Wednesday, August 31, 2011

As promised...Peanut Boy's birth story

Date: June 2, 2010
Time: 10:49 pm
Height: 19 ½ inches
Weight: 6 lbs 12 oz

        Our induction was scheduled for June 2 at 7:30 am. Jess and I slept ok the night before, him more so than me of course. I woke up several times and thought about what a huge day it was going to be. Finally, at about 6 am I got out of bed and took a shower. I shaved my legs and tried to prepare myself for what I was sure would be a long day. I ate a good breakfast and went to try to get Jess up. He was in no hurry and of course I got emotional and cried a little, but we pulled it together and were at the hospital a little after 7:30 am. 
        We parked the car and walked together to admissions and checked in. A very nice hospital volunteer showed us to our room and I was asked to undress and pee in a cup, and of course step on the scale. I did that and I was appalled!! It turned out that the scale was calibrated wrong and it was off by 10 lbs!! I weighed 265 lbs the day Peanut Boy was born. Only 23 lbs more than the day he was conceived! I was very happy with that! So I got undressed and got into the bed and our wonderful first nurse, Liz, came in and did the intake stuff and took 15 minutes to get my IV in because I was such a weeny and let her know I hate IVs. So she took her time and got it in right the first poke. After the IV was in and we got settled, Dr Jen came in and checked me. I was still at 4 cm so she tried to rupture my waters. Right before she stuck the weird looking crochet hook thingy in me she looked up at me and said "We don't have to do this right now. You can go home and wait longer". I really wish I had taken her up on that offer. But I didn't and she ruptured my waters.

          We waited for about an hour to see if that would be enough to start contractions, but at about 9 am Liz started the Pitocin. The contractions started soon after, but were not as bad as I anticipated, yet. Jess was wonderful and did all he could to try and make me more comfortable. By about Noon the pain was really getting to me and I asked my Doula, Dr Sara, ( to come to the hospital. She was a great help. We tried using the birthing ball first. Jess was amazing and rubbed my back just how I like it with tickle fingers and light touches. Sara was also great and encouraging. We also tried walking for a while and then went back on the ball. After about 3 hours of actual contractions I was beginning to consider getting the epidural soon. At about 1:30 pm, I asked for the epidural and was told they would call the anesthesiologist, I was considering asking for narcotics first to dull the pain, but the anesthesiologist showed up pretty quickly. I have to say that the epidural hurt! I was having a contraction, my legs were shaking really bad and the blood pressure monitor was going off all at the same time!! But it was worth it. After it was in, I laid down and noticed I was only numb on one side. It was very strange! So the nurses helped me turn and get the medicine to my whole body. I was feeling great!  I got the epidural at about 2 pm and I contracted painlessly while Jess and I chatted with the nurses, Patty (MIL), Grandma Jan (GMIL), my mom, my Aunt Florence and my neice Olivia, who all stopped by to visit.

        At shift change we got an awesome new nurse, Racheal, and she checked my cervix. I was dilated to almost 10 cm!!! I was almost time to push!!! This was at about 5 pm, I think. The nurses had me labor down for about an hour and turned the epi down a little so I would be able to feel when it was time to push.This didn't really work. I remained almost completely numb, and dumb me didn't say anything about it. At about 6 pm I started pushing. It was really hard work, but everyone was amazing and encouraging me to keep it up. I would push with all my might and try to hold my breath, but if I looked at Jess I would just start giggling. It was strange, but I’m a nervous giggler and every time I looked at him it would just come out. I pushed and pushed!In between pushes I talked to my best friend Cindy on the phone.

         After about two hours the epidural seemed to have completely worn off. I was back in immense pain and asking the nurse to give me more! They said it wasn’t possible at that time. I was getting really tired and very frustrated. On top of that my doctor was unable to come because she had to care for her own kids. I was not that upset about it when they told me, but it was hard to go through this with a doctor I’d never even met. After about 3 hours of pushing the doctor checked me and I wasn’t moving the baby down as well as they had hoped. He also informed me that Peanut Boy was in the “sunny side up” position and that was why he wasn’t progressing as quickly as we’d hoped. The doctor told me it was time to talk about other options. I asked him what they were and he said C-section. I was terrified!!! Jess was great and Dr Sara was awesome and tried to help me keep calm kept reminding me that a healthy baby was all that matters. Now I know that it is ALL that matters. At the time all I could think of was how much I hurt and how scared I was. I just wanted him out! I was still trying to hold out hope that I could do a vaginal delivery, so I asked the doctor about using a vacuum. He agreed to try it, but wasn’t optimistic it would work. They got the vacuum team ready and I pushed with everything I had for another 30 minutes or so with no baby. I was so tired and in sooooooo much pain that I was finally ready to give in and just have the C-section.

