Thursday, November 3, 2016

Mac's Birth Story

As I am sure we all know, I really wanted to experience an unmedicated, vaginal birth. Since I had the boys via C-section, I struggled to find a doctor that would support my dreams of a VBAC. After finding my medical match and preparing for this magical experience all I had to do was wait....and wait I did.

On Tuesday, October 11th, just one day before my 40 week mark I was feeling rather icky. Whether it was because I was SURE he would have come already, or had to go back to work for another day, all in all, I felt not in the mood.  I dragged myself to work, slapped on a happy face and decided on my prep to grab some Del Taco burritos loaded with hot sauce and take some laps around Target...I was determined to get this baby OUT asap.

When I got home that afternoon, I started to feel a little something. It wasn't much, but since it was seriously time, I paid a bit more attention. When I got home, I mentioned it to my mom and Thriving Husband (who was at work) and of course, my doula Nic. I went about my regular mommy duties (dinner making, cleaning floors, bath time, ect) that evening and noted that my surges kept getting stronger.

After I put the boys down at 7 PM I decided to finish up my nightly chores and get into the "birth zone".  At 8 PM I poured myself a little glass of red wine (oh what a glorious moment that was), drew a warm bath complete with essential oils and epsom salt, lit some candles, hit play on my affirmation playlist and got to relaxing. Then, it was time to get some rest. I had a big day ahead of me and needed to be well rested!

After a little cat napping (I won't lie, I was pretty excited) the surges started to get much stronger and closer together.  Around 10pm, my dreaded nausea kicked in. I had prepared to be throwing up through this entire labor as I did last time, so I grabbed my trusty vintage barf bowl and some ginger ale to sip on. I also started tracking my surges and sending them to Nic for guidance. So far they were about 9 minutes apart and lasting only 30 seconds. I decided to call my Thriving Mommy to come over and keep me company as I tried to stay hypno-focused between barf sessions.

At about midnight I lost my mucus plug and knew it was game on. I called my Thriving Husband and told him he should start heading home as his commute takes nearly an hour and I knew once he got home we had another 45 minutes to the hospital.

By the time he arrived I was having surges every 7 minutes lasting 45 seconds and they were getting stronger each time.  Because I had tested GBS positive this pregnancy, I knew I had to head into the hospital earlier than normal as I needed to get all the appropriate doses of antibiotics. With the windows down, affirmations blaring and my cycle of breathing, puking, breathing, puking we finally arrived at the hospital at about 3:15 AM on Wednesday, October 12th, my official 40 week due date.

We checked in, got situated and waited for the amazing Doula Nic to arrive. She made it to the hospital shortly after we did and we updated her on the latest developments. While my surges were consistent, I was only 2 cm dilated (booooooo). The nurse reviewed my "please leave me alone in darkness" birth plan and decided to wait until my doctor came in for rounds at 7am before checking me again. Nic helped me stay as comfortable as possible trying new positions and supporting me through each surge as my delirious Thriving Husband stayed at my side and did whatever he could to keep me feeling good. Which sadly was making sure my barf bowl was empty and I kept drinking liquids so I had something to puke up. Gross.

I was given IV fluids and some Zofran in an effort to keep the nausea down so I could concentrate. Sadly, it didn't work. The writhing, gut wrenching stomach pain was showing no signs of stopping (as to be expected), I just hoped it stayed coming out this way and not the other...if you get what I mean.

At around 5:30 AM the back labor kicked in. This was one of the moments I was dreading most. As I had experienced HORRIBLE back labor with the twins I was terrified of having it happen again. I had done so much to keep this from haunting me again (swimming, always sitting upright and never reclining, visualization), but alas, here we were again. Nic wore her hands to utter exhaustion massaging my back as I tried to not focus on the discomfort. It just kept getting worse and worse.

Just when I thought the back labor wasn't enough...I had the urge to push. It was only 6:30AM but I was watching that clock (we didn't really set up for my hypnobirth as I wasn't admitted yet and was going to move rooms before delivery) waiting for 7AM when my doctor came to check and I could threaten his life if he didn't make this stop. Yes, those were my exact thoughts, I was going to cut someone if I didn't get some drugs...

