Expectations, labor, and an early present!

January 1, 2013 at 5:52 am (Intro) (, , )


BabyMaisy joined us December 24 at 11:42 a.m. She was 19” long and weighed 7 lbs 3.3 oz.  Labor lasted nearly 38 hours, but wasn’t bad. It was definitely a lesson in going with the flow and dealing with the unexpected.

I would hazard to say that every woman who is pregnant has expectations about how her labor ought to go, be it med-free, with a midwife, epidural, c-section, there are some expectations. I was no different.  Being a diabetic, my doctor was very upfront with me during the entire pregnancy, telling me that we will induce by 39 weeks at the absolute latest, 38 weeks more likely. He also said that at least 60% of his diabetic patients who were induced had c-sections.  I was okay with that.

Being a twin, and married to a twin, both of our moms had c-sections. They talked about recovery times, and DH’s mom who had a vag birth and a c-section extolled the virtues of a c-section, talking about how much easier the recovery and how much simpler everything was.  Between my doctors and our moms, DH and I went into the labor process figuring that we would end up with a c-section, and did all of our research around that idea.

Moving towards December, my diabetes was so well controlled that the doctor was comfortable scheduling our induction at 38w6d.  We were told to call in to the hospital on Saturday at 5 to verify they had room for us.  When Saturday, December 22 rolled around, everything revolved around that 5 p.m. call. DH and I would look at each other and laugh, saying “only 2 more hours” throughout the day.  Imagine my disappointment when we call in and are told, eat some dinner, take a shower, don’t come in until 7.  But I wanted to go in then!  We did as we were told and my mom made it into town in time to drive to the hospital with us. 

We were checked in and settled into our room by 8 p.m.  Nurses placed us on a monitor, much like the twice a week Non-Stress Tests I’d been having.  The doctor came in at 9:30 and did an internal exam.  She initially said that we weren’t dilated at all, but changed that to “Well, I can kinda fit one finger, so we’ll say 1cm.” She also agitated my cervix while down there. I was give 50 micrograms of misoprostol, orally, and told that we’ll check in four hours.  My blood sugars were acting up (don’t eat barbecue right before your induction!) so I had to be on an insulin drip. This also meant staying hooked up to monitors except for bathroom visits, and having my blood sugar checked every hour.

2 a.m. was the first check, and the monitors showed that I had started contracting, but they were irregular and light.  Add another dose of misoprostol, 100 micrograms.  6 a.m. showed contractions that were more regular, but still light so another 100 micrograms of misoprostol. 10 a.m. was more of the same, saying that if things were still regular at 2 p.m. we might be able to start Pitocin.  At the 2 p.m. check, we weren’t able to start Pitocin because I hadn’t dilated beyond the initial 1 cm, so the decision was made to use a Folley catheter to stir things along.  Essentially a thin tube is inserted into the cervix and a balloon is blown up on the end.  When you are 3-4 cms dilated, the catheter will fall out.

My in-laws arrived right after I was given the catheter and a nice dose of morphine to encourage rest.  They all watched a movie and I added my own loopy comments as I dozed. I really woke up a few hours later, in time to boot out all of my company to go get dinner while I ate too.  My in-laws and mom left around 10 p.m. and at 10:30 the catheter fell out.  Now we were getting somewhere!

The morphine completely wore off at 11p.m. and I held off on the epidural until 1 a.m. 4 units of Pitocin were added to the mix at midnight, and at 2:30 they broke my waters. Pitocin was turned down to 2, and then turned off. Also, all external monitors were removed and internal monitors were placed. By 6 a.m. contractions were strong and just 2 ½ minutes apart, so we called our families and told them to be at the hospital by 10:30.  Another check at 9 a.m. showed us to be 9 cm dilated and baby was in place, so we recalled family and set to get on their way! Pitocin was turned back on low, just to keep things moving.

My mom and in-laws arrived by 10:30, and a check at 10:50 told us that it was go time, so they were kicked out.  The bed was adjusted and doctors notified; pushing began at 11:10 and LO arrived at 11:42 a.m.  I suffered a second degree tear that was mended with one stitch.  It was a vaginal birth, unlike the c-section I was expecting.  And I cannot tell you how proud I felt being able to push her out!

It was around 6 a.m. that it really dawned on us that we probably weren’t going to need a c-section.  Labor was progressing and everything looked good. A few times baby’s heartbeat would fall with the contractions, but an internal monitor showed us that it was because the contractions were a lot stronger than we thought. When they asked me to rank them on a scale of 1-10, I was telling them 2-3; apparently I have a pretty high pain threshold! 

Even though I went in to labor expecting one thing and ended up with the exact opposite, I was very much okay with that. Throughout the entire pregnancy, our attitude has been “whatever it takes to give us a healthy baby.” This included copious doctor’s appointments, lab work and tests. It included IVs in both hands, pills and Pitocin, a c-section if needed, and now that baby is here it includes feeding her however she’ll take the food!   Parenthood has already been the adventure of a lifetime, and we’re only 8 days in! 

Tonight, when LO was fussing, I found myself praying, telling God to help me to remember to be thankful for our little blessing, to remember that she is a gift from above, and that it is our job to treasure her and raise her up to follow God in all that she does.  It’s an awesome responsibility, one to not be taken lightly, and one to be cherished!


1 Comment

  1. mrslilybugg said,

    what a beautiful post! So happy for you and your family.

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