Mini Cooper's birth story
Saturday August 22nd we spent the day with good friends at a birthday party. It was a beautiful, cool day and we were all tuckered out when we got home. DS and I layed down for about a 2 hour nap. When I woke up, I thought I might be leaking fluid, but I had wondered that before so I just decided to keep an eye on it.
My MIL called after our nap to let us know that she and my FIL were coming to visit my BIL & SIL that night and would come to see us the next day. With 2 kids under 4 our house is in constant post tornado status so we all spent the next little while picking up.
When we were done, I told DH that I thought I might be leaking and thought I might be having mild contractions. He suggested I go and lie down, and eventually I did. I layed there a little while and all of a sudden I was no longer leaking fluid-it broke! It was everywhere too!!
So, we called back his MIL and FIL and asked if they would like to come and stay at our house instead of going to my BIL & SIL's so that we could go to the hospital. They came over as well as my BIL, SIL and nephew and everyone hung out and talked while I tried to get contractions to come stronger and more regularily.
My water broke around 7 in the evening on Saturday, and though some contractions started even right away, they were very mild and not regular at all. So, DH and I took a couple walks, I did some cleaning and laundry, and tried a few other things to get something going because I did not want Pitocin.
I had decided that even if the contractions werent regular I was going to go to the hospital around 12 just to make sure that baby was okay, and if that ment I ended up with Pitocin, I knew I had at least tried.
At about 11:45 my DS was still not asleep. He was very confused by all the excitement and it had kept him awake. So, I went in the very quiet living room and sat with him to put him to sleep. Finally quiet and very relaxed, he fell asleep and I started having good contractions. So, my DH and my mom headed off to the hospital.
I got to the hosptial at about 1am on the 23rd. The nurse came and got us and took me up to L&D-into the same room that I had given birth to our older DD in 4 years prior.
My contractions seemed to have fizzled out a bit, but the monitor did pick them up. I was checked, verified that my waters had broken and they told me I was 4 centimeters dialated. I told my nurse about my concerns for the Pitocin, and she told me after I had been on the monitors awhile I could walk/use the birthing ball, etc.
I had to stay on the monitors for 30 minutes so they could make sure baby was okay and that I was contracting. So, the nurse asked me a bunch of questions and had me fill out a bunch of papers. They drew some blood, but did not start an IV right away.
After I got off the monitors, the nurse brought me a birthing ball and showed my mom and DH a few wonderful ways to rub my back that helped tremendously! I stayed down there for a good 45 minutes and then had to get back in the bed for some monitoring. I didnt have to stay there too long. The nurse let me sit up or on the ball as much as I wanted to. I had the monitors on most of the time, but sometimes it was only picking up my heart rate if I moved wrong.
At about 5, she checked me and I was at 5. I was a little frustrated that I had only gone from 1 to 5 in 4 hours, but with DS it took forever to get to 5, and then only 1 hour to get from 5 to 10 so I was hopeful. My nurse then let me get in the shower :). I HIGHLY recommend this form of pain management. It was awesome. She said I could stay for about 1/2 hour, but an hour flew past before I even knew it. Interestingly enough, I turned off the water right before my new nurse came and told me I had to get out. It was the strangest feeling, because my body was telling me I really needed to get out.
When I got out of the shower I was soooo relaxed. It was after 6am by this point and I hadnt had any sleep since my 2 hour nap 15 hours earlier and I could tell I was tired. The new nurse checked me at about 6:30 and said I was 6-7. So I felt I was progressing. I got on the birthing ball again and just zoned out. I got as close to falling asleep as you can in labor. It was great. I dont remember how long I was there, but I know that at about 10 till 8 the nurse checked me again. I knew that if I hadnt progressed I was asking for the epidural, because my body was so drained I couldnt last much longer. But, I was 8.
Since I was 6-7 at 6:30 and 8 at 8, I figured I was progressing at about 1 cen an hour and that I guess I could last about 2 more hours. I mean, really, was was 2 hours in the grand scheme of things? She didnt tell me until later that even if I had wanted something at that point, it was too late they wouldnt have given it to me. At that point I was laying on my side and trying hard to sleep. Thankfully, my body knew I was exhasted and I only had but maybe one strong contraction for about 20 minutes.
As soon as the nurse found me at 8, she started getting the room ready for delivery. I tried to tune all that out, but it did encourage me that she didnt think I would be in labor for another 2 hours. Of course she had just stepped out of the room when I realized my body was pushing and this was happening. I asked my mom to please ask my nurse to check me, and sure enough I was complete and she was coming! I told her flat out I am not pushing, but my body is and I cant stop it.
It got very busy as the nurse asked again and again for my dr to come in, but no one had seen him yet. Thankfully, he walked in right as Mini was crowning. I know I yelled a number of things in that short minute. 'What was I thinking?' and 'Get her out' are the two that came to mind. It only lasted probably 30 seconds to a minute tops, but the birth was where I totally lost control. Everyone was yelling to push, and thankfully my body did because I only remember pushing a total of 2 times, neither of which were for more then a few seconds.
But, at 8:20 am Mini Cooper was born :) She cried a few moments after she was born over on the warmer. She weighed 5 lbs 11oz and was 19 inches long. Her apgars were 8 and 9.
This is where everything was unexpectedly different from my other 2 births. With DD#1 and DS I got an epidural. With DD #1 at 7 cens and DS at 5. I could not feel to push with either one. I couldnt walk for hours after DS's birth. I certainly could not feel the placenta, the stitches, the cramping right after birth, and a whole lot of other things that you dont take into account when you have a natural childbirth. When they were born I watched in awe as they cleaned up my LO on the warmer, weighed them, took their footprints, etc. My husband, the nurses, the doctor, and I all made various comments, all laughed, took pictures, and more.
This time-afterbirth was still about ME. I could barely even care that they were cleaning Mini up. No pictures were taken of her on the scale because I wasnt paying attention and DH didnt think about it. The delivery of the placenta hurts. Getting even 3 stitches hurts. I got a shot for the stitches and that hurt, but of course it didnt completely take before the stitches were put in. The cramps right after birth hurt. And it isnt like contractions where the room is quiet, you know they are coming, and you find a zone. Its just a barage of unexpected pain in a very busy room. On top of that I was so unbelievably tired and my body was shaking from shock, tired, and cold, and I was starving. All that combined, I have to say that the afterbirth may have made the drug free birth not something I want to do again.
Recovery was overall, very very smooth. The pain killers they gave me for cramps eventually took the edge off and by day 3 the pain was pretty much gone. With every baby the cramps to shrink your uterus are worse. I knew this, but I still wasnt exactly prepared for the pain. The 3 stitches I got have not been a problem at all, which makes this the best recovery as far as that region goes.
We went home just after lunch on Monday. My MIL was still watching our other 2 kids and DS especially was a bit out of sorts from having his mommy gone. I had never left him much of anywhere in nearly a year (the church nursery, my parents, and my ILs) and had never left him overnight. So we headed home to bring some sense of normalcy to him, and to save a bit on the hospital bill as we pay 20% of our insurance bill.
Being home has been wonderful. We co-sleep so I havent been too sleep deprived, and my DH and family have been helpful at keeping my other two entertained so I could care for Mini. Breastfeeding seems to be going well. My milk came in without a hormonal breakdown YAY, and I only had to supplement a little bit the first and second nights.
We are all very happy that Mini is here. DD #1 wants to hold her all the time, and DS keeps saying 'see baby.' So overall, I think we will keep her, though DD#1 wants to know when she is getting a baby brother lol.