Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Brenson's Birth Story

I have finally finished writing Brenson's birth story . . . whoo-hoo! It is quite lengthy with lots of photos, but there were many details that I didn't want to forget. If you make it through the whole thing, you deserve a gold star :-)!

After our disappointing appointment on Monday, February 6th, I began Operation: Get This Baby Out! I had been doing a few things - such as walking - but I knew I could step it up a bit. So, I concentrated on walking, rocking, bouncing on my exercise ball, squatting, massaging pressure points, etc even more than I already had been. I even went and got another pedicure (taking one for the team, folks :-). I ate spicy food . . . which I actually eat a lot of on a regular basis . . . so it didn't bother me. I didn't feel much different, but I had about one strong contraction a day, which was more than I was having before.

Dr. N had told us to come in on Thursday, February 9th for another cervical check, a fluid check, and a Non-stress Test. Because of the NST, we expected this appointment to be long, so we asked Chris's mom to come stay with Brianna and off we went. We knew there was a possibility of being sent straight to the hospital, so we packed the car and prepared for that.

We walked in Dr. N's office for our appointment at about 8:45am. We were called back almost immediately. They did not weigh me, but my blood pressure was 100 over 63, so it was MUCH more normal for me than last time. Dr. N came in to do the cervical check first, and I was extremely happy when he announced that Brenson had finally dropped and engaged! I was dialated to between 2 and 3 centimeters, so he looked at me and said, "Let's have a baby!" Whoo-hoo!!! I don't know if all the "tricks" worked, or if it was just time, but I was so relieved to hear that news!

He wanted to schedule an induction for Sunday, February 12th. However, after doing a quick ultrasound and fluid check, he decided that Brenson's fluid was too low to wait that many days. He had his nurses schedule us to check into the hospital on Friday, February 10th at 7:30am. I was 40 weeks and 3 days pregnant at this point, so I was not opposed to going in a few days earlier :-). Also, since we were inducing the next morning, Dr. N decided to forgo the NST.

Chris and I were not expecting such a quick appointment - or a free day - so on the way home we decided we would take Brianna to the zoo. This way, I could spend the day walking (and hopefully progress further), and we would have a fun outing.

That evening, we spent our time doing some last minute cleaning and tying up a few loose ends. My parents arrived at our house at about 8:00pm. I was so keyed up (and SO sore from walking for hours at the zoo) that I had tons of trouble sleeping that night. I think I got maybe 3 hours of sleep . . . not an ideal way to start labor!

The next morning, Friday, February 10th, I got up bright and early, showered, ate a light breakfast and prepared to leave the house. We were leaving at 6:45am, so I didn't think Brianna would be up, but she woke up about 10 minutes before we left. She knew something was going on! I was actually glad that I was able to hug and love on her for a minute before leaving.

Here I am, 40 weeks and 4 days pregnant - right before heading to the hospital:

I also wanted to capture one last family photo before Brenson arrived:

Heading to the hospital, I was surprisingly calm . . . and so was Chris :-). After arriving and getting checked in, we waited about 15 minutes in the waiting room before our nurse for the day escorted us to our Labor and Delivery room (room 8). Our nurse's name was Staci, and I immediately liked her. I had prayed for a good nurse after the experience we had when delivering Brianna, and that prayer was certainly answered. Unfortunately, Staci missed Brenson's actual birth, but I'll get to that soon.

I got settled into the hospital gown and bed, answered the endless questions they ask, and Dr. N popped in for just a few minutes to say hi. He said that he really thought I would go into labor on my own the night before since I had suddenly progressed, so he was surprised when he didn't hear from me. He also said he wanted to wait to break my water until after my IV was in, so he asked if it was okay if Dr. S (the doc I saw during my terrible 39 week appointment where I was checked 4 times) broke my water a bit later (Dr. S would be at the hospital performing a C-section). I was very tempted to say no since my other experience with Dr. S was not positive, but I agreed. I was trying to be a good patient :-).

Dr. N left, and Staci began my IV in my wrist. I had purposely drank several glasses of water that morning in hopes that my veins would be prepared for that IV, but she still had to fish and fish for my vein as it kept rolling. UGH. Getting the IV is seriously one of the worst parts for me! Staci was great about it though, and eventually the IV was in place so I could start getting Pytocin. At about 8:45am, I had my first contraction (not painful, just lots of pressure).

