Friday, March 15, 2013

My Labour & Delivery Story

I can honestly say I had a fullfiling labour and delivery. Not everything went as I had hoped but overall I am happy with the experience especially because my daughter was born healthy. My labour began on Friday February 1st although I was not entirely convinced at the time that it was the real deal. Up until a week before I didn't even realize that the sensation I had thought was the baby pushing against me oddly was actually Braxton Hicks contractions (I had one during a prenatal visit with my delivery doctor and he pointed out that that was what they were). At about 5 am on the 1st I noticed that I was starting to feel more cramp-like sensations and noticed other changes as well (I won't go into details to avoid crossing into "too much information" territory. I didn't really think much of them as I knew I should expect some changes with less than a week until my due date. So on February 1st I went for a pedicure and lunch with my Mother-in-Law as we'd planned weeks before. She mentioned that my stomach shape had changed and asked how I was doing but again could only say I'd noticed some "false" contractions over the past few days.

I'd also been at the doctor the day before and was only dilated 1-2 cm so again wasn't thinking it was the real thing quite yet. At that appointment my doctor mentioned that he wouldn't be there for my delivery if I went into labour over the next week as he'd be on holidays, and further that because of my glucose intolerance he wouldn't let me go much over my due date by very much. He said that if the doctor covering for him did not decide to induce me at my next appointment (booked for my due date) then he would on the 11th or 12th.

At 1 am on Saturday February 2nd I woke up sure that the contractions were the real thing. I kept track of them for about an hour and then woke Chris up to say we should head to the hospital as they seemed to be about five minutes apart and had been for almost that full hour. We arrived at Grey Nuns and after monitoring me they decided to send me home. At that point the contractions were really not that bad; I was easily able to breathe through them. We got back home and I went back to sleep. Fast forward to 5 am and things had definitely changed. For an hour I barely kept it together experiencing incredible back and leg pain; the contractions were on top of each other and I was shaking uncontrollably. I woke Chris up again and told him to grab a towel (I was terrified my water would break in our new car). On the way back to Grey Nuns we hit every single red light; I was not impressed to say the least and even told Chris to run the light at one point (he wouldn't because the cop station was right there).

I barely changed into the hospital gown when my water broke (in a big gush like a movie). I knew then I would not be sent home. I also at this time decided to get an epidural even though I had wanted to have a natural labour and delivery with as few interventions as possible. The pain (back labour likely caused by the baby being in a posterior position) was too much - I could barely focus and don't recall even opening my eyes - and I was only 4-5 cm dilated so had a long way to go. I knew if I was going to have the strength, energy, and focus to push the baby out that I would need to be able to breathe and focus. It was the right decision and I'm happy I made it.

I received the epidural around 7:30 am. At around 8:30 am our nurse was told to go get breakfast so I asked her to check me before she went as I hadn't been checked since we arrived around 6:30 am and I'd been feeling some pressure. Turns out it was a good thing I asked - I was ready to push. Pushing was not easy nor was it intuitive. I had some great coaching and at 9:55 am our baby arrived safe and sound (the umbilical cord was around her neck but it was quickly unlooped and the baby was breathing just fine).

The baby was delivered onto my chest and it was amazing to finally hold and touch the little one I'd carried for 39 weeks. I'll never forget the doctor asking if we knew what we were having. When we said no, she unceremoniously lifted the babies leg and announced it was a girl. We couldn't have been happier. Our baby girl was/is healthy and just perfect! Our girl was small at 6lbs 9oz and 18 3/4 inches long.  The only complication I had in the whole delivery was that the doctor had to deliver my placenta by hand as my uterus had stopped contracting. This resulted in me being on an IV for the next 12 hours, which was fine.

We had 18 visitors that first day - it was a good thing we ended up having a private room. It was a blur of visitors, learning to breast feed, and just pure amazement at the little one we'd created. Since then so much has happened. She is growing so fast...but that's for another post. I'm looking forward to sharing more of our journey as she continues to grow and as I try to figure this motherhood thing out.

 One of our first photos together. 

1 comment:

  1. So beautiful... so amazing! Thank you for sharing this lovely story of the one-of-a-kind beginning of a beautiful life.

    HUGS and LOVE!