I am kind of ashamed by this, but our daughter is 7 months old now (she was born in April) and I haven’t even told you all about the birth! What kind of a mommy blogger am I? So, today I will tell you the full story. Not that I remember a lot of it! I actually had to ask my husband to help me with this, because every time someone asks me about it, I seem to tell it wrong! But this is how it actually was and I hope, by writing it down, I will never forget!
I was pregnant for 37 weeks and 4 days when I had a scheduled appointment with my gynecologist to check on me and the baby. After I had my ultrasound we sat and talked for a bit. It became clear, that because of my high blood pressure and the fact that the baby didn’t grow much any more, they were going to schedule me in for an induced labour. “Now let me see.” she said out of the blue, “There are four inductions planned for the next two days, so let me check where I can squeeze you in.” Excuse me? The next two days? As in, tomorrow or the day after that? Instant headache! “Oh, I see you were already scheduled in for tomorrow at 7 in the morning. Isn’t that great?” I was happy I brought my husband with me, because I couldn’t hear a single word after that. If I was already scheduled in, why did no one care to tell me this earlier? I wasn’t ready to have my baby the next day! How could she possibly think she was doing me a favour? We had so many things to do still, I had to wash all of the baby’s clothes, the nursery was a hot mess, someone needed to take care of the cat, how could this possibly be done? When we walked out of her office, we decided to go to the hospital’s cafeteria and get a cup of tea and something to eat. My head was exploding, I was so angry! Which, in hindsight, is ridiculous. A lot of people don’t know when they’ll give birth and their surprise is even bigger! But I just couldn’t help it, I was so scared we weren’t prepared. But once we got home, we made a list of everything we needed to do, got to work and somewhere in the afternoon everything was taken care of.
Cervical ripening balloon
The next day, we checked in at the hospital at 7:00 AM for my induction. A nurse brought us to our room and I got hooked up to the CTG, to keep track of my blood pressure and the baby. After some time, we got breakfast. I could’ve eaten a horse, but because I was ‘in labour’ (said in a sarcastic voice) I could only have one sandwich. Great. After a while, somewhere between 9 and 10 AM, it was time to take the first step. The nurse told me I was dilated a tiny bit (like 1 cm and a half and you need 10 to start giving birth), so they were going to insert a cervical ripening balloon to stimulate the cervix to dilate more, which is normal procedure for an induction. After this, the only thing we could do is try to relax and wait for the next checkup. I can’t really remember how I got through those hours, to be honest. All I remember is how annoying it was to pee while having wires sticking out of me and how much the hospital bed hurt my back and buttocks. After a lot of hours, a few checkups and almost no dilation, it was time to go to sleep. I couldn’t handle the bed anymore and when I told the nurse that it felt like I was lying on a metal board, she got me a normal hospital bed. Which was better, but not great. I think you all know. At night, my CTG was a disaster. It lost connection several times, which triggered an alarm and we got little to no sleep. After a few times, the nurse decided she was going to start inserting an IV, which would be used the next day for the medicine used to induce contractions. Meanwhile, I was dilated around 3 cm, which isn’t a lot.
The next morning, they replaced the balloon (which felt a bit more unpleasant than the first time) and around 1 in the afternoon, I felt something pop inside of me. It felt like a snapping elastic band. So I thought either the balloon popped, or my water just broke! We called a nurse to check if the balloon was okay. While I was telling her what had happened, I felt warmth. I felt like I was peeing! So obviously, my water did break! Weirdest feeling ever! At this point they had to insert a small electrode into the baby’s scalp, to internally monitor her heart rate. So, more wires down there! Awesome, right? They also started giving me the Oxytocin, to start the contractions. It worked and for the next couple of hours I felt contractions around every 10 minutes. But, in the evening, I was still just around 3,5 cm dilated. Great. Vera wasn’t in a hurry! Around 8 PM the contractions were so powerful, I begged for pain relief. And even though I never wanted an epidural, I just couldn’t care less, I wanted it. And I must say, with me, it didn’t hurt as much as I thought it would. I was so relieved! And it felt so good to not have so much pain for a while! A while… because just after 10 PM, I started to feel the contractions through the epidural. Almost as painful as before! So when I told the nurse about it, they decided to stop the Oxytocin, to stop the contractions. Then (and I don’t remember a single word of this) they started talking to me about a possible C-section. Apparently an operating room was already being prepared. Next thing I remember was the nurse being all suprised: I was dilated 10 cm! The C-section was not going to happen!
There she was
They immediately started giving me the Oxytocin, to get the contractions going again and around 10:45 it was time for my first push! I remember this being kind of boring, because there was quite a lot of time between the contractions. Me and the nurses had a bit of a chat and I remember making jokes about how boring this was. Then, at 11 PM it was time to actually work. After 2 big contractions, I asked Rick for some water and when I drank some, I noticed my tongue being numb. I instantly knew this was something I had to express. So, I said “Guys, I don’t know, but I can’t feel my tongue.” And as I spoke, the noises around me started to sound weird. Vibrating and a bit metallic if I can call it that. At this point I started to panic a little bit. I knew by instinct this wasn’t normal and I knew I had to speak up about what I felt, so I did. And now not only the voices around me were sounding weird, a metal like humming was getting louder and louder. And I remember I started crying a little bit, I was really scared! And for the first time in my LIFE, I actually spoke the words ‘I’m scared!’. The nurse that was holding my hand was very sweet, told me to stay calm and laid a cold wash cloth on my head. And while the weird noises around me didn’t go away, the nurses told me I had to give one last big push. I gave it everything I had and with one big push, Vera was born at 11:18 PM! At that same time, the humming, the weird noises, everything went back to normal. I never knew what happened there and I have no idea if the nurses knew. But later on, my husband told me that when it happened, it was a sign for the nurses to get our baby out fast, so they used a pump along with my last push. They placed our daughter on me and we were so shocked by how little she was! 1880 grams, which is a little over 4 pounds. But she was beautiful!
Because Vera was a dysmature (which is a baby that isn’t born prematurely, but has a low birth weight) and my blood pressure was still way too high, we couldn’t leave the hospital right away. We actually stayed 7 whole days. But I’ll tell that story some other time!