I started having strong contractions on our way back home from the imaging center. OtterPop asked if we could make time to get a haircut because he wanted to be clean shaven for his soft baby's skin. While he was getting trimmed up, I took the kids across the parking lot for ice cream. I thought that maybe I should run to the bank and do a few run around errands while waiting for Otter, but while driving out of the one parking lot, I had a strong surge that made me turn around instead. We just parked in front of the haircut place and waited instead. Afterward we drove home. I think it was pretty close to 2:00.
At home OtterPop showered and shaved, then took the little ones out in the living room for a movie and nap. I stayed back to our bedroom to work through the contractions in peace. I didn't want to lay down because that's how I "worked through" them with buttercup's labor and by the time I had to get to the hospital, getting out of bed, sitting in the car to drive to the hospital, and getting from the car to the hospital all were too much for me. I didn't want to replicate that error.
I used the moving methods of swaying, leaning, hands and knees, kneeling by the bed, and rocking on the toilet as coping methods along with deep relaxation music and breathing.
It was during this period that I realized I had a fear of going to the hospital. Also in the music of choice, I also found a good trigger word, "waves", for me to be reminded to let the surges not just pass in waves, but to work in waves as I visualized them doing their job.
At about 3:45 I told OtterPop that it was time. I had gotten a little tired and sat down on the bed through a surge. It was full of pressure and I could feel turbo moving lower. I knew I'd be sitting in the car ride and decided we needed to get there.
OtterPop came back and packed up his stuff. I hadn't unpacked from the morning before (where I was quite certain that turbo would escape to my arms in Mother's Day). During this time the contractions intensified even more. After he packed and loaded the pickup I felt like it took me about 10 minutes to get outside and loaded up.
I contacted my OB earlier and found out that she accidentally left her cell phone at home. She returned my call and said she'd wait to hear from me but probably meet me after work (5pm) at the hospital.
I had contacted our birth photographer and kept her pretty informed too. My sister-in-law shared an app with me that helped me time the contractions and intervals without brain concentration, I expressed to her how frustrating it was for me when people asked for that info. I didn't want to focus on time and had a very difficult time answering them. The app helped sooooo much! The only difficulty with it was I didn't want to carry my phone around, but I had a hard time rushing back to it an the onset of the surge.
We arrived at the hospital shortly before 5. Again, it took a while to get out of the vehicle and up to the 3rd floor. OtterPop got me a wheelchair, but I didn't want to incapacitate myself. I really WANTED to stay up and moving! A security guy met us at my second contraction stop and rushed up to l&d to let them know of my arrival.
After signing the few papers, I was "rushed" (at my own snail's pace) to the check-in room. I kept my own clothes on for personal comfort and asked her to be as gentle as possible in the cervical check. Also I asked to not have to lay flat on my back as all through my pregnancy it caused great discomfort and would almost always onset a contraction.
The check went quickly and painlessly and I was beyond thrilled to hear her report a bulging bag and 8cm dilation. OtterPop praised me, I praised my ultimate awesomeness, the nurse praised me, and we moved down to a room (307). The staff tried contacting my OB after the check, but had no success because it was straight up 5:00. The office had turned off the phones, and again, she left her cell phone at home! I wasn't worried, but hoped she'd have the instinct to come straight to the hospital from work.
At this point, A Full Cup (our photographer) arrived and upon entering the delivery room I had to make a mad dash (at my great snail's pace) for the toilet. OtterPop ran outside to park and grab our stuff.
We had packed a great birth bag full of ESSENTIALS for the most amazing birth. I'll post separately on the contents and how they tremendously helped!
On the toilet I mistakenly said that I needed to poop, but that scared the nurse into thinking I needed to push (which I didn't) so she hurried me off the pot to get the monster on me. <-that was an accidental typo that I'm going to leave because it's hilariously ironic.
