The Tweedles

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

The Birth of Hudson George

Hudson was born at 8:14 am January 28, 2010, but my labour started at 5 am January 27 at 5am. If you do the math that's 27 hours. It was a long day.
Wednesday morning I woke to a popping feeling in my uterus, which I wrote off as the baby kicking because often when he kicked I would hear and feel a pop, like when you crack your knuckles. I figured it was my pelvis or something clicking. My midwife assured me it was normal, not common but okay. So I just assumed the popping was him clicking. Then about 5 minutes later, (after I shifted positions a little) I felt some gurgling in my abdomin. I thought perhaps I had some indigestion, and waited to see how I felt. I waited, more gurgling. Then I noticed some dampness, again I didn't think it was much. Then I noticed more... putting two and two together I jumped out of bed and bounded to the bathroom doing the tightest keigle I could manage. Once I hit the tile floor (3 steps from my bed) there was a giant splash and I took the final step to the toilet. Once sitting I screamed for Adam to wake up, telling him my water broke. He jumped out of bed and came running to me and we confirmed that I my water had indeed broken, all over the bathroom floor. Adam went and found some towels to sop up the mess, I wiped up some with white toilet paper to check the colour, which was a lovely clear colour.
After we cleaned up the mess Adam went back to bed and I tucked a hand towel between my legs and went back to bed too. Trixie woke up a briefly, but we gave her a bottle and she went back to sleep. At 5:30am I had my first contraction, then had another 3 minutes later, and another 3 minutes later, each lasting 45-55 seconds each. By now I was convinced I was going to have a baby on the 27th and was trying to not get too excited and get some sleep. At around 7am I called my doula and midwife* to let them know what had happened. My midwife was going to send her appretice over to see me, and she arrived around 10 am, she listened to the baby's heart, told me to drink some water, eat something with protien and to rest. Around the same time a good friend came over and took Trixie to a near by indoor playground, she also brought me a protien shake. I continued to labour at home for a few more hours with regular contractions.
At around 3 or so my doula suggested that we go for a walk to help get things going since my contraction had started to slow down. I was exhausted and took a small nap first with Trixie. When we woke up less than an hour later we got ready to go for a walk, and I changed the cloth diaper I had stuffed in my pants to absorb the amniotic fluid. At this time I noticed it was tinged greenish brown. I figured it was just bloody show, perhaps reacting with the cotton of the diaper and we went for a good long walk, which triggered a lot of strong contractions. When we got back from the walk I changed the diaper again since I could feel it was rather sodden, and I noticed more green/ brown fluid. At this time I called my midwife who was already on her way. While we waited for her to arrive I sat on my fit ball bouncing a little between contractions to help them out. Trixie insisted she bounce too so Adam went and found her the small fit ball so she could sit on it and bounce like Mama. With each contraction I would stand up and rock myself to help with pain. Trixie also would stand and bend 45 degrees at the waist, hold her back and say "oh baby, oh baby". She really helped with pain mangement. Adam would rub my back and Trixie would rub my leg. They were a great labour team. Around 7pm my midwife arrived and I showed her the diaper with the stain and shes said it was likely meconium and I should go to the hospital. So I called the hosptial and spoke with the head nurse on the maternity ward, who also urged me to come in. Then after my inital shock and disapointment at another failed homebirth we called up our friend again who came and took Trixie to her house for an extended playdate/ sleep over. After they left Adam bustled around gathering things for the hospital bag because we didn't have one packed. Then we left for the hospital, close to 8 pm. The drive there was horrible, every bump was agonizing and I had what felt like 4,000 contractions, and since I was in a car I couldn't move to help them, all I could do was angle myself in the seat so I was kind of standing and beg Adam to drive faster.
