Tuesday, October 07, 2014

Liam's Birth Story [picture heavy]

Well, the little guy is finally here!

Let's start from Tuesday Septermber 9th, my 37 week appointment. I'd had a false labor episode with timeable contractions the Sunday before that resulted in the dilation of a fingertip and a soft cervix. The remainder of that day I'd had light spotting from the cervical check and some cramping but nothing I hadn't experienced before with my daughter's checks. The rest of the week was relatively normal, minimal nausea, and a few Braxton Hicks. Then the weekend came. 

That Saturday/Sunday was pretty miserable as I think I'd overdone my activities earlier in the week with the daycare kids. More timeable contractions, some diarrhea, and a couple boughts of night time nausea/vomiting. At my 38 week appointment on the 16th we'd learned I was now 1cm, almost 2cm and 50% effacted, -2 station. Station is simply how low the baby is lying in your pelvis. 

On Monday the 22nd I'd had an unexpected visit to my Dr's office because I thought my water had broke.  At that time he did my normal check-up tasks. Everything remained uneventful as it was not my waters that were leaking and we were still only about 1-2cm dilated and 50% effaced. I was discouraged because of the misery I was in yet again the weekend prior with some false labor contractions.  The remainder of the week was fine though I continued to feel increasing pressure from how low he was lying in my pelvis at this point. I made a conscious effort to walk at least 3-4 times the rest of the week. No more than a couples miles though. I certainly didn't want to add to the labor exhaustion but I was getting stir crazy waiting.

On Friday evening while Jason and Annalise were watching a movie I went for a brisk one mile walk/shuffle jog down our gravel road. Nothing strenuous as I'd previously ran a 5k when I was 6 months pregnant but at a slightly faster pace than my usual stroll. When I got home I thought I'd indefinitely kick started labor. Nothing. So, I continued about the evening per our normal routine of getting Annalise bathed and dressed for bed. Jason and I stayed up a bit later catching up on some recorded shows on the DVR and snacking on some left overs. 

After finally drifting to sleep (just after 11) I heard Annalise in the hallway. It was 12:15am. She was proclaiming she had to "poopy." *sigh* Ok, kid. Let's go. She finally settled shortly after doing her business and I crawled back into bed. Still no impending labor signs.

At 1:30am I moved to the couch. Jason's snoring was making me irritable and I couldn't get comfortable. Plus, I had the munchies. At 1:45am I attempted to roll to my other side and started having some contractions. I didn't think much of it since I'd now had 2 weeks of false labor pains, but, since I couldn't sleep I decided to start timing them.

At 3:30am I was still having said contractions and they were now occurring when I laid down, sat, and stood. As they increased in intensity, I began to think to myself, "I think I'm actually in labor." Sure enough, after a trip to the restroom I'd had my "bloody show."  With that, I woke Jason around 4 and exclaimed he should probably start getting his things together just in case we needed to leave in a hurry. He showered, I kept timing; two to three minutes apart, fifty seconds to one minute long. 

At 4:30am I decided to give the OB a courtesy call and explain the morning's events. The nurse I spoke with encouraged me to labor at home as long as I was comfortable and give them another call if we decided to come in. So, I did just that. We let Annalise sleep in til almost 6:30am and I had a snack, sat in the recliner (still timing), and watched TV with Jason. By this time I'd labored for about 4 hours and had to breathe through the contractions. A few times Jason asked me if I was going to make it. I kept insisting we had to wait til the gals shift change because I knew I'd be hooked up to the monitor for at least a half hour when we got there.

By 6:45am we'd dropped Annalise off at my mother-in-law's place and were on our way to the hospital. I'd had a mini meltdown in the car crying on our way there knowing those were literally our last moments as a family of three. I knew in my heart everything would be fine but somehow felt like I was slighting Annalise. And, I think she sensed something wasn't right with mommy too.

At 7:00am I'd signed my facesheet to be admitted. My doctor was already present as he'd delivered a baby just an hour before. The nurse hooked me up to monitor baby's heart rate and any contractions we may be having. Sure enough we were still having contractions about 2-3 minutes apart. At 7:30am the doctor did a cervical check- 5cm and 100% effaced, bulging waters. Within the next couple contractions he was sure my water would break on it's own. Instead, he broke it for me with permission since he was already checking me.  I was surprised we were that dilated! No wonder I'd had the increasing urge to push by the time we reached the hospital. 

