She went from this…
A cute, impossibly tiny, squishy little blob…
A freakishly loud, rambunctious, brilliant, incredibly beautiful ball of pure energy…
2 years ago I pushed this little one out me vagine. That’s one experience I’ll never forget.
Here’s the birth story (a VBA2C) I wrote to some online girlfriends the day after the birth of my baby daughter, Josie… I warn you – it’s NOT for the faint of heart. If you saw the word `VAGINE`above and squirmed, you probably won`t want to read this! ;)
Josie Kae, 6lbs 15.9oz, 19.25″ long, happy, healthy and beautiful!
I’ll start off after my last update, where we made the call to get into Ottawa and find a motel room (before rush hour kicked in!). At that point I’d been in early labour since the evening before, cx starting around 4:00pm and getting more intense with bloody show around 10:00.
At the motel, my contractions had been sporadic throughout the day, but strong. They were coming every 2-7 minutes depending on how I had myself positioned. About 6:00 my midwives and doula were puzzled, and my midwife Diane didn’t want to check me for fear I was 5cm dilated (technically the beginning of active labour) and worried that the technical thing to do at that point would be to augment the labour with pitocin in the hopes that it would help my contractions become more regular. We knew that this was a really bad position to be in because it was the exactly the same routine that had happened in my past two labours, but it would be the safest thing to do at that point since we knew most uterine ruptures occurred when labour was stalled in active labour… we were at a bit of a junction as to what to do.
My water broke, and there was meconium in it, and we decided to go ahead with the internal thinking of the baby’s safety. There was no reason to believe there was anything wrong, but it was better to be safe than sorry. Sure enough, I was 5cm (but apparently 90% dilated and she said she could probably stretch me to 7cm)… but for some reason my body still wasn’t in active labour.
At the last moment, my second midwife came over and thought it might be an idea to use a towel and pull up on my uterus/stomach as I was having a contraction, hoping it would help the baby’s head rest better in my pelvis… INSTANTLY I was in active labour – the contractions increased in their intensity and were 2-3 minutes apart and 60-75 seconds long. Whew! Thank God! Apparently my uterus is tipped way forward (I guess common when you have multiple kids close together, though I expect it’s always been like that since my previous labours were identical!).
This was around 9:00PM, and we decided to head to the hospital.
Once we got to the hospital, I got hooked up to a monitor that I was able to walk around with. The tracings were pretty sketchy though since I was moving around so much (her heart rate was absolutely perfect, it was just a liability thing *rolls eyes*) and after a few hours the dr on call wanted to put an electrode in Josie’s head. So they tried that and the damn thing didn’t work. They tried once more, but I needed to get onto my hands and knees right after and it tugged just slightly and they lost the heartbeat again. At that point they said screw it, and my midwife just held the other monitor on the baby the whole time and we totally got rid of the straps that were keeping it on. What a total pain in the butt that was! And them trying to draw blood while in full on active labour? Drove me nuts. My midwives felt so bad for me… lol… just totally being poked and prodded while I’m just trying to do what nature intended for me to do.
Anyway, it was just as the OB was putting the second electrode in (around 2AM) that I started feeling very pushy. I knew it was too early though and I started getting very distraught that my cervix would start swelling if I started pushing… I just breathed through them as best as I could be they started getting really intense. Since I was off the electrode I asked to get in the tub and it was OK’d… it didn’t really help the contractions, but we were hoping it would help me dilate faster and because of the pushing sensations that needed to happen ASAP.
My midwife checked me in the tub after I started flipping out because my body started REALLY pushing, and I was still 9 cm and had a puffy anterior cervical lip. My doula was doing a really good job of trying to keep me focused through the contractions and trying to stop my body from pushing, but it was like a freight train was going through me. At that point my midwife was pretty sure if I pushed, the baby would just come out anyway… ! Man, I could have pushed the baby through my NOSE that’s how uncontrollable and strong the contractions were.
We migrated back to the bed and I pushed for about 20 mins and she was out and screaming. She was a lot faster than we expected and pediatrics, who were supposed to be there for the birth because of the meconium, were too late. She had a bit of molding, but nothing you’d expect from a baby who was pushed out at 9.5cm at best.
I tore all the way up my vagina though! My perineum is totally intact, but deep inside I have a few 2nd degree tears (I guess from pushing so early?). I’m not even sure how the OB on call reached those suckers to sew them up, but she found a way.
And Josie is of course a fantastic nurser and she’s so very quiet compared to James and Julia. The only time she ever cries is when she’s hungry or being changed and even then it’s more like a whimper not a full out tantrum.
So that’s that! We were leaving the hospital and I told Jon “Hey, that wasn’t so bad!” I’ve already forgotten the pain… !! Well, I’m still sore of course, but the actual labour pains? I’d totally do that again in a heartbeat (even 30 hours of natural labour worth!). I could NOT have done it without the support team I had though… I would have been begging for an epidural 25 hours in for sure. I didn’t have back labour this time though and that made a HUGE difference. Let me tell you, “normal” labour pains are completely different and entirely more tolerable than “abnormal” labour pains. I feel like this has been a truly healing experience. Amazing. Just amazing…