I pushed and pushed and pushed. Everyone told me to stop, breathe through my surges. I immediately transported back to the twins birth when all I did was push (way too early) and my cervix became incredibly swollen and I was forced to face a C-section. I was terrified history was going to repeat itself. Nic did her best to keep me motivated and remind me of my goal, but I openly told her to screw herself, that I was a failure and didn't care about anything I had said, I wanted the baby OUT or I wanted drugs...NNOOOWW!  Instead, I laid on my side, pushed and well....pooped...lots.

Shortly after 7am, the nurses were changing and heard my pushing. They were not happy. "Oh honey, are you pushing? Don't do that. I better check you now"... My response..."Umm, I can't really stop, so I am going to keep doing what feels right to me"...Her response..."Oh My God, you are at 9cm, how long has she been bleeding like this?! CALL THE DOCTOR!!!!!!"...My response, "Say what?! Thank F, let's do this"...Nic's response..."You did it!! You are there!! I knew you could do it!"...My response, "I hate everyone, hope you all die, I am pushing this baby out now and that is the end of that". Despite all I had practiced I had convinced myself that when the doctor showed up he was going to sigh and tell me I was only at like 4 cm and was doomed like I was last time. Trust, when I heard it was showtime I nearly fell out of that bed I had been clawing at for the past hour...Guess I won't be moving rooms after all...

She rolled me over to help my cervix efface that last centimeter and felt his little head right where it needed to be. As mass chaos ensued all around me (Had someone paged the doctor? Get the doctor on call! Bring in a table! She is having this baby now! She hasn't been admitted? Oh LORD!) the moment I had been waiting for was finally here. My surges had literally been on top of each other, and I should have known it was close. My stupid monitors kept falling off and since no one was fixing them no one knew just how serious this situation was getting.

That last centimeter melted away and it was on. My beloved doctor came in and was as calm and cool as ever. He was just the kind of energy I needed. I continued to lay on my side, grabbed my hamstrings, took in a deep breath and channeled all my strength down.

As the ring of fire took hold (all I could think of was Jonny Cash), I was filled with such energy and motivation. Sure I hadn't slept, hadn't eaten and had removed everything in my body for the past week but I suddenly was my usual beast and was so fired up I could have jumped from that table. Three surges/monster pushes later his little head was out. YES! Man, I could do this all day, the pushing felt like heaven. Him emerging into the world felt like I was touched by an angel. This was just the workout I had been waiting for and thank G it was here! A few more and out came his shoulders then blluuppprrrppp the rest of him just sort of fell out. At 8:30AM, a mere 5 hours after we arrived at the hospital, my little poop covered man made his way to my chest and all I could think and feel was utter pride. We did it.

When I was in transition and at my lowest of low (hence the thoughts of cutting the next person who didn't give me drugs even though I didn't want them at all) I should have trusted my body and where I was in my labor journey. I guess hindsight is always 20/20. At the end of the day, no matter what happened along the way, I got my perfect, healthy little boy with no medication and through my vagina. Take that all you VBAC nay-sayers!

I am so thankful to my TH and Doula Nic for being there for us every step of the way. While this birth was a blink of an eye compared to my first, it was still a long night for Mac's birth team. I can't say enough about Nic and her ability to be everything I need when I am birthing my baby and beyond. I am one lukcy Thriving Wife to have her.

Big brother Peanut sharing his love of trucks and cars with his new baby
As we settle into our new family life of #3under3 I continue to be filled with deep and complete happiness. While I didn't (and still don't) get what the big deal is surrounding a VBAC, apparently I am quite a unicorn (which I love PS). Every nurse, lactation consultant and person who hears of my experience usually picks their jaw up off the floor and throws up their hand for a high five...interesting and exciting all at the same time.

Not sure about that fourth baby as of now....but only time will tell!

Strive to thrive, 

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