The Story of F (Part 2)

3.15.2020


9:40 pm

Jordan and my dad went to get dinner at the Chick-fil-A that was inside the hospital. My mom stayed with me while I waited to get moved into an actual L&D room.

I was in a serious amount of pain at this point, with contractions coming every couple of minutes. There's obviously no actual way to describe contractions, but the best I can say is that it feels like the worst period cramp of your life, wrapping around your entire body and lasting for a good 45-60 seconds at a time. It's almost an out-of-body experience because it's like something is happening to you that's beyond your control.

My mom and I sat in the room while I laid on the bed and had contractions. By 9:50, I'd received almost an entire bag of fluids through the IV line in my arm and needed to pee so badly. My mom went out to find a nurse so she could unhook me from the monitor, and I was thisclose to peeing all over the floor by the time she finally came back (which was maybe a minute, but it felt like forever).

While I was in the bathroom I had an extremely painful contraction and decided I was asking for an epidural when I came out. We'd only been at the hospital 2.5 hours, and based on my labors with R and J I thought we might be there another 7+ hours and honestly wasn't going to be able to handle it. I came out of the bathroom, and just then the nurse came in to tell us that they had an L&D room ready.

10:00

My mom collected our things, and we slowly followed the nurse down the hall. I had to stop and have a couple of contractions on the way, and the walk probably took us at least five minutes. While we walked, I told the nurse that I was in a lot of pain and wanted to get an epidural but that I was nervous about not liking the feeling of my legs being numb and potential other side effects. 

She said that made sense and asked if I wanted to put a pain medicine in my IV line when we got to the room. I took a pain medicine with both R and J and knew that while it didn't take away all of the pain of contractions or pushing, it did knock me out between contractions, which was great, so I said yes please. (I'm pretty sure they gave me Stadol with both R and J, for anyone interested!)

The nurse (her name was Ivy) left to check with the doctor, and as we got to the room she came back and said, "I'm so sorry, but the doctor said it's too close to delivery and can cause respiratory distress for the baby. We can't give you anything."

I had another contraction and started to go into full-on panic mode. I was in horrible pain and I wasn't going to get anything at all???? 

*questions all life decisions that have led to this moment.* 

Just then, Jordan and my dad came walking up from the opposite direction holding bags from CFA. I waddled to the bed and was instantly hit with a wave of the smell of fried chicken. "You need to get out of here with that right now," I told Jordan.

The walk to our new room must have really gotten things moving down there, because as soon as I laid down on the bed, my contractions went next level. The doctor checked me, and I was at an 8. I asked how low the baby was, and when he said -2 station I was really upset because the baby was "way up there." (The baby has to get to -2, -1, 0, +1, then +2)

10:15

The nurse asked if I wanted the doctor to break my water to speed up the process.
"You might have a baby by midnight!" she said.
"Please don't get my hopes up," I replied.

I said the doctor could come break my water (they had to break my water with J too!), but my mom said we needed to get Jordan back in here before that happened because she had a feeling it was going to go fast. They also called the on-call doctor to come to the hospital for delivery (I had still been seeing the resident doctor).

Jordan says he ate his sandwich quickly and threw away most of his fries because he was too anxious to eat. He came back in the room, and they broke my water.

10:25 

The doctor told me to move up to the end of the bed so the water could drain, and that's when they realized I was in a postpartum bed and not a labor & delivery bed--the huge difference being that the bed didn't break down at the end for stirrups and all the delivery things.

There was a bunch of commotion and discussion between the doctor and nurses about whether or not they could leave me there or why the wrong bed was in that room in the first place. Meanwhile, I was having contractions upon contractions and was the absolute picture of calm serenity (lol).

There are people who sign up for "natural" childbirth and come into the labor experience with essential oil rubs and calming mantras and positive phrases to create an atmosphere of an empowering and confident delivery. Things like, "My body was made to do this" and "Every contraction brings me closer to seeing my baby."

And then there's me repeating, "I'm going to die. I'm dying. I'm going to DIE," while the nurses kept telling me that I was okay and that I was not, in fact, going to die.

There was a bit of hubbub while a few nurses wheeled the proper bed into the room right next to the one I was lying in. The doctor told me that after the next contraction I was going to have to move over to the other bed, and I sobbed, "I can't move." I honestly felt like I was possessed and totally outside of myself. I told the doctor that I was shaking all over, and he said, "That's normal. It means the baby is coming."

They told me to raise my lower half up just a bit, they put a sheet under me, and then Jordan and several nurses helped pull me from one bed to the other. The doctor asked if I'd ever given birth without an epidural before and said, "So you know about the Ring of Fire?"

I honestly must have blocked out this part of my other two deliveries, because I truly do not remember the shaking or the ring of fire being as pronounced as it was during this experience with Baby F. My entire body was shaking, and it almost felt to me like when your arm or foot falls asleep, and you try to move it and experience that painful tingling sensation, expect it was way worse and like that all over my entire body at once.

At this point I said I was going to die a few more times. Add that to your birth affirmation signs, just saying ;)

He checked me again and said I was 100% effaced and there was just a tiny bit of cervix left until I was completely dilated. I felt extreme burning and squeezed Jordan's hand until he said he thought I was going to pop off his fingers. (Where is this strength when I'm alone at home and trying to open a can of pickles????)

The nurse said I could push whenever I felt like I wanted to, and my body was definitely pushing almost on its own. They had to remind me to hold my breath while pushing instead of breathing out like I had been during contractions. I pushed and then asked the doctor how low the baby was, and he said the baby was at a Zero Station.

