Friday, January 13, 2006

Long Overdue Birth Story

My original EDD was 11/25. Due the fact that we pretty much know when I conceived, that date was pretty accurate. On Friday 12/2 I went to the Dr. for my 41 week appt. The baby was still up high and my cervix had done nothing. The Dr. scheduled my next appt for Monday 12/5 where he said we would start discussing a plan as he doesn’t let his patients go past 42 weeks. He said we would start with Cervidil to ripen my cervix and go from there. Of course I was less then thrilled that we might have to induce labor, but after doing some research on Cervidil it didn’t seem that bad and our Doula agreed that it was a fairly low tech approach to start with.

I went to my Appt on Monday at 11:45 and they hooked me up to the fetal monitors. I could feel the baby moving and the monitor was even registering some contractions which felt pretty much like Braxton Hicks, just a lot of tightening. I was happy to see that and hoped my exam would show some change. After awhile the nurse came in and said the Dr. had to leave on an emergency, and asked if I could come back at 1:30. When I came back at 1:30 they did my exam and there was no difference. My cervix was still high and tight. The Dr. also said he didn’t get the info he was looking for the first time on the monitor and wanted to hook me up again. After awhile he checked on me and said he still didn’t see what he wanted and asked that I go over to the hospital for monitoring. They hooked me up and gave me some juice to help the little bugger start shakin. Finally at 5:00 the nurse came back in and said she could see the accels, they weren’t as great as they would like, but that everything seemed to be fine and she sent me home.

Early the next morning, 12/3, I woke up at about 2:00am and felt kind of weird, but I went to the bathroom and went back to bed. At about 6:00 I woke up again with the period like cramps everyone kept telling me about. I tried to dismiss them thinking it was just in my head and tried to go back to sleep. About 20 minutes later it felt like the baby punched me hard, low in my pelvis. I tried to turn over and thought “oh no”, jumped up and ran to the bathroom. Sure enough my water had broken. I talked to my sister and she said the contractions would come on really strong now. I decided not to head L&D, but to try to rest some, eat, and take a shower. At 11:30 we finally left for the hospital but my “contractions” were nothing, even after my water being broken for 4 hrs.

I was admitted to the hospital at 12:30PM where they hooked me up to the monitors and checked to see if I had in fact broken my water, which I had. Immediately they hooked me up to an IV. They watched the monitor and could see my contractions, but they were very sporadic and weak. The Dr. came by and said they he would like to start Pitocin to get my contractions coming on stronger. I asked if there was any thing else we could do like walking and he said if I was a little more dilated that he would suggest that, but because I was so closed and the baby was still high, that he didn’t see that helping. He left to give us some time to talk. When the nurse came back she again didn’t notice the accels she would like to see with his movements. They decided to give me some sugar water through the IV and turn me on my side but that didn’t help and a bit later they gave me oxygen. We explained to the nurse that I wanted to try as natural as possible and asked her if I would be able to get out of bed and use the ball during contractions. She kind of giggled and said if we can get you stable and your labor going, you can do whatever you want. Because my water was already broken they could no longer start with Cervidil so we started discussing Pitocin. The Doula, Connie, said some women just need a little push and the nurse said she would turn off the Pitocin as soon as I started having regular contractions, so we finally agreed.

While we were waiting for the Dr. to come back to start Pitocin Connie and I insisted Rachel go get something to eat. While she was gone the nurse did another internal to try and “scratch” the babies head to get a response and see if I was still leaking fluid. She said the bag could have folded over on itself causing the bag around the baby to in essence still be intact. WOW did that make me jump off the table. She was really nice and apologized profusely. She left and when she came back she sat next to the bed and said I wanted to wait until Rachel came back, when in walks Rach, perfect timing. The nurse continues…We’ve been watching you for three hours and we’re still not seeing the accels we would like to see, even after everything we’ve done, his heart rate was pretty flat, meaning no heart accelerations during his movements. I just tried to tickle his head and as you can tell it nearly killed you for me to do the exam. The Dr. is on his way, but I wanted to prepare you, I think he will suggest we do a c-section. I just looked away and lost it. She said honey, the dr will check you and may say something different, but I just wanted to let you know because the baby isn’t responding the way we would like.

