Friday, January 7, 2011

Sarah Grace- A Birth Story...

I've been in hiatus the last few days, and I've had good reason. I've wanted to write this post from day one, but lack of sleep, sheer excitement and joy, and the feeling of not wanting to miss a second of my new status of 'Mommy of 2' has kept me away from blogging.
Things are settling down here, and all of us are getting used to our new routine. Sarah is sleeping soundly in her bouncer, and Hannah is eating breakfast and watching Mickey. Ahhh, a few minutes to tell her story! Here it goes!

December 27th started out as all of the others had that month. Slight discomfort, inconsistent contractions, and me feeling huge, uncomfortable, and irritable. I woke up that morning thinking the same thing I'd been thinking for the last week, Well, I'm still pregnant. I got out of bed around six, got showered and dressed for the day, and headed downstairs to soak up a few minutes of solitude and quiet before I started my day.
I was greeted with kicks and squirms and shifts in my belly. She was awake, too. I'm not sure exactly what I was thinking in those few moments of quiet, but I'm sure I smiled, patted my round abdomen, and took mental note of the feeling of a baby moving inside. I knew it wouldn't be long before she'd be here.
All day long I had contractions. Some timeable, some not. I did laundry, tidied up the house, prepared lunch for Hannah...the usual. Nothing significant in the way of labor, though.
Around suppertime, I started to feel a little queasy. The contractions were increasingly uncomfortable, but still not timeable. We put Hannah to bed, and Micah and I settled in on the couch to try to relax.
Around 11:00, I called the doctor. I was pretty uncomfortable, and my contractions, although no totally consistent, were timeable.
We headed into L&D and they hooked me up to a monitor. My nurse that evening was less than pleasant and I could tell she was beyond irritated that I was there. My contractions continued once I was hooked up to the monitor, but they were so inconsistent that I heard what I knew was coming and what I dreaded to hear...This isn't real labor. We're sending you home.
Even though my contractions were more uncomfortable when I left than when I came in, I was only dilated to 1cm. I begrudgingly dressed and we headed to the car, me in a wheelchair with a few doses of sleeping pills (which I tried to refuse, but nurse cranky insisted I take).
We got home around 1:30, and I'm pretty sure I slept very lightly until around 4:00am. It was at that time that I started timing my contractions. Around 5:30, I had to get on all fours in bed to breathe my way through them. I'd take position, breathe for the 45 seconds to 1 minute, then roll back onto my back and catch a few winks before the next one hit between 4 and 8 minutes later.
By 6:30, I was absolutely miserable. At this point, I was moaning in pain with each contraction, and resorting to all fours was no longer alleviating the pain. I decided around 7:00am to call the doctor. I had held off because I did NOT want to head to the hospital and then be sent home again.
I called the on-call line and was told that the on-call doctor would return my phone call shortly. I waited what seemed like an eternity, struggling through each contraction.
Finally, at around 7:30, a doctor who is not my own, returned my call and told me to head in.
I got dressed, taking multiple breaks to grab onto the bed or nightstand and moan through the contractions. They were so painful at this point that I couldn't stand them. I could barely walk down the steps to get to the car.
We jumped in the Explorer, and Micah turns to me and asks, "Do you think we have time to stop for coffee?" Ummm, really? I told him NO and we headed for the Medical Center.
Of course, when we hit town, we hit traffic. Lots of it. It was almost 8:00 at this point, so motorists scurrying (or not) to work were everywhere. We hit every redlight, got behind "pokey Joe", drove under the speedlimit for a few miles...all the while I'm climbing up the door of the Explorer in pain.
I've never had pain like that in my life.
We got to the hospital, and upon instruction from the on-call OB/GYN, we went to admissions. I walked from the car into the hospital in hopes that, if this wasn't real labor, that it would help me along.
I had a few contractions in the parking lot that required Micah to hold me up under my arms and rock me through them.
Once in admissions, I was instructed to have a seat at the window to get checked in. I'm thinking, are you kidding me? I'm clearly dying and you want me to check in?!
Wouldn't you know, a contraction hit right before I took my seat. There, in front of a waiting room full of people (how embarassing!), office staff, and the young kid who was supposed to check me in, I moaned and groaned, and grabbed for the wall and Micah's hand, and rocked...for the one minute the contraction lasted.
The young man turned as white as a sheet, grabbed a bariatric wheelchair, told me to sit, then looked at Micah, almost in a panic and asked if he'd like to take me to L&D. Micah obliged.
The kid banged me off the wall trying to get me out the door, but we were soon off with Micah racing down the hall to Tower C elevators, me in the wheelchair moaning and groaning and squirming. I'm sure we got some looks, but we made it.
I got hooked up to the monitors, they checked me...5 CMS!! Thank you, Jesus! I told them I wanted the epidural, so plans were made for one. In the meantime, the nurse gave me Stadol via IV. Instantly, the room started spinning, I got warm, and I started having strange thoughts...that stuff is powerful, but doesn't do much in the way of pain management, unfortunately.
Within ten minutes, I felt the most tremendous pressure. I had had a few VERY intense contractions that apparently had done their share in helping me dilate. I yelled to the nurse that I was pushing. She checked me...9 1/2 CMS! I was pushing, but it was my body. I really had no control over what I was doing. It was too late for an epidural and I panicked.
My doctor ran in at the last minute, throwing on his gown and taking his spot to delivery the baby. I felt everything. I felt her crown, her shoulders, and then the relief of it all being over. The minute she delivered, the pain was gone and I felt peace. She was here.

Sarah Grace December 28, 2010 8:59am 7lbs 3oz 20 inches

The first time I held my precious little girl

She arrived in perfect time. On her due date. She's destined for great things, my girl. She's here for a purpose. She has a high calling on her life, and it's already evident.

My heart is so full!

And my Hannah? Her heart is full, too!

And my husband? He's the best Daddy. A picture of our Heavenly Father's love for us...

We are so blessed.

My home feels full. It feels more and more everyday like a dream. It's a good dream, and I get to live it. I have a wonderful, loving husband. A beautiful home. Two beautiful, healthy, amazing daughters whom I love with my entire being.
And life is good. It's real good. And we're living it up. All of us. All four of us.

...a baby is stirring in her bouncer...

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