One year ago today my little guy was born. I really wanted to post my birth story then, but it was a crazy time, and as time got away it didn’t seem right, but I don’t want to forget it either. So, as we celebrate his day, today, I will tell about how he made his way into the world.
So as many of you know, Keaton H. was 12 days late. I was 2 weeks late too, I guess it runs in the genes. And those last 2 weeks were full of false labor and bouts of contractions lasting hours only to be nothing. Since, I’ve actually been in labor I can now say, that a few of those “pre-labor” pains were intense and readily believable that labor was imminent. However, it really wasn’t.
I knew I didn’t want to be induced, because I wanted the best chance at a natural labor, and I knew that didn’t start with induction. However, at week 36, I found out I had Group B Strep, so I knew I was already off to an “intervention path” since you have to be on antibiotics while laboring with Group B. And they recommend you arrive at the hospital when your contractions are 5 min apart. And they want to hook you up to an IV and own you after that. 🙂 Not really, they want to ensure the health of your baby, but I felt that way beforehand.
On Sept. 24th at about 11pm, I was feeling some pretty intense contractions, but assumed nothing because of my previous crazy pre-labor bouts. By about 3-4 in the morning, I realized I was groaning in my sleep and by about 5:30 I couldn’t sleep anymore. So, I did what any normal person does, Jake and I went to WaWa and got breakfast burritos, all the while having intense contractions about 5 minutes apart. 🙂 At this point, I knew I was in labor, because the contractions were timely, and not stopping. By about 8:30, I was laboring on my birth ball, and having hubby provide counter pressure, cause I was really feeling my contractions in my back. By about 9:30 the contractions were every 3 minutes, and I did not want to go to the hospital, but I was also worried about getting penicillin to treat my Group B.
Since, I was so past due, I had been “checked” about 10 times it seemed, and had 3 ultrasounds in a week, all predicting Keaton was 9 lbs or bigger. Several days before I had been 3 cm dilated, so I didn’t want to push it too close, and miss getting medicine for him. So, by about 10:30, we decided to go to the hospital– with the agreement, that if I wasn’t at 5 cm, I would go back home. My contractions were about 2.5-3 min apart.
We got to the hospital and I was quickly informed that I would not be going to Triage to get checked, but rather I would become a patient regardless of what I wanted because the following day, I was set to be induced anyway.
I was NOT happy about this. When I finally got checked, I was at a blasted 3 cm, which I found to be impossible, since I’d been that 5 days ago, before 12 hours of early labor. I wanted to go home, but they made me feel like that was the wrong choice, etc…. Really they just wanted to OWN me (see above) and hook me up to an IV. Kidding- Kind of. 🙂
Shortly after, this around noon, my OB came in to see me. He had stripped my membranes in the office several times in the past 2 weeks to try to activate labor. Well, while I was having a contraction he did it again, and it was the WORST decision ever. It hurt like stinking fire, and it made my contractions majorly ramp up. Almost immediately after, my contractions went to like 2 min apart, and I started to puke when I was having them. Based on everything I’d read I would have sworn I was in “transition”– with them being so close together and intense, and if I had been in transtition, I would have been great, but I was at blasted 3cm. This went on til about 4 pm. With my blessed husband by my side, I was doing a round in the tub, and they made me get out to GET BACK ON the IV and check the baby’s heartrate for 20 min, while lying on my back. My nurse asked if I wanted to be checked again. I told her yes and no. Yes, because I wanted to know, but no because I was afraid it wouldn’t be the number I wanted. Since, I was puking every couple contractions, I was MISERABLE. But she told me the magic number was 5cm, so I decided if I was at 5cm, I would keep going, and if I wasn’t, I would get an epidural. Low and behold, 4 hours later, I was at a 4 and 1/2, and I think she gave me the 1/2 to be nice. 🙂 So, I got the epi, and while I was having a contraction, trying to hold still they gave it to me. Next thing I know, my husband is about to pass out. And literally within 30 seconds, my vomitting had passed and I could talk again. Talk about crazy turn around. I was literally amazed. Like 5 minutes after that my water broke. I thought maybe things would speed up, but no such luck. It took me til almost 11 pm to get to 10 cm.
And not without any action either. Oh no, I had a raging fever during a large portion, and Keaton was showing super high heartbeat (indication of fever for a baby) as well. I was self prescribing advil and trying to cool myself down with rags/fanning, cause I didn’t want them to make me have a c-section. The doctor said epidurals can occasionally cause fever (another reason in my mind not to have gotten one, since it puts you on the intervention path), but we were past that. When I finally got to 10cm, my contractions slowed way down to about 5 min apart again. They kept asking if I felt the urge to push, I didn’t. They let me wait for about an hour and a half, and then started putting some pressure on me to push. They said I SHOULD be feeling the urge by now, I was just barely starting to. So, we did mini pushes for about 30 min, and then started pushing for real, for about an hour +. But we pushed with the contractions, so it was slowing moving. The doctor said Keaton wasn’t coming down and he was thinking c-section.
This made all hell break loose for me, I was like NO WAY am I going to have a c-section after all this…… He said it was my choice, but that was his prediction. So, I started pushing like donkey kong, and on the next contraction, Keaton’s super high heart rate (from the fever) dropped REALLY low. My nurse got nervous and put the oxygen mask on me. At my next BIG push, I was determined to get that boy out. Only to be followed by an even crazier deceleration in Keaton’s heart rate. The next thing I knew, there were literally like 7 people in the room, monitor’s were going off, and they were telling me I was having a c-section no matter what.
Since, they hadn’t been planning for me to have a c-section, they had to call someone in to assist my doctor. It was during that lovely 45 minutes that I suddenly felt the urge to FINALLY push. And boy was it intense, this was welcomed by 45 minutes of people telling me not push. While we waited for everything to get set up.
When we got to the operating room. The discovered that the cord was wrapped around K’s neck which was stopping him from descending. They also find that since he was already working his way down the birth canal, they were having a hard time pulling him out via c-section, they were talking about using a vaccuum. While laying there, I was jokingly yelling out, seriously this kid is 12 days late, won’t come out the normal way, and now is fighting the c-section, what does this say about my boy?
But at 2:53am, they finally yanked him out. I got to see him, and when I spoke he turned right to me, as if to say, “there’s that voice I know”, but he was whisked away to the NICU to be checked over since he’d had quite a tramatic labor and delivery.
I finally, got to be with him at about 5:30am. Only to find out that something was wrong with his blood levels. The next day, my Ob let us know that K’s problems were stemming from something else based on the examination of my placenta.
Group B strep.
Despite all that penicillin and my rushing to the hospital, my baby was the 1:4,000 exception of the kid who still contracts it despite treatment.
Specifically the results showed chorioamnionitis, which is another bacteria that can be caused by Group B. In my case, I possibly contracted it with one of my gazillion checks or ultrasounds. Since, I had Group B, I had a better home for other outside bacteria to latch onto.
This whole fiasco resulted in another 12…..
12 days in the nicu.
But it also resulted in this….A precious bond with my sweet boy. And a fiercer, more protective love than I could have planned for.
So, happy birthday Mr. K– today you are the light of our world.
And to add to that– you are probably the only mom that was in the NICU for 12 days and didn't succumb to the pressure to bottle feed or tube feed or whatever else they wanted to do to get Keaton to eat and pee. You stood firm, showed up for every feeding around the clock and YOU determined your baby's feeding outcome. Very impressive!
Thanks mom, you are sweet!!!!!