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Karin & Scooter's Journal - BIRTH STORY (FINALLY!)


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  #1521  
September 11th, 2013, 01:48 AM
plan4fate's Avatar I may bend, but not break
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Location: Wisconsin
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He's such a cutie.. I love the pictures of him!!!

I was thinking today.. when I joined, you were just starting to do your IVF journey.. and now he's going on 8m old!
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  #1522  
September 11th, 2013, 09:23 AM
kbpeanut's Avatar Scooter!
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Location: san diego, ca
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I know, crazy right? It always seemed like it would never happen... Like time was standing still, and I was never going to get pregnant. And now here I am with an almost 8 month old rolling around my bed (and kicking me). It's nuts!
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05.24.2011



Our TTC Journey | View my pregnancy journals here or here
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  #1523  
September 11th, 2013, 11:36 AM
Belita's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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And we still don't have that birth story!!!!
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  #1524  
September 11th, 2013, 11:39 AM
kbpeanut's Avatar Scooter!
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Location: san diego, ca
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Belita View Post
And we still don't have that birth story!!!!
Ahhhhhhh! That's right! It's all written too!
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Our TTC Journey | View my pregnancy journals here or here
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  #1525  
September 12th, 2013, 10:15 AM
kbpeanut's Avatar Scooter!
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Without further ado, below is (FINALLY) Baxter's birth story. I wrote this a long time ago, when it was fresh, so I wouldn't forget the details, so forgive the lack of brevity. Also, my intent was to insert pictures throughout, but never got to that, and rather than hold it up any longer, please just ignore the random numbers and filenames that are inserted throughout -- I will get those added someday!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Baxter’s Birth Story

Background
After a 3 ˝ year journey of trying to conceive our first child, including one loss, we were finally expecting our first child. We sought the help of science and conceived after a rigorous IVF protocol (following one failed cycle of IVF-turned-IUI). Because of my AMA (advanced maternal age) and my unknown medical history (I am adopted with no known family history), along with our infertility diagnosis (basically, diminished ovarian reserve), I was considered moderately high risk, and was accepted into a maternal/fetal medicine/high risk practice. All this meant was that my doctor was a perinatologist, and I was seen and monitored far more frequently than the average patient.

Monday, January 21, 2013 – 4:40am
I woke up early that morning with some odd pains. I realized pretty quickly that I was having some pretty strong BH contractions. It wasn’t unusual for me to wake up early in the morning, but it was usually because my hip hurt or because I had to pee. This time, neither of those woke me up, rather the strong BH that did the trick.

I figured there was nothing more to it, and tried to fall back asleep, to no avail. My husband, Patrick, woke up around 6 for work, and saw me lying there, clearly not feeling too hot. Every morning for the previous 2 weeks or so, he would immediately ask me upon waking if we were having a baby that day. Every day prior to this, I said “nope, not today”. This morning, however, I paused slightly, and said, “maybe!”

He sat up in bed, and asked me for more details. I told him I was awakened by what I thought were BH contractions, but was now starting to realize they might be the real thing. I was otherwise feeling pretty good, but these contractions – real or BH – were starting to hurt.

Monday, January 21, 2013 – 6:30am
He got up and got ready for work, per usual. I got up, took care of the dogs and my other critters, and tried to assess the situation. I tried to convince P to go to work, and that I would call him if anything changed. He only works about 10-15 minutes from home, so it would have been no big deal. Plus, I had a previously scheduled NST (non-stress test) for 9:30 that morning. I figured I would find out what was happening when I got there.

However, P was not comfortable with me driving to the doctor’s office alone. (Actually, my NST that morning was at the hospital instead of my doctor’s office since it was a holiday and the office was closed.). I called the hospital/antenatal testing department to see what they thought. I explained that I had an appointment for my routine NST at 9:30am, but that I had a sneaking suspicion I was going into labor, though the early stages. I asked if they thought maybe I should skip my NST and see if things progressed, and if they did, to come into L&D later in the day. They told me that I needed to have my NST, and if I skipped my appointment, I would have to come in and have it by way of triage later in the day. All that meant was that I wasn’t on the schedule and would potentially have to wait a long time until they could fit me in. I opted to go in for my appointment. P decided that he was going to work from home in the morning, and then drive me to my appointment. At this point, I was clearly in a great deal of pain (at least far more than I had been in the past), and he didn’t want me driving. I decided to call my mom and let her know that while I wasn’t quite sure, I did suspect that something was changing. She was clearly excited, and glad I called. I promised her we would keep her updated. Little did I know that was the last time I would talk to her until after our little one had arrived.

