Eat Drink & Be Mary: Cole's Birth Story Part 1


Cole's Birth Story Part 1

Y'all its about time I write this post seeing as Cole is already a month old -- whatt?!  

I feel like I should start out this post by saying I loved being pregnant, and yes I know its a blessing to be able to say that.  But I did. I had some nausea at the beginning and once 38 weeks hit I started feeling ready for him to make his appearance whenever he wanted but I knew I would miss being pregnancy once it was over.  And call me crazy, but I do!  

Something else to note: during pregnancy one of the things I was most worried about was not knowing when to go to the hospital.  So I did quite a bit of reading and talking to moms about signs of labor and I read that most women don't have their water break before labor starts (that a lot of times doctors actually have to break their water), and that some women mistake peeing themselves, oh the glories of pregnancy, for their water breaking so I made sure to read up on the differences.

Last thing before we dive right in, I love reading birth stories and how they can all be so different.  I'm so excited to finally have Cole's on here so I can look back on it in the future and for if any of y'all are just curious like me and love reading birth stories.  

WARNING: this post is detail left behind ;) 

side note: I did keep bullet points in my 'notes' app so I wouldn't forget the times of things as the day progressed, otherwise, I KNOW I would've forgotten by now.  

March 20 //

I had recently went on maternity leave and spent the day making to do lists and crossing off all the things -- hello nesting.  That night I even made a long to do list for the next day in preparation for my parents coming that weekend (ha!).  Thomas was on shift at the fire department that night we had a discussion on a very stressful topic and I went to bed VERY stressed around 1am.  Mentioning this because we both think that stress is what induced my labor early.

March 21 // 39 weeks 3 days

4:52 am
I woke up at 4:52am to a gush.  And I remember thinking did my water really just break?  

I sat up in bed and another gush happened, and I was pretty dang sure this was "IT".  I called Thomas a minute later and told him "Ummm I'm pretty sure my water just broke."  While I was describing to him what it was like I was shaking like crazy and dropped my phone on the floor while trying to rush to the bathroom.  There was a HUGE gush of what did in fact turn out to be my water breaking (thankfully in the toilet this time) and I threw my clothes in the shower because if you've ever had your water break you know how gross it can be (thank God for my mom coming and washing my sheets and clothes before we came home!).  Thomas told me to call his sister to take me to the hospital and he'd tell his work and meet me at the hospital.  

The next couple minutes consisted of me calling my SIL and then my mom to let her know what was going on and to be ready to leave if they admitted me to the hospital.  After making all the phone calls, I went around grabbing last minute items to take to the hospital.  I also put on a large pad to catch the ever gushing water breaking, and had to put a new one on by the time we left the house which reassured me this was in fact the real deal.  Oh, and I let Remi out really quickly and I swear she knew something was up because she was ready to go, running all over the back yard and didn't want to go back in the house when it was time to leave.

5:37 am
My SIL arrived incredibly fast and we were off to the hospital.  We arrived to the hospital at 5:37 and as we pulled in Thomas was crossing the street from parking his truck -- amazing timing!  We went straight to the labor and delivery floor and the lady at the desk asked me for my name and then told me to wait in the waiting room.  I remember telling Thomas I thought that was odd and that I thought they didn't know my water broke.  But the three of us sat for a couple minutes just talking about how crazy it all was that it was actually happening as my water continued to basically leak all over -through my clothes and onto the chair I was sitting in.  About that time the lady from the front desk came over and asked my name and if I was there for a c-section or induction saying she couldn't find my appointment -- meaning I was right about them not knowing why I was there.  And once I told her that actually my water broke she ushered us across the hall to triage.

Once in triage we had to wait at least 10 minutes because there were no nurses there (what!) we think due to shift change.  Meanwhile my amniotic fluid is literally dripping down my legs.  Finally, we get checked in and put in this sectioned off  "room" where I changed into a gown.  The nurse checked if it was indeed my water breaking (which it was) and then "checked" to find out I was dilated 2cm and 70% effaced.  This is it.  It's really happening!