Once at the hospital I cured the bad layout for having the elevators to the 3rd floor so far away from the entrance. Finally on the 3rd floor we reach the very far away maternity ward and go to check in, but despite calling to let them know I was coming in I was asked to wait in the waiting room. I was livid. I was in active labour, with regular contractions and mec in the fluids, and I had to wait, in a full waiting room of other families waiting to hear of a birth. Finally I was allowed to talk to the receptionist who put me in observation, and had me pee in a cup. Still not impressed and in labour I peed in the cup and notice that there was vernix in the cup. At close to 8:30pm a doctor comes to see me, and tells me that she knows my regular doctor, which lets me know that she knows that I was planning a homebirth. She's kind and doesn't give me a hard time at all. As she's checking my records for "one more thing" I tell her I'm GBS negative and she's shocked that I would know to tell her that. I bite my tounge about being my own advocate and we wait for a nurse to tell us which room we'll be moved to. At the same time my midwife is told she has to leave the maternity ward becasue she has her 2 month old baby with her and she's too close to being a newborn to be allowed on the ward. My midwife is upset and waits in the waiting room for my doula to arrive.
At around 9pm we are taken to the delivery room and I'm given a hep lock and they do blood tests for something. I notice the nurse manages to get my blood everywhere and it will annoy me for the rest of my labour and hosptial stay. My doula arrives and we talk about how I've had another homebirth fail and she reassures me that it's okay, and we're doing the best thing for the baby. I agree, but I"m still sad. My contractions are regular and strong, I'm don't need to vocalize through them, but I do need to lean on Adam and rock through them. After strapping the baby monitor on me the nurse can't find and keep the heartbeat on the monitor, so she sits next to me holding it to where the baby is for a couple of hours. I"m glad that she's so dedicated, but I hate being tethered to a person like that.
For the next couple of hours nurses and doctors come and go, I have lots of contractions and I wait. I start to lose track of time and I can only remember events, not time. (for the most part)
Soon the doctors start talking about wanting to put a monitor in my uterus to see how strong my contractins are since I've only dilated to 4 cms, adn I've been at the hospital with regular contractions for a ocuple of hours. I hesitate on the monitor because I feel it will start a string of interventions and I want to avoid that. Finally I agree to having one after it's mentioned to me that if I stay at 4 cms too long that I'll be at a greater risk for a c-section. The monitor lets the doctors know that I am having strong contractions, and they should be dilating me, but they are not. The nursing shift change happens and I get a new nurse who's had 4 natural births herself and is an advocate of everything I want, which is nice. No one ever gave me a hard time for my birth plan, but it was nice to have someone on the staff who agreed with my choices.
Around now the doctors come back and suggest pitocin. I decline. I do not want pitocin, I had a hard time with it during Trixie's birth and I don't want to go through that again. I opt to let my body do the work. The baby is doing fine and everyone agrees that it's okay for me to wait. We wait. I have many more contractions and I question if I can do this. My doula tells me that if I question it, that means I can do it. It's when I can't do it anymore and declare myself done is when I am done. This makes perfect sense to me and I buckle down and put a lot of energy into my contractions and getting through them. It's about now that I get mad at them and really start to breathe hard into them, really leting lots of anger at them flow, and it makes them easier to handle. I still ask if I can do it. My doula tells me that I need to get out of my own head, I need to stop being so polite to everyone, including the doctors and let hte labour take me over. I ask her what I could think about, since I've always focused on pain to get though it. She guides me on a relaxing sequence and I have a whole bunch of contractions envisioning each one as a wave washing over me. I manage to sit through about 5 without saying anything. But they have started to slow down and get less intense.
Enter the doctors, again. There's a lot more talk of pitocin or a c-section, it's been about 2.5 hours since the last talk of pitocin. I agree to it only if I have an epidural. It's about 3am, i've been in labour for 22 hours. The nurse whom I love suggests that an epidural will help me to relax and that my body might finish dilating (I'm still at 4cms). So I get one. I am the most devistated I've been in a long time. I feel like the ultimate failure. Everyone tells me that labouring naturally for 22 hours is a feat, but I still feel let down and upset that my body failed me. I get the epidural and a cathedar, and I'm now bed ridden. I seem to be lucky and got a good anethesiologist who gives a perfect dose and I am able to move my legs and adjust my position mostly myself. I