Dr. S arrived to break my water around 9:00am. I had already decided that I was going to forget the "who cares" comment from the first time I met him and give him a fresh start. However, as he was walking in the room, he said, "So, are you one of those green women who doesn't really believe in induction or what is the deal? Why are you overdue?" I replied, "I haven't been induce-able until now." But seriously? What kind of greeting/question is that? What if I am one of those women? He then proceeded to check me and break my water. When he checked me, he said, "I'm still not sure you're induce-able. I would say you are a closed 1 cm, so you have a very long day ahead of you. But, you can't just go on being pregnant forever, right?" I wasn't even sure what to say to this, so I just said nothing. He just really rubs me the wrong way.

He did have a little trouble getting my water broken, but finally I heard a small gush and he left. However, after the initial gush, nothing else happened for the next 10 or so minutes. Staci had me get up and use the bathroom, but still nothing came out. She gave me the option of having her check me (and hopefully irritate things in there enough for the water to start coming out) or calling the doctor to come try and break it again. I went with the first option. Staci checked me, and was surprised to find that I was dialated between a 2 and 3 (exactly what Dr. N had said the day before). This was only 10 to 15 minutes after Dr. S said I was a closed 1, so I think he was just being conservative. Yes, I'm trying to be nice :-). Staci's check worked, and I finally began discharging my waters like I needed to.

All the while, Staci had been upping my Pytocin every 20 minutes, so with my water broken and the Pytocin flowing, I started really feeling the contractions. They started to get painful around 10:00am, and by 10:30am I couldn't talk through them anymore. I told Staci that I wanted to be at a 6 before I got my epidural, so I expected to labor for several hours with no pain meds. I think I did pretty well laboring through the contractions. I concentrated on breathing, relaxing, and taking them one at a time. Chris's mom arrived at the hospital at around 10:30am. I couldn't really visit with her at this point though because I was concentrating on making it through the contractions.

Around 11:00am, I asked Staci for some pain meds. She gave me Stadol which is the same thing I had during labor with Brianna. I soon felt very relaxed and even had trouble talking without slurring my words. It didn't take the pain away, but certainly took the edge off. Of course, my parents arrived with Brianna about 2 minutes after I received the meds. Poor Brianna didn't know what to think of Momma in bed, hooked up to so many wires and beeping machines, and acting drunk. She pretty much wouldn't have anything to do with me :-(.

About an hour later, Staci checked me and I was an "almost" 4. I was disappointed that progress was so slow! The Stadol was wearing off, but I couldn't decide whether to get more Stadol or go ahead and get the Epi (there was a lot of commotion in my room and the Stadol was still clouding my brain). Staci pretty much decided to go ahead and order the Epi, and I'm so glad she did. Getting the Epi was not bad at all. The worst part was that I had a big contraction right in the middle of getting it, so I had to hold very still during the contraction. So hard to do when you are in that kind of pain! Chris held my hands the entire time, and later told me that I squeezed them so hard his fingers turned purple, ha! It wasn't long at all before the contraction pain faded to nothing. My Epi with Brianna did not work correctly, so I had completely numb legs and feet, but could still feel contractions very strongly. I couldn't believe how nice it was this time! I was able to completely relax, and could even still move my legs and feet pretty well. At 12:30pm, Chris went to lunch with Brianna, his mom, and my dad in the hospital cafeteria. My mom stayed with me, and I took a nap! Talk about a completely different labor experience this time around!

I woke up around 1:30pm. I dozed in and out for about 30 minutes, and at 2:00pm Staci checked me again. This time I was at 5 cm. I was really sad about this as I was wanting a baby that afternoon and I thought that meant it wouldn't happen. Staci had to leave for an appointment, but would be back around 3:00pm. Before she left, she said, "Don't have that baby while I'm gone." I just laughed.

I was really missing Brianna, so I asked my mom to please go to the waiting room and send her in with Grampy. While Mom was out, I sent out a text to family/friends telling them that things were going really slow and it would be a while before baby. Brianna came in and we played for a bit. She decided that it was okay to touch and talk to Mommy after all.

At 2:45pm, I buzzed for a nurse because I was feeling tremendous pressure all of the sudden. I was really afraid that my Epi had stopped working like it did with Brianna, and I wanted to get on that problem sooner rather than later. The nurse decided to check me, so I sent my dad and Brianna away. The nurse reported that it was time to push! WHAT?!? Just 45 minutes before I was only a 5! I sent Chris to get my mom, and the nurse went to call the doctor. I was left alone and honestly began to have a bit of anxiety. Things were suddenly moving so fast, and when the nurses wheeled the utensil carts in it was a little much for me. My mom and Chris were both so excited, but I was having trouble breathing and started shaking all over. I just suddenly had all these flashbacks to Brianna's {very painful} birth, and I wasn't mentally prepared for that yet (silly, yes?). It only took me a few minutes to calm down and get myself under control. It was about this time that the nurse said, "Whatever you do, do not bear down. You cannot push until Dr. N gets here." This was so hard. Not pushing when everything in you is wanting to push is extremely difficult. I am very thankful that Mom and Chris were there to help me breathe through those contractions.

