Well, I figured I better get this down before I continue to forget! It's already fading, though it was probably the most intense experience of my life.
It all started when Friday, about noon...I started noticing my underwear was wet...too much information? Don't worry there's more coming. So I didn't think much, I figured...you know...pregnancy is weird and I'm constantly discovering new "fun" things to deal with.
Well every time I went to the bathroom it just seemed more and more wet. By the time 5:00 rolled around I thought, you know...I better check with Molly about this. So I text her and say, "Awkward question...but I feel like I'm...leaking? Is this normal?" And she says, it could be amniotic fluid...better go get it checked at labor and delivery. So...Clayton gets home and I say, "Not to alarm you...but I've been kind of...leaking. Molly thinks we should check if its amniotic fluid." He gets a little panic in his eye, but we are thinking, eh...its probably nothing. Keep in mind its 10 days before my due date.
We make it to the hospital and they set me up in this room that is basically a closet. They say- "This is the backup of the backup of the backup of rooms...tonight has been CRAZY. We are totally out of rooms!" So you know, that's comforting. But I am probably going to be leaving anyway...so no problem.
They test the fluid and while waiting for results check to see if I'm dilated. She says, well, you are barely about a two. I know women go weeks being dilated at two so no big deal. She asks if I've been contracting at all and I say no...but I have been having some cramps here and there...like right now I feel crampy. And she feels my stomach and says, "well dear, that's because you are having a contraction!" So I say... "Oh! I guess I've been having contractions off and on then..." About then the results came back and she tells me, "Well, you are definitely in labor! That was amniotic fluid...your water is breaking!"
We told them we want to have a natural birth...no epidural, no pit. She says okay...we will try for that, but we are on a time table now. I first remembered leakage at noon so I essentially had till noon the next day to give birth without risking infection. And it was already about 6pm. My doctor was already at the hospital delivering for 2 other patients and he was really wanting to put me on pitocin to get things going. He wanted me to have the baby by 16 hours. So, I sat in my closet of a hospital room and waited while Clay ran home to get some last minute things we didn't have in my hospital bag. I continued to have my "crampy" contractions about 5 minutes apart consistently. About when Clay got back (very quickly we only live 5 min from hospital), they moved me to another room, which they said is also a backup room (no bathroom, pictures, anything...but a bed and monitor really- super small) and my labor really started to pick up. They kept saying, "I'm so sorry- we will get you in a real room soon" but it was a while...Clay and I would walk the hall, rock back and forth, sway, and I was handling it. It was painful, but manageable.
They finally took me to a room when things were really picking up...I was having contractions about 2 minutes apart by then and they were longer and harder so we were thinking, I wonder where I'm at! I've got to have dilated more! She checks me and says with an awkward face..."oh man, you are still at a two...maybe close to a three...I'm going to check you during this contraction, it will hurt, but I need to give the doctor an update" so she checks me while I'm contracting and it hurt like hell but she said, "Okay I feel comfortable telling him a three...its really a stretch, but it will make him feel better about waiting on the pit". SO I kept laboring. We got a birthing ball and that was nice...I would stand up walk, lean on Clay, lean on the sink, take deep breaths, moan out, I was DOING THIS! This lasted a few hours and we thought, okay- now I have GOT to be dilated far. She checks me and says, "Oh man you are just barely a 4"....WHAT?! My contractions were two minutes apart and INSANELY huge. She was monitoring me and confirmed I was having intense, BIG contractions. I continued to labor like this for two more hours and I was at a breaking point...I was thinking- okay, I know at some point they will make me get on pitocin because this isn't progressing fast enough and I have this dang time table because of the water breaking. Pitocin equals epidural, epidural equals no pain. Do I keep going and end up at that result no matter what and have gone through the pain for nothing? So Clay and I decided together that next time she checked me, if I hadn't progressed, I would get the epidural and pit. She checked me two hours after the last check (at a 4) and I WAS STILL AT A FOUR! Oh my gosh. Clay and I were shocked. We were like...how could I have just gone through 8 hours of active labor and only dilate 2 centimeters from when we first go here? Well...that was it, I said- get that anesthesiologist in here I want that epidural, and lets get this moving! Took another half hour or so for him to get in there and another half hour to get it going...the epidural didn't hurt at all to go in so I thought- great! He's a great anesthesiologist! So pretty soon my legs got numb...ish. I could still feel them and feel touch but I couldn't move them myself. I was feeling some pressure, not pain, but pressure and I was told that was a contraction. I thought- fantastic! This is so much better than before. They told me to try and sleep and they'd continue to check me here and there...well...nice thought. But every two minutes I could feel this intense pressure in my butt hole and vagina. Again, it wasn't necessarily PAIN but it was still intense. This lasted about 5-6 hours and I seriously just laid there thinking...everyone I've ever heard of getting epidural gets to sleep...how could they sleep through this?! They checked me and I was at a six. A SIX! I had gone from a 4 to a 6 in 6 hours with the PIT! Oh my heck! They said, "Well...we are going to break your water because it hasn't fully broken yet, and hopefully that speeds things up". So they break my water and leave us be.