I pushed again and asked how low the baby was. He said. "Still at zero," and I was like, "HELLO EVERYONE THE BABY ISN'T GETTING LOWER AND YES I'M GOING TO DIE."

My mom told me later that she heard the doctor tell the nurse that the baby was going back up after every push instead of getting lower, and I guess I must have really seemed panicked about the baby not going down because during the next contraction a nurse stood near my head and pushed down on my stomach while I pushed. Then they told me to sit up like I was doing an ab crunch, hold the backs of my thighs, and push with my chin to my chest. Someone counted to ten while I held my breath and pushed.

10:42 

I felt a ton of pressure, and the baby's head came out. The doctor told me to hold on, but I said, "I can't!" and he came the rest of the way out on the next push. My eyes were closed, and as soon as the baby was out everyone was shouting, "Open your eyes! Look!"

Because of the way I was sitting upright to push, the baby was super close to my face and his bottom was facing me. I saw boy parts, but it wasn't processing fully at that point, and I said, "What is it?" and Jordan said, "It's a boy!" 

Just then the on-call OB came flying into the room shouting, "I missed it!"

I kept saying, "Oh my gosh, oh my gosh," while Jordan cut the cord. I didn't realize that I was accidentally holding the cord, and the doctor had to ask me to move my hand so Jordan could cut. We immediately did skin to skin, and the OB helped the resident doctor stitch me up. I re-tore everything from giving birth to J, so that was horribleness all over again, and stitching hurt so bad. I don't want to talk about it. 

I went from an 8 to a 10 to baby in less than thirty minutes, and F came so fast that his entire face was bruised and looked black and blue, almost gray, and I asked a few times if there was anything wrong with him. 

He wasn't covered in anything and was pretty clean for initial skin to skin. They didn't end up giving him a bath until the next day, and I declined the eye treatment, which was totally not a big deal at all, and all the nurses and my doctor acted fine about it. Definitely look into that if you're interested in why it's used and what it's supposed to protect from!

We still weren't 100% on a name and had even been discussing name ideas during our drive to the hospital just a few hours before. It wasn't until the next day that we officially decided. I never thought we would be those people, but we had such a hard time agreeing on a boy name! We had two girl name options we were set on, so it would have been one of those, but we struggled with boy names.

I had booked a Fresh 48 photographer when I was about 8 weeks pregnant, so Sara came to the hospital the next day to take some family pictures and photos of baby F. Although the idea of having a lovely image of my baby being born appeals to me, I'm not totally sure I really want to see myself in all my labor glory enough to book a birth photographer. But I am so glad we did a special hospital session after he was born, and I love our photos so much! For the first time, I actually brought makeup and a hair straightener to the hospital ;)

Pregnancy is such an anxious time for me, and I can't describe how thankful I am that Baby Bum 3 is here and healthy. We praise Jesus for his little life and addition to our family. Thank you all so much for following along, for praying for us, and for celebrating his birth with us!

Kaity said...

Oof. Getting stitched was by far the worst/most painful part of my delivery with Cros. Just when I think I'm ready to bring a third baby into the world, I read this and I'm like- nope. I remember why I don't want to go through childbirth again ��

In all seriousness, you're amazing (positive affirmations or not!) and I'm so happy Baby F is here and healthy ��

Laura Morgan said...

You described all of this so well. I was feeling everything right along with you. I love your affirmation idea. It’s accurate. And I love that your mom knew how quickly this was moving!

Such a good point about the pickle jar!!

The fresh 48 was a great idea. They came out beautifully.

Rebecca Jo said...

Bless your heart. I feel like I'm sitting here in a PUSH MODE fashion.
I love your mantra. I think that needs to be on a shirt or printed on the wall :) LOL
You are one tough lady!!!! It really is amazing what the body can do!!!
Hope you share some of the pics from the next day by the photographer :)

AnneMarie said...

Wow, what an incredible story! Your mantra made me smile. The way that God made us to bring forth babies really is incredible!

Audrey Louise said...

Wow... You make me very glad I got an epidural. Haha. Especially for all the stitches I got.
F is so, so precious. Those first two pics of Jordan holding him & you holding him... it brings back all the memories of being in that room with M. What a crazy moment.
Congratulations, again! Such a perfect little family!

Terra Heck said...

Congrats to you and the baby! Glad all went well.
Girl, I'm with you...I was straight on the "I Want To Die" train with all three of my kids.

Michelle said...

Oh my gosh how am I going to do this again in a couple weeks??!!?!?!! I’ve had a few moments of feeling like maybe I was in labor, and the panic that swept over me was insane.

If it makes you feel better, I had an epidural and multiple shots of anesthesia and the stitching was still SO PAINFUL. I worry about that again. That recovery was one for the record books.

I didn’t even know those kind of photo shoots were a thing! Honestly it’s a good thing I didn’t book one since no one is allowed at the hospital except for James. Thanks pandemic!

Torrie said...

Oh man! Ha ha, I was cracking up at the "I'm going to die" part, because you know I understand you 100%! I'm soooo relieved that your labor this time was so much shorter.

If there ends being a next time, I've heard the epidural is pretty awesome for numbing all the stitching and such. I've been super lucky not to tear (so I can't vouch for the epidural with that), but I know with this last one, it really helped with my placenta issues (and the little bit of scraping they still had to do) for me to have that numbing. I also did like that the birth of my 3rd was quite a bit more peaceful (for lots of reasons) than my other two.

That being said, it's pretty amazing to be so in tune with everything when you choose to go natural---your body really does know what to do.

Congratulations on baby #3! He really is so precious.

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