Procedure is to monitor for 20 minutes upon arrival. I wasn't excited about it at all and I think I just laid down and decided that I'd rest through the stress of having the monitors on me. Turbo HATED having anything touch my belly. Even rubbing my bump would set him squirming.
I got antsy and restless about 15 minutes in and asked how turbo was doing during the contractions. After they said he was doing just great I asked them to please take them off. I was denied, but reassured there was only 5 more minutes. At 5:33 the monsters came off. <-it must be autocorrect
I have as a note that my bag of water ruptured at 5:35. I'm foggy of the details on that. I'm not sure what I was doing, probably trying to figure out a comfortable way to labor after being taken off the monitors. And on that note I'm also foggy in a lot if the details for the next hour. I have notated that at 5:35 I had a feeling of increased pressure. At 5:45 my dr arrived and checked in with me. And then at 6:14 "he's moving down!"
Here are some of the things I remember: my body was so full of adrenaline that I was shaking from head to toe. I was sweaty and clammy. The extra nurse we had in the room to take notes for this here story I document, got a fan out and started fanning me and that felt good. I think that for the most part I was muscle fatigued from the adrenaline shakes and was kinda stuck in the side-lying position. My lower half was extremely sensitive to the touch. My husband was with me and rooting for me 200%. <-another typo that emphasizes my sentence so sgsin, I'll leave.
I remember asking the nurse questions like "what's next? What am I waiting for? How much longer? What makes the next thing happen? What can I do to make him hurry and come?"
I remember talking to turbo continuously. I said things like, "please come out. Please move down. I'm ready to meet you. I really want to see you. I want to hug and kiss you. Please fall out of me. Please just fall out! Come on, turbo!" I pleaded a lot with him to fall out the closer his birth came.
I remember getting exasperated with the length of "nothing happening". That's when the nurses encouraged me to change positions. Even if it just meant rolling to the other side. I explained that my muscles just couldn't move any more because of my stupid shakes and everyone reassured me that they could help, assist, and/or even move me for me. So i rolled over, but opposite the natural way. Instead of "rolling over", I rolled under and got stuck half way on my hands and knees. Judging from my notes, I think this was around 6:30.
I was on my knees, but my arms just couldn't hold me up, so I stacked all the pillows up on the headboard with a wet washcloth on top and layed my head there.
I found it extremely beneficial to rock my hips in this position and I think it moved the little guy right down quickly through the surges. It was then that I felt that "pressure" the nurse had explained we were hoping for (6:45). After that pressure, someone stuck their finger up me without (or if it was with, I was totally in my own world at the time) warning and was really lucky I couldn't kick them! That was probably the worst part of the whole delivery... Trying to breathe and relax through a very pressured up surge only to get poked and have the natural reaction of tucking my pelvis and Kegel-ing! But they realized I was fully dialated and that was exciting.
The dr wasn't sure that she could assist the delivery in my current position and told me I'd have to find another. I was just as sure as I was previously that I just couldn't move! My muscles couldn't do it. I started whining that I possibly was in over my head and that maybe after all this I just wasn't able to endure this last stretch.
Everyone encouraged me that I could. OtterPop reminded me that my body was designed for this and that I was amazing and I WAS DOING IT!!! They , again, assured me that if needed that THEY would move me into the position if I really COULDN'T do it. So I got off my duff to move.
The idea was to just move me to the same position but using the footboard (er, birth bar, at the bottom of the bed) in place of the headboard. That would allow the dr a better angle to help my guy out if needed. Otherwise she'd need to be laying on the bed under me...
It sounded like an alright plan, but I was sure I'd need the assistance all the way down there!!! I got up to move and was immediately caught with a hard surge. I said, ok, let me back down, and got stuck (again) in the side-laying position.
I have to interrupt here and say how ironic this was. In one of our last hupnobirthing classes, we were instructed to practice all of these different possible positions to birth in. There were quite a few and I liked all of them EXCEPT this side-lying one. It was so uncomfortable that I, honestly, could NOT practice it and I told Pop then that there's NO WAY I could have a baby in that position and was amazed to look around and see the other women actually doing it!!!!
