Baby #1’s Birth Story: Nothing Goes as Planned
When I was pregnant with my first, I read every birth story I could get my hands on. I was fascinated to learn how women were able to get babies out of their bodies. It seemed impossible, even though I knew I had no choice but to do it. The one thing I knew for certain was that I was going to fight a C-section with all my might. Spoiler alert: I ended up having three C-sections. But I’m getting ahead of myself.
With my first baby, I went eight days late. I desperately wanted her to come out, but I didn’t want to be induced. At my 41-week appointment I was showing no signs of labor and my doctor started talking about everything that would need to be done to be induced, including inflating a balloon in my cervix. Naturally, I started to cry.
I went home feeling so defeated. Later that night I started to feel sick, like I had a bad stomach ache. Instinctively, I knew my body was getting ready. All night I timed contractions, and at 5 a.m. I woke my husband and told him it was time.
We grabbed the hospital bag and went on our way. I was so excited to meet my baby. When I got there, the nurses got me set up in triage. I was 2 cm dilated but my contractions were getting less intense instead of more. They told me I wasn’t ready and sent me home.
By the time we got home, I was exhausted, anxious, and angry. I just wanted this child out of me. I laid down on the couch to rest and woke up three hours later.
Even though it was the middle of July and 90 degrees out, we decided to spend the rest of the day walking around our neighborhood to try to get the contractions started back up. We walked up and down the block and every single person who passed us gave me a pitying look. I was clearly miserable and swollen.
I started to wonder if I’d be the only woman to be pregnant forever (I was clearly thinking very rational thoughts at this point).
I took another shower and laid down on the bed. My husband put his hand on my stomach when we both felt (me from the inside, him from the outside) the biggest kick our little lady had ever given. We sat up and looked at each other. I quickly realized it wasn’t a kick, but my water breaking.
Unlike in the movies, it didn’t come out in a gush but in a slow trickle. Immediately, my contractions went from a 2 to a 10. I went from being uncomfortable to being unable to walk, talk, or breathe.
My husband hurried me to the car and when we checked in to the hospital this time, they put me directly into the birthing room. From the second I set foot in the hospital I asked anyone who would listen for an epidural. I still have no idea how women give birth naturally and am very happy I did not have to find out.
All night I laid in the hospital bed while my husband slept. I was too nervous and excited to get any rest despite all the nurses telling me I should try to sleep. The doctors came in to check my dilation periodically, but since my water broke they didn’t want to check too much for fear of infection.
Finally around 8 a.m. they told me I was 10 cm, but the baby was still very high up. They wanted to let me labor a few more hours to see if that would help push the baby down. At this point, I still assumed that I’d have a vaginal delivery since I was completely dilated.
At 10 a.m. the doctor came back in and told me to start pushing. I pushed for almost an hour before he looked at me and said, “I think we need to talk about a C-section. The baby is very high up and is not descending.” I didn’t even have the energy to argue. I was so exhausted from two nights of labor and no sleep that I said, “do it.”
Within ten minutes they had me in the OR and ten minutes after that our beautiful Annie was born.
This was not the birth I wanted. But in the end, it didn’t matter. We had our baby, and while it was a longer recovery, eventually I healed.
Come back next week to hear all about baby #2’s birth story.
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