5cm 100% no big deal

Since it was inevitable we were staying the nurse offered to unhook me from the monitor, start an IV, and let me labor on the ball, in the shower, or walk around. I agreed, I get stir crazy when I'm in pain anyway. At this time the baby warmer, bassinet, and bed weren't even ready. We'd literally just got there. At 7:33am I called my parents and told them baby was coming and my water had been broken. After one failed attempt at an IV all we were waiting on at this point was the supervisor to come up and start my IV before setting on the edge of the bed. Moments after being unhooked from all the machines I raised the head of the bed and suddenly felt the urge to push. Contractions were back to back and I knew I was transitioning. My breathing became heavier and my body began to naturally bear down. I exclaimed to the nurse, just as the supervisor showed up, that I needed to push. Caught off guard she rushed into the hall, hollering back, "Don't push Hannah, just wait, don't push. Blow like you're blowing on candles." As the supervisor fiddled with my wrist trying to start the IV they began to lie my head back down. The doctor rushed in and sat on the edge of the bed. I kept apologizing for pushing but I couldn't help it. He was right THERE, literally!

Just as I relaxed back into the bed, that still didn't have stir ups out, the doctor (who was still sitting on the edge) gave me permission to push. At 7:50amwith one and half pushes our Liam was born!

Over the next couple hours we able to have adequate skin on skin time, nurse, and oogle our baby before getting his measurements- 6lbs1oz and 19 inches. Something I was unable to do as long with Annalise. It was really nice to have this time of just the three of us before big sister came to visit. Within that time I was able to shower, walk, and order lunch. Also something I was unable to do immediately following my daughter's birth because of the influx of visitors so soon the morning after.  By 3pm most of our visitors had come and went and I was able to get some rest. 

Daddy waited patiently to hold me while mommy and I had skin to skin for over an hour.

Meeting big sis for the first time.

Proud big sis.

Daddy with his babies. 

Just a few hours old and so alert.

Today, Liam is 10 days old. He's perfect in every way. Nurses well, sleeps well, and tolerates his sister's rambunctious behavior. He prefers his mommy and nursing/cuddle time in the evenings and isn't sure what to think about the pacifier yet. His first baby well appointment is next Monday and I fully anticipate he's gained an adequate amount of weight. He gained almost a pound within the first 4 days!  He's already changed so much and I find myself cherishing things twice as much as I did with Annalise. Maybe because I can grasp fully how fast things go now. Either way, I'm LOVING every moment (even the frustrating ones) and adjusting to the two kids fairly well. Nap time and bed time are a bit more of a challenge as Annalise tends to act out but we're figuring out things that help. With time I'm sure it'll get better. 

For now I'll enjoy it as it comes. Happy Tuesday all!

Friday, September 26, 2014

39 weeks [size of a mini watermelon]

Thursday we celebrated bringing in week 39 of 40 in our pregnancy. Are we there yet?
Almost. This last week seems like an eternity but mainly because at 38w6d we went into labor with Annalise. For a couple weeks now I thought her brother would follow suit, but with all the false labor symptoms no such luck.

Baby, fetus at 39 weeks - BabyCenter

At 39 weeks Liam is between 7 and 8.5lbs and 19-21 inches. His movements are less frequent as he's running out of space and simply too low in my pelvis. 

Monday afternoon I had an unexpected visit to my Dr's office because I thought my water had broke. At that time he did my normal check-up tasks. Everything still remains uneventful.  Blood pressure, urine, and labs all checked out fine. Amniotic test was negative for broken fluids and I've lost 2.5lbs.

We're still hanging around 2cm dilated and 50-60% effaced. He was vague but mentioned he thought we'd definitely made progress from the previous week so all the misery the weekend prior wasn't for nothing.  We also had a discussion about how long he'd let me go before inducing me. Typically they don't like you to go past 42 weeks (at most), shockingly that puts me at an induction date no later than October 13th. What?! I pray we don't go that long. That's another 3 weeks! No thank you.

Since Monday's visit I've continued to have a myriad of early labor symptoms;

-back ache
-contractions (time-able up to 1-2 minutes apart for ~2 hours)
-lack of appetite
-weight loss
-small spurts of energy/nesting

Pretty much everything except for my "bloody show" or my water breaking. As I recall, true labor didn't start for me with Annalise until after I'd had my "show" and 6-8 hours later she was born. I'm thinking that's what will have to happen this time to stir anything up.

So, while I remain nauseous and uncomfortable most evenings and weekends we continue to wait for his arrival. It's said that baby releases hormones that help induce labor so if he's not releasing them, he's probably not ready yet. Even if mommy is. ;)

I'll keep waiting sweet boy. Take your time.