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I was one of the folks due at the end of the month and honestly felt I would carry past my EDD since it was my first baby. However I had spent 6 weeks doing lots of walking and stair stepping commuting to my job so maybe that pushed things along.
I had gone to my 38 week appointment and the doc stripped my membranes without my permission. After that I began bleeding and some mucous plug came out. I was cramping all night long and thought she may have kicked me into labor. I wasn't able to sleep until 7 am in the morning after a long, uncomfortable night. After that everything settled down and I thought I would last until my EDD. (Dec 27th)
The night before labor was weird for me. I am usually a night owl and can stay up until 1 am if I don't have to be up early the next day. But that night I fell asleep on the couch at 9 pm, woke at 1 am, drank some milk and then went to bed. I guess my body knew it was about to enter the marathon of labor. I woke at 5:30 am feeling like I had a cramp...kind of like when you think you're going to have diarrhea. I groggily thought, "Hmm I guess I am starting my period." Then I woke up and realized I shouldn't be feeling menstrual cramps. I went to the bathroom and after about 10 minutes felt another cramp.
At this point my DH was waking for work and I told him I may be in early labor. I can't believe this now but I told him to go ahead to work and I would call him when the contractions came closer together. And then two minutes later I had another contraction. So I made an addendum, take me to the hospital now and call your chief and ask for the day off. On the way to the hospital I was having contractions two minutes (or less apart). I was checked into triage and the nurse told me to change into a gown and she would be back to check me. In the meantime someone was being wheeled into triage and she never made it out of the chair...she gave birth right then and there. For the next hour the nurse was distracted and I wasn't checked. I took advantage of this and went to the bathroom and had a BM. (I was nervous about having a BM while delivering so this was an answer to a very strange prayer. ) When the nurse came to check me she said I was 3-4 cm. I was so depressed because I felt the contractions were very intense and close together to be only 3-4 cm.
I spent three hours in triage and it was getting really, really intense. I was vocalizing at this point and finally asked my DH to request an epidural when we were admitted to L&D. I felt if I was in this much pain this "early" in that I would exhaust myself by delivery time and not be able to push. By the time I was admitted to L&D I was making quite a bit of noise and demanding meds. I had to use the bathroom again and once again had a BM. The nurse yelled at me because she said I needed to get checked before using the bathroom, well I can't exactly close the barn door after the horse got out. I painfully made my way back to bed and just laid on my side and vocalized through the contractions. After a few minutes I felt like there was a bowling ball trying to make it's way out of my butt. So I started sneak-pushing because I felt the nurse would yell at me for pushing too soon. The pushing made the contractions easier to tolerate. After three sneak sessions of pushing the nurse caught me. She asked my DH how long ago I came in triage and what my measurements were then. He told her we came in about 4 hours ago and I was 3-4 cm. She called the doc in to check me. The resident checked me and said I was 10 cm and complete and it was time to get this show on the road. Suddenly the room filled with people and they broke down my bed. My hopes had been to labor on all fours or at least squatting but I was in no shape to demand anything as I was being completely irrational at this point. I told my DH that I couldn't do this, to make it go away, and that I had changed my mind about wanting a natural labor.
I labored on my back and felt like I was pushing the baby up a hill. The resident did AROM but there was barely any fluid and it has merconium in it. I was crowning and screaming to the doc to numb my perineal area as the ring of fire had arrived. He misinterpreted my request and thought I was asking for narcotics and told me they couldn't give me anything by IV at this point. All I could get out was, "Local, fool!!" before another contraction hit. I think I even yelled at him to pull her out with the suction cup....yeah...like I have any business instructing an OBGYN how to retrieve my kid. After about 5 minutes of her being stuck inside my canal he asked if he could give me an episiotomy. Originally I was adamant about no episiotomy but I could feel her head was stuck, it was like I was pushing against a brick wall. I gave him consent and he made a small cut. During the next contraction I pushed with all my might and her head came out. Her cord was wrapped twice around her neck and once around her arm but she came out crying and completely perfect. We also found out why there was so little fluid when her bags were broke. She had acted like a cork and blocked the fluid. When I pushed her head out there was a huge gush of fluid. (ever seen the movie Coneheads....yeah...like that ) They delivered the rest of her body and her apgars were 8 and 9 respectively. She was 5 lbs 6 ozs, tiny but expected as both DH and I are petite people. The doc said he was glad she was petite as he thought I would've needed more repairs if she were any bigger. He complimented me on "good pushing" and the resident began perineal repairs.
While my labor and delivery was not my gauzy, mother-earth dream it was as natural as it could be in the hospital. I was able to stay on a hep-lock for the majority of the time and had only two pelvic checks. In the end it was good that they didn't listen when I told them my family had a history of fast births. Because of their disbelief I had a mostly non-interventional birth. The nurses marveled at my quick recovery and I was discharged the next day per my request. Now I am enraptured with this tiny, perfect being. I can't believe she is mine forever. It was a long road getting to hold her in my arms but worth every second of it.
I dropped a tear in the ocean, and whenever they find it I’ll stop loving you, only then. ~Unknown