I called my mom to give them an update (and prayed they'd make it on time - a 4 hour drive) and then they wheeled me up to my labor and delivery room.  I had two nurses at first that attempted to go ahead and set up an IV before the nurses changed shifts.  While they were friendly, I'm glad we ended up coming in at the shift change because in trying to set up the IV they blew my veins TWICE (giving me large bruises on both arms for over a week later) and I ended up LOVING my nurse, Yolanda.  

in our triage "room"

7:25 am
At this point I had only had a couple contractions (maybe 2 or 3), but they weren't that painful.  After the shift change and I met my labor and delivery nurse, Yolanda, she let me know that because my water had broke they wanted to start me on pitocin right away to get labor moving along.  She also asked at this point if I was planning on having an epidural and 100% yes I was!  And y'all pitocin contractions are NO JOKE.  

Thomas had let his parents know I was in labor after I called him, and they also arrived around this time.  His dad took his sister back to get her car from my house and back to her kids; while his mom stayed in the room with us.  

During this time, I was updating my mom via texts, and watching my 500lb life on TV (random but it helped pass the time).  Thomas didn't get a lot of sleep that night between staying up late talking to me and then running a couple calls before I ended up calling him, so he tried to get a quick nap.  

Funny little note: during this time I had quite a bit of gas and considered holding it in since my MIL was in the room but it hurt to much as the contractions began and just had to let them go.  She never said anything but I know she had to have heard me just tooting away.  

Pitocin ramped up the contractions quickly.  Y'all.  I have no pain tolerance, but actually feel like I handled it all pretty dang well.  Thomas obviously wasn't sleeping anymore at this point and was letting me know how the contractions were reading on the monitor.  Within the next 2 hours I was having contractions that went off the chart and would have 5-6 back to back within 7ish minutes.  The only thing I knew to do was just close my eyes and breathe through them - I couldn't talk through them.  Around 9, I had to pee and called the nurse to help me since I was all hooked up and didn't know how to make it on my own.  When I returned to the bed, I was having another contraction and Yolanda mentioned to let her know when I was ready for the epidural and I told her I was ready now knowing I'd still have to wait on the anesthesiologist to have time for me.  

9:45 am
The anesthesiologist made his way to my room along with Yolanda, which meant Thomas and his mom had to leave the room.  They told them it could take about 30 minutes (but it ended up only taking about 10).  My contractions were LEGIT at this point and the two right before they made their way to my room had me in tears.  They had me sit sideways on the bed with my legs hanging off facing Yolanda and a pillow near my belly.  The anesthesiologist was a super nice guy and began to tell my about what he was doing and what to expect, but Yolanda told him not to worry I wouldn't feel much compared to the contractions I was having.  Both of them continued to talk to me and ask me questions I'm sure to distract me and while I knew that is what they were doing it was still a nice gesture and sorta helped.  They had me curl my back, my head on Yolanda's shoulder, and push through my back.   And seriously y'all as he began to insert the needle all I could feel was another contraction which was tricky considering you're not supposed to move.  I began to pray like crazy that the epidural would take.  Because Yolanda had told him my contractions were pretty intense he hooked me up with an EXTRA dose of the epidural.

Afterwards they laid me back and instantly my right side was warm and numb, but I could still feel the contractions on my left side.  Once I let them know, they rolled me on my left side saying that it would help the epidural move to that side of my body and they'd come back in a couple minutes to make sure it took to that side as well.

10:30 am
Yolanda came back to ask how I was feeling and I let her know that my left side was now numb as well.  Y'all the epidural was so legit (strong) that at first that I couldn't feel ANYTHING, they had my legs bent and they kept falling to the sides, and I couldn't move myself up the bed Thomas and my nurse had to help me.  Thankfully the epidural ended up taking on both sides and finally I had some relief.  However I was feeling a lot of pressure near my butt.  She then realized I hadn't been checked since that 4 that morning and decided to see how far along I was only to find out I was already 8cm dialated.  She let me know that she and my doctor would be back to check me at 12 again to see if I was 10 and we'd start pushing.

Meanwhile I'm texting my mom updating her and seeing how close they are.  They had run into some traffic in Charlotte earlier that morning which of course we were both not thrilled with.  