Monday, January 21, 2013 – 9:00am
We left for the hospital around 9am. Our hospital bags were packed a few weeks earlier, and everything was in the car, just in case. By the time we left the house, the contractions were getting more intense; though still not that close together. (P had been timing them, and they were about 10-12 minutes apart). On the chance that I was not returning home, we had prepared a list of “last minute things to do before going to the hospital”. I made sure that list was updated, showed P where all the critter’s food was (in addition to my dogs, I also have a bunch of fish, an aquatic frog, snails, hermit crab, and a crested gecko), and did one last run through of my hospital bag list. Luckily, I had showered that morning, just in case.

We arrived at the hospital, went to the antenatal department after checking in. When I told them I was there for a scheduled NST, but had a feeling I was in the early stages of labor, they told me to go to my appointment, and they would assess from there. So we did. I checked in, waited for them to call me back, and decided to take one last belly photo! For most weeks leading up to this point, I had been taking pictures of my ever-growing belly. I figured, we were right at 39 weeks that day, so might as well take one last photo – right next to the L&D sign!

<insert 39 week belly pic here>

We got called back after waiting only a few minutes. While I was waiting, though, a younger couple was also waiting, and she was about 7 months pregnant (not by my guess, but I heard them talking), and was also there for her NST. I was clearly breathing heavily through my contractions, and I must have looked like I needed something, because her husband/partner offered to get me a cup of water (which was about 1 foot away from me). So sweet.

When we went back to the testing area, and got hooked up. I explained to the nurse that I suspected I was in early labor. She did a quick ultrasound to check fluid levels and didn’t like what she found. She said my fluid levels appeared pretty low – in the 6 range. Up until this point, I had been going for twice weekly NSTs and AFIs, and my fluid had been perfect. I explained that with every AFI (amniotic fluid index), they sometimes had a hard time because there was always cord in the way. She tried again, same result. She decided to go get another nurse to double check. Second nurse came in, same result. She said she would continue with the NST and monitoring, but she had a feeling that the doctor on call wouldn’t be letting me leave with fluid levels that low.

She got me hooked up to the fetal monitors, and took one look at my contractions and decided she was going to let the doctor from my practice who was on call know about my fluid levels. I asked which doctor was on call, knowing it wasn’t mine since she was on call the next day (when I was scheduled for an induction). I had secretly hoped it was one of a few doctors, though I really do like them all. There is one that, though uber smart, and the head of the practice, was a little quirky and odd. Of course, that was the doctor on call. No worries. I would be in good hands no matter which doctor was on call.

While we waited, we watched the ticker tape during my contractions. They weren’t getting stronger, but were getting a bit closer together, though still somewhat irregular. Sure enough, after about 10 minutes, the nurse returned and said the doctor was admitting me due to my low fluid levels. I suspected as much.

Immediately, my life changed. I remember having a feeling of anxiety, excitement, uncertainty, worry, fear, elation – all at once. Most of all, it was disbelief that won out. I looked at P and said something to the effect of “this is really happening!” I waited a few minutes, and the L&D nurse (Amy) came down to get me. I was unhooked from my fetal monitor (a brief reprieve, I was soon to learn), and we all walked up to L&D.

Monday, January 21, 2013 – around 11:00am
We entered the L&D room. I looked around, remembering how the rooms looked from our hospital tour just a month or so prior. This time, it wasn’t a tour. This time, this was MY room. This is where I would give birth to our son. Still surreal.

I was told to change into a gown, and they would start the admission process. For the next hour or so, I went through a myriad of paperwork and procedure, got my IV started (LRS drip for now), and P sent a few messages to our immediate family, letting them know what was happening. I gave the L&D nurse my birth plan, which was pretty standard, but pointed out that we would be donating the cord blood to a public bank (this required some up front paperwork that needed to be done now). She got that underway, and all the while, I am hooked up to the fetal monitor again. My contractions were getting stronger, and were still a ways apart, but getting closer together. I forgot how far/close they were at this point, but probably around the 8-10 minute time frame.

