Friday, March 28, 2014

The First Weeks

These past three weeks have been tough. I knew they would be, but it's always one thing to imagine it and another to actually live it. I've had my share of meltdowns and so has Kylie. Rex and I are readjusting to having a newborn again and Kylie is getting used to having a baby brother.

Seth has been great. He is nursing like a champ and he has reached his birthweight and then some. He's sleeping for three hour stretches during the night and we are working on him taking longer naps during the day since right now he is only taking little cat naps here and there. The past couple days he has been a little gassy/fussy during the day, but gripe water and some diet changes on my part are seeming to help. My only real complaint with him is that he is killing my boobs. They are super tender and at times raw even. I'm making sure that he is latching on correctly, but he can be quite vigorous at times. His output is working just fine, as he seems to be one of the babies that feels like its necessary to poop ten times a day.

Kylie has been a little tougher. Not so much in that she is jealous of Seth, but more her schedule has been thrown out out of whack. And she is a girl who lives for her schedule. The first week was super tough, she wasn't napping at all, was waking up in the middle of the night, and was throwing some major tantrums. Just being an all around stinker.  I've been trying really hard to keep her on her normal schedule and she's slowly been improving.

She absolutely adores Seth. She sings him lullabies when he cries, helps me burp him, loves helping with his baths, and is constantly giving him hugs and kisses. She holds him ever night when I read her bedtime stories and is teaching him the Lord's Prayer.

It's been tough too not having Rex around very much. He only had four days off after Seth was born and he works nights so he's sleeping for a good part of the day. Plus, my doctor took 16 days (that's right, SIXTEEN DAYS) to sign my disability paperwork so I haven't received any checks yet which is making things even more stressful for Rex and me.  And the hospital didn't process our insurance correctly and are trying to charge us directly. Not fun.

So we are trying to enjoy Seth's first weeks with us, but the real world is not making it easy for us. Wish us luck!

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Seth's Birth Story

               So Wednesday March 5 was my due date.  I had an appointment with my OB that day and found out that I was still at 4 cm and 70% effaced, which is where I had been for the past two weeks.  I think my doctor said that Seth was at -1 station as well.  She went ahead and stripped my membranes to see if that would help things along and scheduled an induction for the following Monday.  I was disappointed because I really did not want to be induced like I had to be with Kylie. 

                That night I had a little bit of cramping, but no contractions or discharge.  I spent a good amount of time googling membrane sweeping and how effective it was with inducing labor.  Most sites said it’s about 50% effective, but really it will only help start labor if your body was ready.  Enter more disappointment. 

                Thursday morning I woke up and went to work as usual at the daycare.  I was having on and off contractions, but nothing regular or able to time.  They died off around lunchtime.  I remember Rex and me eating Subway for lunch.  I was ravenous.  I had a six inch sub, jalapeno chips, and three double chocolate chip cookies.  Nothing really happened that afternoon at work.

                Kylie and I headed home at 4 pm and I remember rushing Kylie into the house because my stomach was upset and I had to GO.  That night I probably went at least ten times.  Not fun.  Contractions started back up again after we got home, but at first I attributed it to my stomach being upset.  I took it easy and just relaxed on the couch, messing around on my iPad.  I made Kylie some spaghetti, gave her a bath, and put her to bed.  My contractions were about every ten to fifteen minutes at that point and were about 30-40 seconds long.  Something told me I should take a shower, which is something I almost never do at night, always in the morning.  I went ahead and shaved too, just in case. 

                I went to bed about ten, but was having a hard time falling asleep so I watched some Netflix.  My contractions were every ten minutes apart and were getting longer.  I didn’t say anything to Rex (he was at work) because they were staying at every ten minutes and I didn’t want him to worry.  I finally dozed off but kept getting woken up by contractions.  At midnight they were probably every seven minutes apart.  Then at one they jumped to every five minutes.  I still didn’t call Rex, but that was because I knew he was already on his way home. 

                When he got home he sat down to play some Call of Duty like he always does to relax before he goes to bed, but I told him he should probably take a shower.  He didn’t take me seriously at first and just looked at me like I was crazy.  I think we both never expected me to go into labor on my own.  So I was going around the house getting things together and took out the dogs.  Now the contractions were getting hard to talk through and I finally convinced Rex to jump in the shower.  I was having a lot of bloody, mucousy discharge and I went ahead and talked to the on call doctor at my OB’s practice.  She told me to go ahead and come in. 

                We still had Kylie, and so Rex called both of his sisters and was freaking out because he couldn’t get a hold of either one of them.  After about 20 phone calls later, he finally got a hold of his younger sister and she said she would come right over to stay with Kylie.  By now Rex realized this was the real deal as my contractions were getting closer together and much stronger.  He almost loaded Kylie in the truck with us to go to the hospital but then his sister got to our house and we were on our way.

                The car ride to the hospital was uncomfortable to say the least.  My contractions were every 2-3 minutes apart and were lasting at least a minute.  I couldn’t talk through them.  I remember always thinking that during contractions I would want to curl up into a ball, but it ended up being the opposite, I felt better if I stretched out straight. 

                The hospital is usually about 45 to an hour away, but thankfully it was a little after three in the morning so there was absolutely no traffic and we made good time.  There were tons of skunks out that morning, and I was nauseous from smelling all of those darn critters.

