What is this Adventure?

Full-time Mama & Part-time school social worker in the throes of toddlerhood at its best and worst. In my short tenure as a member of the prestigious Mamahood club, I find the reality of it all to be amazing, exhausting, hilarious, challenging, a blessing, lonely at times, nostalgic, guilt-ridden, and the most wonderful thing that has ever happened to me...all at once. Sit back, read, laugh and cry with me on my adventure!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Baby Hazel makes her fashionably late appearance!

Well, cute as a button was born 17 days late.
I didn't even know they LET you wait that long!
Yup... fashionably late.

and I did everything under the sun to "convince" her to come on out...
from gentle methods like chiropractic care and eating eggplant to more brash methods like spicy curry, stripping my membranes (twice) and last but not least --- gulp...castor oil. None of it worked. Finally I believe it was the acupuncture that finally let Hazel know it was time... I went into labor one night before her scheduled eviction (as my friend called my induction)

Here's the story...

10:30 pm. I'm resting after running around all night revved up about having to be induced the next day. I have a contraction. Now, on other nights, I would have started doing all sorts of weird things to keep up my contractions - pressing accupressure points all over my body - but tonight I was defeated..."I'm going to bed," I thought to myself, "and if the baby wants to come out tonight, he/she will let me know."

11 pm. Contraction.
11:30 pm Contraction.
Each time I would fall back asleep after the contraction, telling myself not to get too excited.
This continued until around 2 am.

2 am.... contractions started to get closer together - maybe 10 - 15 minutes apart. I woke Paul up..."Do you have work to get done before we have this baby?" I asked. He was sleepy and responded sluggishly, "It's not time to get up yet. I'm fine."
Clearly he misunderstood. "PAUL," I said more loudly, "I'm going to have this baby in the morning, so do you have anything you need to get done?" "Huh?" he responded lovingly, "how are you going to have the baby if you are not having contractions?" Oh boy. He was still sleeping. I finally convinced him that I was having contractions and going to have the baby. He stated, "do you need me?" and fell quickly back to sleep when I answered "No." This was the FIRST sign that this birth was going to be a bit different than the first...the first of many. :)

By 3 am, my contractions were 5 to 8 minutes apart. I began timing them. As I couldn't sleep anymore, I signed on to Facebook...the eternal "time waster". I didn't want to write anything about my pending delivery, so I just commented on everyone else's statuses and stalked everyone.

I woke Paul up around 3:30 am -- "Ok, Paul, time to get up, I said, we are going to leave in the next hour." He was so confused. Again, I had to re-explain that I was pregnant, I was 42 1/2 weeks into my pregnancy, and I was going to have a baby, a small young child who would need lots of attention. Just kidding. It wasn't THAT bad...but....yeah....

We called our friend around 4 am and she headed over. I wanted to leave early this time...it was all for practical reasons...the second clue that this wasn't my first birth...
1. I didn't want to sit in traffic on 290.
2. I didn't want Kieran to wake up and watch us leave.
3. I didn't want to sit in triage in so much discomfort.
So, yeah, we left early.

I told Paul to park the car and meet me up in the Labor and Delivery triage area --- that was the third clue...
The woman in ER gave me the 3rd degree (is that the expression?) about if I was REALLY in labor. Finally, she realized that my due date had passed by 17 days and she stopped giving me a hard time. She didn't let me use the bathroom though - in fear I would give birth in there... "yeah, right, lady, I just want to PEE!" I said.

Triage was lovely. No problems. "Why didn't they ask us all these questions when Kieran was born??" I asked niavely. Paul simply answered, "you weren't really in the mood" hahaha.

I was only 4 cm. dilated. 100 % effaced. It was early. I walked the hallway twice.

Before long I was led to the ABC room (Alternative Birthing Center) where I would give birth to my baby girl. I walked around, sat on the birthing ball (hellish!) and before long asked to be in the tub. 7 1/2 cm....all set to fill the tub!

For all of you out there that think a water birth is crazy...man oh man, it's so much more relaxing than roughing it outside the water. I LOVE THE TUB! I instantly felt more able to handle my contractions and more settled. The worst part? My IV. I think the IV for antibiotics (strep B positive) was more annoying and uncomfortable than my contractions!

The midwives switched and Cynthia came in to see how I was doing. I had her check me...9 1/2 cm and I was feeling ready to push. "Go ahead" she said...

Oh pushing.
The hardest part.

And let me tell you -- pushing while your water bag is in tact is CRAZY.

So, I pushed and pushed and pushed with no avail for a while. Hazel would come down and float back up in her little sac o' fun... NOT FUN...

Finally I convinced the midwife and Paul that she should break my bag (after asking twice for her to do it and her and Paul not being so sure it was a good idea because I didn't have my "two doses" of antibiotics). I stated, "hey, the baby got one more dose than Kieran and he's FINE! Let's DO this thing!"

So she broke my water bag during a contraction. Why oh why did she have to stick a crochette needle in my body as I am contracting? But...

20 minutes later...Hazel arrived.

The funniest part? I felt Hazel's head crown...and then my contractions stopped. Just stopped. For what felt like 20 minutes (it was less than a minute, but ya know). I felt the "ring of fire" (as they call it) with Hazel's head feeling like it was halfway out my body. I HATED the recovery from tearing after Kieran, so would be damned if I was going to push without a contraction. So, I didn't. Well, the midwife and nurse didn't like that very much. Every 2 seconds they checked baby's heart beat. My midwife stated, "ok Elizabeth, if the baby doesn't come out on this next push, I'm going to have you rotate your body so that most of it is out of the water." I got the message loud and clear -- she was going to PULL my baby out. "NOPE," I said loudly, "baby's coming out". At that, I made SURE that Hazel was out in the next push. So funny how all you need is a little convincing. Hahaha.

9 lbs. 11 oz.
21 inches.
Beautiful baby.
Beautiful birth.
Beautiful life.

Unmedicated water births are so empowering. You feel like a freakin' rock star when you are done. Well, ok, at least I did.

On to Baby Hazel...the best part...

She is so calm, understanding, and good natured.
I'm in awe of her ability to forgive me for my inability to juggle everyone's needs all at once. She is amazing.

Kieran is adjusting. He is trying so hard. He is a good big brother with a big heart. His big heart has been a little wounded when he discovered Mama has to share, but he is trying so hard. So hard.

Mom of two. Wow. How the HELL did my mom do five? I need to clone myself for the times that both wake up from naps needing me. Why haven't I cloned myself yet??

I'm exhausted. Must sleep.

Love birthing babies.
Love Mamahood.