It's go time!

Dr. N walked in at about 2:55pm. He sat himself down in a chair, crossed his legs, leaned back and said, "So, are you ready to have a baby or do you want to wait a while?" I said, "I'm 40 weeks and 5 days pregnant, you had better get yourself up!" Which actually, I was only 40 and 4, but whatever :-). He chuckled, jumped up, and said, "Okay, let's push!" I pushed through 3 contractions. On the 4th contraction, Brenson's head came out. I could have birthed him completely during that 4th contraction, but Dr. N said, "Stop, stop, stop pushing!" after his head was out. Oh my that was so So SO hard to stop pushing! BUT, Chris told me later that Brenson's cord was wrapped around his neck twice and Dr. N had to unwind it before I could finish pushing him out. One more big push during the 5th contraction, and Brenson was born! It was 3:09pm.

We were so happy to see him! I love that I enjoyed his birth so much. I talked, smiled, and opened my eyes immediately when he was born. It was soooo much better than Brianna's birth. I even watched Chris cut Brenson's umbilical cord . . . something I completely missed with Brianna.

Our little man came out screaming! Such a wonderful sound :-).

So happy to see and hold our baby boy!

Dr. N had me guess how much Brenson weighed before the nurse put him on the scale. I guessed 9 pounds 4 ounces. He weighed 9 pounds 2 ounces, so I was close!

Dr. N holding Brenson:

Let me take a minute to brag about my doctor. After fixing me up, he asked if big sister was in the waiting room. We told him that she was, and he said, "I'm going to go get her. My favorite part is watching the siblings meet the new baby." He then left the room, got Brianna, and carried her back in the room to see us and meet Brenson! I thought that was a pretty special thing for a doctor to do.

Big sister seeing baby brother for the first time:

This is not the best photo, but it's our first as a family of four!

Brianna really wasn't sure what to think of everything. She was very interested in looking at brother, but she didn't want to touch him. I think this photo is so cute of her staring at him.

I'm incredibly thankful that my Mom was able to be there with me during Brenson's birth. She helps me stay calm better than anyone else!

Grampy meeting his namesake for the first time (Charles is my dad's name):

Meme meeting her fourth grandchild (notice Brenson is still crying/screaming in all these photos!):

After Brianna stared at Brenson for a bit, she was content to go play with Grampy. Forget the new baby, haha!

All of our company left fairly quickly after Brenson was born. Mom took Brianna back to our house for the night, Dad went home, and Meme went to meet Papa for dinner. It was nice to have some down time, eat dinner, and relax for a bit.

The hospital was extremely busy with new babies, so we had to wait about 3 hours to be moved to a postpartum room. One nurse told us there were 42 new babies in the maternity ward that evening! Brenson came out rooting and ready to eat, but the nurse who was in there during his delivery said to wait until he was cleaned up to feed him. However, he still hadn't been cleaned up at about 4:00pm, so Staci said to go ahead and let him nurse. He nursed like a champ from the word go . . . like he had been doing it for weeks! After he finished nursing, a nurse came and took him to the nursery to get cleaned up. This was at about 4:45pm, and she said they would have him back within an hour.

At about 6:00pm, Brenson was still not back and we were moved to a postpartum room. I hated that we were moved without him. I don't know why, but it really bothered me! When I said something to the nurses who moved us, they told Chris to call the nursery and ask them to bring him to us. He did, but after 30 more minutes we still had not seen him. At this point, this Momma was getting frustrated! I wanted my baby back! Chris's parents came by around 6:45pm, so Chris went to the nursery to get Brenson. He didn't return for another half hour, BUT this time he had Brenson with him. The nursery had him for 2 1/2 hours!

We let Chris's dad meet him and hold him briefly, but then it was time for him to eat again.

My college besties arrived to meet Brenson around 8:00pm. Of course, we were trying to visit while a constant flow of nurses and techs came in and out of my room to clean me, poke me, check me, ask me questions, etc. It was a bit chaotic in spots!

Kendall brought these super-cute cookies with Brenson's name:

My friend, Christie, also came to meet him (and brought us food, which I was so thankful for! I had worked up an appetite!)