Within fifteen minutes I was feeling INTENSE, PAINFUL pressure in my bum and vagina...like A LOT! I started to panic and cry and I was feeling like I needed to push. But I thought- no way? It's only been 15 minutes since I was at a six?!! I have four centimeters to go! But I was like- holy pain, holy pressure, this baby is COMING! I told Clay to call the nurse and tell her I felt like I needed to push. Of course, being me, I felt stupid...I thought- they will think I'm crazy...I was literally JUST at a six! There's no way! But also why isn't this epidural working?! She came in and said, well its possible breaking that water is all you needed to get going...and what do you know I am at a NINE! I dilated 3 centimeters in 15 minutes! I told her I was in pain and she had the anesthesiologist come in to give me another dose of epidural...well...I don't know how well it worked. I'm starting to believe it didn't work that well and that I was having a "window" that they talk about where the epidural misses or something. Point is, I was feeling every contraction, and I was panicking. She told me to start making small pushes with my contractions if I could, which was really hard to do because all I wanted to do was push like I was pooping (haha sorry, but its true!) and it was so hard to breath and push only a little. There was SO MUCH pressure. So much. With every contraction she would stretch me. Pretty soon she said, "Oh he looks like he has blonde hair! I'm going to feel it. Oh it is long!!! I'm playing with it." haha, and I thought oh how fun...can we get him out of me now? She called the doctor in (we had been doing that small push contraction thing for about 20 minutes or so) and he got me all ready and they told me it was time to push with all my might, like I was pooping (ha) three times for 10 seconds each with each contraction. I did this and he would stretch me through every push with his hands and oh my gosh- it felt SO much better to push than to not. SOMEthing to work towards, giving into my body's desires and intuition that it was time to push, it was working. I have to tell you- I felt powerful while pushing. It was HARD. Hard hard work. But I felt encouraged as every push they told me I was doing amazing and to keep doing exactly what I was doing. They never told me when I was supposed to push because I always said- I think its time! Its building!!!! And then they'd say okay go! 1...2... etc. I pushed for about a half hour with Clay on one side, my nurse on the other, my doctor down under, and all of them rooting me on. There was a moment when I knew it was the end when they all got intense saying, "hurry one more! again!" and I could FEEL he was there. I WANTED to keep going and I wanted to push with all my might, and it was so hard but I thought, "I'm doing it! I'm having a baby!" Then, I did. The second his mouth was out of me we could hear him start to cry. Everyone in the room was shocked and my doctor said, "Oh wow he is already trying to cry!" and by the time he was all out of me (within seconds) he was wailing. Best sound in the world. They tried showing him to me but I couldn't really see him and then they whisked him away to the other side of the room. I was told earlier this would all be just barely a few minutes and he would be back to me. Well, it took more like 10 minutes and there was a baby nurse that both Clay and I soon decided we hated. Don't take this lightly. I am a person that generally gives everyone the benefit of the doubt...but she soon proved herself to be a horrible person. She was checking him and Clay said, "I think there's something in his mouth or throat"...he could hear liquid in there. He said that she didn't even look at him and said, "Oh he's fine". Clay was pretty positive about it but it was all pretty hectic. Pretty soon I heard her saying, "Where's that measuring tape? Hmm I need to find that measuring tape." And all I kept thinking was- "I DON'T CARE HOW FREAKING LONG HE IS- BRING ME MY BABY!" and keep in mind he is just wailing the entire time since he got out of me. Well finally they bring him over and immediately the second he is put on me he is quiet :) It made me so relieved because the hormonal emotional woman who just gave birth to a human being thought, "He's forgotten about me! It's been too long! He won't know me! We've missed our bonding time!" well, that couldn't be further than the truth. He knew me, I knew him, and it was perfect. A perfect moment. Until...I noticed he was breathing weird. Very pained sounding. Not natural. I asked about it and they acted like it was fine...but both Clay and I were very adamant that it wasn't fine. They came in and had some nicu nurses working on him and after a WHILE...he got it all worked out and was breathing fine. But hello? Clay knew he saw and heard liquid in him when that evil baby nurse wasn't paying attention!
We had some special time just me baby and Clay and then Clay's family came to meet him. It was wonderful.
