**Disclaimer** A painful delivery is discussed in this post. I don't mean to frighten anyone currently "due any day"...so please feel free to skip paragraph 4.
I have to say...that even though my water broke, I was feeling NO contractions...NO pain whatsoever. I was very nervous on the drive to the hospital. I didn't feel ready...I thought I'd have another 4 weeks to syke myself up for this moment. When we arrived in L&D I was taken into an exam room and told to strip and put a gown on. Once that was done, I was asked all the routine questions you get asked when going to L&D...last prenatal visit, all that good stuff. Around 11:45 I was taken into my room...and it hit me. This is the room where my daughter is going to be born. My hospital has "birthing suites". You labor, deliver and recover all in the same room. It's nice because you don't have to worry about being moved everywhere. My nurse, Heather, did the paper test to make sure that my water had indeed broke, standard procedure she said. She could tell by the amounts of fluid I was leaking that my water had indeed broken. I was hooked up to the monitors and Heather had to go through my "prenatals". Since I was only 36 weeks, and had just gotten my Group B strep test done the day before, the hospital didn't have my records from the OB yet. So I had more questions to answer. Heather then checked my cervix...which was still "high and tight" talked to Dr T, the OB on call, and he said to go ahead and start my IV and antibiotics.
Now, you have to forgive me as things started happening fast and I don't remember most of it. I had my hubs writing things down for me as far as times and what was happening. I do know that around 1:45ish I started feeling cramps. Nothing crazy, just felt like bad menstrual cramps...and they were all focused on my lower abdomen. At around 2am, my husband left to go back home and pick up some things I had forgotten. We figured, it's our first baby, I'll be here awhile. At 2:30am, my Pitocen was started. And the contractions started coming, at what felt like, every 2 minutes or so. But I could still breathe through them. Hubs got back sometime between then and 3:00, when my cervix was checked again and I was at 2cm. Over the next 45 minutes, I really started having alot of painful contractions...one right on top of the other. I was getting no relief between them. I was given a shot of Stadol at 3:45am, which didn't take the pain away, just made me feel really loopy.
Dr T. likes to have his patients at 3-4cm before an epidural is administered. When I started begging for one, the nurses said that they might as well "go ahead" with it because I'd be 4 cm by the time the anesthesiologist came. At 4:45am I was given my epidural and checked again. I was 7cm. By 5:30am I was fully dilated. Now, while the epidural took away the pain of the contractions, I could still feel the pressure in my bottom, and at about 7am began having the worst back pain on my left side ever imaginable. On a 1 - 10 pain scale, my pain was a 20! There were only certain positions that I was comfortable in. I wasn't allowed to push at 5:30 because baby girl was still high and Dr T wanted her to drop naturally before I started pushing. I think I was finally allowed to push at around 8am.
It was not what I imagined it would be. Don't get me wrong, I didn't imagine a pain free delivery...but I also didn't envision one that was as painful as mine was. I felt no contractions, just the urge to push, but the back pain...OH MY GOD, the back pain. It hurt to push, it hurt NOT to push. My nurse kept telling me I had to rest between contractions, but I couldn't. I had NO relief between them. Dr E. then came in. He's another OB in the practice and he was going to do my delivery. He really got me focused, as I was begging them to just do a c-section and get her out. I don't know if I would have made it without his efforts. I really wanted to give up. I was exhausted and in pain. My poor hubby felt so lost. He wanted to help me, but didn't know what to do. I just remember pushing and pushing...none of that controlled push to the count of 10 bullshit you see on TV. At one point, the delivery of her head I found out later, my urge to push never went away. I must have pushed 10 times. I honestly didn't even feel her crown. The pain in my back was too extreme. The next thing I knew, I could hear Dr E suctioning her...and I asked DH "Is her head out?" and he told me it was. I pushed again and her shoulders and the rest of her was born. It was 9:40am. And it was like someone turned off a pain switch. The pain in my back was immediately gone. I learned then that Baby Girl came out face up, instead of face down, and the back of her head had ridden my sciatic nerve all the way out. That is what caused all the pain I was having.
Alexis was taken to the warmer to be cleaned up, while I was stitched up. I had torn at the last minute when she debuted face up. I was crying the whole time. I couldn't believe she was here. I still can't.
Pictures are coming. The camera is downstairs, and I'm typing this with Alexis on my chest. I'll try to get them up tonight or tomorrow.