Everyone left a bit before 10:00pm, and we were so sleepy! Being born is hard work!

Of course, getting rest in a hospital is a joke, and there was very little rest to be had that night with all the interruptions. I was also in quite a lot of pain during the first night. With Brianna, the birth was hard, but the healing process was not. I never took narcotics with her (just Ibuprofen), and I was up and moving pretty quickly. However, this time I was in so much pain that I asked for stronger drugs as the Ibuprofen just wasn't cutting it. I was pretty drowsy/drugged up that first night, which I hate, but I had to have something. We did send Brenson to the nursery for about 2 1/2 hours so that we could get some rest.

The next morning (Saturday), our friends Ross and Tia stopped by to see us. They are expecting a baby in May.

Also, my friend, Joy Lin, came by to meet Brenson. I love that we had so many visitors!

And that afternoon, Chris's parents and sister and family came by. Mom had also brought Brianna back up to spend some time with us, and we were so thankful! Chris and I both had missed her so much!

All the grandchildren on Chris's side of the family:

This Momma was so happy to have both of her babies at the hospital! Unfortunately, Brianna was acting out quite a bit (not listening and just generally acting naughty), but she was very sweet with Brenson.
I did take a shower (finally) on Saturday afternoon. I was going to do it Saturday morning, but the nurses told me I had to wait until after Dr. N and our pediatrician came by so I didn't miss them. Well, Dr. N didn't make it by until about 1:00pm, so I was ready for that shower by the time he and our company left!

I'm not sure Miss Brianna could have been more excited about baby brother!

Mom took Brianna home about 5:00pm, and Chris and I ordered dinner from the hospital. After a {very} few bites, we decided that Chris would just go get us something edible. However, all three of us ended up falling asleep before he made it out the door! He did go pick up Pei Wei after we woke up (around 7:30pm!). It was super yummy . . . hit the spot!

We spent a lot of time just staring at this little guy:

Daddy and son got some bonding time Saturday evening. It was just as nice to not have visitors that evening as it was to have them at the other times.

Saturday night we had a GREAT night! Brenson slept so well (and that trend has continued so far...), and we had far fewer interruptions. We woke up feeling very refreshed on Sunday morning!

Sunday morning, however, was a bit rough on everyone. The nursery took Brenson to be circumsized around 9:00am, and we expected to be discharged from the hospital by 11:00am. For some reason, the circumcision didn't go very smoothly and Brenson ended up bleeding for about 30 minutes afterwards. He was doing okay when the nursery brought him back to us, but when a nurse came to go through our discharge paperwork with us, she took him back to the nursery due to additional bleeding. They kept him for another 30 minutes, then gave us a few special care instructions for him. I felt so bad for our little guy :-(.

Before beginning the check-out process, we had a little photo shoot with Brenson. He looked so handsome in his going home outfit!

Ready to walk out the door (about 12:30pm):

I couldn't get over how big and grown up he looked already! Several of the sleepers I took to the hospital were already too small. I guess that's what happens when you weigh 9 pounds and are 23 inches long!

Brenson didn't make a peep on the way to the car or on the drive home . . . such a good baby!

Here is Daddy carrying him in the house for the first time:

Brianna was SO excited to see us when we got home and was acting kind of wild. It felt really chaotic for the first few hours, but things soon calmed down. He fits so perfectly into our family. We thank God every day for the blessing that he is to us!


Mallorie said...

Oh my gosh! It sounds like you had an awesome experience!!! (Except for that very unplesant doctor...I would've cried, you're a trooper!) Your birth with Brenson sounds very similar to mine. I went from a 4 to a 10 almost instantly! ha! And I'm jealous you only had one contraction during your contractions were coming so fast by that point I had SIX while he was putting it in! OUCH!

I love that he was so alert and awake, that's how Emma Claire was too!!! He is just precious!!! I LOOOVE his coming home outfit! Too cute!!!

And of course I read the whole thing. Birth stories make me all sentimental :-)

Sarah said...

YAY!! I loved reading this. It sounds like you had a wonderful labor and delivery!

Lisa said...

Ooo Ooo! I get a gold star!

Cayce, Sara, and Lily said...

That was beautiful! I cried through 3/4ths of it. Congratulations!!!

Angie said...

That was beautiful! So glad he is here!

Emily said...

Beautiful story!!!!! He is precious... And huge ;)

Elana said...

Great birth story!!! I would've told that first doctor to get the h*ll out of my room. What an a$$, really. As my father would say, some people have diarrhea of the mouth and constipation of the brain. :-)