Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Birth Story

Gwendolyn Eve was due on July 24, 2010, but she had plans of her own. My labor started on Thursday, June 17th while I was 34 weeks and 5 days pregnant. Although I didn't have any contractions, my water started leaking on and off. I was sent to Labor and Delivery twice that day only to be sent home because they could not confirm that it was my water. That night, the doctor was finally able to confirm it and I was admitted to the hospital.

The doctor started inducing my labor with pitocin right away. Since it took over twelve hours from the time my water started leaking till the time that they confirmed labor, the clock was ticking for me to have the baby. There was nothing that anyone could do to stop the baby, she was definitely coming. I was a little worried because she was so early, but my doctor was very confident that the baby would be fine. The doctor felt that I was far enough along that my daughter should not have any problems.

I tried to get some sleep that night in the hospital. Since I wasn't having painful contractions, it wasn't hard to rest. By morning, nothing had changed. I started having uncomfortable contractions and chose to get the epidural since with my first daughter, the epidural actually progressed my labor all the way to full dilation.

This time, the epidural did not do the same. I was on the pitocin for over twelve hours and by 1pm on Friday, June 18th, I was still only 2 cm dilated. My epidural was turned down because I still wasn't having painful contractions, but I was having major tingling with numb feet and hands.

At about 1:45pm I got a ridiculously painful contraction and immediately asked to have the epidural turned back up. Before I could do anything else, I got another ridiculously painful contraction that basically felt like it would not end. As a complete shock to me, I also felt like pushing, as crazy as it seemed. The nurse checked and sure enough, the baby's head was right there, ready to come out.

In seconds, the room was filled with people rushing around, trying to get ready for me to give birth. My doctor wasn't in the hospital but was rushed back and in the meantime there was another doctor in the room for me. After my third ridiculously painful contraction, I started pushing. The pushing was very painful because the epidural had not kicked in yet.

After two pushes, my doctor arrived. One more push and Gwendolyn arrived at 2:12pm on Friday, July 18th. She was four pounds and fifteen ounces and eighteen and a half inches long. When they put her on my tummy I couldn't believe how little she looked. They brought her to the other side of the room to clean her up and then my legs started going numb - the epidural was certainly working at that time!

My beautiful new baby was born at 5 weeks and 1 day early. She was perfectly healthy and scored an 8 out of 9 on the Apgar. She only lost the one point because her coloring was a bit yellow. She had to go to the level II nursery and get an IV for fluids and antibiotics to take care of any infection that I might have had that could have caused the early delivery.

Gwen had to stay in the hospital three extra days, but after that she was able to come home. Since then, we have been loving having her here with us. It is very weird that I'm not pregnant anymore, but she fits into our family perfectly. Christina loves her baby sister more than I could have imagined.

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