Birth Stories

When NOTHING goes according to plan...(long)

Well, we spent 300 bucks on a Bradley Method childbirth class. My mother had four of her five children completely naturally and said that it was the only way to go. As I share her aversion to drugs, I totally agreed. I couldn't imagine taking a drug that could numb me from my waist down when getting novacane at the dentist made me woozy. So, I learned all about how to manage pain and how to breathe through my contractions, distracting myself with thoughts of meadows and hammocks by the ocean. GREAT! I could do it. Just envision the happy moments that you are going to share with your child and you can block out anything. Just breathe deep and you can swallow almost any pain.At 34 and a half weeks, I went in for my last sonogram. I was hoping to get one of those cool 3-D images of Marley that everyone has these days. The sonogram tech tried her hardest, but apparently little Marley was squished up completely against my uterus. The images came out fuzzy and all we could see was a flattened nose and flattened lips. She was crammed in there - and not due for another 5 wks? Are you kidding?Well, the doctor's visit started out horrifyingly. As the nurse went to take my blood pressure, she did so three times. Finally she said, "we'll just wait until you calm down to take it again." Calm down? I wasn't upset about anything. I felt perfectly normal. My heart wasn't even beating hard, until she muttered that phrase.When the doctor finally came in, he checked me and said that I was dilated at at one which was perfectly normal, but that Marley would probably be born in about two weeks - not 5 (glory, glory hallelujah!). The nurse came in again and took my blood pressure and then walked out, leaving me to get some more blood work done and schedule an appointment for the following Monday, giving me no hint that anything was amiss.?Skip to Friday night. I have a Braxton-Hicks contraction, which I was totally used to at that point. But then I have another 10 minutes later...And then another 10 minutes after that. And then they start coming every 7 or so minutes. Then every 10 minutes again. But for four hours, they just keep coming at a relatively regular rate. So, I call my doctor at around midnight because I had read that regular Braxton-Hicks contractions can be a sign that labor is going to start within the next couple of days. Since I was only 35 wks at that point, I was a little worried that it might be too early for that.He asks me to come in so we can figure out what's up. At the hospital again, my blood pressure is elevated and the nurses are concerned. But, I am not any more dilated than a one, so there's no signs of true labor. They decide to do some blood work and see if they can get my blood pressure regulated (as it was jumping up and down).?It's about four in the morning when they're done with all of this. The dog is with Mom, I've got a hurriedly packed suitcase with God knows what in it as I was a little nervous as I was packing but I haven't even bought nursing bras or night gowns yet...At nine a.m. they come in to wake me up and tell me they're going to do an emergency C-section right away. My platelette count which was low from the beginning has dropped severely since Tuesday. I have pre-eclampysia which can only be cured by delivery and magnesium. ?I swallow the news that I'm not going to get a natural birth like a large cold stone and pick up the phone to make the calls to the four sets of grandparents. At nine-forty-five I'm in the surgery room receiving my first epidural. Five minutes later, someone is poking me with something pointy on my shoulder, and then on my hip. I tell him I can still feel it on my hip. He runs this test every couple of minutes as I start to feel incredibly loopy. They tell me that I'm not going to be put under for the surgery, but it sure as heck feels like I'm going to pass out. Micah comes in as the administer ANOTHER epidural at ten a.m.Fifteen minutes later. I'm not kidding. I don't remember this. Or the rest of it. Micah says the birth was a remake of the last scene of Braveheart. I was swatting at the doctors, moaning that I could still feel what they were doing as a nurse and Micah held my arms down to the surgery table. He said it was the most horrifying experience ever.As soon as they pulled her out at 10:08 a.m. they administered morphine through an IV which is probably why I don't remember any of the birth or the following two days. I did not ask for morphine. I did not want morphine. I feel like morphine stole the first two days of my daughter's life from me. But that's neither here nor there.Marley was perfectly healthy at 7lbs 5 oz 20 inches. Micah followed her into the nursery (as that is what I asked him to do no matter what happened with me) where she got cleaned up and showed off to the rest of the world.I got put back in an LDR room which also acts as an ICU room for new moms. I stayed there for three days, sure that I was dying as my blood pressure dropped to 70/40 (yes you're reading that correctly). After having close to 70 visitors the first day, the nurse absolutely refused to let Marley sleep in the room with me, as the noise she might make by crying may cause me to have a seizure or stroke...Apparently nobody mentioned this to Micah or my mother before they let everyone and their second cousin in the room to goof off and rowdily celebrate the birth of the new generation. Luckily I didn't have a stroke. Altho I was so high I don't see how anything could have caused me stress.I refused new pain meds that the nurses continually wanted me to swallow as I had started hallucinating from the morphine (WTF was my dog doing at the foot of my hospital bed???)After six days in the hospital, I was released to go home and take it super easy. Relax. No stress. I went to my mom's as we lived on a second floor apartment and stairs were forbidden for me for two weeks. The morning after we arrived, my mother came in to tell me that my grandfather had suffered a stroke. Two days later, he passed away.So much for no stress. We ended up staying at my mom's for the full two weeks since there was just so much going on.Glad to say tho, life has settled down quite nicely. Micah and rented a house (no more trekking up concrete stairs with a bulky carseat, baby and diaper bag). And Marley is just now nine months old. ?

Re: When NOTHING goes according to plan...(long)

  • Congratulations that Marley is here and healthy. 

    I am so sorry you had a traumatic birth experience.  If you haven't yet, look into finding a local chapter of the International Cesarean Awareness Network (this links you to the national organization).  They can be a wonderful resource to help you heal from this.  They've been extremely helpful for me.

  • I'm so glad everyone is healthy!!

    I loved reading your story Smile Congratulations!

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  • OMG. All I can say is I am so sorry for what you went through! I am happy that Marley is here and healthy and things are good now!
  • Congrats!!! What a story...

  • My daughter's birth was pretty similar--severe pre-e, HELLP, c-section with epidural not working, and no memory of the birth.  I still think the separation from my daughter was the worst part.  If you ever need to talk to someone with a similar experience, I'm often on the preemie board.

    I'm sorry you had the whole pre-e horror show, there isn't much good about it.

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