Saturday, June 19, 2010

Birth Story

For months people have been saying 'Congratulations on the baby! It will change your life.'

Having a child has not changed my life, it has changed the entire anchor of my existence.  The center of my universe is now this tiny little life that I have been chosen to protect and nurture. And here's the story of how he made his arrival.

Friday, June 11th, 2010  
  • 6:00 - 12:00 pm - I am experiencing what I believe are continued Braxton Hicks contractions, the same as I have had for the last few weeks.  However, these are slightly different in their feel and rhythm and I am hoping that the time is close at hand.
Saturday, June 12th, 2010
  • 12:30 am - I wake up with contractions.  They are not as strong as I had expected, very manageable.  I try my typical routine to get rid of Braxton Hicks - snack, walk around, drink a large glass of water and try to go back to sleep. 
  • 1:30 am - I am still unable to sleep due to the regular occurrence of the contractions. I take this time to re-pack the hospital bag for my impending departure.
  • 5:00 am - We arrive at the hospital because contractions are again less than 4 minutes apart for nearly 3 hours.  I am 1 cm dilated and choose to be sent home to continue what the nurse says is likely 'early labor'
  • 7:00 am -  I am able to rest somewhat as the contractions have spaced back out to every 10 minutes. 
  • 11:00 pm - Contractions have been irregular all day, but begin building again just as I try to go to sleep.
Sunday June 13th 2010
  • 5:00 am - We arrive at the hospital because contractions are again less than 4 minutes apart for nearly 3 hours.  I am 1 cm dilated and choose to be sent home to continue 'early labor' 
  • 12:00 pm - Contractions continue in an irregular pattern going through cycles of every 15 minutes, 10 minutes, 7 minutes, 4 minutes. I am able to rest briefly between contractions. 
  • 6:00 pm - Contractions really pick up and finally enter the textbook 'Getting closer together and more intense.'  Kirk really stepped it up here as a labor coach following all of the techniques we learned in class operating on almost as little sleep as myself. 
  • 10:00 pm - Contractions are ranging between 3 and 5 minutes apart, extremely intense, and we are considering going to the hospital again.  I am terrified that I've labored for 24 hours and I will still only be 1 cm dilated.
Monday June 14th 2010
  • 12:15 am - Kirk and I arrive at the hospital for the 3rd time. 
  • 1:00 am - We are admitted to the hospital so that I can receive a low-grade pain killer to see if I can sleep (we are now nearly 48 hours without true 'sleep') and IV fluids for slight dehydration - I am 2.5 cm dilated.
  • 6:00 am - I wake up from my slightly restful sleep to find out that my contractions have slowed considerably due to the IV fluids and Kirk and I now have the difficult task of getting everything going again. 
  • 12:00 pm - I request the Epidural on the advice of my OB and after long consideration. Kirk was an amazing coach throughout this process, but he really impressed me here with how he made sure that I was informed and comfortable with all of the decisions about to be made.
  • 12:30pm - My wonderful doctor arrives on her lunch hour to break my water - I am 3 cm dilated.  
  • 1:00 pm - I am finally able to sleep after more than 48 hours of continual contractions - the Epidural was not part of the original birth plan, but I am deeply grateful for it. 
  • 4:00 pm - I wake up after my first good sleep in 3 days and I am 8 1/2 cm dilated - I guess all it took was a little relaxation.
  • 4:50 pm - Nearly time - almost fully dilated
  • 5:20 pm - I am evaluated 10 cm dilated and 100% effaced, ready to push 
  • 5: 35 pm - I make my first official 'push' and the epidural is stopped so that I can deliver more naturally
  • 7:20 pm - We are making progress, but the doctor is concerned that the baby is very big and is having difficulty passing below the pelvic bone. With every push we can see him coming, but he is still retreating. 
  • 7:35 pm - After discussion with a labor & delivery nurse (scary when it's held in hushed tones at the foot of your bed while you push), the doctor asks if it is ok for her to use a vacumn to help get the baby out.  He has still not managed to pass the pelvic bone and they are noticing some signs of fetal stress on the monitors. The L&D nurse would like to go for an emergency Cesarean, but the doctor seems to have confidence that he can be born vaginally. 
  • 7:47 pm - After 3 strong efforts with the vacuum assistance, Whitfield Ian Renegar is officially born weighing 9 lbs 5 oz and measuring 21 inches long.
  • 7:49 pm - Whit lets out his first cry and my universe re-aligned.

1 comment:

  1. It was so great being there. I can't imagine not having children, then you would never get grandchildren. He is the most precious gift.