Sunday, September 15, 2013

My story of induction

I was scheduled for induction on the afternoon of Sunday, September 1, 2013 at Mercy. Baby Liam decided to finally arrive at 9:24 PM on Tuesday September 3, 2013. We remained in Labor and Delivery until 4:30 AM Wednesday September 4. (Yes, this is abnormal.) We were discharged from the hospital about 2PM on Thursday September 5. 

I logged as much as possible during my stay. It was just random blurbs of the timeline. It's taken a few days to get it in order for reading. Ok, honesty, it took me over a week to have time to get back to the computer to edit this entry. (Some of the tenses are past or present, I didn't care to change them all.) 

Note - I was being induced at 39 weeks because of the gestational diabetes diagnosis. Even though my GD was controlled by medication and diet, they (doctors?) still prefer to induce to prevent complications of high birth rate or placenta problems. 

Here it is - My Induction Story

Sunday September 1, 2013
The phone call came about 2:30 PM, my bed was ready. The car was already loaded and we were ready to go. We stopped at McDonald's to get some cheeseburgers and ran by the post office to mail my Baby Shower thank you notes, and got to the hospital around 3. I was checked into my room by 3:30.

They checked and I was only 1 CM dilated. (Same as the previous Friday.) They hooked up my IV and monitored the baby heart rate and my contractions for a while. It turns out I was having contractions and did not feel them. I was able to order dinner and eat. Luckily I wasn't being starved to death during my stay. While we waited, Jason and I watched Field of Dreams. I had never seen it! We had to keep pausing our movie when I was being checked.  

Around 9 PM the doctor gave me the 12-hour induction drug. It has to be placed near the cervix - which is very painful. (I edited out some of my commentary from the placement of the's better that way.) 

Even though I had an IV, I was still drinking lots of water. And around 11PM I was sprinting to the bathroom to pee for like the thousandth time since I got there. I tried to sleep. I am very uncomfortable from the contractions. It's hard to get all comfy in bed with an IV in one arm and two monitors strapped around my abdomen. I wish I had an early morning induction... I wish I would have slept more during the day (yesterday). And then during a 3 AM pee break my (wireless & waterproof) fetal monitor fell in the toilet. I felt bad for the nurse who had to fish it out.

Monday September 2, 2013
2PM. No baby yet. At 9 AM they checked and I was still only 1 CM dilated. So they did the 12-hour drug again. I was fortunately able to take a shower and go see my friend Alexsis and her new son, Cole, for 15 minutes. At the rate I am going they will be discharged before I give birth. I was able to eat lunch and napped on and off. I have to wait to be checked around 10 PM. At that point they will make a decision to do the 4-hour induction drug or the foley bulb. At this rate though, he's not coming until Tuesday.

Note - My parents, thinking I would be induced on Monday afternoon, told me they had planned to come Tuesday evening and Baby G better be here by then. I hated that added pressure for a less than 24-hour induction and birth experience. And that was why I didn't want waiting room warriors.. too much pressure and stress about giving birth on someone else's timeline. Especially when it turns out I was only 1 CM dilated. When my doctor changed my induction date to Sunday the 1st I lied and told very very few people. My friend Alexsis knew because she was already in the hospital with her new son. I told Dee in case I needed help with Monday (my dog), and Jason told his brother in case we needed his help. 

5:30 PM - Still only dilated 1 CM. Good news - I can eat dinner. Bad news - This kiddo is comfy. Super comfy. 

We spend the evening watching Harry Potter #6. We bought a handful of movies and are watching those and Cardinal baseball games. 

Around 8 PM I started to have regular contractions. I was starting to feel them more, but I still had to wait until almost 11PM to be checked again. 

11PM rolls around - and I am still only 1 CM dilated. I'm annoyed now. And in pain. I have nicknamed the cervical checks, vagina torture. And I still think that's a nice way to describe this process. The next step is using the foley bulb. You can feel free to google that - but again, it's not a walk in the park. This whole process sucks. 

General FYI-- I am still in "induction". Even with contractions, I am not considered in labor. 

Tuesday September 3, 2013
Midnight. Hopefully today is Baby G's birthday. He would share his birthday with Dave Ramsey! I am waiting an hour to be checked again. I am ready to be done. This is emotionally, mentally, and physically draining.

1 AM - The foley bulb has worked!!! I am 4.5 cm dilated. The most joyous part has finally arrived!! I can get an epidural!!! I take a quick shower since I won't be able to move after the EPI. Oh wonderful EPI, my new BFF. No pain, no pain, no pain... I can sleep through the contractions, I have a catheter and don't have to get up anymore. Everything is all tingling and there is no pain during cervical checks. (And no more crying).

I sleep. And sleep. Oh it's nice. My water breaks at 4:30 AM and they check my, I am 5 CM dilated. And am still not considered in active labor quite yet.

