by Rochelle, USA
Victor was due on August 8. I wasn't being checked vaginally to see if I was dilating and felt no Braxton Hicks surges throughout my entire pregnancy. On August 17, a week past my due date, I had to go in for an ultrasound and a stress test. My fluid looked great and the stress test showed I was having a few contractions and that the baby was fine.
I had to set an appointment for Thursday the same week where I would have to be checked to see if my cervix was softening. If it wasn't, I would have to check into the hospital on Friday evening for cervadil to soften my cervix and pitocin on Saturday to start labor. If I was dilated, I would have to check into the hospital on Saturday (2 weeks past my due date) for pitocin.
I was really stressing myself out about a medical induction. On Tuesday, I spent most of the day meditating trying to de-stress. Finally, I was able to release all that fear and anxiety and started hoping that my body would take over and the baby would come on his own. Hypnobirthing CD's really helped).
My labor really started sometime on Wednesday Aug 19 with a few Surges on Tuesday. Alexis (my husband) and I were trying to “kick start” my labor. I guess we'll never know if anything worked or if it would have started on its own. I think we both believe the latter.
I lost my mucus plug on Tuesday night and got a little excited. On Wednesday, I stayed home from work. In the afternoon, Alexis and I went for a walk and things felt to be moving along. We stopped a few times along our walk to dance through a surge. I actually planned to go to one last Yoga class on Wednesday night, but decided against it at the last minute. Wednesday around 9 pm my surges started strong lasting 40-45 seconds and were only 3 minutes apart. This went on for several hours. I did try to rest and relax between surges but 3 minutes is not a lot of time to fall asleep. I also got sick several times. I kept waiting for that lull everyone says you get during labor but mine never came.
Our Doula, Julie, came over a little after midnight. She did try several positions with me and helped communicate what was going on to Alexis, who felt a little helpless. I was most comfortable on my hands or elbows and knees during surges (and I have the rug burn to prove it). I don't know what time Julie put in the tub, but once I got in, I started to progress more quickly so we think I was already 5 centimeters when we got in the tub.
Around 6 AM, Julie suggested we make our way to the hospital. Woa, what a ride. I believe my water broke in the car on the way to the hospital. Luckily, Julie put me in a diaper (literally) in case that happened.
We arrived on the 9th floor Good Sam Hospital in Cincinnati around 7 AM. We were berated by the nurses for not calling before we arrived. Not a good experience for anyone. I was still being yelled at as they were taking me to triage to check me (We are not sure what the point of the yelling and the rude nursing. I was there now and clearly in labor. Alexis was angry). When they got me on the table, I was 10 centimeters and between +1 and +2 station.
Unfortunately, there was meconium in my waters when they broke which was cause for concern. I never left triage. It was already time for me to push and I was exhausted. My Doula kept suggesting the squat bar but all I wanted to do was lay on my side. I tried breathing the baby down from +2 to +3 but the Dr. was getting worried about the Meconium. She let me continue for a few hours but upon approaching the 3rd hour I had to find the energy to help move my baby.
Changing positions helped. They put me upright on the toilet so I could bear down stronger/harder and I stayed there for awhile. Thankfully, this really helped move the baby down. When I got back into the bed, his head was peaking out.
I laid back on my side with one leg propped on my husband's shoulder and my hands on the bed post and on Julie for leverage and found the energy from somewhere to bare down and push this child out. The Dr. followed my wishes, no episiotomy and only perennial massage.
Victor Aaron Dujan was born August 20th at 11:41 AM. Unfortunately, because of all the meconium, they could not place on my belly right away. They had to clean out his lungs. Alexis was able to cut the umbilical cord.
Once the nurses made sure all was good with Victor's lungs, they placed him on my belly for the first time and OH, what a feeling! After an attempt at the breast crawl he latched on almost immediately, the advantage of giving birth 12 days late, everyone was just fine.
This also helped me deliver the placenta. I didn't need stitches (I swear by Kegels), I never got a Hep-Lock so I wasn't full of fluids from an IV, I could just enjoy my new family. I couldn't have done it without the help of my Husband, our Doula, Julie, and even Dr. Rinala who let me have the natural birth I wanted.
Looking back, we think I was in pre-labor all day Wednesday. In between surges, I thought were nothing at the time, I meditated or used some yoga poses to help relax. If we only knew…