I have finally got around to doing it. Energy has been drained but now I am back at it. Ready to roar.
As pregnant ladies do, I made a birth plan. I wanted no drugs, the least intervention as I could get and I was going to birth my baby the way my body wanted to. As we all know, things don’t always work out the way you plan them.
I know what went wrong. For sake of hurting feelings I won’t point it out…just tell you my story.
My mother came down to AZ from AK to see the birth of her grandchild and for some reason I had a feeling we were going to be early, (due on June 2nd) so Mom came down on May 30th. A week passed by and nothing yet. I had all the common questions, “When is the baby coming?” “How long are the going to let you go?” “Hurry up and have that baby already.”
I know most first time moms go over, but all these repetitive questions made me feel anxious and kind of angry people were expecting me to know when the baby was coming. Like I was in charge of when I birthed.
As the time started getting closer to Mom leaving we started looking at natural ways to trigger labor. We walked and walked and walked.
On June 10th, Thursday, we went to Metro Center Mall and walked around for a couple of hours. I walked stairs, sat in the vibrating chairs, got a foot massage and contractions started. They were getting closer and closer together so we decided, being five minutes away from the hospital, we were going to go. When we got there and I got hooked up to the monitors, the contractions started spacing themselves further apart. Six minutes, seven minutes, so they sent me home. I really at this point just wanted to have the baby. When the nurse in triage called Tiffany, (the midwife on call) I told her I wanted to get my water broken to get things started. They told me to come back in the morning and we would be scheduled for an induction. So we went home still pregnant.
That night, I thought about it. This whole pregnancy I didn’t want any intervention. I hadn’t even taken Tylenol for headaches. Why now at the very end had I chosen to have an induction? Why have the baby come when everyone else wanted the baby, not when the baby wanted to come? I told my mom who was supposed to be leaving that Sunday, “I want to have the baby before you leave, I don’t want your trip to be for nothing!” She said, “Well don’t get induced on account of me leaving, the baby will come when she comes.” (We didn’t know what the sex of the baby was, but she wanted a girl, to have three girl tiger Gemini’s in a row. Her, me, and baby.) So when she said that, I thought ‘you know she is right! Baby will come, forget everyone else.
The next day we decided to go to Arizona Mills, another mall and walk some more. We met up with my cousins there and walked around the mall for four hours. We heard pineapple helped induce labor so I was eating that all day while we walked. We walked and walked, but I didn’t feel any contractions. When we went home our feet were so tired. Husband got home from school and we went about our night.
At 12:35 I felt my first contraction. Out of nowhere they came on and so I decided to time them. Five minutes, seven minutes, six minutes, but they were getting regular. I waited for a little while to make sure it was for real this time, and at 2:30am I decided to wake my mom. It was time, guess baby was waiting for daddy to be able to be there. It was the weekend.
So I called my cousins and told them it was time and we went to the hospital. I got checked in triage and I was at 4 cm almost 5, so they decided to keep me. I went walking. We walked around labor and delivery and contractions got to the point where we had to stop now and again to work through them.
My room was finally ready and I was hooked up to the monitors again for five minutes to check and make sure the baby was doing okay still. When we were done, I got up and walked around the room for a while, was able to get into the tub and labor in there for a while, then I went back into the bed to rest. This went on for like 8 hours. Lisa, the midwife decided to come in and talk options. At this point my water hadn’t broken. I was dilated to 5. We decided to break my water. There was a little meconium in my water, which is normal for overdue mothers. Lisa wasn’t concerned so we continued to labor.
Then my mother in law showed up.
Her, Husband’s sister and Aunty wanted to come into the room and watch. Something I didn’t think was a great idea. I felt it was a private moment, and for those who know our history, it wasn’t something that felt “right.” Husband was torn. He wanted to share this moment with his Mother, at the time I didn’t realize that but he was ready to leave me if I didn’t let her in the room. She made it about her. I was getting at a point where contractions were unbearable, 12 hours of pain without meds, and now I wasn’t progressing. I was stuck at 5 cm. I went to the toilet, and when I came back to sit on the bed more water came out. This time it gushed and was dark with meconium. Lisa came in to talk to me about what we were going to do. It was about the baby now and at this point I was barely able to get through anything. Baby was moving away from the external monitor, so they put an internal monitor in me.
We decided it was time for pitocin to get contractions rolling and cervix dilating. I know from all the birth stories that pitocin makes contractions very painful, so I opted for the epidural. With the epi came the catheter, and oxygen mask. After I got it, I was in heaven compared to the last 12 hours. I told Husband his mom could come in now. I felt no pain, and wasn’t embarrassed anymore. Husband and I were able to get some sleep and even though I couldn’t feel the contractions, I felt some pressure in my anal region. They told me that was the baby’s head and contractions. So I could still feel them, just not as strong. By 6pm I felt urges to push. I asked to be checked and I was fully dilated! I was ecstatic. They told me we would start to push about 6:30pm because we had to wait for a doctor for the baby because of the meconium. Time finally came around and we started to push with the contractions. I couldn’t even feel the baby moving down. People were all around me telling me I was doing great and things were going well, but I couldn’t tell!
7:30 rolls around and they finally could see the head emerging. Seven minutes later I hear, “It’s a boy!” It was such a fantastic feeling getting him out. The pressure was released and I was so happy to hear I had a boy! Half the family was hoping for a boy, and the other half a girl. Guess you can’t go wrong with 50/50 chances! I was just hoping for a healthy baby.
Julian James Cleveland was born on June 12, 2010, weighing in at 7 lbs 12 oz, 20 1/2 inches long. He is a lovely addition to our new family and we love him dearly.