My favorite position was squatting. I was sure that'd be how I would deliver my baby naturally. But really was mostly sure it'd be ANY POSITION other than the side-lying position!!!!!!
Anyway, so there I was in the side-lying position with surges so full of pressure I knew it was time to push. But first I really had to poop. I wish they would've let me empty my bowels over the toilet instead, but I at least warned them it was coming! I said, "I need to push, but it's not a baby yet. You'll have to wipe for me. Sorry!" And then I let out my first push. And probably a poop the size of a baby.
I'm putting in this detail not because I like potty talk, but because it happened. It was part of the story. I'm a real girl and real-life things happen even during the most important stories of my life. I poop. It's true. I also pee but praise the lord I didn't have a full bladder too!
After that I was ready to push out my babe. The first contraction I had to refocus my push to the right area. The nurse reminded me where to concentrate. This was at 7:03. Two pushes during the contraction. My uterus did most of the work, I just upped the Annie (so to speak) with my buff abs! After that surge the dr told me with 4 more seconds of pushing that he would've been out! I wasn't going to go against my body's urges though. I could feel what my body was doing and I was just working through and with it... Not through and with the dr and nurses. The next surge came shortly and I let it push him out. Again, just another two pushes but they were quick and painless! There wasn't really a pause between them like my other babies after the head and before the shoulders. Turbo had his sweet hand in his cheek, smoothing the transition from head to shoulders into an easier escape. At 7:08 turbo came into this world!
He was suctioned and quickly examined since the amniotic fluid was getting darker as I labored.
The dr finally handed my bundle of boy to me after what seemed like an eternity but was probably 30 seconds max. He cuddled my bare skin and we warmed each other.
I was allowed the privilege of cutting the chord (a first for me) after it was done pulsating (about 4-5 minutes). That was neat. And the stump fell off this morning, btw (5/18).
I hugged my son and kissed him. I told him I love him and after some special bonding I then gave him to his proud (and super patient) Poppa. It was then that I got my last surge and delivered the placenta (7:17). I like to check it out. OtterPop reassures me that I've made bigger, but I tell ya what! It wasn't too much smaller than turbo himself!
OtterPop and I hugged and kissed and examined every inch of turbo before weighing him and doing all the details.
My parents were actually just passing through town on the way to watch the kids, so they stopped in and met turbo on his birthday. This was especially sweet since we knew turbo's middle name was going to be my father's middle name in his honor. My dad had a triple bypass open heart surgery in November right before we were to announce the pregnancy. We wanted my dad to know ahead of time prior to his operation. He was the first to know and we were beyond relieved and happy for his life to be continued and his recovery to go amazingly smooth! My dad is a wonderful guy, a spiritual leader, a godly example, and a hoot to be around. OtterPop and I named our first son after him (Theron Tyler), but with his passing at 14 weeks in utero, the legacy didn't really get the honor we were desiring. When we found out turbo was a boy, OtterPop and I decided Daniel would make a fine middle name for our young man!
Turbo was named while they were there. He weighed approximately 10 whopping pounds and 2 ounces. (Actually 1.6 ounces, but the nurses said they round to the nearest... So 2 ounces it was. He had popped a good 3 big poops already so I don't feel like a liar.). He measured at 22 inches.
He looked long and lean, not a single bit chunky! Maybe a small double chin, but that's it.
I was amazed how wonderful I felt to have had my bump fall out. Without the epidural I was able to hop out if bed and bustle about the room. I was extatic to have my beloved little man in my arms and to share him with the world.
I will continue to dream beautiful things, God-willed, for his future. My heart is bursting with love for yet another sweet blessing bestowed upon OtterPop and myself! God is amazingly and unendingly good to us! Amen for that!!!