So, as you can imagine... What a WEEK!
On Monday I went in to the hospital to have my water broke. I started at 6cm dilated at 8am when they broke my water. By noon I was at a 7. By 2pm I was starting hard labor at an 8. I tried to labor in the waterbirth tub, and did well for about 45 minutes until I felt like I needed to pee, and I wanted to get out. Then Contractions seemed harder but I really felt the need to be UP and moving, although that didn't last long. By 5pm they had tried to get me back into the tub, I had been on the birthing ball, and in the hallway walking (okay, being drug by my midwife because I was at the point of deciding that I wasn't sure I had made a good decision in trying labor at all, let alone natural labor.) I couldn't stand being in the tub anymore. I was so freaking HOT and they had half my body covered with washcloths that they were soaking in ice water. Yeah. I was naked as much as I could be, I was much more comfortable that way, and cooler (although not really cool at all.) By 4pm I was asking for pain meds. But I had been 8cm dilated and in hard labor for 2.5 hours, and in labor for 8.5 hours, with only 3 hours of sleep the night before (excitement and worry will do that to a person!) So by 5pm I was DEMANDING drugs, and my midwife was talking me out of it the best she could because she know I had a plan for a natural birth. While she was doing my job I was becoming more scared, exhausted, and in pain every single minute, until I was begging and whining and PLEADING for drugs. It was at that point that I couldn't find any movement that would help me through a contraction and got back into bed. Contractions were 2-3 minutes apart since before hard labor started, and I was just so tired. My midwife told me that if they checked me and I hadn't progressed, I could have something for pain. I was not really progressing so between 5-6pm they gave me some Stadol (sp?) which they told me I wouldn't really feel like it was helping, but that it would be helping me relax and let do between contractions. I don't remember feeling any relief from pain, but I think I could ALMOST doze off between contractions, or at least be out of it, but as they got stronger I was begging and pleading for an epidural. By about 6-6:30 I was at a 9, and they were trying to get me to push, but I didn't want to push. At that time I was whining and complaining and begging them to let me stop, and saying crazy things like I didn't want a baby, and I had changed my mind, and I couldn't do it. My poor midwife probably wanted to kill me at this point. Finally at 7:30 (ish) They tried to give me pitocin and I recall basically trying to get out of bed and leaving and REFUSING to have any pitocin without an epidural first. Contractions were so hard at that point that I couldn't stand them, and I may have said things like "I want to die" and such... and then I had to wait for them to call in the Anesthetician and wait for stat bloodwork. I remember how difficult that wait was. It was a pretty bad hour or so. They moved me to a different delivery room, but even now I don't remember how I got there. Did I walk? Good lord I will have to ask Evan! I must have walked, because I think they made me put on a hospital gown, and I remember getting into the bed in the other room and ripping it off, and since I had an IV and couldn't get it off, I tore it off by the snaps on the shoulders and threw it on the floor. So the hardest was trying to make it through contractions every 2 minutes, dilated to 9cm, while sitting up and hunched over a table on the edge of the bed, while the epidural was put in. That was the only time that Evan wasn't with me, he had to leave the room because he couldn't handle the epi being done to me, and I was so happy to have it I could have cared less what they had to do to me. I had about 5 contractions during the epidural insertion, and each time I would be coached not to move at all, which was almost impossible, but I did pretty well. The epidural felt WONDERFUL but I learned very soon that the dose I got was like a starter dose that wears off, because my midwife didn't want them to start and intravenous drip... I think that I subconsciously knew that I was being given Pit at that point, but the contractions were so hard and fast that I couldn't even think. I did lots of begging and pleading for it to stop, and lots of "I can't do this" and "she won't fit." They coached me to push but I still didn't want to. Eventually it didn't matter what I wanted because my body was pushing as a reaction to where she was and the pitocin. It was horrible. By about 10:30pm they had finally started to believe that maybe she wouldn't come out, and called the OB to come check me. She said the head was stuck, and they started to prep me for a c-section, which I was begging for by then. I had a catheter, and I remember being talked to about the risks, and basically moaning "I don't care" between contractions. As they called in the OR staff, I was begging her to turn off the Pit. As she did, by about 4 contractions later, the pain started to subside a little bit more, and the pushing feelings increased, and I was a teeny tiny bit more relaxed as I could feel when I needed to push and was trying to hold back because I was headed for a c-section. Then the midwife wanted to check me once more and said that I was complete and her head was down all the way and that she was coming out normally and I wouldn't need a C-section, to which I told her "no!" and then refused to push. Eventually I started to push because there wasn't much else I could do-she refused me any more epidural (which had worn off) unless I agreed to push- and even though I was sure I was going to die or split in half, she was born at 11:36pm and when she finally came out it was the greatest relief of my life. I really thought that she wouldn't fit. I remember the midwife and Evan telling me she had so much hair as they kept being able to see the top of her head, and me saying I didn't care and still denying that it was going to happen.
Evan and I were both pretty overwhelmed by everything, I remember then putting her up on my belly and feeling completely amazed that she had actually come out! Of course she was beautiful, and the first thing I said was that she was cuter than I had been as a baby. Evan was in love with her instantly, and I was pretty impressed, although I think I was still kinda in denial that she was even really there. We spent the next 45 minutes breastfeeding and waiting for the placenta. I had a small tear that required no stitches, and I watched from the delivery table while Evan took tons of pictures and helped the nurse clean her, weigh her, bathe her, and check all her vitals. She screamed like crazy the whole time. Then Evan called our parents and Ardyn's aunt and uncle. I think it was especially real to me when the nurse said "what's her name?" and I got to spell it out.
At about 1am I realized that I was SO hungry as I hadn't eaten in over 12 hours, so a nurse made me some toast with butter and grape jelly. I was shoving it into my mouth as they were trying to take the IV out of my hand. I had 6 attempts at an IV while at am 8, and it wasn't pleasant because they had to keep stopping for contractions. I am pretty bruised up in the arms and backs of my hands. But that was all worth it! We got back to our hospital room at almost 2am, and while I tried to pee after they removed my catheter, Evan discovered our first poopy diaper and we changed it together. I think we breastfed for a while and around 3:30 the nurses took her and I got almost 2 hours of sleep that night. The next day our parents came. I felt great during the day, but that night I was feeling pretty sore and my tailbone was killing me. It ended up that we had a really rough night and Ardyn ate every 45 minutes, and had an hour long fit that started at exactly 11:36pm, the time of her birth. Just before 1am I sent her with the nurses to have her PKU Test (heel stick) and they kept her for almost 3 hours while Evan lie awake and rubbed my back to try to help me sleep. I could hear her crying and although there were other babies there, I knew it was her, and it was keeping me awake. I just wanted to go get her!
The next day we slept most of the morning away, as did Ardyn, we were all exhausted from the long night before. That afternoon we came home!