                We got to the hospital and parked and walked up to the doors only to find them locked.  The entrance we usually used was closed from 9 pm to 5 am.  We walked a little way around the building to another entrance we knew about, but no, that one was closed too.  My contractions were fast and strong now and Rex was freaking out, he ran back to the truck, picked me up, and then we had to drive all the way around to the other side of the facility to the night emergency entrance.  We went in as fast as I could walk which wasn’t very fast at that point and checked in.  They got me a wheelchair and wheeled me up to L&D.  I had to fill at another form, even though I had already preregistered.  That was not easy, seeing how strong my contractions were.  They took me to triage and had me get changed into a hospital gown and to get a urine sample.  I remember not being able to pee at all and barely being able to get undressed.  Then I pick up the hospital gown and almost cry because it is all unsnapped and there is no way I can figure this out.  So I called Rex into the bathroom and have him get me into the gown.

                Our nurse, Ashley, gets me onto the bed and hooked up to the monitors to check my contractions and the baby’s heartbeat.  She goes to check how much I am dilated, but can only feel my bag of water bulging.  She calls for another nurse, and the head nurse comes to check me.  Now, my biggest fear at this point is for them to tell me that I am still at 4 cm and I have a way to go.  That didn’t happen though.  The new nurse waited for my latest contraction to end, and I think she asked me if I wanted an epidural because now was the time to get one.  I said no I didn’t want one, which is a good thing because then she checked me and said I was at a ten, fully effaced, and the baby was at zero station.  We were going to have a baby very soon.

                As they were wheeling me in the triage bed to a delivery room, I started to feel tons of pressure and I needed to push.  The nurses were telling me to wait and just breathe through the contractions.  Ha, WAY easier said than done.  They get me into the delivery bed and are calling the doctor.  She gets in, I think her name was McLaren; she was the one I talked to on the phone.  She checks me again, and I don’t know why because they just did and I NEED TO GET THIS BABY OUT NOW.  More telling me just to breathe and more of me not being able to stop pushing.  My water still hasn’t broken yet so the doctor goes ahead and breaks my water, which felt like a huge relief, as a nurse is putting in my IV and everyone else is bustling around getting stuff ready.  I am holding on to Rex’s hand for dear life and finally they tell me I can push.  They had me put my feet up and wanted me to hold behind my knees, which I did relucently because I didn’t want to let go of Rex’s hand.  After about three pushes, his head was out.  One of the nurses asked Rex if he wanted to look and he said, no, he was good, last time one look was good enough for him.  I know another nurse commented on how much hair Seth had.  Then one more push and the rest of Seth was out and they put him on my stomach as they cut the cord.  He was just like his sister and didn’t cry right away.  They took him over to weigh him and such and he starts peeing as he is laying in the warmer.  I saw a huge arc of pee go up into the air and then the nurses laughing as they covered him up so he wouldn’t pee on himself. 

                Seth was born at 4:15 am, weighed 7 lbs. 7 oz. and was 20 inches long.

                And the unbelievable thing is that although this sounds like a lot of stuff, I delivered him only 25 minutes after checking in at the front desk and only 7 minutes after the doctor broke my water.  Crazy, isn’t it?

                I delivered the placenta and breathing a huge sigh of relief when the doctor told me that I didn’t tear at all.  All the nurses were talking about how perfectly everything went.  I didn’t have any problems and Seth was perfect, no cone head or bruising or anything which they said is rare, especially for how fast everything progressed.

                And I was happy because I got my wish for an all-natural birth.  No pain killers, no epidural, nothing.  It wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be either.  Oh, it definitely hurt, don’t get me wrong, but it was worth it.  I think how fast it went played a huge part in it too.  I didn’t even have a chance to really think about the pain.  I would do it again if I can convince Rex to have another kid.  And I have to say, my recovery was a hundred times better this time around.  I don’t know if that’s because of the lack of epidural or interventions, or because it was my second time doing this, but I’ll take it.

                I was able to breastfeed about 30 minutes after Seth was born and he latched right on.  After he ate he was taken to the nursery for an hour or so.  After he came back, he was being a little stinker and didn’t want to latch on again.  I met with a lactation consultant and she got us back on track and he has been nursing like a champ ever since.  This was a huge weight off of my shoulders especially since I had such a hard time nursing Kylie in the beginning.

                I had a little scare when Rex was with Seth in the nursery and they moved me into my postpartum room.  I stood up and then there was blood everywhere.  I think I said something along the lines of “I think I’m bleeding.”  They got me into bed and to see if they could find out what was causing the bleeding.  That part was not fun.  They were pressing on my stomach really hard and then had to check me internally to see if anything was left inside my cervix.  Owwwwww.  They ended up taking me back to L&D, giving me another bag of Pitocin, and Cervidil, or something like that to help stop the bleeding.  It turns out that it was caused my very full bladder since I now had been pumped full of 2 liters of fluid since giving birth and it was putting a lot of pressure on my uterus.  I was a little weak and dizzy because of the blood loss and the fact that they wouldn’t let me eat until they were sure the bleeding was under control, and just in case I had to have exploratory surgery.  I was given the all clear and was finally able to eat, and let me tell you, I was FAMISHED.  The last real meal I had was Subway the day before.  I had some plain noodles for dinner since my stomach was bothering me, but it definitely wasn’t very filling.

                So this is Seth’s birth story.  I feel extremely blessed to have gotten the delivery I wanted with a perfect little baby boy and a wonderful husband who got me through this crazy fast time!