Monday, January 21, 2013 – shortly after 12:00pm
After about an hour, all the paperwork was done, and I decided to send P back home. He was NOT pleased about leaving me, but he knew that I would rest much easier knowing that my animals were being cared for properly. I needed him to feed the critters with time-release foods, make sure they had plenty of water, check the lights and thermostat in the house, and gather the dogs and drop them off at “camp”. Luckily, the prior week, I had stopped by the vet, where we kennel our dogs, and filled out the paperwork. They know us VERY well there, and they were all very excited for our little one’s arrival. They knew that one day soon someone might be running in and pretty much throwing our dogs at them! Sure enough, that’s pretty much what P did. He told me later that when he showed up, he walked in the door, the ladies at the front desk turned around, saw him (and not me, who usually goes), with the dogs, and said “ooooh, is it baby time???!!!” He told them I was already at the hospital in labor. They grabbed the dogs from him, and wished us luck!

He returned to the hospital in about an hour and a half – not bad considering all he had to do, and that we live about 30 minutes away (and he stopped for a quick bite to eat!). We didn’t really expect to be admitted, so we fully expected to grab lunch after my appointment, and neither of us ate breakfast. He was a bit frantic, but very happy to be back at my side.

Monday, January 21, 2013 – 1:15pm
While he was gone, my contractions were getting stronger for sure. I had him set me up with my Kindle, phone, and iPod (with my programmed L&D playlists). I sent a few emails/texts, and then tried to read. That didn’t last long…I found it very hard to focus through my contractions. When he got back, he immediately noticed I was in significantly more pain than when he left. It was all I could do to breathe through the pain until he returned to help me focus.

Monday, January 21, 2013 – 2:15pm
We had taken a prepared childbirth class at the hospital about 6 weeks earlier, and this class illustrated some different types of laboring techniques, including breathing and positioning. We started to try some of these techniques, to see if my pain would lessen, or at least to see if I could focus through the contractions. They were getting stronger and closer together, though I can’t recall how far apart they were exactly, I guesstimate between 4-6 minutes by now. One thing I remember was that when I had to go to the bathroom, I was having a hard time. Probably due to the pain of the contractions countering the pressure or something. I decided to try some narcotic pain relief right around this time, probably close to 3 or 3:30pm. The L&D nurse gave me Fentanyl via my IV, and told me that I would need to be in bed for an hour. Within a few minutes, the medicine kicked in and I felt a bit woozy for a few minutes, but that quickly wore off. The pain relief was negligible, to the point where I asked the nurse if she really put anything in my IV at all. After the requisite hour, I decided to try getting up, walking around, moving, and some other techniques. I walked to the bathroom, which was no fun, and the walking didn’t seem to help anything. I was walking hunched over from the pain, and all it did was make me feel more tense everywhere. All the rooms have a birthing ball (a big exercise ball you often see in gyms). I decided to sit on that, and see if either bouncing or rolling on it would help. P was holding on to me, and we put the ball next to the bed so I could sit on the ball and lean on the bed. Plus, my IV had me tethered fairly close to the bed anyway. I leaned on the bed, and started bouncing on the ball, and knew immediately that the bouncing had to stop. So I started rolling my hips around in circles. That seemed to help a bit. I’m not sure if it really did anything, but it allowed me to focus on something other than the pain (not falling off the ball ) P was rubbing my back, and staying very close by.

I should interject here and say that throughout my laboring process, he was right by my side the entire time. He provided a constant stream of encouraging words, and always offering to help, rushing to do anything he could at a moment’s notice. I couldn’t have asked for a better labor partner.

After rolling around on the ball for what felt like hours (but was probably only about 30 minutes), I was finding little to no relief. My contractions were getting very strong, quite intense, lasting longer each time, and were much closer together. Throughout my laboring process, the nurse had been asking me at various times to rate my pain on a scale of 1 to 10. When I arrived, I think I told her I was at a 2, and when the pain got pretty bad, I upped it to a 4. During all this time, as my pain was clearly intensifying, she kept asking me if I was still at a 4, and reminding me that I could get an epidural at any time, especially since the Fentanyl apparently did nothing to ease the pain.

