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Birth story, part 1

May 31, 2010

I had no idea it was going to take so long for me to type up Bella’s birth story.  I had no idea that I was going to have such an emotional reaction to being told I needed to have a C-section.  I had no idea that I was going to be so emotional about the “birth trauma” that I went through.  This was very tough to write and I hope to get the rest of the story out.  I think it’s important for it to be out there, better out than in.  I am still trying very hard to come to terms with how Bella was born.  I am so very thankful for having a beautiful and healthy baby girl, but I am still dealing with how she came into this world.

Isabella’s Birth Story~

Since I had not shown any progression in almost 5 weeks and I was 1 week after my due date, the doctor’s at the group decided to induce me.  They said that because I was already 1cm dilated, I should be a good candidate for a successful induction.

Last of the baby belly!

I checked into the hospital at 8pm on 5-13-10.  By 9pm, my IV was started and by 9:20 they had inserted my 1st dose of Prestin and checked me, I was still 1cm dilated and about 50% effaced.  The plan was to have 2 doses of Prestin, 4 hours apart.  The Prestin was supposed to get my cervix to become “more favorable” so the contractions that I had been having would be more productive.  It turns out that I only needed one dose of Prestin and my contractions had started to become pretty regular so at 3:30 am on 5-14-10, they started my Pictocin.  Nick and I got some sleep between 5:30 and 6:30 and they came in around 9:30 and upped my Pitocin.  At this point, I was really starting to feel the contractions, they were piggy backing on each other and I was having 2 contractions every 4 minutes.  I was able to breath and focus through them.

I was checked again at 10:45 and I was finally making some progress, I was 3 cm dilated and at -2 station.  I was able to get the nurses to unhook me from all the wires so I could move about the room and just keep walking to keep my progress going naturally.  I sat on the ball, walked the floor and listened to some DMB and Bob Marley to keep my focus.  I felt great!  Every hour or so, the nurse (Theresa) would come in and up my Pitocin level, when it got to 6 (out of 20) the contractions got very uncomfortable and I wasn’t able to breath through them at all.  I started to panic and cry.  A nurse and a resident came in to talk to me about pain management and I declined anything at that moment because I did not want narcotics and I had made a deal with myself not to get an epidural until I was 5cm.  Theresa came back from her lunch and turned down the Pitocin to 4 and I was able to relax a little.  She had the resident come back in to check me and while he was checking, I had a painful contraction and my water broke and my mucus plug came out.  Nick checked it out and thought it was one of the coolest things he’d seen so far. It was also discovered at this time that the baby had a heart arrhythmia.  This had not yet been detected on any of the ultrasounds that we had so we were a little concerned.  We were assured that most babies who have a heart arrhythmia that is picked up on the monitors soon repair themselves or are non existent once born.  They hooked me and the baby up to internal monitors to really be able to keep track of us better.

At that point, I was 5 cm dilated and at 2:45 I was receiving my epidural.  It really wasn’t as painful as I thought it was.  The only downside is they made Nick leave the room, I think that was more painful than the actual shot in my back.  I felt great after that for a few hours until the Epi started to wear off on one side, Theresa was great and helped me changed positions so the Epi would continue to work on all parts of my back and lower parts.  Dr. Borkowski was the doctor on call and came to check on my progress, he thought everything was going great and we would have a baby by the end of the night, he actually assured me that we would have our baby by the end of 5-14-10.  I was relieved as I have a thing against odd numbers, I don’t know what it is, but anyway…

Theresa went home and we got Marcy as our nurse.  At first, I wasn’t sure I liked her.  Every time she came to check me, she left me covers off and I would have to bother Nick to cover my legs again.  It was the little things that really aggravated me during labor.  I was checked again at 7pm and I was 8-9cm!  We were getting close and I was still loving my Epi.  Nick was getting so excited to meet our little girl, I was getting nervous about pushing.  This is where I start to lose track of time.  I was checked again by a resident (cute girl with cute glasses, I wish I knew her name) and she said I was just about 10 cm, I was 9 cm but I had a little “lip” left to my cervix.  Since I was so close, the said I could push.  I tried pushing on my back for about an hour with no progress, Nick was watching the cords and they weren’t moving at all.  I tried doing some pushes on my sides and the same thing would happen, the cords would move a little and then go right back in.  Nick said they moved all of a quarter of an inch then entire time I was pushing.  The resident came back to check me and said that since I had been pushing for 2.5 hours with little progress, I was probably a candidate for a C-section.  I was not 100% comfortable with that and decided to continue to push to try and get the baby out vaginally.  Nick wanted to talk to the doctor right then and there but I was insistent upon pushing some more.  I was convinced that I could get her out.   Did I mention that it was now late, late Friday night and I had been up since Thursday morning with about 2 hours worth of sleep and no food since 7 pm Thursday night?  Yeah, well, that wasn’t fun at all.

