A Birth Story: Baby J.

I’ve always been a planner, my life has basically been planned to the day, since I was 16 years old. Get married at 24 ✅, buy a house at 25 ✅, have a kid at 26 ✅, have 2nd kid at 28 ✅. One thing I couldn’t plan though was when I was going to go into labor- which was a huge concern of mine throughout my pregnancy.

I had a fairly easy first pregnancy; besides the excess weight I was carrying around, I felt pretty good. The only thing not in my favor was commuting to Brooklyn my entire pregnancy. The 120 trafficy miles a day meant 4-5 hours in the car, Monday through Friday. Not only is that tough for anyone, but it sucked for a pregnant soon-to-be Mama. Around 34 weeks my legs and feet swelled to elephant trunks and feet. It was awful, and every minute in the car made it that much worse. I was also nervous that I was going to go into labor 60 miles away from my doctor and hospital. I stopped working at 38 weeks, and spent the next two weeks bored at home wishing I was still working! In hindsight I’m glad I stopped working then.  Although I stopped working, my husband, M, was still working in the city, which was equally as concerning to me. Would he make it home in time? Would I be driving myself to the hospital? I had enough supportive family nearby that I knew it would be okay if God forbid he didn’t make it home in time. My due date came and went, and 3 days later on a Sunday morning in 2015, I got up to pee and my water broke. I wasn’t sure if it was actually my water breaking at first, but throughout the next hour or so I had a number of gushes so I quickly knew it was indeed that!

I knew I wanted to labor at home, but as it was my first pregnancy I called the doctor’s office to talk to the on-call OB. They told me I needed to come in and be seen. I rolled my eyes but I went in. They confirmed that my water did break and began to say that I should take it easy in the hospital as I began to start contractions but that I was still only 2.5cm dilated. I looked at the nurse and said, “I’m going home, I’ll come back in later.” And I did just that. The on-call OB, who I had seen a number of times throughout my pregnancy (and didn’t really love) was actually amazing. He called me basically every 2 hours to check in. He told me I had 24 hours before they had to induce to avoid infection, since my water broke. I agreed to coming in the following morning if nothing major had happened in the meantime.  By midnight, M and I were lying on the family room floor in front of the fireplace in the fetus position because I was in so much pain. He wanted to go in because he wasn’t sure how much worse it was going to get and wanted me to get checked out. I on the other hand knew it was going to get way worse. By 2am we were checked in and I was still only about 3cm dilated. At 8am I was induced as it had been over 24 hours.

The next few hours were quite the whirl wind. I went from “bad contractions” to the most painful thing I had obviously ever experienced in my life. M was trying to help soothe me through it all, but obviously that only helped a tiny bit. At about 10am I took a shower. Before I got into the shower I peed (even though I was scared baby J was going to fall out). When I wiped I noticed greenish/black discharge which I knew from my birthing class was meconium (first poop), and that was not a good thing to see. The Doctor/nurses weren’t sure if the baby had ingested the meconium but they needed to have a Neonatologist on standby during my delivery. I was happy that they were prepared but scared that that meant something was wrong.

My “plan” was to have an epidural free delivery, but knew I wasn’t sure how much pain I could take. After an extremely intense three hours I broke down and asked for the epidural at 11am. At 11:15 they gave me the epidural and by 12pm I was 10 cm and ready to push. After an hour and a half of pushing “the wrong way” they had to stop the drip because they needed me to feel what I was doing. The nurses went on their lunch break (which pissed me off beyond belief but now I understand why) to give me a break and to have the epidural start wearing off. By the time they got back I pretty much felt everything. I pushed for another hour and a half and out came baby J, at 6 lbs 7 oz. The Neonatologist suctioned his lungs and that first cry sounded amazing (the meconium potentially could have caused distress if it was aspirated).

My tiny babe unfortunately caused 3rd degree tearing, from my vagina to my anus. I also had some clitoris damage (that after about 6 months was back to normal and fully functional (THANK GOD!)) The tearing basically made me immobile for a good six weeks (I’ll leave most of those details out for another post). I could barely walk and sitting was even worse. I was so swollen and made my poor husband take a picture of me down there so I could see the war zone. And that is what it looked like! My inside labia were on the outside because of all the swelling (in case you needed a visual). Thankfully between the best hubby, mom, mother in law, sister and dear friends I made it through that insane time!

 

Meet Carla L. 

About SarahTBD

A mom trying to survive this beautiful disaster we call life with a family. Some days I rock it, some days I just survive it, some days are rough and some days I can’t get enough. I work part time from home trying to juggle the work hours with the everyday life with two children.