Eleanore Grace Casagrand was born on Thursday June 25, 2009 at 3:23 pm. She weighed 14.7 pounds and was 21 inches long at birth. I gave birth to her when I was 40 weeks, 3 days.
Wednesday night I was having some contractions?about four an hour and they weren?t increasing in intensity yet. I tried to go to sleep around 2 a.m. and woke up to use the bathroom. When I wiped, I saw a bit of red spotting. Next thing I knew I was leaking and it wasn?t stopping. I was fairly sure that my water had broken, but the bright red color kind of scared me. I woke my husband and we were checked into the hospital by 3 a.m.
I was taken into an exam room to be checked. The nurses didn?t seem to think I was very urgent?they figured I was a first time mother and overreacting. It was only after they had me change into a hospital gown and they saw how much I was dripping that they sent me straight into a birthing room.
This was not the labor I had in mind. I had wanted to wait for an epidural, and my husband was prepared with massage tools, positions to suggest, and great support. None of that happened. Because my water had broken, I had to have an IV for the first hours. By 4:30 a.m., my contractions were 1-3 minutes apart, very painful, and I was only dilated to a one.
The doctor oncall did not want to give me Stadol (I never saw him, the nurse just talked to him over the phone) but my wonderful nurse convinced him to because the contractions were coming SO fast that I didn?t have time to rest between them (around 6 a.m.) The Stadol made me loopy. I could still feel the pain but it was then easy to ignore. Between contractions I was really relaxed. The Stadol also made my mind jump from one thing to the next very fast, but I kept most of my thoughts to myself. I did apologize to my husband for waking him up, which made him laugh.
I got a second dose of Stadol after an hour and then the nurses switched. The next nurse was not very nice. I was told that the anesthesiologist would be able to see me at 7:30 a.m. This was about a half hour after the Stadol would be wearing off?not a big deal, I thought, because the second dose had almost come too fast and made me a little too out of it. Well, 7:30 came and went. When I gave in and asked for Stadol and I was told I couldn?t have it because the epidural was coming soon. My stepmother arrived with my dad in tow and I immediately kicked him out of the room (he came back and said hello later when I was calmer) and my stepmom stayed with me. My husband went to get a quick breakfast. This was the WORST time of my entire labor?I kept saying ?I can?t do this? and almost crying with each contraction (one minute apart).
After refusing to give me Stadol for awhile, I told the nurse twice that I didn?t care if the epidural was delayed, it had been delayed so long that I needed SOMETHING. She finally gave me the Stadol?and the epidural arrived five minutes later (8:30 a.m). The anesthesiologist didn?t care whatsoever that I had just received Stadol?so I have no idea why the nurse kept telling us no. Around this time I was dilated to a four.
The epidural = heaven. The numbing shot pricked a bit but I was so full of Stadol it didn?t matter, especially compared to my contractions. I had some feeling in my legs but was in no pain at all. I was able to nap for an hour, visit with my mother-in-law and dad without being embarassed, and generally felt okay.
My crappy nurse had to assist with a c-section, and my new one was AMAZING! She checked on me regularly and talked to me like I was a human. Apparently I was pretty gross after the epidural and with my water still leaking, because she immediately cleaned the bed linens?something the other nurse didn?t even check. My baby had passed her meconium so the nurse hooked something into me to flush out the water and keep it moving, along with a urine catheter and an internal contraction monitor. It wasn?t uncomfortable to get any of those.
Around noon, I mentioned to my nurse that I was a bit uncomfortable?not bad, just had some feeling on one side of my body. The on-call doctor came in for the first and ordered some Pitocin for me, because according to the internal contraction monitor, my contractions were not very strong. She then did an internal exam and to everyone?s surprise, I was dilated to 9.5! I?d be ready to have the baby by one! My epidural was so strong that I didn?t even feel it coming!
One came and went and the doctor was busy with another patient. The nurses were a bit worried because my baby?s heartbeat was dropping every third contraction when I was on my side. They were considering a c-section but it turned out not be necessary. The doctor came in and told me I could start pushing at 2:30. I felt kind of dumb?I didn?t have the pressure and it was difficult for me to tell when to push, but Ellie was out within an hour! She had a bit of help via an episiotomy and a vacuum extractor. Labor itself was not very painful, I couldn?t feel the episiotomy or the stitches afterward. Ellie had to be cleaned up for a half hour after birth because of the meconium and because her umbilical cord was wrapped (very loosely) around her neck, but she?s doing great and so am I!