I continued to push and nothing was happening.  Well, something was happening, the baby’s head had started to mold around my pubic bone.  The resident also thought she felt the head bones sliding over the top of one another.  They explained the risks of continuing to push with this condition, we were looking at possible brain damage, not to mention the due to the stress, there was also meconium present.  When Dr. Borkowski came in to go over our lack of options (C-section was our only option at that point) he said that he thought things would turn out alright still and was shocked that we hadn’t given birth yet since we were making such good progress earlier.  It was now 5-15-10, I had been pushing for over 3 hours and we were getting ready for a C-section.  I was devastated.  I couldn’t stop worrying about all the risks and Nick was pretty concerned but we needed to get the baby out and didn’t want her to be in any more harm.

I was prepped for the C-section and wheeled in while Nick was given scrubs and made to wait outside.  I was transferred to the operating table and my arms were strapped down.  I started freaking out a little because I could feel someone scrubbing my belly button. That was the only time that I yelled at someone the entire time that I was in labor.  I was still contracting and not allowed to push, which was pretty painful.  I made Marcy promise that once they took the baby out, I wouldn’t have to feel the contractions anymore… Ha ha!! Those pain meds were working already!  Morphine would become my best friend.  They tested my skin to see if I was numb enough and had to give me a little more meds as I could still feel my upper belly.  They put up the curtain and Nick was allowed in.  I was so happy to see him!

Dr. Borkowski started the surgery and I kept waiting to hear the cry, that’s all I wanted to hear.  I was so tired and couldn’t stop shaking and I just wanted to take a nap but I needed to hear the baby cry before I could close my eyes.

Isabella Nicole was born at 1:18 am with a very loud cry that announced that she was pretty upset about her whole ordeal.  Hearing her cry was one of the best moments of my life, Nick and I looked at each other just started crying together.  She had a large cone head from being stuck behind my pubic bone but had great APGAR scores of 9 and 9.  She weighed 7 pounds and 14 ounces and was 20 and a half inches long.  She had a full head of dark brown hair (hence all the heartburn!) and the mood in the OR was pretty upbeat.  Nick was able to hold her and take pictures.  This is about the time they asked Nick to leave to “get all our stuff ready” which was really code talk for “please get him out so he doesn’t hear what we are talking about.”  I could hear the doctors asking for more drugs and more sponges, I heard them say that my bladder looked like it had gone 3 rounds with Mike Tyson and that I was peeing blood.  They seemed a little concerned but then it was all done and I was stitched up and Marcy and everyone told me I was fine.  People kept congratulating me but I was so tired, I just kept asking if I could close my eyes.  I needed to see my baby girl but I could barely keep my eyes open and was still shaking violently.

I was wheeled back to recovery where Nick was waiting and Marcy told Nick that he could let the family in (he had called them as soon as I was wheeled back, we figured they could at least run out and get me food, wasn’t part of our original plan, but nothing was going with our plan.)  Before Nick’s parents got back to see me, Nick helped me hold Isabella as I still had limited mobility and was so tired I didn’t have the strength.  Nick’s parents came back to see Bella and Nick ran downstairs to grab some food for himself.

Before all hell broke loose! I’m pretty sure that this picture can be used as birth control!

This is when all hell broke loose.  While Nick’s parents were holding Bella, I continued to shake.  I was shaking so bad that Marcy basically had to lay on my arm to get the blood pressure cuff to read my pressure.  When she got that reading, the mood turned very serious.  I was still asking to take a nap and close my eyes but instead of the normal answers of “sure thing” it changed to answers of “not yet, you need to stay awake.”  Marcy took the baby from Nick’s mom and told them they had to leave the area as I needed medical attention.  Nick retuned from getting food to see his parents kicked out and my blood pressure had dropped to 52/34 and the pad under me was covered in blood!  I was hemorrhaging from my very tired uterus.  The resident came back (the one with the cute glasses) and pushed on my belly and huge clots came out along with some more blood.  She then inserted some medicine while Marcy started another IV medicine and they injected a 3rd type of something into my other IV.  They put air things on my legs to get my blood up to my heart but those weren’t working.  People were looking very concerned and Nick looked green.  I thought he was going to cry at any minute but he was trying to stay strong so I wouldn’t get nervous.  I couldn’t see the monitors or any of the blood so I just kept saying “I’m fine, go be with the baby!” and “Don’t worry hun, I’m fine” but he knew I wasn’t ok.  The resident had talked to him and told him how serious my situation was.  If my BP didn’t come up soon, I was looking at losing my uterus.

Finally, my bp started to come up slowly and Marcy and Nick did a little happy dance when it finally broke 100/50.  It came up a little more and Marcy cleaned me up since my lower half was pretty bloody.  My mom and Nick’s parents were finally allowed back to see me and Isabella around 3:30 am.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. June 3, 2010 2:18 pm

    Wow Beth, what an ordeal you went through. Having read all of that, you are very lucky that everything was “fixed” in a matter of hours. Sounds like it will take some extra time for you to recover but Bella is gorgeous and I adore the name!

    Hope 30 is your best year yet!


  2. Sandy K permalink
    June 14, 2010 7:50 pm

    Beth, I know we were there for part of this event, but I had no idea how terrifying the circumstances were. Thank heaven for modern medicine and observant nurses and doctors. Lots of prayers were answered with the outcome of your delivery of Isabella.

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