I think it was right around the 330 time frame when I finally asked for an epidural. I looked at my husband, and told him I was ready. Then I looked at the nurse and said something like “I don’t think I’m at a 4 anymore”

Monday, January 22, 2013 – 4:00pm
Ahhhh. The sweet relief of an epidural. Once I told the nurse I was ready, she called the anesthesiologist and had her come in as soon as she was available. Lucky for me, we caught her right before she was about to go in to the operating room for a scheduled C-section. It might have been hours before she would have made it back to me if I had waited any longer. She came in, introduced herself, gave me papers to read and sign, and explained to P and me what was going to happen. Normally, husbands and other non-staff persons have to leave the room during this time, but after she had me try and sit on the edge of the bed, I was leaning so heavily on P, and I think she must have realized I was in a tremendous amount of pain that she decided to just let him stay.

She started the procedure and said, very matter of fact-ly, every single step she was about to take. She worked swiftly, but carefully. It was done in a matter of minutes, and I felt absolutely zero discomfort the entire time. I would guess she was done in less than 5 minutes, but my guess could be way off too. Either way, once she finished, she told me to lie back down, and she would be back in 20 minutes to check my progress. I didn’t feel anything immediately, but after only a short time, I noticed that while I was still feeling each contraction, they seemed to be getting shorter. What we learned was that they were not, in fact, according to the monitor, they were actually getting longer, stronger, and closer together, but that’s not what I felt. Again, ahhhh, the sweet relief of an epidural.

She returned in about 20 minutes, and asked how I was feeling. I explained that everything seemed to be working just fine, and I felt much better.

Monday, January 22, 2013 – 4:30pm
At this point, I believe P started taking pictures of me. I was laying in bed, smiling, and playing on my phone (I think I was texting my mom and brother). I was checking on my FB status – which I had updated very cryptically early in the day to “Nice Little Monday”. I had no intention of letting anyone other than my immediate family know I was in labor, and I was especially not planning to share the news on Facebook. I think around this time, I also took a short nap.

<nap picture DSC_0434>

I can’t be certain of the time I woke up, but I know that I was no longer feeling my contractions, or at least any pain from them. It is hard to describe, and unless you’ve been there, you probably won’t understand this, but I knew I was having them, but couldn’t feel them. Odd, I know. P kept looking at the monitor and whenever I would have a big one, he would look at me quizzically, and say “How are you feeling?” or “Are you feeling that?” The answer was usually that I wasn’t feeling much of anything. At some point shortly after I woke up (I think), the doctor came by for a visit.

Monday, January 22, 2013 – 6:00pm?
Dr. Val Catanzarite was the doctor from my practice that was on call this day. He was on call for the entire day shift and the night shift as well. Unless Scooter held out until 7 or 8 the next morning, he would be the doctor to deliver my son. He stopped by, we chatted about how I was feeling, and he did an internal exam. I think I was about 4 cm dilated at this point, but I could be remembering this wrong. He decided to break my bag of waters, and he said that should speed up the process of dilating. Because of the epidural, I didn’t feel anything other than a bit of pressure. My water was clear, so that was great news. Baby was doing just fine in there. After he left, the nurse changed out the disposable pad underneath me. Apparently, along with my water, came my bloody show. I remember a bit later feeling leaking and wet down there, and P went to look, and sort of freaked out and went to get the nurse because there was a lot of blood. He wasn’t aware that it was just the rest of my show, and that it was totally normal. Either way, she came in, checked things, changed my pad again, and we were back to waiting.

We were listening to some relaxing music that I had prepared ahead of time. I made several playlists for L&D. The primary list contained Adimus, Enya, and Andrea Bocelli. Other lists included relaxing classic rock by Bob Dylan, Sting, and Elton John, another list with Enigma, and one more with David Helfgott piano music. He bought some wireless speakers, and we had those hooked up to our iPod so we had a constant stream of music playing. Aside from having P by my side, it was my music that got me through.

I don’t know how we managed to pass the time, really, probably just chatting and resting. I know that we took out our list of baby names and started eliminating some of them to pass the time. I think our list was probably about 40 when we got there, and by the time I was ready to push, or long before that actually, the list was down to about 3.