Later that day...not THAT much later mind you. Only a couple hours or so after he was born...the same baby nurse comes in and says, "Well I'm sorry but I need to take him for a bit." And I ask why and she says she needs to draw his blood for something or other. None of this sounded familiar so I said, "Can you do it in here then?" And she says no she has to take him away because she has to run an IV. I say, "Well how long will that take?!" Oh, about a half hour (like its no big deal for me to have my brand new baby taken away for half an hour?!?!). I really don't feel good about it, but don't know what to say so I just say okay...and unfortunately Clay would faint if he saw an IV, and none of our parents were there so off he goes, my precious brand new child! With this evil nurse. None of it sounds right to me and I feel so uneasy. Within 2 minutes she is back and says with a smile, "Oh good news! I didn't have to torture him...I got him mixed up with the baby next door..." and we are like..."um..." and she said, "This is the Phillipp baby right?" Yes..."Well he doesn't need to do that then!" And leaves. Doesn't say sorry, acts like this is totally normal to almost accidentally RUN AN IV IN MY 2 HOUR OLD BABY! Oh my gosh. I about had a meltdown. Clay and I just looked at each other in awe. We were pissed to say the least. We decided from then on our baby goes no where without Clay, that we need proof for everything, and that we trust our gut! So far it has been right every time. But seriously. Thank heavens for those wrist bar scan thingies because that had to of been how she realized her mistake. But seriously! Ah. I still am not over it. So she will forever be known as the evil nurse to me. Half of the problem was that she acted like it was no big deal at all. IT'S A BIG DEAL!
I think of the hospital, and I feel sick to my stomach. I HATE THE HOSPITAL. To all you crazies who like it...who are you? What is wrong with you that you enjoy being bugged every 20 minutes? Here is what happened. I have a nurse, my baby has a nurse, each of us needs to be checked every couple hours. Then the baby needs certain tests done (never all at once?), the baby needs shots, the baby needs washed, I need to give a blood sample, time to bring food in, time to order my food for the next few days, time to pick up the garbages from the room, time to introduce you to the new nurses at shift changes (not all of them at once- but mine, and then later the babies), and all of these things are done at different times than the nurses giving us our checks every couple hours. So when I say every 20 minutes, I am not exaggerating! It was literally EVERY 20 MINUTES we were being bugged. So pretty soon we said, "How soon can we leave?" and they kept acting like it'd be so hard to leave and we had to stay at least 24 hours blah blah blah we have to get approval from baby doc and my doc. Okay well, the baby doc was strongly wanting us to stay 36 hours but we just really didn't want to because everything on the baby was perfect. And he said, "Well, ultimately it's up to you- you could've left yesterday if you wanted...it's your decision I can't stop you" and we thought- what the crap? What are these nurses talking about then? So we wait a bit longer for my doctor to show up and he seriously DOESN'T EVEN CHECK ME! And says, "When do you want to leave?" And I said, "Right now." and he said, "Okay sounds good!" So it's like..umm okay why are these nurses acting like we are insane people for wanting to leave. I believe its all about money. At one point, my mom was really getting upset at the nurses and saying, "we want to leave as soon as possible, please do whatever you need to do now so we can leave" and a nurse said in a baby voice, "Well I know grandma wants to leave but these two sure don't, they need all the rest they can get!" referring to me and Clay. Ummm- I was done then. I said, "No, I WANT TO LEAVE. I am not getting any sleep here. I want to leave as soon as possible," and she didn't really have a response to that. ha.
We stay longer for our "lessons" which are basically a checklist they read to us and give to us. Don't shake the baby, oh! Okay. They probably told me that a billion times before I left. I'm like- yeah duh that's only the one thing they teach you your entire life growing up to NOT SHAKE BABIES. GOT IT! Finally we got out of there and oh my. Home is heaven! I love home. We all felt so much better.
And now...we live! We feed him, we burp him, we wrap him in a blankie, we watch him...ohhhh we watch him. I spend my entire day watching him! I think this is the first time in five days that I have done anything but just watch him. But he is laying right next to me :)
I love him. I love him so much. He is pure perfection, in every way!
Also, I love Clayton. He was so amazing during my labor and delivery. He comforted me, cheered me on, told me how amazing I was, and everything except the putting of epidural in, he was right by my side and right up in the heat of it. He watched Asher come into the world, and has protected me and him, and done everything to make me and him happy. He encourages me to rest as much as I can, and asks me how I'm doing all the time. He loves little Asher to pieces, feeds him, burps him, changes his diapers, and all SO well. He actually is really quite good at all of these things. Like, REALLY good. He's a natural. It's a very sweet experience.
And that...is it! Other random items...I barely tore, with just a few stitches, am recovering very nicely. Still pretty crampy so I keep up on IB profen. I am not breast-feeding because of Lyme...so...another fun over-share...my boobs are hard as rocks and VERY VERY VERY in pain. We are hoping this only lasts a week or so before the milk stops trying to come in. Another random- the hospital said that on average they have 4-5 deliveries every 24 hours. The 24 hours I was there, there were over 16 births. We all think it was the super moon that caused it!
Overall everything is fantastic! Sure there's been some bumps, but what doesn't? He is perfect and that's all that matters. I'm a mom! It's amazing.
I look at him and think of all the pain, the patience, the days I would cry and cry wondering if I would ever get this...and it is all worth it. I'd do it all again. He is so special and I would do everything for him to be in my life.
Welcome to the world little Asher!