Entries in birth story (2)


His Birth Story: Part 2

Read Part 1 here.

My c-section was scheduled for December 10 at 1 pm (there were two other c-sections scheduled before me that day.) They still said I needed to be at the hospital at 6 am in case they could get me in sooner, so I wasn't allowed to eat or drink anything after midnight the night before (absolute torture--especially to a pregnant woman!)

I got up around 4 am to get ready, but I honestly only got about 45 minutes of sleep the night before. Partly because of excitement/anticipation and partly because the last few weeks of pregnancy I was so uncomfortable it was hard to sleep for more than a couple hours at a time. When we got to the hospital, we checked in and sat and waited for awhile. When my room was finally ready, the cutest little old lady with a "Red Cross Volunteer" smock led us up to Labor and Delivery. Once we got there, the nurses had me change into a gown, put an IV in me and hooked me up to all of the monitors (which felt completely pointless--I wasn't having contractions, and the little graph really only went up when I laughed-haha.)

The nurses left and it was basically just me and Brad hanging out all morning. We watched TV for awhile, American Pickers and ironically, A Baby Story (really surreal to watch women in painful labor while sitting in a hospital room awaiting a scheduled c-section.) I slept for maybe an hour and tried not to think about food. My mom got there around 11:30 and hung out for awhile. Around noon, my friend and assistant, Stephanie came, which is how we have awesome photos from this day (besides my iPhone photos and Brad's photos from the OR. 

1 pm rolled around and we were still waiting. Around 1:40, nurses finally came in to get me prepped. I had to drink a shot of really nasty liquid and they put compression socks on my legs. Then they had me get up and walk to the OR (probably the weirdest part of the whole day.) When I got to the OR, they helped me up on the table and had me sit on the edge to put the spinal in. One of the nurses faced me and had me brace myself up against her while the anesthesiologist worked on getting the spinal in. The first attempt did not go well--I could feel it going in--unevenly--and it HURT. I cried. When she started a second attempt, I focused on all of the Hypnobabies relaxation tracks I had listened to (at least that prepping for natural childbirth helped a little) and it went much better--once the medicine was in, I started losing feeling in my legs. The nurses helped me lay down on the table and started getting stuff ready. I had a little bit of a silent freakout moment when I was laying on the table. The nurses had rolled my gown up, leaving me completely exposed below the waist, and when I looked up at the lights above me, I realized they were mirrored, and I could see everything on the area where they would soon be cutting me open. Thankfully the nurses put a sheet up and my view quickly disappeared--whew!

In the meantime, Brad was scrubbing in and waiting to come in and join me. (I'm super thankful he wasn't allowed in while I got the spinal and to see me in pain.)

Brad's self-portrait while waiting and a sneaky photo he took of my doctor scrubbing in.

Before I left our room in labor and delivery I told Brad to bring the camera and the baby book (for the footprints). While the nurses were prepping me, they asked if he would be bringing those things in, and I told them that I had told him to, so he should be. As soon as they had everything ready, they let him come in and one of the nurses asked him if he had the baby book and the camera and he said no so she made him run back and get both! 

A photo Brad took of me once he got the camera.

Because of the spinal, I was basically paralyzed from the middle of my chest down, so I couldn't feel any pain, but I could feel pressure and movement, which was really strange. It felt like the doctor was pressing on my stomach and just wiggling it back and forth. As he started to get the baby out, the doctor announced "He's got a big head! C-section was a good decision."

When they got him out, it felt like forever before we heard him cry. I didn't really tell many people, but at our 20 week appt, there was a spot on his heart and another spot that could indicate a few different health conditions. There was a slim chance of something being abnormal and our doctors were optimistic that everything would be fine, but there was still a part of me, in the back of my mind, scared that something was wrong with our baby. But there wasn't. When he finally cried, I started laughing, I was so happy. I also started crying. 

Because of his size, the nurses were all guessing how heavy they thought he was.

"He's at least 10 lbs!"

"I say 10 lbs, 3 oz!"

At 2:17 pm on December 10, 2012, Miles Henry Montague was born weighing 10 lbs, 14 oz and measuring 21.5 inches. Proving I'm an overchiever on way too many levels. (Seriously, 10 lbs, 14 oz?!)

