Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Wesley Sage: A birth story, part 3

We arrive at the hospital and are escorted upstairs to labor and delivery. Amy joined us in the lobby and I have rarely been happier to see someone. I really needed the support of her presence in the hospital.

You see, one of the main reasons why I wanted, thought I needed, a home birth was because of fear. Fear of not being able to resist the temptation of "pain relief" that was at hand in the hospital. Fear of not begin able to control what is determined medically necessary by a medical doctor.

I needed the support of someone who understood what I wanted and would help me achieve that, without me having to tell her what to do or say. Amy was that person for me.

Shortly after we got up to the room, the L&D nurse came in and immediately started attaching monitors, telling me to strip down to the hospital gown, pee in a cup, and she'd be right back in with my IV line. No offense to nurses, but it was all very business-like and procedure for them, whereas this was the loss of a dream for me along with the excitement of a new life. When I asked why I needed the IV line, the nurse had no clue other than to say, "we just do it for everyone". Procedure. Medically necessary. That was what I had become.

The IV line went in, along with antibiotics since I had not been tested for GBS+ and we were planning on and had been treating me at home as though I were positive. The monitors went on and I was to be monitored for at least 30 minutes. Luckily, the baby's heartbeat was healthy and strong and until the nurse checked my cervix, there was no concern about a C-section at this point.

My contractions were still going strong, although I had long since abandoned my droid contraction timer app. My water continued to leak in large gushes all over the floor and, I inevitably gave up on wearing my own clothes for this labor as I kept ruining my pants and I only brought two pairs. Wearing my own clothes was my personal way of trying to maintain my labor and my birth. Every time I went to pee, I felt a huge burst of pressure and a small urge to push.

The nurse came back in about 45 minutes later and checked my cervix to find that the baby was indeed head down, and I was dilated to 6-7 and almost fully effaced. The first ray of light in a dreary place! I might have already made it to the transition phase and just need to push through the next few hours until I would have my baby in my arms! I was excited!

Ken's dad took over for my mom with the kids so she could come be at the hospital with me and Ken's mom arrived as well. We walked the halls for awhile until I felt that I couldn't walk anymore and needed to just hold onto something, breathe through each contraction and sway back and forth. For some reason this helped me relax through each contraction. I reached a point where I basically stopped talking all together and just concentrated on what my body was doing.

A little while later, I had a huge urge to push and thought, "this is it! I remember this part with Grey." We called the nurse back in and she checked me again and said the last thing I wanted to hear: "you're still a seven."

For some reason, that really psyched me out to the point where I was scared to stand and walk around because it brought on a huge amount of pressure and then the urge to push, even though I knew that it wasn't time for that yet. So, I opted to sit down on a stool or on the edge of the bed and continued swaying back and forth.

I don't know if it was my sitting down, or an unconscious reaction to my hearing, "you're still a seven" but my contractions really slowed down in intensity and timing. Around one o'clock, I decided to lay down and try to get some rest in between contractions. Ken, my mom and Amy were all taking cat naps and falling asleep while sitting down and with the lights down low, it was a natural reaction to just rest. I told myself I would need the energy when it came time to push.

Really, it just delayed my labor and set back all of the hard work I had done up to that point. When my doctor came in around seven the next morning and checked my cervix, I was down to a 5-6. I was pretty dejected at this point, exhausted and hurting. And of course, then came the words that I dreaded most at that point: "pitocin".

Within 30 minutes, I was hooked up to an internal fetal monitor, two belly monitors that kept falling off all night, an IV line and a constant pit drip. I kept thinking to myself, "I'm not going to be able to do this" as I rolled out of bed and took up my standing laboring position.


1 comment:

Jennifer said...

Brandi- I'm just in tears! I'm sure that this was extremely devastating to say the least. My worst nightmare. However, I do have to say...no pain meds...with PIT? Holy cow, super woman! That's dedication! I can't wait for the next installment and I can't wait for pics of your little guy up here on the blog. God bless you and your family.