This part of the night gets a little fuzzy for me. Probably because I was so bored, and just waiting to finish dilating so I could actually “do” something active, rather than passively wait. I think the doctor came back later in the night, maybe around 10 something to check (or maybe the nurse did it, again, a bit fuzzy), and I was getting closer to being fully effaced and dilated. Matter of fact, I’m pretty sure I was 100% effaced at this point. If I had to render a guess, I was about 8 cm dilated around this time. Also sometime during this time, our original L&D nurse, Amy, went home and there was a shift change. We got a new nurse; name escaping me at the moment. I liked Amy better.

Fast forward…because I really don’t remember what we did during the next 2 hours, nor does it really matter.

Monday-Tuesday, January 22-23, 2013 – 12:00am midnight
The nurse said I was fully dilated, and ready to start pushing. It all happened sort of fast, but the sequence of events that took place included turning on the baby warming station, getting some stirrups on my bed, and some instruction on how, exactly, I was supposed to push the little guy out.

At 12:15am, I started to push, officially. The nurse would hold one foot, and P would hold the other, as I grabbed behind both knees (my feet were in supports, much like for a routine pap). I would bear down and push for a count of ten, take a breather, then repeat, take a breather, then repeat a third time. I did this with each contraction. Sometimes I felt the contractions about to start, and when I did, I usually felt the need to push. Sometimes, P would look at the monitor and sort of give me the “eye”, like “do you feel this?” or “ready to push through this one?”

<pushing at 1230a DSC_0441>

It went on like this for an hour. At 1:15, I was still pushing. And getting tired. But onward!

<pushing at 115am DSC_0442>

Tuesday, January 23, 2013 – 2:15am
It was now after 2am, and I was still pushing. Same old routine, wait for a contraction, push for a 10 count, breathe, 10 count, breathe, 10 count. It seemed like I was getting nowhere, but I kept telling myself that giving birth wasn’t supposed to be easy, nor did it necessarily happen in 1, 2, or 3 pushes. I was in for the long haul. All my ultrasounds were showing that Scooter was on the larger side, so I figured it was just taking a while because he was, in fact, a big baby. My nurse put me on oxygen, as I was showing signs of distress, as was baby. Not enough to warrant any emergency action, but just enough to make wearing an oxygen mask necessary.

At some point in here, our nurse went on break. Another nurse came in to take over in the interim. I don’t remember her name either, but I knew I immediately liked her. When I was pushing through each contraction, the other nurse sort of just sat there, counted for me, and held my foot. This new nurse was coaching me. Really telling me how good of a job I was doing, and to keep it up, especially when I had a really good push that clearly helped Scooter progress further down. She would reach inside and feel around, trying to help out with each push, and she was just really encouraging. During her short time with us, I realized how much more motivated I was to push. My epidural was starting to wear off on the left side, and part of that was due to the fact that I was pushing by laying on my right side. (Other nurse saw that I wasn’t making much progress while pushing on my back, so at some point, she had me push on my side).

With each contraction, I was now often pushing 4 times (that is, 4 counts of 10). My efforts were getting more intense, and I was feeling like I was actually doing something. At one point, this nurse said, “with the next push, we’ll know if your son has hair!” Talk about motivation – I was getting somewhere!

Sure enough, next push, she said, “he has blond hair!”

Very shortly after this happened, our nurse returned from her break, and the relief nurse went about her way. I didn’t break stride, I kept pushing whenever I felt the need. I kept the relief nurse in my head for motivation, and focused on P, since he was following my lead.

I did this until 3:00am.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013 – 3:15am
Dr. Catanzarite paid me a visit. This was at the suggestion of the L&D nurse, who felt that I might not be making as much progress as they would have liked by this point. He came in, and did an internal check. He noted that not only was the nurse right, but that I wasn’t even in a position to continue pushing. He explained that they put a limit on the length of time any woman can push, and that time is 4 hours. For women over 35, that limit is 3 hours. Not only had I hit my 3-hour limit, but baby was still quite a ways up there. He said that if his internal examination had revealed that I had been making significant progress in moving the baby down, he might have let me continue. However, given that I had made such little progress in the past 3 hours of pushing, he was in no position to let me continue.

His next words hit me like a ton of bricks. He said, “This baby isn’t coming out that way. I would recommend we do a cesarean section.”