can still feel my contractins some, but they are really mild and I rest. Adam naps and my doula goes for a walk. At around 5 am I'm checked for dilation and I'm at 6 cms. The nurse comes back a couple more times to check me and help me shift positions and there is much resting. At around 7 I'm checked agina and I am fully dilated, and the nurse shift changes and I get a new nurse. My doula comes back from her walk/ snack break and we set everything up for me to start pushing. Since I'm all numb I can't stand and squat so I start pushing from my side. At about 7:40ish I'm told to push for a 10 count, which was a little annoying, but it gave me something to focus on. I do some pushes and then the nurse comes back and tells me to stop since she needs to get the doctor since the baby's head is nearly out. A doctor comes in and I push again, then on the next one I'm told to just push a little, which I find to be amusing. I try to hold back, and then next thing I know I have a crying baby on my chest. He cries for a long time, but it's a good cry. The doctor waits for the cords to stop pulsing and then she instructs Adam where to cut it. My doula tells me that the cord looks good, and I can tell that the baby is a good size, much bigger than his sister. Shortly after the cord is cut the placenta comes out and I ask the doctor if I can see it and she promises me that she'll show it to me before she leaves.
After the placenta is born the doctor checks me out and I have 2 second degree tears, one into my peinium and one up to my urethra. It takes her over an hour to stitch me up and during ths time the baby is weighed and measures. He's 7 pounds 5.3 ounces and 20 inches long. Adam and I haven't settled on a name for him yet. It's about now that the nurse tells me that I don't have a record if I am HIV posituve or not. I tell her that I am negative, that I had a test when I was pregnant with Trixie. She tells me that since I declined the test this time (I did because I knew I was negative, I didn't see the purpose in taking it again, it would just cause someone more work) I have to do it again. If I declined it then they would test the baby. I told her that there is no way I could have gotten HIV, since I am married in a monogomous relationship and I am not an IV drug user. She insists that she takes my blood or she'll take the baby's. I'm very upset by this, but Adam suggests that I let her and fight a differnt battle. I decline the eye goo for the baby and allow the vitimin K shot since he has a lot of head molding. (the 3 plates on his head are overlapped and he has a huge swollen spot. )
As the doctor is stitching me up my doula gives me a tour of my placenta, which looked healthy and a good size, which made me happy. There is a large white spot on the bag that is attached to the placenta and I wonder aloud if it's a calcium deposit from all of the tums I ate from my killer heartburn during my whole pregnancy. The doctor looks at it as she's checking out my placenta and says that it could be calcium. I would guess it was about 12 cms across and is rather square.
The baby gets checked out and scored 8 and 9 on his apgars and all is good, we're left to bond and start breastfeeding. A little while later the doctor comes back and tells me that she was wondering about the white spot on my placenta and she went to check my medical record and confirmed what she though. The spot is Hudson's twin, where she absorbed into him. I wasn't sad to learn this, it made me happy to see this, and have his twin acknowledged. However in the days to come it made me sad, not to have seen it, but to realize what's missing. My doula leaves around now, she's had a long night and needs to get back to her family.
After the doctor leaves again we still don't know what we're going to name the baby and Adam and I talk about the choices, finally we settle on Hudson George and we let the people know who need to know.
After a long night in the birthing suite I'm taken to the postpartum ward which is overflowing so I am in the overflow ward which is in the children's part of the hospital, and lucky me I get to share a room. The other lady's baby was born 15 minutes after Hudson and we don't talk. Her whole family and a bunch of friends are there for the whole day and I get little chance to rest, which was not plesant at all.

1 Comments:

At 11/16/2010 11:54 AM, Blogger Heather McD (Heather Eats Almond Butter) said...

Dea,
Thanks so much for sending me the links to both of your birth stories. I know you were disappointed not to have a home birth for either baby, but what's most important is that Trixie and Hudson both arrived safely. Trixie's birth brought back a lot of memories. I admire you so much for laboring that long with pitocin, especially when you were stuck in bed. You're an amazing and strong mama. :)

 

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