My 32-hour labor-LOOOOONG — The Bump
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My 32-hour labor-LOOOOONG

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Sunday, May 8th at about 6am, I woke up with the worst cramping. I knew it was early labor. I tried to go back to sleep, but ended up just laying in bed for another hour. I went about my day, and sometime in the afternoon my husband and I decided to go to the hospital, because we weren?t sure if my water had broken or not. (I?d seen some pink water come out, and wasn?t sure if it was amniotic fluid, so the Midwives said ?better safe than sorry? and that we should come in to be checked.)


We got to the hospital and they sent us to triage. We waited for a while, and then a nurse came over to monitor me. A midwife finally came over to check me. They checked me for amniotic fluid, but since there was blood on the swab they said that often gives a ?false positive?, and so their guess was that my water had NOT broken yet. I was only dilated 2cm, so I was sent home.


When I got home I decided to put on some of my favorite music and bake some brownies. The contractions were coming between every 7 and 20 minutes. They were very irregular, but very painful. Every time I got a contraction I bent over the counter and focused on my breathing. I figured that since they hurt SO much, I must be making fast progress.


By about 9 that night the contractions were still irregular, but growing increasingly more painful. We watched some Brian Regan comedy to take my mind off of the pain, and it really helped.  I decided to go to bed around 11, worried that I should be going to the hospital, but knowing that my contractions weren?t close enough together yet to head in.


I don?t remember what time, but sometime after 11pm the contractions were SO strong and getting closer together. I asked my husband to call the midwives, and he did. He told them what was happening and they recommended I stay home longer and take a warm bath. They said the bath would slow things down if I was still in early labor, or speed things up if I was going to be having the baby soon. I remember getting into the bath and feeling much better, but still being very uncomfortable.


When I decided to get out of the bath, all hell broke loose. I remember getting contractions so strong that I became nauseous. I was yelling at my husband to get me to the hospital, but he was really trying to convince me to hang out at home until the contractions were more like 2-3 minutes apart. Then I got a contraction that had me writing on the floor, screaming like someone was drawing and quartering me. I was convinced the neighbors would hear and call 9-1-1.  That contraction lasted 524 seconds. (There?s an app for that, and damned if my husband wasn?t utilizing it.)


Convinced that my torturous contractions meant baby was about to be born, I screamed at my husband to get me to the hospital. I could NOT walk through the contractions, or talk. They hurt more than I ever imagined anything could hurt.


We drove to the hospital, and when we got there they sent us to triage again. I had to wait behind a curtain for a midwife to come check me. People were attaching things to me, and checking my cervix through the contractions, and I thought I was going to die. I just wanted to scream. I actually did, and was kind of worried that the other patients could hear me, but not too worried. 


Finally a midwife came in to check me, and after THE most painful check and jumping back to the top of the exam table, she declared that I was a whopping 3 ? centimeters dilated. I wanted to die. I just couldn?t believe that after all of those horrendous contractions, I was only 3 ?.


We were finally moved to our hospital room, and I remember being in complete agony. I thought that I would endure, because my goal was to have a natural birth. I labored on the bed because I just didn?t have the strength to labor standing up or walking like I had originally planned.


We decided to move to the tub because I knew that warm water really helped ease the pain. I labored in the tub for about an hour, because it made the pain a bit easier to bear, but not much. I could barely answer anyone?s questions or look at my husband because the pain was so great.


I finally decided to go back to the hospital bed because a nurse suggested I?d have an easier time if I stood up.  Standing up made me feel like I was about to die, so I got into the bed. I was shaking and the pain was so bad that I began to vomit. When it seemed like I was done vomiting, I was checked again. I was ready for them to tell me that the baby?s head was showing, and that it was time to start pushing. Instead, they told me that I was only 4 centimeters. ?4 Effing centimeters?!? I said.


Sometime after the puking and the horrible realization that my labor was progressing like molasses runs in winter, I demanded an epidural. I am usually polite and patient, but this felt like life and death. The pain of my contractions was so great that I actually wanted to die. It was like nothing I can explain, so I?m not ashamed to admit that I yelled at the nurse to ?GET ME THE %$#@ EPIDURAL 5 MINUTES AGO!?


Of course, it took what felt like another hour to get the epidural, but once I did, I felt a million times better. One side went numb first, but they fixed that quickly. I was able to rest a bit, at the suggestion of the midwife and nurses.  I could still feel the contractions but they weren?t nearly as painful as before.


There is a blank in my memory here, but apparently I slept for a few hours in the middle of the night. My body had had enough. I woke up around 6 am and labored for a few more hours. Baby X (we decided not to find out the sex) was ?sunny side up?, and my cervix was inflamed, so the midwife had me flip onto my side in the hopes that baby would flip over and my cervix would right itself. If these things didn?t happen I would have had a very painful labor and a pretty serious tear to my cervix.


I happily turned to my side and relaxed, even though the adrenaline and pain I?d been through caused me to have uncontrollable shaking. The midwife came back to check me and said that my baby had turned back around! Also, my cervix was looking perfect. Whatever had been the issue before had fixed itself. She said I?d be ready to push soon.


Around 1pm, about 32 hours after my labor pains began, I got the go-ahead to begin pushing. I pushed in about 4 series of 3 long pushes, and my sweet baby was born! My husband announced ?That looks like a BOY to me!?. J Ciaran Matthew Gent was born at 1:43 pm on May 9th, 2011.


Also, they thought my water might have broken way before they originally thought, and baby and I had slight fevers, so they treated us with a full course of antibiotics for amniocoreocentisis (or something like that)....It was so sad to see my gorgeous baby with an IV in his head. :(  


Trying to post a pic. 


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