After a few minutes, they got Miles ready to take to recovery to clean him up while the doctor put me back together. Brad left with Miles, and because of a glitch with an automatic door, both of our families were able to see them after they left the OR and went to recovery. (Normally no one is allowed to come back into labor and delivery, but our families were waiting right outside, and there were repairmen fixing the doors, so they were wide open right when Brad came through with Miles, and the nurse let them all come see him for a minute.

After everyone saw them, they took Miles to get cleaned up and our families went out to the waiting room and updated everyone on social media. Brad went to the recovery room to wait for me to get done.

When I finally got to recovery, Brad and I had a few minutes alone and then all of my family came in. The nurses started my pain medication and I started to feel really groggy and cold so they put lots of hot blankets on me.

In recovery, I was finally given some Sprite to drink (it was about 3:45 at this point), but still nothing to eat. I was okay with that, though, because the medicines started to kick in and the exhaustion of the day started to set in. I began to feel really groggy. We got moved to our room, but we still didn't have Miles--they wanted to test his blood sugar because of his size (which was normal, as were all of my glucose tests during pregnancy--sometimes people just have big babies.) We finally got him back a little after 6. I finally got to hold him and feed him, and we had Stephanie come in to get a few photos of just the three of us.

In the midst of these beautiful photos and sweet moments, I was feeling worse and worse--as the spinal started wearing off, I started hurting, and the medicines the nurses put me on were making me feel really nauseous, so I started throwing up. I was so exhausted I also had a hard time keeping my eyes openfrom the drowsiness. It was awful but I felt bad making our families wait, so I went ahead and let everyone come in.

So we let everyone hold Miles while I threw up and tried to settle my stomach.

A note about Miles' outfit--apparently he was too big for the standard newborn t-shirts the nursery uses, so they went digging through a donation box of old baby clothes from a local church and dressed him in this sleeper from it.

Our photographer, Stephanie, handed over the camera for a few shots so she could hold Miles, too.

After everyone left, I was able to sleep for about an hour, and the nurses changed the medication I was on; both of those made a huge difference in how I felt. I was finally able to eat a little around midnight that night and after that I felt great. All in all, the c-section wasn't bad at all (just the immediate recovery), and my recovery since then has been much better than I anticipated. We love our little boy and have had fun adjusting to this new life with him!


His birth story: part 1

Towards the end of my pregnancy, we knew the baby was measuring big. At my 36 week appt, they did an ultrasound to see just how big and he was measuring approximately 8lbs, 6oz. (I remember looking at the ultrasound screen, which also showed the measurements in pregnancy terms, and apparently that was equal to 40 weeks, 1 day! Crazy) Everything else was really healthy in my pregnancy, he was just big. I had been reading up on the Bradley method and also had been listening to Hypnobabies tracks, preparing for a natural hospital birth, but because of his size, my doctors told me I may need to start preparing myself for a c-section. I really didn't want to have to schedule a c-section, I wanted to be able to just go into birth on my own and at least try for a natural birth. As the weeks went by and I got closer to 40 weeks, he just kept getting bigger. My body wasn't showing any signs of going into labor soon, so a natural birth was starting to look more doubtful.

This was taken at 32 weeks. I still had 2 more months of being pregnant! Photo by Jud Davis.

As he got bigger, I got bigger. And everyone let me know it. Random strangers would ask, "You must be due any day now, right?" and I'd just nod and smile. It was better than dealing with their shocked look when I told them my due date.

Photos taken at 37 weeks by Jud Davis.

I tried just about every method of natural induction (minus castor oil--just couldn't do it), but he just wasn't ready to come out. At my 39 week appt, they did another ultrasound and said he was measuring at least 10 lbs. They said that it could be off by 20%, but either way, they wanted me to consider scheduling a c-section. I put it off, wanting to see if he might come before my due date, but no luck, so at my 40 week appointment I went ahead and scheduled a c-section for December 10 (mostly so I could still maybe go into labor on my own, but also so I could still attend Benefit Dinner on Dec. 7.)

I was all belly at 40 weeks. Still kinda shocked I somehow still had a waist.

Me at 40 weeks, 2 days with Condoleezza Rice (FHU Benefit Dinner speaker.)

Our last weekend pre-baby was pretty nice--there is something really great about knowing exactly when your kid is going to enter the world, and being able to completely prepare--clean the house, pack your hospital bags, eat a last meal, etc. By the time Monday morning rolled around, I was at peace with it all. And super excited. To be continued...