I always wonder how women calculate how long they were in labor when they say things like they labored for 24 hours or 40 hours with their child. When do they start counting? I would probably count from when I got the EPI, or maybe a little before that, but I won't count the 34 hours prior where they were trying to get my body ready. Of course, the big deadline is when your water breaks. The doctor's want the child out within 24 hours of your water breaking. 

9AM Tuesday September 3, 2013
I am now considered in active labor. I am 6-7 CM dilated. Whew whoo!! Progress has been made. We are currently watching Top Gun. 

When the nurse checked me around 3 PM she noticed my EPI was bleeding. I had complained that I was more uncomfortable during contractions, but I didn't know what was normal so I wasn't aware that something was wrong. Once my EPI was redone, I was much more comfortable. 

At 530 PM was finally 9.5 CM. During this time I discussed with doctor how I can push the baby out if I can't feel anything (which turns out wouldn't be a problem.) 

During the new few hours, my blood pressure and temperature kept rising. The doctors were concerned about this. I was too. I hated that my blood pressure was being taken every 15 minutes. It got annoying having it taken so much and being able to see my blood pressure continuing to rise. 

Around 7 PM I was finally 10 CM. My doctor wanted me to try some "test pushes." I think they tell FTM's (first time moms) that to trick them into actually starting to push. Baby G still hadn't descended all the way down (really, he was comfy and not ready to come out), so the test pushes should help move him down. 

I wasn't able to log during the next few hours - so this is all from memory a week later. 

Pushing was painful. My epidural had wore off. During the latest stages of pushing, my Epidural drug actually ran out. Maybe the epidural just lessons the pain of contractions but cannot actually eliminate the pain from pushing. I was in a lot of pain during each push. I no longer wanted to do it. And pushing wasn't making a ton of progress either. 

Eventually, after almost two hours of pushing, my blood pressure was raising with each push and Baby G's heart rate was dropping. I trust my doctor fully and the decision was made to use vacuum to aid with the birth. And Baby G was born at 9:24 PM. He weighed 8 pounds and 3 ounces and 21.5 inches long. 

While Mercy encourages immediate skin to skin contact, I wasn't able to do that because due to vacuum extraction and the falling heart rate they needed to examine him. 

Jason was able to hold him almost right away.... I had to wait almost two hours. Usually you spend only two hours after delivery in the Labor and Delivery room before being moved to postpartum. Due to complications, I remained in the room until 4:30AM - an extra 5 hours. 

Jason and Liam
So the complications..... I haven't spoken about the complications with many people, and I wasn't aware of these two possible complications so I want to share so other people will be aware. 

After birth, you have to deliver the placenta. (I was aware of this.) It usually happens within half an hour of giving birth. It didn't for me and I wasn't aware that it could or would be a problem. I was also still in a lot of pain. They wound up giving me a shot of the Epidural drug and morphine. (Which morphine sucks - it made my body feel like it was on fire.) My doctor had to check with the main OBGYN in the hospital to determine the protocol for the placenta complication. A few options were considered with the final option being a D&C (Dilation and Curettage) which means a surgeon would extract the placenta. Fortunately, additional pitocin and another drug aided with the placenta delivery. I'm not sure the timeline, but I know it wasn't long after my doctor inserted the second drug that my placenta delivered. 

It still wasn't over. 

My uterus wouldn't constrict after the placenta delivery. This is another complication that can be a problem. In order to help constrict my uterus, the nurses and doctors are constantly pushing on it. This also aids in "clearing" it out and making sure all the blood clots are out of it. All in all, another painful experience. It took awhile, but eventually it did constrict and was getting smaller. 

By the time we were being moved to postpartum around 4:30 AM, I was very much physically exhausted. And mentally drained. And so full of confusing emotions. I was in a lot of pain from being poked and prodded at for three days, and I was super swollen from the 3 days of IV fluids.

And thus ends the story of my induction and birth of my first (and most likely only) child. 

Some of the good - 
Almost every nurse we encountered was amazing. Very helpful, answered my questions, was helpful with anything I needed or asked about. The postpartum nurses are really great too - especially with helping new parents establish newborn care and breast feeding. We had some additional questions and the lactation nurses stopped by to talk to us. (And we called them after being home.) 

The rooms are great. The labor and delivery rooms are huge with large bathrooms which include jet tubs and the most amazing showers!  The postpartum rooms are smaller, but comfy, especially for the dad's sleeping. They talk of redoing the postpartum rooms - mostly the bathroom needs to be redone. It is such a let down after the L&D bathroom. 

The meals are great. You are given a huge menu and told to choose 1 item entree, and then 1 item from this list, 2 from this list, ect. It winds up with a lot of extra food sometimes, especially if your eyes are bigger than your stomach!

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