hour on the hour. Chris had to walk the IV thingy with me to the bathroom each time with my ass hanging out. This is how I know he loves me unconditionally. He never once complained.

painDuring the long, miserable night.

The next morning, after a VERY long, painful night of contractions, and 24 hours after I checked in, a blonde angel walked into my room. She told me that she was the nurse for MY doctor and without even asking me (just witnessing how miserable I was), already called and got authorization for an epidural. I was never more relieved. The anesthesiologist missed the first time and it hurt like hell. The second time he did it, I barely felt it and it was fine.

That day and night, I was trying to be as positive as possible. I was making lots of progress, getting up to 8 cm dilated and 100% effaced. But the pitocin they had been pumping into my veins for 36 hours just weren’t getting my contractions strong enough to push Henry out. The night nurse did everything she could to help; putting me in weird positions and sticking an oxygen mask on my face. These methods actually did help — just not enough. Blood was pouring into my catheter because little Henry’s head was hitting my bladder with every contraction. At this point, it was closing in on 48 hours of labor.

The next morning, the doctor came in and told me they wanted to give me a c-section RIGHT THEN. They had a scheduled section, so I was getting in that OR immediately. I was so scared. I wanted anything but a c-section. I asked if we could wait a while since I was already so far along, but the contractions were too dangerous to keep inducing.

nervousdaddy

 

Chris told me later how scared he was, even though he put on his best game face. I would be nervous, too. Not knowing what was going on and sitting in the same room as my spouse was being operating on and my child being delivered. But look at this cute picture he took of himself. Makes me smile.

As I was laying on the operating table, the big light above me was reflecting onto my belly. I couldn’t feel anything, but I could see them pinching me as a test, and then THE SLICE. I told the anesthesiologist  who was next to me the whole time, that I didn’t really want to see that, so could they just move it a little. The man told me most women want to see that. WHAT? Who are these crazy ass women? They had to take out my uterus to irrigate it since the contractions had beat it up pretty bad. Could you imagine watching them take out an organ and cleaning it? YOUR ORGAN? Ugh.

operation“Oh so hey, what are your plans for Christmas?” “Not much, just got some family in town.” – the surgeons as they are pulling my baby out.

I was pretty scared and couldn’t stop shaking. Like I said in my last post, Chris was amazing. Chris was amazing the entire time, but I couldn’t have gone through that operation without him. Just talking to me about our new baby and how we’ve wanted that for so long. When Henry was delivered, and I heard him cry, the tears just poured out of my face. Like someone flipped a switch and they just came streaming out. It was the best sound I’ve ever heard. Then I heard our nurse say, “He looks just like Chris!” He really does look just like Chris, too.

babyhenry1

 

Henry was born at 7:58 am on Dec. 18, 2012. He was 7 lb 10 oz and 19.75″ long. Perfect.

babynurseGetting a clean bill of health.

 

Chris was also very emotional. But when they told him he could cut the cord, he jumped up and wiped off the tears. I could just hear excitement as he walked over and said, “Hi baby boy! It’s your daddy!” Yeah, so then I cried harder.

It sucks that like 5 people got to hold my baby before I did. Even Chris had to feed him first because I was shaking so hard from the surgery. I had a (hormonal induced) breakdown in front of a nurse because it should have been ME to feed him first. ME to change his first diaper. You get the idea. She hugged me and reminded me that I just had major surgery and not to beat myself up.

mamaandbaby

 

When I finally did get to hold him, the feeling was amazing. The fact that I hadn’t showered in two days and was swollen to the max didn’t matter. All that mattered was that he was here safe and sound and with all his fingers and toes.

skintoskin(Not-so-glamorous) Mama and baby doing a little skin to skin time.

footprintsGetting his footprints.

The recovery area at the hospital was nice and baby stayed by us the entire time. The only downside is it’s impossible to sleep in hospitals. A nurse comes in every hour (or more). There are other random people coming by (“Hi! Just wanted to give you a pen!”, etc) and techs coming by to get your vitals. My husband is also a snorer, but he slept upright for me so I could get some sleep. He still snored, just not as loudly. Again, true love.

exhausted dady

I had 20 extra pounds of fluids in my body by the time we were discharged. I was swollen from head to toe. I didn’t even have shoes I could wear out! I had to wear Chris’s slippers. I’ve since lost all of the weight I gained during pregnancy plus five extra pounds (so that’s around 50 pounds), and two weeks after delivery, I feel great. My incision doesn’t hurt and losing the weight has made things much easier.

Now I just get to enjoy baby Henry, and that’s what I’m trying to do. I nurse A LOT (he lost a little too much weight waiting for my milk to come in, so I’m playing catch up — another blog on that later). The good news is, he’s a champion sleeper, so I get about 4-5 hours a night of broken up sleep. A couple nights here and there, he’s fussier than usual and I only get an hour or two. But it’s worth it. Look at this face! Of course it’s worth it.

babyhenry2

 

 

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Dear Henry

Dear Henry,

Only a few more days until you’re here! I can’t even begin to tell you how excited we are. By we, I mean everyone. Your family, your friends, people I used to work with. Your little life is a much celebrated one (making your mama feel very lucky and blessed).

