Thursday, December 29, 2011

Baby Essex { a birth story}

Baby Essex
Wednesday December 21st, I had an appointment to see my midwife, at 4 days past my due date, and with my blood pressure going up (again) I couldn't avoid the induction talk. Reluctantly we scheduled one for Tuesday the 27th, but I was going to do everything I could to avoid it......induction was NOT a part of my VBA2C birth plan. 
In a last ditch effort to 'help things along' my midwife stripped my membranes. I honestly wasn't holding my breath that it would work, but by the time we were on our way home, I could already see a difference in my contractions, and quickly realized that, I WAS going to have this baby on my own BEFORE the induction date (praise God!).
The contractions continued to progress through the evening and into the night. 
I was SURE the baby was going to share a birthday with my best friend on the 22nd.
So we packed up, brought the kids to my brothers house, and headed to the hospital. Things kept up at about the same pace all night. Not getting stronger, but not letting up. Something needed to give. I either needed a break from the contractions, so I could get some sleep, or I needed to see some progress. As Thursday morning dawned, the contractions finally began to lighten up and space out.
I was not happy to make to 'walk of shame' out of the hospital with no baby, but I knew I needed the break, and I knew it wouldn't be too long before we were back.
I had put a call into my mom that night so she was planning on coming up in the morning,
it was great she came, because after a completely sleepless night, I was able to rest/sleep on the couch ALL DAY.  I remember 'coming to' a couple times through out the day to eat, but mostly I was passed out resting up for a another long night.....
Thursday evening as we got the kids ready for bed, the contraction picked up again. 
They progressed quickly, and within a few hours were very regular at 3-4 minutes apart.
I actually hadn't been timing the contractions myself, but my mom had been listening to me breath from the other room, and like any good worried mother, came out to say 
"they're really close, are you sure you can make it there in time!"
(we had an hour drive to the hospital).
Way to freak me out mom! ;)

We made it to the hospital around 1:00am on Friday 23rd.
Being a VBA2C, I had to be on continuous monitoring, and have a hep-lock placed,
 I had thought about refusing one or both, but decided to just let them be. In the
end neither bothered me at all, and I think it helped that the nurses had a little extra peace of mind.
When first checked, I was at about 5cm and fully effaced.
I was THRILLED, seeing as I was a tight 2cm and only %50 effaced just 24hours earlier.
Everything was looking good and I was ready to start laboring in the tub.
Unfortunately for me, we had to wait for my midwife to come check me out, AND they wanted to see a little more progress before letting me jump in.
And so, I pressed on,
finding no relief at all in the many techniques I had so look forward to trying.
Somehow the nice squishy birth ball felt like I was sitting on pole.
The birth stool (kind of like sitting/squatting on the toilet) felt the same.

All I could do was stand and either hunch over or squat down with each contraction.

Baby Essex

Finally my midwife arrives...I have no clue what time,
it felt like forever, but looking back it could not have been that long.
She checks me, and because the baby is still pretty high, she can't get a good feel for how far along I am.
The only way for her to tell is to try and check during a contraction. I really did try to let her, but as that contraction came on, and I was laying on my back being checked, I was suddenly not so cooperative.
She still couldn't tell for sure, but we were pretty sure I was complete....
Ok, I was sure I was complete, I don't know what she thought.
She also wasn't sure at this point if my water had broke or not.
After what felt like hours (probably more like 30-40min) of contemplating how far along I was,
I was finally let into the tub.
It. Was. Heavenly.
My first contraction in the tub, and I felt myself pushing a little, and I couldn't stop it.
I feel like I always hear of people feeling like this hours before 'real' pushing begins, so I just let my body do it's thing and I didn't say anything.
Second, and third contraction in the tub, and more unstoppable pushing.
Fourth contraction in the tub, more pushing, and then I feel something coming out....
John yells to the nurse so I know now it's not just in my head.
My midwife was just walking in, my bag of water was bulging out, she grabs it and pops it.
Just like that I can feel baby slide back UP. Not a good feeling.
Turns out, my midwife had just come in to get me out of the tub. Baby's heart rest was not doing well at all, and they need to get a better monitor on him.
They whisked me, 'kicking and screaming', out of the tub, and back to the bed.
I couldn't do this.
Since I began planning an unmedicated birth 5 years and three kids ago, not ONCE did I imagine I would be in bed, pushing from my back.
This was all wrong, and I just knew I couldn't do it this way.
My *picture perfect* birth was gone, and I suddenly felt like everyone was doing whatever they wanted to me, and I didn't like it. I felt myself becoming very uncooperative, and even more pessimistic about seeing this birth through.
A couple minutes later, baby had an internal monitor on his head, and I was told to push.
I couldn't though. Pushing felt all wrong in bed. The position just seemed like it was totally conflicting with what my body was trying to do.
I think it was two or three contractions later when my mind started to clear a little.
I started to see the concern on the nurses face,  and I started actually listening to my midwife.
As I began to actually listen, I could hear my midwife telling me, we needed to get baby out ASAP, he wasn't doing well, and we needed to hurry. I heard as a nurse left to call in my back up OB in case they needed to use the vacuum.
I had heard enough, and got my focus.
I had already lost the water birth, there was NO WAY they were going to use that vacuum.
Baby need to come out, and I was the only one who could make that happen.
Once I was able to set my mind to it, it was only about 5 more contractions before he was out.
I got to hold him for a second, but he wasn't crying, and because his heart rate had been so low, he was quickly taken from me again. As they took him from my arms I quick looked to see if baby was a girl or boy.....It's a BOY! (I knew it!)
Another small thing that I had SO look forward to, resting with my slimy baby on my chest, gone.
I watched as they looked him over, still no crying, but also, no concern on the doctors face.
A few more minutes passed, and still no crying.
Finally they handed my quiet little baby back to me, perfectly pink and healthy, just quiet.
Born at 4:54 am, on December 23rd.
(40 weeks 6 days)
Weighing in at 8lbs 14oz (seriously can't I just say 9lbs?)
It wasnt what I had dreamed, but it was perfect, and beautiful.
I had done the impossible.

Baby Essex
It  was over an hour before we got a full cry out of our little man!
and 6 days later, his personality hasn't changed.
A good eater and a good sleeper, the boy hardly makes a peep.
I keep wondering how long it can last like this.
Surely he won't be this easy forever, right?



Lisa Gutierrez December 29, 2011 at 4:11 PM  

You did it!
He is perfect! Congratulations! :)

*Jess* December 29, 2011 at 6:14 PM  

He is so precious!! Congratulations!

Brooke December 29, 2011 at 7:14 PM  

Oh, Maria, you did great. And I can tell you that while he may make more peeps, he can continue to be just as easy. Enjoy him.

drwag82 December 29, 2011 at 7:28 PM  

Yahoo! Your got the take home prize for sure. Love you Maria.

Anonymous December 29, 2011 at 8:31 PM  

awww, mama. wonderful birth story. I love the honesty in your emotions and I feel your heartbreak in not having things go the way you'd visualized. he is beautiful and perfect, of course. xo, Megan

Anonymous December 29, 2011 at 8:53 PM  

Way to go, Maria. And Essex.
BTW my third was definitely the easiest as far as fitting into the family. He's still pretty chill!

Jess @ Just a Blink December 29, 2011 at 9:07 PM  

hugs and blessings from the mcws!

Jess @ Just a Blink December 29, 2011 at 9:08 PM  

hugs and blessings from the mcws!

Anonymous January 21, 2012 at 3:27 PM  

Thank you for sharing. Beautiful pictures. Beautiful baby! Blessings.

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