Wednesday, November 02, 2005
Miss W is back!
I am here, and I am alive. And I am far from 'clever.' I am a heaping mushy mess of a woman. To say that I am hormonal would be an understatement. To say that I am in love would not do justice to the true depth of my feelings. I think it's time for a birth story, from my perspective, from what I know of the events leading up to the birth of the lowercase.
I seem to recall writing a post about contractions that I had off and on all day last Thursday, October 27. I finally realized at 9:00 p.m. that I might actually be having contractions and made a call to the peri. He told me that he didn't think they sounded like they were productive and that I should call the office at 8:30 to schedule a quick check to be certain. He advised me to keep track of them overnight and if I had more than 6 in an hour I should come in to labor and delivery to check what was going on.
I counted and recorded every slight contraction until 1 am when I fell asleep. Mr. W had been called back in to work due to some catastrophic system failure or another (please note my sarcasm; I somehow doubted it was important, but the VPs of several other departments at his corporation thought it was). He arrived home at 2:30 am and I rolled onto my left side as he crawled in bed beside me.
At 4:51 am, I woke up. I don't remember feeling any kind of pain that might have caused me to wake. I only knew that I felt extremely uneasy. I reached up above my head and began quietly petting the cat who was curled up against my forehead. And then it hit. A contraction. I wrote the time down and continued petting the cat. At a bit before 6:00 am, I realized that I had already counted 13 contractions. I rolled over and gently woke Mr. W.
I asked him if he thought I should wait until 8:30 and call the office since, you know, this really wasn't anything real, or if I should call now. He answered with the obvious, "Call the doctor NOW while I jump in the shower to try to wake up."
I had many more contractions on the way in to the hospital. Upon reaching labor and delivery, they were hitting at 3 minutes apart, yet they didn't hurt so I was still convinced I wasn't in labor. A resident did a speculum exam and said that I was definitely dilated and that he thought he saw something, but could he get the chief resident to look because he wasn't sure what he was seeing. The chief resident confirmed that my membranes had not been ruptured, but I was 3 cm dilated and 90% effaced.
My peri's office was called and I was rushed into a high risk delivery room where a magnesium sulfate wash was connected to my IV in an attempt to stop the contractions. Alone it didn't work, so endocine pills were added every 6 hours. At 9 am Friday, October 28, I was given a steroid shot to try to mature my son's lungs with another steroid injection given on Saturday at 9 am. I stayed on the mag and endocine through mid-day Sunday (October 30). This was the exact duration needed for the steroids to reach maximum effectiveness. After the labor-stopping drugs, we wanted to clear my system and re-evaluate the situation. This would give us a way to determine if we had merely stalled labor while on the drugs or if we had truly stopped the labor.
By midnight the contractions began coming closer again. And they were increasing in intensity. Additionally, I could NOT lay on my left side. Every time I did, my lungs felt as though they were being crushed and I just couldn't get any air. If I rolled onto my right side, my bladder was irritated -- I kept having to get up to pee...and I peed a lot each time...but I hadn't had any fluids in over 3 hours. I laid on my back, but then I just felt so heavy and uncomfortable. Something was not right.
Around 1:30 am on October 31, one of the residents came over from labor and delivery to the high-risk antepartum unit where I was staying to examine my cervix. He watched the frequency and intensity of my contractions and determined that I was 3 1/2 cm dilated, though he felt I was only 80% effaced. Regardless, he knew it was time to move me to labor and delivery. I was immediately placed on a stretcher and the nurses ran with me around the corner to the labor and delivery unit. It took under 5 minutes from the exam done by the resident before I was in L&D and a resident working at my peri's office was examining me. 4 1/2 cm dilated, 100% effaced, contractions increasing, water still unbroken.
The peri on call from my office was called into the room and the announcement was made: Let's have a baby. They quickly did an ultrasound to see if there was a chance the lowercase had changed position, but we had no such luck. He was still complete breech. We were having a c-section in 30 minutes when the anesthesiologist was finished getting things going with an emergency procedure in the ER.
Obviously, I'm just now getting to the really interesting part of this story, but it's after midnight and I need to take some pain meds, eat some pie, pump some milk and go visit my son. Check back soon for the next installment of the birth of a lowercase.
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