B's birth story part 1, "The Long Induction"

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

I am splitting this up into several posts since his birth was a very long and arduous process.  On Monday, April 15, I went to my 40+ week appointment expecting to have at least some change from the past week.  Well, no luck.  I was still stuck in the same place that I had been for the past 3 weeks and, in-fact, this time my doctor said I was a "stretchy 2 cm" instead of 3 (50% effaced, 0 station).  Talk about a punch to the gut.

We discussed my PUPPPs rash, which at this point, had spread to my entire arm and sides of my stomach.  It was starting to keep me even more awake at night.  I was supposed to be induced on 4/18, but the doctor decided that the PUPPPs rash was enough to induce sooner, so we decided on the next morning, 4/16.  I was relieved and excited at the same time.  They told me to go home, pack and then rest up for the long "day" ahead.  I had absolutely no idea what I was in for.

The rest of that day, I laid around and watched the terrible news about the Boston Marathon bombings. I have always wanted to run the Boston Marathon someday.  I laid glued to the TV for most of the afternoon, shocked and saddened that I was about to bring a baby into this kind of world.

The next day, April 16, we got up early and got all of our things together.  My husband's mother was coming to stay for the time that we were in the hospital to take care of the pets.  Such a relief for us.

We got to the hospital and checked in around 9:30 AM.  It was surreal.  I had been to the hospital so many times in the past year and a half and I have passed the obstetrical admitting area just as many times.  I never imagined that I would be actually going there to be admitted to have a baby.

Once we got checked in they helped us carry our things to the maternity ward.  I was greeted by a nurse who took my vitals, made me change into hospital gear, and then prepped me for an IV.  She was amazingly nice.  A resident came in as well and checked my "progress", which he stated was not a stretchy 2, but a solid 2.  Sigh.  He also told me that I was having a big baby and he counseled me on shoulder distocia.  That was a fun conversation.

Next it was time to be shown to the room where I "would" give birth.  It was a small and very warm room with a hospital bed, small, TV, and a fold out bed for my husband to sleep on.  I was almost immediately hooked up to a pitocin drip and there it was that we started the long induction process.  I was also hooked up to the NST monitor.  It was comforting to hear the baby's heart beat and see it on the screen.  The nurses and doctors all said that my baby was the "best behaved" on the floor and a definite overachiever because his heart rate and activity were so good.  :)

For the first few hours I felt nothing.  They let me order lunch and then dinner off of the GD menu.  No more than 70 carbs per meal.  Geeze.  That is way more carbs than I was used to!  I really felt nothing with the pitocin.  Some very minor contractions, but nothing painful.  I think I may have dilated to a full 3 cm.  Woohoo.

At around 9 PM the resident high-risk OB came in to discuss our options.  She mentioned Cytotec, Cervidil, and a balloon.  She strongly recommended the Cytotec, but I was dead set on never using that drug again since I had used it before my first D&C and I could not understand why they would give out a drug like that to induce labor.  It is not FDA approved for labor induction.  Out of all of the doctors that I had seen and would see, the doctor who was telling me to take the Cytotec was my least favorite.  When I told her my reservations and associations with it, she basically said that I could go another route, but that I would be potentially extending my labor out farther in kind of a snotty manner.  I told her that my husband and I needed time to think.  Once they left, I had my first of many hospital meltdowns.  I cried to my husband about the research that I had done around the drug and why I was so uncomfortable with it.  He told me that he would support me no matter which option I chose.

A few hours later, another doctor came in to check and see what my decision was.  She was one of my favorites that I met while I was there.  I explained to her again my hesitation and she gave me more information and answered all of my questions, very thoughtfully.  After talking with her for a while, I decided to go with the Cytotec after all.

They took me off the pitocin and and gave me one of the pills.  They told me that it would take 4 hours to do anything and that I would more than likely need at least one more dose after that one.  After taking the pill, my husband and I switched rooms because the heat in the room we had been in was unbearable and I could not imagine having a baby while being that hot.  Once we moved to a cooler room, I  slept for 4 hours until they came to wake me up to check my progress.  I made it to 4 cm, so they gave me another pill and I went 4 more hours until my next check.  Oh and I should mention that every 2 hours, someone would come in and test my blood sugar and check my vital signs.  I was constantly being awakened.

After my second Cytotec check, and around 8 AM the next morning, I had gotten to about 5 cm, 80%, 0 station.  The doctor on at that time came in and said that they were going to break my water and put me back on the pitocin to speed up the process.  Wow was that an odd feeling.  My water breaking was a huge gush, followed my many smaller gushes.  I felt immediately smaller and lighter.  They kept changing the pad that I was laying on because I kept soaking them.  Holy amniotic fluid!  Every time I would move more would gush out.  I think I had like 3 gallons in there!

Breaking my water and putting me back on pitocin made my contractions start to get more painful.  I had my husband give me some mini-massages on my lower back while sitting on the birthing ball for a while, but gradually the pain got really bad.  When it was to the point that I was crying during each contraction, I called for the epidural.  I didn't know how bad the pain would be, but so I wanted to see how far I could go and I definitely did.  I give serious credit to women who can go do it all without meds.

Once I got the epidural, I was feeling good for a while.  I even took a short nap.  It was great.  When I woke up I started to feel really itchy in the spots where my PUPPPs rash covered the upper part of my body, though.  It was itchy to the point of me wanting to scratch my skin off.  Not very much fun.  Then, not long after that, I started to feel pain in my mid-back on the left side.  The pain gradually started getting worse and pushing the button for a higher dose of meds did nothing so I talked to the anesthesiologist about it.  They confirmed that the pain was too high up to be relieved by the epidural, so basically I would have to suck it up and suffer, yay.

Doctors and nurses came and went over the next several hours while I laid on the table in partial pain.  The day turned into night and finally one of the doctors did a cervical check and I was finally 10 cm, 100% effaced, and zero station!  It was time to start pushing.  It was now 10 PM on 4/17.  What a long past 2 days.  

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5 Responses to “B's birth story part 1, "The Long Induction"”

  1. Holy moly! Congrats!! Anxiously awaiting part 2!!

  2. I am on pins and needles awaiting part 2 now. Sounds like such an intense couple days!

  3. Wow. You went through ALL that then had a c-section? Oh boy....
    Hugs to you mama....