Here I am, laying on my right side, oxygen mask on, barely breathing. I could hardly keep my eyes open, and yet, my eyes were starting to open wider with each contraction, since I was now starting to feel them on my left side. I hadn’t eaten anything since about 8pm on Sunday night (reminder, it’s 3am on Tuesday morning now), and I had no energy. Luckily, I was allowed as much water as I wanted, and earlier in the day, I was allowed a couple of cups of beef broth and some tea.

My birth plan stated that I wanted to avoid a C-section at all costs, unless it became medically necessary. Well, I am part of a high risk/MFM practice, and according to Dr. Catanzarite, the head of that practice, it was now considered medically necessary. Of course, it was still my/our decision, but the next words out of my mouth surprised even me.

“Ok.”

In one instant, I knew that was how it was going to be. I was not tired. I was completely and utterly exhausted. I could barely form words, let alone functionally push out a baby at this point. I looked at P, tears in my eyes, and asked him something to the effect of “are you ok with this?” He said, “of course, baby”.

The next period of time moved fast. Once I gave my verbal consent, all sorts of things began to happen, and quickly. The doctor and nurses were talking to P, giving him instructions about what he was going to do, where he would go, what would happen. It was only a matter of minutes and he was already donning scrubs over his clothes, and I was putting a cap on my head. In that moment, I lay back in bed, and knew things would never be the same.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013 – 3:30am
The anesthesiologist came in to talk to me about what was going to happen in the next short while. He was going to pump up my epidural medicine, and then when we got to the operating room, he would check with me to see if I felt a substantial amount of relief. P would say his goodbyes to me, and they would escort him somewhere, to wait.

Wait for what?

Wait for them to prep me for the operating room, and get me situated. And that they did. P packed up all of our things from the room, and the anesthesiologist told him the only thing he needed to bring was our camera. He explained that once in the operating room, he would take photos for us, with our camera. With that, he took one final picture of us right before we parted ways, and with that, P was gone.

<parting ways DSC_0448>

Now I am alone in the room, with various staff doing some hustle and bustle about me. I was actually very relaxed at this point, but also very sad, since I was without P, even though I knew it was only for a short time. Only a minute or two passed, and I was being wheeled out of the L&D room and down a hallway. (I’m not sure exactly when it happened, but much earlier in the day, I had opted to put my contacts in – I’m very glad I did, so I could see everything around me.).

I was wheeled in the operating room, and as expected, I was cold. I was greeted by Wayne, a large gentleman nurse who explained that he was there to make sure I was ok and stayed smiling. That, he did.

I was quickly shifted onto the operating table, and from this point, things moved VERY fast. Lightening fast. The anesthesiologist checked with me on my pain relief, and I explained that it was better, but I could still feel things “down there”. He said that was normal, and now he was going to give me the rest of the medicine. He did, and then started opening little alcohol swabs and dribbling them on my belly and chest and such, asking me if I could feel anything. I could. And I made sure to tell him so, in no uncertain terms. The last thing I wanted was for them to slide into me, and have me feel it. He took this time to administer another medication into my IV, which he explained was for after the delivery. I can’t remember what it was, but he called it the “anti-shake” medicine. I was having some pretty serious shakes by now, and I think he anticipated they would worsen after delivery. He tried the alcohol trick again, and this time, I don’t think I felt anything. They had put up a sheet/tarp thing right below my neck, and it rose straight up so I was unable to see anything going on down below. Probably a good move.

My arms were strapped in the shape of a “t”, and I was freezing and shaking. I was thirsty, and alone. And there was a ton of activity around me. And then it was all better. P finally appeared at my side. I have never been so happy to see him. He grabbed my hand, and then things started.

