Brayden arrived on Thursday, October 28, 2010 at 6:46 p.m. He was 8 lbs., 5.4 oz. and was 20 3/4 inches long.
We knew we were having a big baby, so since I'm petite, my doctor decided it would be best if Brayden came early--either by c-section or induction. After a lot of debate, I decided that I really wanted to give a vaginal delivery a shot. So, induction it was. Because our hospital only induces as early as 39 weeks except in emergencies, my doctor bumped my due date up from November 11th to November 4th. So, on October 28th at 3:30 a.m., DH and I drove up to the hospital tired (we couldn't sleep and only got about two hours) and anxious to meet our baby boy.
I was checked in very quickly and brought to our labor and delivery room. My nurse, Kendra, came in and got me settled. I was actually already contracting and was a centimeter and a half dilated. Another nurse came in to get my IV started, and I was so swollen that she tried four times to get the IV in before calling in a pediatrician (my veins are also pretty small) to help her out. Once the IV was in, all we could do was get some rest and wait. My contractions quickly grew closer together. When they checked me again at 8, I had only dilated to 2 centimeters. My doctor up'ed my IV fluids and broke my water to try to speed things up. My contractions got a lot stronger and some were off the chart displayed on the monitors. We just knew it was progressing. I wanted to hold off on my epidural, so I asked to receive pain medication through the IV. I still felt the contractions, but I was able to sleep some. At 4:00, I was checked again. I had only progressed to 3 centimeters.
Dr. Harris said that if I hadn't made it to 5 by 6:00, she would do a c-section. At that point, the contractions were taking their toll. I had wanted to wait longer, but I'd been in labor for 12 hours. I asked for the epidural. Around 5:30, I began feeling my contractions through my epidural. The anesthesiologist came in to up my medication, and he ended up being one of DH's softball teammates!
At 6:00, I was checked again. 4 centimeters. My nurse called the doctor, who scheduled our c-section for 6:30. So, I was quickly prepped for surgery. The anesthesiologist was still there, so he up'ed my medication again to prepare me for the section. By 6:20, I was in an operating room. DH was able to come in while I was being prepped because he knew the anesthesiologist. My doctor came in at 6:35 to begin, and Brayden arrived at 6:46 p.m. As soon as I heard him cry, tears began to fall. I was so happy our baby had arrived.
Everything is a bit of a blur because I was so out of it, but DH filled me in on what I missed. Apparently, Brayden was too large to come down my birth canal. He had begun to descend, but couldn't go any farther. Also, his umbilical cord had been tied in a true knot. It was loose enough for him to be okay while growing, but if I had given birth vaginally, it is very likely that it would have tightened. His oxygen supply would have been cut off, and we could have lost him. We were wheeled back to our original room for recovery. Our family met us on our way to greet Brayden, then they went back to the waiting room while Brayden was cleaned up and screened. I was so groggy that I slept the whole time.
Two nights after he was born, Brayden was taken to the NICU for rapid breathing. He was monitored for 24 hours, then was released to the Special Care Nursery. His breathing was abnormal because he was a large c-section baby and still had fluid in his lungs that is usually passed during a vaginal delivery. His body just needed time to absorb it. So, we both spent an extra night in the hospital. While he was away from our room, I pumped so I could bottle feed him breast milk at his scheduled feeding times. Fortunately, we were released together on Monday, November 1st at 7:00 p.m. and have been at home trying to get a routine down ever since!