Also, Thomas' dad had made it back sometime before now and he and his mom were thinking it wouldn't take that long once I started pushing, but Thomas and I thought differently.  

11:37 am
Yolanda and Dr. McDonough came to check me and sure enough I was 10cm.  I text my mom to let her know, kinda sad because I really wanted her there in the room and it wasn't 12 yet I thought we'd have more time for her to get there.  But I was hopeful that she would make it before Cole was born.

12 pm
Yolanda came back saying it was time to push and I swear as soon as she said that my mom came walking in the room.  God has amazing timing y'all.  Later she told me she had been worried about seeing me in pain (while laboring before the epidural) and thinks God sorta had it all work out in the end.  

It was time to push.  Thomas and Yolanda each held a leg and I'd push as she counted to ten three times and then we'd take a break until the next contraction.  Every once in a while I'd feel nauseous  so they gave me a wet washcloth for my forehead and a bag in case I did get sick - but I never did. My mom took pictures and was good support in between pushes as well.  I loved having all three of them in the room with me and they were great support. 

at one point they had me lay on my side and try pushing that way to see if it moved Cole "onto the right path"

After a little bit Yolanda went to go talk to my doctor (who could see all of my monitors from his office as well), and when she came back she mentioned that the baby's heart rate was sorta dipping when I would push so they were going to stop pitocin, and thankfully he was perfectly fine after that.  I continued to push until 1:50 with not too much progress.  They were happy with how I was pushing, but Cole didn't seem to be moving down much.  The nurse and my doctor agreed that I should take a 30 minute break and during that break I'd have the "peanut ball" between my legs while laying on my side to hopefully get Cole "on the right path".  I wasn't exactly sure what that meant he/I wasn't doing, but I just remember praying that it would work and I would get to meet my baby soon.  

2:20 pm
I didn't feel extremely tired from pushing but since I didn't get a lot of sleep the night before the break was welcomed.  After 30 minutes, Yolanda came back and I began pushing again.  This is when I started to feel defeated and frustrated.  I still didn't feel tired or like I couldn't do it, but frustrated that I'd been working so long and nothing was happening.  I just wanted to meet my baby!  With every push I would pray please let this be the push.  After about another hour Yolanda went to get my doctor and I had a feeling I wasn't going to like what was happening.  

When the doctor came in he had me push a couple times to see what was going on.  And told me Cole was close but it looked like I needed help.  He suggested using the vacuum, and when he asked if I was okay with assistance from the vacuum I was all for it.  Let's get this baby out!!  It took two tries with the vacuum, four pushes each.  The first round of pushes, on the third push Thomas said he could see a couple inches of Cole's head, but I lost strength on the fourth push and stopped and the doctor stopped the suction at the same time.  Thomas said he saw the head sucked straight back in.  My doctor informed me that we'd try one more time and if that didn't work we'd have to have t move to a c-section.  One more try with vacuum -- on the fourth push his head was out and he told my nurse we couldn't stop so I had to keep pushing and his body came out in the same push.  No break to stop when just his head was out and to suction in between; he was completely out.  .  And thanks to the epidural all I felt was a lot of pressure which in my opinion was just the perfect amount to not be in pain and still have the experience of feeling myself give birth to him.

11 hours of labor, 3 hours of pushing, two attempts with the vacuum, an episiotomy and a 3rd degree tear (which makes the episiotomy seem kinda pointless... but whatever) later and our sweet Jackson Cole was born at 3:36pm on March 21st, and was 8lbs 4oz of pure heaven. 

I didn't have an actual birth plan other than a healthy baby and an epidural - we were hoping to not have a c-section..but if we needed to then we'd do whatever was necessary.  And we were so blessed to have those wishes come true.

And this concludes the first part of Cole's birth story.  Lengthy I know..but I don't want to forget a single detail.  As for part 2, I'll be talking about the first interactions we had with Cole, our hospital stay, and - something I don't feel like is talked about near enough - recovering after birth. 

And since I feel like recovery and the rest of the hospital stay doesn't get talked about that much feel free to leave any questions for me in the comments and I'll make sure to answer them in part 2 coming within the next week.

So stay tuned!

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