Sunday, December 30, 2012
Grace's Birth-Part 1
This birth story is much different than my previous stories. As soon as I found out I was pregnant, I knew I would need to deliver back in the hospital. After my last home birth, and my second significant hemorrhage, the hospital would be the safest place for me.
It is really difficult to return back to the hospital after home birthing. Even though I'd had seven wonderful hospital births, something changes psychologically after you've home birthed. At least, for me it did.
About a month before my due date, my husband and I asked my doctor when he would be on call. One very important aspect of the impending birth was that I delivered with my beloved and trusted OB doctor. If I had to be in the hospital, I had to have my own doctor. I realized that it was not so much the birth itself that I needed him, it was the potential post-partum issues I needed him for. If I would require any type of emergency intervention at all, I must have the doctor with whom I've known for 12 years, and whom I would trust to make a quick decision on my behalf.
The day we would shoot for was November 8th. We knew that day my doctor would be on call for 24 hours. We also knew that having baby number 10 would pretty much squelch any questions about my being in labor if I wandered in a week before my due date. :)
So, it was time. November 8th was here and we had to decide if we really wanted to proceed with that day. I struggled off and on about going into the hospital before it was "time". I am all about waiting for things to happen on their own. So the thought of going in before made me a nervous wreck. But after more discussion about facing a possible emergency situation and having my own doctor, we knew this was the best decision.
The ride to the hospital was very quiet. My husband I both were secretly wondering how everything would play out. We were very excited about meeting this precious baby, but we were both nervous about what would unfold after the birth. No matter how much we prayed, how much Scripture we read and recited, or how many people told us to "give it to God", we were just plain nervous! It's just something you can't understand unless you've been there. We trusted God with all our hearts and minds, but it didn't take away the fears of what His plan might be after the birth. I don't mean to sound ominous here. We new my life was not in danger, it's just that hemorrhaging is a scary thing, and it feels terrible. I didn't want to face what I had in the past, and was praying I wouldn't have to.
We arrived at the hospital about noon. And as I predicted, the nurses didn't hesitate to get me right into a room upon hearing I was in early labor. Thankfully, I had been having enough contractions to genuinely say that I was in early labor.
Once I was settled, I was started on antibiotics for GBS. Shortly after that, we discussed the possibility of an epidural. Leading up to the birth, this was another decision we tossed around, again, because of my post-partum issues. If I would need quick attention, an epidural would prepare me for whatever needed to be done. If I didn't have an epidural, it could mean possible general anesthesia.
So many decisions. I felt lost. This birth challenged me in every possible way. Everything pointed toward intervention and I didn't like it. After one more discussion about an epidural, we decided it would be best to go ahead and do it.
Just before my second round of antibiotics, I received the epidural. It was a challenge getting it in, and it took quite a while for it to kick in. I had second thoughts about having received it, but it was too late.
It was now time to get the show on the road. The doctor came in and broke my water. This is something I opted for to avoid pitocin. We were officially on our way to meeting our baby. My two older daughters and friends had arrived and we all had a great time talking and laughing.
The labor was a bit slow going (for me), but after about five hours of labor, it was time to push! Thankfully, despite the epidural, I was still very much in control of my pushing and I could feel our baby move down. And at 9:55pm, she was here! We were all surprised she was a girl since the whole family had guessed a boy. But we were thrilled and completely in love with our seventh daughter! She was perfect!
My doctor laid her on my abdomen, skin-to-skin, and waited while allowing the cord to stop pulsing. As soon as Grace was born, the nurse turned up the pitocin to get my uterus contracting to minimize the bleeding. I held my sweet baby and took in all that I could, trying not to worry about whether or not I was bleeding too much.
My doctor massaged my abdomen steadily for quite a while and then said everything looked good! I was speechless! No hemorrhaging? I couldn't believe it! God had allowed everything to go as smoothly as possible, and I was absolutely fine! Praise God!
After about an hour of wonderful bonding time with our baby girl, the nurse came over to administer the vitamin K shot and the prophylactic eye ointment.
But we kindly refused them both.
At that moment, things changed and before we knew it, we were being told that we would be reported to CPS.
To be continued......