I’ve been asked a lot of questions about the long labor and delivery of Aiyana, so I’ve written her birth story and happy to share it with everyone! Enjoy!
*** There’s nothing about delivering a baby that is glamorous and ok for immature persons, so if you don’t want to know the “nitty gritty details” or have a queasy stomach, you may want to skip the first 4 paragraphs! ***
Everything and everyone was ready for her debut. The house was clean. All of her things were set up, ready to go! There was nothing left to do… except… pluck my eyebrows! (Lots of picture taking? Can’t have a unibrow!) Even our induction was scheduled for June 2nd. There had been no cervical change since 35 weeks, so cervical ripening and pitocin induction was scheduled for 40 weeks 2 days. I was terrified of this entire process, but my OB suspected she was already 8 –9 pounds and encouraged induction. I was ok with the decision to induce, but I was still terrified. I wanted my body to go into labor on it’s own to avoid induction. I wanted to avoid increasing my risks/odds of a possible cesarean section. So, I was doing anything I could in the days before her delivery to induce labor.
On Sunday, we had dinner with my sister and her family. My niece told me she had a dream the night before that I had gone into labor at the restaurant! Strangely enough I also had a premonition of sorts that “tonight was the night”! Well, labor didn’t start at the restaurant, but that night at 11 pm I did start to experience period-like cramping! I had not had this early labor sign, so I was excited that this meant something! I continued to have cramping through the night, but I was able to sleep.
Monday was Memorial Day Holiday. When I woke up at 5 am I noticed the continued cramping and found a small amount of pink mucus when I went to the bathroom. Again, I had not had this labor sign, but heard/read that this was a very good sign of impending labor. I got even more excited! I decided to stay awake and get on my birthing ball just to see if I continued to have any signs. I had been having irregular non-painful contractions for a few weeks, so I wasn’t paying much attention to any contractions I was having. The cramping continued, but nothing else, so I went back to sleep for a couple more hours.
Around 2:30 pm that afternoon, I noticed lots more pink mucus/discharge and later learned this was the bloody show I had read about! So hubby and I had what would be our last “intimate encounter” for a long time! Again, all of the resources say lots of sex is a great way to induce labor! Remember, I was desperate! I didn’t want to be induced!! Immediately, after “our encounter” contractions started and they continued at 3 minutes apart! I was experiencing contractions with the cramping and FINALLY I was starting to feel an uncomfortable feeling during contractions! I had been wishing for pain and I was feeling it! I sat on the birthing ball and facebooked with the ladies from my May 2011 CD Due Date Group! Contractions continued at 3-5 minutes apart, so John double checked the hospital bag (just in case), and he played Rock Band to pass the time! I don’t think he thought, “this was it”, but I started to really become convinced “it was time”.
After a couple of hours, we headed out to the hospital. The contractions were still 3 minutes apart and they were starting to become very uncomfortable. While John loaded the car with our things, I went into the nursery and hung two of her bow holders! My sister had given them to me the night before and I had not had a chance to put her bows and flowers clips on them and hang them on the wall. If I was returning home with a baby GIRL, she NEEDED her bow holders hung!! :P
We arrived to the hospital at about 6 pm. I was only 2 centimeters dilated and 60-70% effaced, so they encouraged us to walk the halls. After a couple of hours, I had not shown much change at all. The plan was to observe me overnight to see if I progressed on my own. If so, great! If not, we’d start pitocin first thing tomorrow morning. Either way, our daughter would arrive on her DUE DATE! My FB status read: “Only my daughter would come on her due date - not one day early, not one day late, right on time... She allowed me to enjoy the majority of my holiday too! She will be here sometime tomorrow.”
The contractions were still 3 minutes apart and starting to become painful and very uncomfortable. I found that the only comfortable position was sitting up on the side of the bed. Obviously, I could not get any sleep like this, so they gave me Demerol (for pain) and Phenergen (for nausea). Immediately, I was “drunk” and “out of it”. I got about 2 hours of sleep and then the painful contractions kept me up all night long. I was exhausted. I had set my alarm for 6 am. I wanted to have plenty of time get in the shower and do my hair and makeup before they started the pitocin! Today was going to be my daughter’s big debut, and I wanted to look nice for pictures! Well, needless to say, it was difficult to take a shower with contractions so close together and painful! I never got around doing my hair, putting my makeup on... or plucking my eye brows!! Grrr! :(
I saw my OB at 7:30 am and at that time I was 4 cm, 100% effaced, with a bulging bag of water!! Wahoo! Progress!! At this point, I was managing the pain just fine. The pitocin was started at 8:00 am. The really painful contractions started to kick in and progressively got worse. I asked for my epidural at the first sign of painful contractions, because I knew it would take 20-30 minutes to arrive (like my nurse said!). Well, she was wrong. The hospital was so incredibly busy that day and the anesthesiologist was in a c-section, so I waited on my epidural for what seemed like a lifetime! I suffered through the horrible painful contractions of pitocin for an hour! I was having back labor, so my sister and John did their best applying pressure and massaging my lower back. I was in so much pain and sick and tired of waiting on the epidural, that eventually I asked for another dose of Demerol. I was a little upset with myself for making this decision, because I knew it could affect Aiyana by making her sluggish after delivery which would inhibit any immediate breastfeeding. I made the decision though, because I could not take another contraction. Once I got the Demerol, my epidural arrived within 5-10 minutes. UGH. I was so mad at myself, but more mad at the hospital/anesthesiologist!
I had made it to 6 cm on my own, and I was pretty proud of myself for that! More than half way! My birth plan was to get to at least 4-6 cm before getting the epidural. ::two thumbs up::
After receiving the epidural, I was able to take a nap for about an hour. At 11:10 am, I was checked and at 8 cm. Also, at this point, my nurse suspected that I broke my water too. Maybe during my nap? I never figured out when exactly my water broke. I never felt it pop.
Just before noon, I was complete at 10 cm and ready to push! While I pushed my nurse made many remarks about how easy I was making it look and how I didn’t appear to be a newbie at this. I didn’t know if she told everyone that to motivate them, but it did make me feel good! I pushed for approx. an hour and a half.
Aiyana Helene was born at 1:57 pm on her due date of May 31, 2011. She weighed 7 lbs 7 oz. (WAY OFF from what my doctor was suspecting!) and 20.5 inches long. She had a head full of hair and looks like Mommy!
...I never got around to plucking my eyebrows until we got home from the hospital. Ooops! ;)
The bow holders I hung while in early labor!
My last belly pic... 40 weeks!
First family picture!
Her nursery is officially done!
Going home outfit. Wearing Daddy's school colors proudly!
1 out of 2 dogs has submitted her approval! One still pending her decision!
First Fluff (cloth diaper)!
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