Morgan Kathleen arrived four days ahead of her due date (so much for concerns about me going early!). The last two weeks I had been stuck between 3 to 4 centimeters dilated with tons of Braxton Hicks contractions. We ended up at L&D with two false alarms (contractions were every three minutes but not intense enough to progress my cervix so we got sent home). Since the doctor was worried about the baby being too big to VBAC, I had an ultrasound schedule for Tuesday morning. Assuming she would be too big, I needed to deliver before Tuesday or I was going to end up with another csection on Friday.
I tried EVERYTHING to get labor started. Spicy foods. Castor oil. (OMG. Castor oil is disgusting. It's like drinking liquid vaseline. I tried 2 tbs on three different days. It did make me contract but did not start labor. Gross, gross, gross). Walking (so much walking). Stripping the membranes at the doctors office (this hurts!). Etc.
By Sunday night nothing seemed to be working and I was getting super upset accepting that I was going to have another csection. Like really upset. OF COURSE you do what you need to do for a healthy baby, but I was really not looking forward to a major surgery and a long recovery with a newborn and two toddlers at home. And I was really bummed about missing out on the labor experience.
They moved me from triage to the birthing floor. The nurse there was wonderful - she did all four of her births naturally so when I told her I didn't want an epidural she was really supportive. The on call doctor was actually the same one that did my csection last time so at least i knew her.
Labor without pain meds was interesting. Obviously contractions hurt but I just concentrated on breathing through them. The nurse warned me I would get to a point where I didn't think I could do it anymore, but I could. And she was right. At 9 cm I thought I was going to die. I need the epidural, I said. Obviously it is too late at that point. The pain was so bad and I just didn't know what to focus on. I felt like I needed to stand, like I needed to pee, like I needed to do SOMETHING but all I could do was lay there and squeeze Darren's hand. Then the nurse said I would hit the point where I felt the need to push. And I did. So she called the doctor in at 2:40.
I was so focused on pushing that I really don't remember much of what was going on. I know the baby's heart rate was dropping a little and they thought maybe the cord was around her neck. They put an oxygen mask on me and called in a pediatrician for the baby to monitor the heart rate (which I guess is standard). Apparently the doctor was talking about maybe using a vacuum to help get the baby out (I do not remember any of this) but before we got to that point, Morgan was born at 3 a.m. just 2 1/2 hours after we got to the hospital! Only 20 minutes of pushing. I had popped blood vessels all over my body, especially around my eyes!
Morgan's weight was 9 lbs 9.4 oz. And I delivered her without pain meds. I did that!
They took her and cleaned her off (apgar score of 8.9) and handed her back to me while I had to push the placenta out. I had no energy and the doctor was like, you do have to push. Oh okay. So I pushed that out. Then she sewed me up (a second degree tear and a minor small tear, but overall not bad considering how big the baby was). Her color started to get funny for a minute so they took her over to the warmer for a few minutes but then she was fine and gave her back to me.
Within an hour of delivering, I was stitched up and holding my baby and the nurse helped me get up to use the bathroom. I couldn't believe how much better I felt in comparison to the csection. Don't get me wrong, pushing a giant baby out of you will cause some soreness, but I felt so much better overall from the csection right away. Plus I had my baby with me and not hooked up to a bunch of machines in the NICU. That part was also way better.
They moved us up to the postpartum floor and we spent two days in the hospital. It was a great hospital stay and I was just so happy everything worked out. Morgan took to breastfeeding right away like a champ (compared to the struggles in the NICU and the constant pumping). She is such a good, easy baby and really just sleeps and eats.