Obviously I didn’t follow through with those pregnancy updates I promised a couple of posts ago on the blog. But, here’s a pretty big update: I’m not so pregnant anymore.
Zach and I welcomed a son, Kash Aaron, on September 22 at 12:57 am – measuring in at 21 in. and a whopping 9 lbs. 1 oz. Here’s his birth story.
My due date was September 26th, but since I was diagnosed with gestational diabetes around week 24, my doctor planned to induce me at 39 weeks. Now, while it was nice to have a pretty good idea of when we would have a baby, induction birth stories tend to be on the dramatic side. I would answer every “When are you due?” inquiry with “My due date is September 26th, but I’ll be induced the week before if he hasn’t come on his own.” After which, the inquirer would give me their best sympathetic look and say, “I hope he comes on his own!” Thanks, me too.
Well, he didn’t come on his own. I wasn’t dilated or having contractions by my last doctor’s appointment, much to my doctor’s dismay. So, I was scheduled to come to the hospital the evening of September 20th to start the Cervidil.
We showed up at the hospital at 4:30pm on September 20th to get everything started. I was both nervous and excited as went up to the desk to check-in, we ended up on the wrong floor at the wrong desk even though we had taken the hospital tour. Once we were in the right place, the nurses had me get changed and settle into the very uncomfortable bed I’d be in for the entire labor and delivery process. After 30 minutes of questions and a pretty smooth IV insertion, the resident doctor came in and inserted the Cervidil to get things going. The Cervidil would be in overnight and would hopefully kickstart my body into labor and thin out my cervix for the next day.
The next morning, the nurse and a new resident doctor came in at 7am to check my progress – dilated to 3cm and having pretty regular contractions. The contractions were still mild on a pain scale and really just felt like menstrual cramps. After checking my progress, the doctor mentioned that I could get my epidural and he would break my water and start Pitocin. Since I wanted to go without the epidural, he went ahead and broke my water and started a low dose of Pitocin. Well, he thought he broke my water… more on that later.
The day went by fast and slow at the same time. We had family members coming in and out all day long sitting and talking and waiting. My contractions kept getting more intense, but still just felt like menstrual cramps. The doctors would come in and check my progress every couple hours, each time progressing more and more. 3cm, 4cm, 5cm, 6cm, 7cm.
Somewhere around 7cm, I stalled out for a couple of hours. My doctor wanted a catheter inserted to monitor my contractions to make sure they were intense enough to move baby’s head down and into the “go” position. However, when she went to insert the catheter, she discovered that my water was still very much intact. Great. So, she broke my water – for real – and inserted the catheter to keep track of my contractions. Almost immediately after the rupture, my contractions went from painful but manageable to holy-crap-there’s-a-gremlin-trying-to-claw-his-way-out. That was because my Pitocin was jacked all the way up because my progress had stalled out at 7cm. So, yes, the horror stories you read about Pitocin are true.
I still hadn’t had an epidural, and I thought I was golden… until the first contraction after my water broke. At this point, my memories of the day get a little fuzzy. I’m assuming that’s because of the pain and because I took off my glasses and had my eyes closed while breathing/screaming through contractions the rest of the day. According to my mom and Zach, I went a couple more hours before requesting something for the pain. I was still only at 7-8cm and I knew I would be exhausted if I kept going like I was.
So, I got the epidural. And, since I got it so late, it really didn’t do much. It didn’t feel like the miracle drug that everyone said it was. But, it did take an edge off. A couple more hours went by, a couple more centimeters, and then I started to feel the urge to push.
And, yes, it does feel like that.
All of a sudden – apparently, it was about 2 hours – I was fully dilated, effaced, and ready to go. A nurse comes in and says she is getting my labor kit ready. Then, the room was literally filled with doctors and nurses all ready to bring another human into the world. My doctor showed up just in time. I pushed for about 30 minutes before I felt this tiny body placed on my chest and heard his sweet cries. He grabbed my finger with his purple hand and wouldn’t let go. He had a head full of hair and he was beautiful. I couldn’t believe just 20 minutes ago he was inside of my body – I know that’s such a cliche, but seriously it’s such a strange feeling.
He stayed on my chest long enough for my mom to cut his cord and for Zach and I to finally pick a name: Kash.
The nurses took him to weigh him and clean him up. That’s when I found out that tiny thing, was actually quite big. 9 pounds 1 ounce big. 10 fingers. 10 toes. He was perfect.
Once he was back on my chest, the rest of the evening was a blur. Somewhere around 2am, I got to eat my first meal in two days. I got a hamburger – it was delicious.