Sure enough, when the Dr. came in he didn’t even do an exam and just explained the same info. I asked about the Pitocin and he said we could try that, but that there was no guarantee that after ten hours of hard labor that there would be any change. He said I had been monitored for over 3 hrs, my water had been broken for 9hrs and there had been no change. He thought the Pitocin might put the baby in distress and that would make or break it. He said if it came to that we might end up in an emergency situation. He again left to give us some time, he was really great.

Rachel left for a second to use the bathroom which I found out later she had gone to cry herself because she felt bad for telling me, at an earlier time, that she really didn’t want me to have a c/s. She came back and we talked about it. I was really upset but Rach and Connie were very supportive. I explained to them that it was just a loss and I needed to come to grips with it and that I didn’t even get a chance to try. Once I got over that I started worrying about the babies health. I asked but they said they couldn’t tell one way or another if he was in serious distress. While we were talking Rachel said she just had a feeling that it’s what needed to do so we agreed on the c/s. They immediately got me prepped and we headed for the OR.

While I was getting my spinal the nurse was holding me telling me if I was her daughter, who was actually due in a month, that she would have insisted she do the c/s. As they prepped me I know Rach was outside pacing the floor. As the surgery started they called her in. We were so frazzled about the quick change in plans that we completely forgot to bring a camera, which I regret. Fortunately we do have a voice recording of the surgery. Within about 20 minutes our son was on his way out and the Dr. told Rachel stand up and look. When she did she said the cord was around his neck twice and his shoulder once, a picture she says will be engrained in her memory forever. As soon as he was out he was screaming and healthy. The Dr. said he was extremely happy we had decided to do the c/s because he wasn’t sure that the outcome would have been good otherwise. This helped me to cope a little bit better with the outcome.

Our son, Justus Ryan was born at 5:48PM, only 11hrs after my water broke. He was 6lbs 14oz, 19 in and would have been soo easy to deliver vaginally had he just cooperated. We should have known he was a little pill when he hid the first time the Dr. tried to find his heartbeat at our 14wk appt. But, he was healthy and that’s all that really matters. His Apgars were 8 at both checks.

The next morning my dr. came into the room and said “how mad are you at me”? I said Dr. Langley, I’m not mad at you. The baby’s healthy and I’ll recover. Even though my birth went nothing like I wanted, it really was a good experience. The nurse was great and my Dr. was exceptional since he gave us time to talk and decide. He knew I wanted to go as natural as possible. Well heck I just threw natural childbirth out the window.

I was in the hospital for 4 days, but that’s a story for another time as are my feelings about the cesarean.


stephanie said...

My doctor's name is also Langley. He is the most awesome doctor I have ever met. He suggested a c/s with both my children because I was too small and my babies were too big for me to deliver naturally. I did have the option to be induced at 39 weeks with my daughter, but when he said my pelvic bones were too narrow, I was just scared to even try. I am thankful now that I didn't because I have two healthy babies and would have ended up with an emergency c/s had I tried to deliver naturally.

seasonalkat said...

I can SO empathize with this. We had similar outcomes with both of my births (as you know) and it IS a loss to grieve. The best part of it is having that beautiful healthy baby boy with you. Hugs!

jeileenbaylor said...

very helpful reading your story. I am about a week overdue and going in to be induced tomorrow. Thanks for sharing!

Gordana said...

thank you so much for sharing. I think I might have to go through the same and it really helped reading about it first. Thanks. G.

Tanya said...

Thank you for all the kind words and that this post has helped some. If you find this post and want to email me directly or would like a response please leave your email. What I learned from this is be prepared for anything.