<in the operating room DSC_0450>

Tuesday, January 22, 2013 – 3:45 am
Next thing I knew, my body was moving around somewhat violently. P was talking to me calmly, not really sure what he was saying, but I know that it kept me focused on him and not what was happening below me. I was scared, excited, tired, and curious, all at the same time. I didn’t feel any pain, but I did, as the doctor and nurses explained, feel a lot of pressure and tugging. But importantly, not a bit of pain.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013 – 3:49am
Next thing I knew, the anesthesiologist was telling P that he could stand up. He said, “Go ahead Dad, you can stand up now”. He did, expecting to look over the tarp and see the doctor holding up his son. What I later learned (and what the pictures will show, if you care to view them) is that when he stood up to look over the tarp, he didn’t see our son. Rather, he saw the doctor with his hand entirely inside my abdomen, and he saw the doctor actually deliver our son. I remember looking up at P, and at the moment he stood up, his eyes were VERY wide. I assumed it was just the shock of it all, but I learned after seeing the photos (which I am VERY thankful the anesthesiologist took), that what P saw was something for which he was not prepared. He saw Dr. Catanzarite reach into me, and actually deliver our baby.

These next few photos are somewhat graphic, though I personally think they are in good taste. As the disclaimers often say before TV programs “this program contains footage of actual surgical procedures…”…so do the following photos.

<DSC_0452, 0453, 0454, 0455, 0456>

For me, unknowing that all of this was taking place, all I knew was the next moment, one of the best in my life…when I heard our son cry. From what we can tell, he cried before he was even all the way out! I looked up/over at P next to me, and I had tears of joy streaming down my face. The doctor held up our son over the tarp so I could see him.

<0457, 0458, 0459>

I began to cry immediately. Our son was here. He was perfect. The doctor said to me, “Mom, what’s his name?”

“Baxter.”

Just like that. His name was Baxter. It was one of the 3 on our list, and while we had always known that his middle name would be Michael, we decided we would wait for him to make his appearance before giving him his first name. The doctor looked at P and sort of asked him if that was ok, to which P responded something like “that’s it!” and that was that. Baxter Michael Reemts was here.

DSC 0462

Tuesday, January 22, 2013 – 3:50am
What I didn’t realize fully at this time was that, at this moment, our lives would change forever. Our son was here. The child for who we had waited for so long was finally here. I glanced over as they were bringing him over to the warming unit to be cleaned up. All I could say, over and over, was that “he’s perfect”. I must have said this 20 times through my tears of joy. While they had cut the cord following his delivery, they cut it long so that P would be able to “cut” it as well. They called him over to the table where Baxter was laying, and P was able to cut the cord also. A symbolic moment, but one I’m sure he will never forget. At this point, I still hadn’t been able to see Baxter up close, or touch him. I think I remember saying something like “Can I touch him??”

DSC 0465

Next thing I knew, they brought Baxter over to me, and I got to kiss his little perfect face. I couldn’t contain myself. I was overcome with joy. The anesthesiologist told us all to look up and smile for our first family photo. I had forgotten he still had our camera. I will cherish that picture forever. Hospital caps and all. This was our first family picture.

DSC 0466

Tuesday, January 22, 2013 – 4:00am
And then I was alone.

They took Baxter to another area of the hospital to be weighed, get his eye goop and Vitamin K. P went with him, as we didn’t want our son to be apart from at least one of us. I remained in the operating room so they could finish sewing me up. I remember being very shaky, and VERY thirsty. Right before P left, I asked if he could get me an ice chip. Not even multiple, just one chip. He said to the room, “Any chance we could get an ice chip or two over here?” The anesthesiologist replied, “Not unless you want to see it projectile vomited across the room” (or something like that). So, the short answer was NO.

As they were working on me, I was feeling crappier and crappier. I was in no pain at all, but I was so very thirsty. I don’t ever remember being more thirsty in my life. I think I was saying sort of to myself, and sort of out loud that I was just so thirsty. I was having a hard time swallowing. I was starting to feel nauseated. Apparently, I was having some sort of reaction that caused the anesthesiologist to give me some medication. He said to the room “she’s stressed over here, we need to xxxxxxx” and I don’t remember what he said, but I think it was something about they need to hurry up or else. I believe the issue was that I was panicking from not being able to swallow well, being strapped on my back still, and starting to feel nauseated, and not being able to do anything about it. He put something into my IV and I felt woozy for a few minutes, but felt a little calmer.

And then they were done.

