Friday, July 8, 2011

Labor--Not Just a Day Off Work Part 2

It's been a few days since my last post, babies can be sort of high maintenance, but I'm finally ready to continue my story.

Back in the delivery room, I had given up on having an easy labor. My worst fear--the c-section--was looking more and more enticing with each painful contraction (and by then, those were coming every minute to two minutes). My nurse called the anesthesiologist back in, but she quickly let me know that he may not be able to do a whole lot at that point.

Dr. Pryor, the anesthesiologist, decided he would just take out the epidural and put a new one in. Again, Mama opted to stay in there and help calm me, but this time she would regret her choice. Because the other epidural had numbed everything but my lower right side, getting me into a seated position and into a "C" shape proved quite a daunting task. Not only that, those contractions were still coming on strong. Mama held on to my shoulders and told me everything I needed to do--relax, take a deep breath, close your eyes and think of England (oh wait; that was Queen Victoria to her daughter and also how I ended up in this blasted delivery room), but you get the picture.

Anyway, Mama's pep talk went over as well as a leadened balloon. What with her words, the blood pressure cuff compressing, the needle going in my spine, my spaghetti legs falling off the stool, AND the contractions, I was not in the mood and proceeded to let her know. I'm not sure what I said, but she responded to everyone with "I'm her mother and she knows she can abuse me." Whoops.

Mama also felt it necessary to provide commentary on everything Dr. Pryor was doing. He was actually quite impressed with her descriptions, so I told him "Well, Mama's a doctor just not of the medical kind." He got a good laugh out of that.

After all that, the needle was in place and all we had to do was wait ten minutes to see if the epidural took. After that, there was nothing else he would be able to do. So we waited...

And would you believe...


Finally! Something went right!

As soon as he left, the nurse checked to see if I had dilated any further. As it turns out, I was 9 1/2 centimeters. Whew! That was close! Within minutes, it was time to push this baby out.

I couldn't believe that within a few minutes I would be meeting my little boy. It was the incentive I needed to get him out. So I gave that part my all just like I had pushed myself up that steep hellacious hill at my first 5 k run. It wasn't going to be long at all until I finally got to hold my baby!

Ok, so it only took an hour for me to realize that the pushing part isn't like it is in the movies either. (Hollywood really needs to stop playing with folks this way.) All that drama of inducing labor and getting a new epidural, and that kid still wouldn't come out! Talk about being physically exhausted, but I kept going, mainly because I knew that baby was going to come eventually and once he got here, the nurses would finally cease their patronizing tones of "You're doing so gooood, oh you're doing so good!" Here I lay spread eagle in front of God and everybody; I don't need them talking to me as if I finger painted the most "beautiful" rainbow in the kindergarten class!

So about an hour and a half total, I pushed for what felt like the zillionth time, and after Count 3, the nurses both shouted "STOP" and it was time to call in Dr. Nicols. Freakin' finally! So Dr. Nicols saunters in, asks me why I have the mirror covered up (is she for real?), and delivers the fine fellow you see above.

Here's some other things the movies fail miserably at depicting:

1. The baby comes out a gory mess. Seriously, when they held up Jude for me to view, one of the nurses said "You can touch him." I don't remember if I actually said it (Lord, I hope I didn't), but I did think, "Do I have to?" (Sidebar--just let me know where it is I need to go to accept my Mother of the Year trophy.) The kid was gray. And he had goo on him. (Shivers...) However, they cleaned him up quite nicely, and once I actually did hold him, I fell immediately in love.

2. Speaking of holding the baby, yeah, they don't hand him off to you right away. Oh no. It was at least thirty minutes before I got to hold him due to Dr. Nicols having to stitch me up and the nursing team getting all of his stats. Therefore, I got to sit there in silent agony for thirty minutes thinking that my child looked like the crypt keeper from "Tales from the Crypt."

On the plus side, though, I didn't have the c-section. I had made it and received a pretty amazing souvenir because of it.

Labor and delivery was painful. It was gross. It was scary. But here's the bizarre part. I would do it again. And again. And maybe again after that. No, not everyday like my nutjob sister said she would do, but I definitely have my sights on more children down the road. (I think Jeffrey wants more too, but he accidentally caught a glimpse of Dr. Nicols delivering the afterbirth, so I'm going to give him some time to forget that trauma and then revisit the issue.) Sure it's one hard and tiring day, but when you have the support that I had (I know I give my sister a lot of grief, but really I wouldn't have made it through my first week at home without her--more on that later), a husband who somehow managed to put his weak stomach in check and be there for me, and one sick sense of humor, labor and delivery is totally manageable. Heck, it's a cakewalk compared to actually raising the child! :)

Later on that day, my family had informed me that a terrible storm was brewing during the delivery. Of course, I was a tad bit occupied to notice. We needed the storm since it hadn't rained in over a month. But what's even more significant (and Lord, please don't let this be a foreshadowing moment), Jude arrived to the world at 4:45 p.m., and he brought hail with him!

No comments: