Saturday, August 24, 2013

Part 2

...knowing I was at a 4, this was my 4th baby, and given my history, I knew I had to hurry because this was going to be over quickly. At that very moment, I heard the garage door open - Dave couldn't have timed that any better even if he tried.
As soon as he came in the house I yelled down the stairs, "my water just broke!" Then bellowed instructions for babysitters, gathering stuff, making sure the boys were all set, etc.
Dave helped me gather things as quickly as possible and I hobbled around nervous and excited with a towel loinclothed (totally a word ;) between my legs. We were out the door in no time.
On the way to the hospital I made all the necessary calls and tried to prep myself mentally. I had decided before I was even pregnant that if my water broke at the beginning of labor, I wanted an epidural. If it didn't, I knew it would be a lot easier for me. If you have recently read my other birth stories (kidding of course), you would know that my water broke at the beginning with Carson and it was my hardest experience and with Brooks my waters were intact until I was at an 8 and it was a fast labor, and by far and away my easiest. I was obviously hoping for the latter, but got the first.
When we got the the hospital and checked in it seemed fairly calm and quiet. It was about 5:00 pm. I can't remember what room they wanted to put me in, but I knew that the hospital had installed a big tub within the last year and all I wanted to do was labor in the water -water and me; we are friends. It REALLY takes the edge off. Anyway, they changed me to room 5 where the tub was. It was at the furthest end of the hall so I hoisted my towel high and waddled down to the end with my sweet husband.
I stood there for a few minutes wondering what to do next. By then at least with my previous babies there had been someone there either wanting me to change or get a hep lock or getting information, or something. This time - Nobody.
After a few minutes someone came in with a gown wanting me to change. I still just wanted to get in the water, but they wanted to monitor me first. Again, they disappeared for a while. I finally got fed up with just sitting there half naked, loinclothed myself again and hobbled back down to the front desk to ask yet again if I could get in the water. They said no and sent me away.
Another stretch later they checked me - I was at a 6, then they wanted to hook me up for 20 minutes to make sure the baby was tolerating the contractions alright. Here's the real kicker. Even though I was sure my water had broken, I didn't have much fluid draining after the initial gush. While I was sitting in the car and on the phone with my dr. I wasn't gushing with each contraction and told her so when she asked. Because of that, she wasn't sure that my water had broken she told the labor and delivery nurses she wanted them to verify that before they admitted me. (Would they really  have turned me away at that point...dilated to a 6 and clearly in labor???)
So there I sat hooked up to monitors while they did some sort of test that involved a q-tip in not so dignified places that then had to be tested and confirmed for amniotic fluid. (With Carson it was a strip of paper they dabbed in the fluid that turned blue if it was positive for amniotic fluid...I still don't get why this process was so much more complicated...). Sure enough, my water was broken, and yet, I still sat - hooked up to stinkin' monitors with very much increasingly painful and closer contractions. I was really having to focus and breathe at this point.
I was feeling pretty frustrated. I couldn't get anyone to come assist us, I was really hurting, I only wanted to get in the water, and I was feeling very much ignored. AND I had been hooked up for much longer than 20 minutes. In this time I expressed to Dave that I wanted an epidural. I didn't want to do what it took to have a natural delivery, nor did I feel like I had it in me at that point...

Bowen's Birth Story Part 1

Wow! It has taken me almost a month to write this and frankly, there are a lot of other things I need to be doing, but I love to journal. Four kids is no joke. How come nobody ever told me how much work a newborn is?! ;)
Sunday July 28th at 38 weeks exactly, I started having contractions. Although I had had contractions all through my third trimester, I could tell these were different and a precursor to labor. They weren't particularly painful, but they were regular at about ten minutes apart. I did something very similar to this with Brooks and it lasted 3-4 days. I had to use the restroom for the zillionth time at the end of church when I discovered I was losing my mucus plug. I was pretty excited about that hoping it meant things would happen sooner than later. Fast forward a number of hours to the middle of the night. The contractions I had continued to feel (and had been able to sleep through) started to intensify just enough that they would wake me up. The timing was such that I couldn't quite fall asleep between them so it made for a long frustrating night. Just before 6 am I decided to go on my usual walk. I called my mom and we chatted and walked - with me taking breaks still every ten minutes or so to breathe through another contraction. When I got home they were actually a little further apart and more bearable.
I went through my morning as normal...same old story with the contractions. I had for sure lost the entirety of my mucus plug by this point though.  I had an OB appointment at noon were she checked me. I was at a 4! Woohoo! My belly had dropped significantly as well - I was measuring 3 centimeters smaller than the previous appointment.  I also had her strip my membranes hoping to speed up the process just a bit. I didn't want to do this for another 4 days. Even before the check/membranes stripping and after witnessing me endure a couple of contractions, my doctor kept saying things like, "I'll be surprised if I don't see you tonight or tomorrow" or "you are definitely ripe!". She also mentioned if I was one centimeter more she would admit me to the hospital right then and there. 
I got home, picked up the boys, chatted with my friend for a bit, and borrowed her birthing ball. By about 2:00 pm the contractions while still a ways apart were getting a lot more uncomfortable. I should mention as well that Dave knew things were moving along but we decided in the morning that he should go to work because I wasn't feeling like I was laboring in earnest yet. He was so cute - he called me every hour or less to make sure I was doing alright and to get a status update.
I tried to take a nap because of the short night I had had previously but they were simply too painful at this point so I simply did my best to get comfortable. Just before 4:00 pm I said a prayer. I asked Heavenly Father to either allow me to sleep so I could get the rest I needed to endure the difficulty of labor when it would come, or to let things happen quickly and be over so I wouldn't have to endure many more sleepless nights. Within five minutes my water broke...