I was being wheeled out of the operating room, and I remember very little about that time except that I looked up at Wayne and said “thank you for taking good care of me”. I was wheeled to the recovery area, and I felt very out of sorts. There were nurses bustling around me, blood pressure cuffs going off, and some things on my legs to prevent clots, I presumed. I saw P walking in the hallway with our newborn son. All I wanted in that moment was to have them near me. I still hadn’t been able to hold my son, and I had been apart from him for too long. I still wasn’t allowed even any ice chips, but they finally gave me a tiny sponge on a stick that was damp. Yep, that was it. I literally sucked the life out of that tiny sponge. Then asked for another. You would swear I had spent 40 days and 40 nights in the desert, as thirsty as I was.

The next few moments were a blur, but I know there were nurses doing various things about me, and asking me questions to see if I was coherent. P was finally able to come and see me, and he brought our son. I don’t remember exactly the order this happened, but at some point, Baxter was placed on my chest for our skin-to-skin time. This was the moment I had been waiting for.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013 - 5:00am
I had no idea what time it was at this point. Maybe around 5? I had to go look at the time stamp on the pictures to verify. It was 5am.

We had some mommy and son cuddles, and I tried to get him to nurse for the first time. We both fumbled through it, but made it work. He wasn’t the best, and nor was I, but we got it somehow. The next hour or so is a blur of happiness. I bonded with my son in the most special way a mother can – he lay on my chest, nursed on occasion, and we cuddled. I will never forget those first baby cuddles. We are having cuddles now, as he lay snuggled on my chest in the Moby, but nothing will compare to that first time. This photo captures the first time I held my son.

,0477

I talked with P a bit, mostly about what went on after he left the operating room, and we shared experiences. We cried some more, and just took in the moment. We were a family. After 3 ˝ years of trying, 6 months of fertility treatments, and 9 months of waiting, we were finally a family.

0602
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  #1526  
September 12th, 2013, 11:19 AM
DaniM0820's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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<3 LOVE! Thanks for (finally ) sharing!
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  #1527  
September 12th, 2013, 11:28 AM
Nicholle ttc's Avatar TTC our first!
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I was going to harrass you about finally getting the birth story, but your post made me cry and made feel so happy for you, so now I can't. I'm so happy that Bax, your precious boy, is in your life. I'm sure he is worth the wait.
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  #1528  
September 12th, 2013, 10:11 PM
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Glad to finally read your Birthstory,brought tears to my eyes!
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  #1529  
September 12th, 2013, 11:16 PM
plan4fate's Avatar I may bend, but not break
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aww man.. now I'm sobbing at my desk.

What a wonderful birth story Karin..
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  #1530  
September 13th, 2013, 08:25 AM
Belita's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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Beautiful story, Karin! I also teared up and it brought back so many emotions since we had similar issues with Sean! In fact, one regret I have is that we were too nervous and scared about the fact that I had to have a c-section to take our camera along. Your descriptions were so vivid I felt like I was right back there in the OR! The anesthesiologist also had Bert look over the curtain before Sean was all the way out! Bert had quite the poker face and I didn't know until a week later! That's awesome that Pat still got to cut the cord. Not all c-section papas get to have that. Bert wasn't able to cut Sean's cord.
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  #1531  
September 16th, 2013, 08:12 AM
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What a great birth story. Thanks for sharing!!!
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  #1532  
September 17th, 2013, 02:11 PM
DeepSouthMommy's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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I read this the other day but was unable to comment at the time. You definitely had a pretty crazy labor and delivery and I truly understand the rough recovery. In a lot of ways our births are similar and I know the emotional aspect is/was really the hardest part. I'm glad that things ended well for you guys. I hope that you were able to battle through the meds to enjoy your first few hours with Bax. <3
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  #1533  
September 20th, 2013, 07:15 PM
JennyLee's Avatar TTC #1 after loss
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Amazing birth story, Karin - worth waiting for!
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  #1534  
November 7th, 2013, 01:26 PM
blueeyes25s's Avatar Expecting #1
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I didn't get a chance to comment after reading your birth story bec I got half way through and realized I had to go back to work (I was on a pump break) and then had to finish it later! Such an amazing birth story, Thanks for sharing!!!
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  #1535  
January 15th, 2014, 08:48 AM
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Haven't had any updates in a long time! Baxter is coming up on his first birthday next week.Hope everything is going great! I bet he has gotten so big! Is he walking yet?
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  #1536  
January 23rd, 2014, 10:43 AM
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Happy Birthday Baxter!
blueeyes25s likes this.
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