The doctor told me today that if you don’t come on your own by December 16, then she’s going to evict you. The eviction process is long and painful (but hopefully no Sheriff’s Department involved), so if you could find it in your heart to come before then, I’d appreciate it.

Of course, I also just want you to take your time. Stay in there as long as possible because once you’re out, you’ll probably want to go back in. It’s so warm and cozy in there, huh? On the other hand, the odds that you’d be born on my Grandma Knapp’s birthday will be good if we have to coax you out of there. So, really, whatever works for you.

I can’t wait to hold you and kiss your face. I become a crying mess when I just think about how much I already love you. Your mom is a nutcase, I know.

Anyway, we’re ready for you and waiting. We have your room all set up, a car seat installed, a stroller to push you around, a swing to help you sleep, and so much more. You’ve got it made, kid. Do you have any idea how many onesies you own? A lot.

Also, be prepared to be the center of attention for a while. Hope you’re cool with that.

Love you more than words on a blog could ever express,

Mom

Beauty is intimidating.

Went to my weekly OB appointment this morning. First things first: if you’re pregnant and haven’t had your cervix checked for dilation, just know that it’s incredibly painful. Especially when your petite doctor has tiny little hands.

I am not dilated at all despite all of the Braxton Hicks contractions. Doctor says that’s normal and is no indication of when the baby will come. She’s seen women go from zero to 10 overnight. Some don’t ever dilate on their own. So we’ll see.

The perinatologist ended up putting me on medication. Sigh. This means induction (unless baby wants to do mommy a huge favor and come on his own). My OB told me that the perinatologist might choose to induce me NEXT week. If they don’t, she will induce me the following week. The perinatologist will be calling me tomorrow to discuss. At this point, if they are going to induce, they should let me pick the date. I’m going to push for a Wednesday so we could be home by the weekend. (I’m half joking, ok?)

Saying-just-kidding

My last day of work is Friday. This is bringing up all kinds of mixed emotions, mainly excitement and anxiety. I will have to write a separate blog on my anxiety. When it’s all said and done, however, I know that my life is just about to become even more beautiful than it already is. Infinitely more beautiful. I’m going to have my own little family. Whoa.

And I can’t wait.

 

Packin’ Up.

I have a feeling this baby is coming soon.

First of all, he is looooow. He keeps moving further and further down, making walking or standing for me EXTREMELY uncomfortable. The Braxton Hicks are ridic and getting to the point to where I start to wonder if I’m really in labor. In all honesty, as uncomfortable as I am, I really hope he stays in there a couple more weeks. My last day of work is this Friday. I’d like to have some time at home, resting, and doing some last minute prep. I am fully aware that once baby comes, all “me” time is out the window for a while. Just a couple days of laying in the recliner and watching season 2 of Downton Abbey on Hulu Plus would be cool.

In preparation, we finally put all of his washed clothes away (they’ve been folded…and sitting in the crib for roughly two weeks thanks to colds and general exhaustion).

clothes_cribOk, not all of them were folded.

baby clothes foldedNow they’re nice and folded and ready to be worn by a cute baby.

We are getting the bags packed and ready to go and we’re doing some cleaning the house today. I bought the breast pump, got some nursing bras, and the baby has more crap than he (or anyone) needs.

baby bagHenry’s baby bag for the hospital. Got some sleeping gowns, a couple onesies, an outfit to come home in, mittens, socks, a little hat, a swaddler, and a blanket. 

diaper bag 1

diaper bag 2I got this bag years ago as a gift from a client of mine. I gave it to Chris, but he never really used it. It’s a perfect diaper bag because it means Chris will freely carry it around shame-free, and I honestly hate most diaper bags on the market. I bought a $10 fold out portable changing mat and stuck it in there. It’s got lots of pockets, too, so bonus.

Even if baby doesn’t come on his own soon, he’ll be here around Dec. 17 regardless. My blood sugars were doing ok…then my morning fasting numbers started to creep up. I told my OB and she told me if my perinatologist (who is monitoring me monthly as well) puts me on meds, they will induce me on or before Dec. 17. I really don’t want to be induced, I’ve heard such horror stories. So far, the perinatologist has NOT put me on medication (because the dose would be really low — half of the lowest dose from the pharmacy. Meaning, I’d have to physically cut each pill in half before I take it). He doesn’t see the point. But, we’ll see. I’m sure I’ll find out more tomorrow.

So, we’re physically ready. When do I become mentally ready? I felt like this pregnancy was going so slow. Now, it’s going by too fast. Ah!