        I signed the papers and they got me rolling. They gave me some medicine that they told me was to neutralize my stomach acids so I wouldn’t vomit during the surgery. This was not the case!! The stuff tasted HORRIBLE and I vomited everything up only three minutes later. I went into the OR with purple vomit all over me. I was still in a lot of pain and the anesthesiologist was trying to give me more medicine to numb me up. They did the pinch test to see if I was getting numb and I kept feeling it on my left side. They waited 15 minutes and tried again. I was really getting freaked out and I kept asking them to remind Jess to bring in the camera. Racheal, my nurse, was awesome and did her best to help keep me calm and even held my hand. After the last pinch test and I could still feel my left side they told me they would need to give me general anesthesia. This meant that Jess would not be allowed in the OR because they would have to intubate me. I was shaking really bad and started crying. I think this was the hardest time for me, but Racheal held my hand and I was out within a couple minutes. This was my biggest fear about giving birth come to life. I was deathly afraid my whole pregnancy that I was going to be alone when my baby was born. This was worse because I wasn't even there.

         The next thing I remember is opening my eyes and seeing Jess holding our son skin to skin and he was crying. Sara was still there and they told me everything was fine. My first thought was “did you call my mom?” I was very groggy and my throat hurt a lot from the tube. Things started happening fast again and we were moved to our room and I was finally able to meet my son when he was 2 hours old. It was the most amazing experience and I felt so blessed to have my tiny little man. The birth was not what I planned and I had a pretty hard time not beating myself up about it. I kept thinking maybe I could have tried harder or pushed longer. Even after the nurses told me that the baby was for sure in the transverse position and that really no amount of pushing would have gotten him out, I was disappointed with myself. Everyone really tried to help me see that I did my best and all that mattered is my wonderful little guy. The next day when I was feeling the pain from both pushing for almost 4 hours and having the C-section I realized that even though Peanut Boy wasn’t delivered vaginally, I did do my best and I had all the pain to prove it. I woke up from dozing and looked acrossed the room at Jess and our son sitting together on the rocker and the look on Jess’s face of so much joy and pride made every pain and all the work so worth it. I would do it all again just to see that look.

         It has been 15 months since Peanut Boy was born and I still have some lingering regrets, doubts and fears about having another baby. But now that I know better, I will not make the same choices. I know now that inductions make C sections much more likely, epidurals and the host of other interventions are not always the best ideas and I need to have more confidence in my body to do what is was made to do. And patience is something I really need to work on.

         As we begin our new journey trying to conceive another child, I hope I can learn the patience I so sorely need give myself the permission to except what happened the first time and move on. It should be an interesting journey! 

Monday, August 29, 2011

This is it...

Well, it's official, we have stopped trying to prevent pregnancy. I took my last birth control pill on Saturday night, possibly the last one I will ever take. While I am excited that we are going to start trying to conceive another child, I find myself having some anxiety about it. Honestly, I'm not 100% sure I'm ready yet. I still have a lot of lingering feelings about Peanut Boy's birth and I need to work them out. In the next few weeks/months I am going to make an effort to come here and blog more, especially about our TTC (trying to conceive) journey. I have a lot to work out before we get the BFP (big fat positive) pregnancy test, and I plan to work it out here. My first issue is I want to stop taking the antidepressant medication that I have been taking for about 10 years. I'm afraid, because I'm not sure how my body will react or how my moods will be without this medication. I took the meds all through my pregnancy with PB and during our whole nursing relationship, so I am concerned how it might affect him as well as what people might think because I took it with him, but plan to stop with the next pregnancy. I hate thinking that PB was my "practice" kid. If PB ever gives me more that 10 minutes to write a blog post, I will share his birth story, but for now real life mommyhood calls!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

The joys of nursing a toddler

A typical nursing session with my 14 month old starts with him standing in front of me and screeching. 

Then I ask him what he wants. I have been trying to teach him to sign, and he has picked up a couple signs. He knows milk, more, and all done. Lately he has only been signing all done for everything, so I have been working with him to learn to sign milk when he wants to nurse. Usually the garners more screeching. Then we snuggle up and start to nurse.

And then it starts, my sweet little nursling becomes a crazy kid! I get a finger in my nose, or in my mouth.

or he pinches me, or hits me. And let me tell you, this kid can really make it hurt! He's even left a mark a few times.

He gets so proud of himself though.

I have had my hair pulled on occasion as well.

And this kid will NOT sit still!!! 

But in the end I know all this fuss and annoying behavior is worth it to give my son the best I can!