Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Jett's Birth Story Part I

Instead of a 39 Week Bumpdate, I give you my birth story.

I am still completely emotional and upset by what happened to me and how it ultimately changed my birth.  It was really small, seemingly insignificant details that had significant consequences and I'm still pissed off.

My birth turned out beautiful and better than I was hoping for after being told I had to be induced but I feel a little bit like something was taken away from me that didn't need to be.

I'm gonna do this in 2 parts for you guys so it's not so long.

So, without further ado...Jett's Birth Story.

When I last left you it was Wednesday, I had been diagnosed with mild preeclampsia and I had refused an induction and agreed to a 24-hour urine collection and an ultrasound to check amniotic fluid and growth of baby, at which time we would discuss again either induction or letting me continue the pregnancy with extra monitoring depending on the results.

I went in for an ultrasound at 1:45pm, by 2:30pm we were once again across the street in labor and delivery being hooked up to monitors and having more blood drawn.

My amniotic fluid had gone from an 11 the day before down to a 6.  Amniotic fluid can vary but it was a significant drop and combined with the blood pressure and the fact that baby was measuring only 6 lbs (13th percentile) we once again went over all the negatives and positives of an induction that night and how there was basically no positive whatsoever to staying pregnant any longer.

After another long chat with both my midwives and the hospital midwives we all decided that yes, if I wasn't already preeclamptic I was rapidly heading that direction and that yes, baby should probably come out sooner rather than later.

Once again I was pressured heavily to not even leave the hospital and just be admitted right then and there to start the induction.  But I still wanted the results from the 24 hour urine test which wouldn't be complete until 7am the next day AND I wanted one last good night's sleep before I was going to have to undergo an unwanted induction to have a baby at 38 weeks.  Remember that detail as it's one of the small details that led us down the road that we had to take and what I am most upset about.

So, we all agreed that we would leave the hospital then and come back in the morning with the urine collection, us rested and with all of the things we would need should we have to stay if the results of the urine collection were not good.

We leave and try to come to terms with the fact that we were not only not having a homebirth but that we would be having an induced hospital birth, pretty much my worst fear.  I cried a lot, took a bath, took some final 38-week photos and made a belly cast of the bump.  We were just getting ready to go out for a final meal as just the 2 of us when the hospital midwife calls to tell me that my blood work had changed and that she was no longer comfortable with us waiting until the next day for the induction, we needed to go in NOW.

At this point we were just so tired of fighting off the inevitable as we'd already accepted that we were more than likely getting induced the following day and we said ok, you win, we'll come in tonight.

This is the bone of contention, the tiny little thing that would not have altered the matter of a safe delivery, but would have given us peace with what we felt we were being forced to do.

One goddamn night's sleep.

We gathered our things and went out for our final meal and had a glass of wine with dinner.

An hour later than when we told them we would be there we showed up at the hospital, got admitted and got settled in a delivery room.  We brought our 24 hour pee collection jug and it was decided that I would continue to pee in the stupid thing until 7 am and they would still do the test for us...for our own peace of mind and hopefully for their medical knowledge, though they had already decided I had preeclampsia and I don't think anything would have convinced them otherwise.

That's another important detail to remember...we finished the damn test.

Some time close to 11pm-midnight after my midwife showed up we decided to go for the misoprostol as the first means of getting labor started.  Technically this is categorized as an induction, but it's just a pill (an ulcer medication actually) that stays in your system for about 4 hours and just thins and dilates your cervix a bit.  The reason for the "light" induction before administering pitocin is that pitocin does not work well unless you're already dilated to 3cm, so the miso is administered beforehand to try to give the pitocin the best shot at working.  I was only 1 cm dilated at this point and I was told to expect some light cramping but more than likely I would be able to sleep right through it.  A 2nd dose would be administered at 4am and I would get checked at 8am after all the miso was out of my system and we would see what the next step would be.

I was told it was very very unlikely BUT there was a possibility the miso would dilate me enough that my body would just go into labor on it's own and that that would be the best case scenario because we could then still have a natural birth...I would just be in the hospital for it.

I don't know that I actually even processed this little bit of information at the time.  I was already exhausted and felt very bullied, defeated and resigned to the fact that I was going to get pitocin and an epidural in the morning.  I did not realize I could still have a natural birth.

I did manage a little bit of sleep between midnight and 4am, with some very minimal cramping, but 2 hours max.  At 4am when the nurse came to check on me and give me my 2nd dose of water broke.  Between 4am-8am I started contracting pretty regularly and once again got basically no sleep.  By the time all the midwives were back at 8am and the Dr. came to check me I was regularly contracting and in labor ON MY OWN.

This is another reason everyone is pretty damn sure I was in fact preeclamptic, apparently preeclamptics are really easy to induce, and while nobody knows why, it seems to be that the body knows the placenta isn't working anymore and that's it's time to get baby out and accepts an induction really well.  Cause let's face it, it's usually a bit tricky to induce a 38 weeker, it usually requires a lot of pitocin.  YAY BODY!  But screw my preeclamptic placenta.

So instead of checking me, they just left me alone.  Midwives kicked everybody out except the nurse and labor was ON. At this point I was hooked up to monitors to measure baby heart rate and my contractions and while I had the setup on my arm for an IV, I was not attached, so I could move around freely.  It wasn't exactly easy to move around as there were lots of cords, but I was attached to a remote monitor and could move around and go anywhere I wanted, EVEN THE SHOWER/BATH!

I didn't know what was going on at this point really, I knew that I was in labor but I had done NO research on hospitals and had no idea that I could eat, drink, wear whatever I wanted, get in the shower, get in the bath, etc etc.  I had come to the hospital resigned to the fact that I was going to be tied to a bed and drugged up to get this baby out and it really wasn't processing that I could in fact pretty much do whatever I needed to do at this point.  We were getting to do this naturally and I couldn't actually comprehend that things weren't as bad as I had thought.

To be continued tomorrow...


  1. Holy fucking shit dude. Congratulations! He's beautiful, love the name, and love that you got your natural birth despite everything! Can't wait to read the rest of your birth story! Auuuugggghhhh!

  2. Making us wait is torture! Looking forward to reading the rest.

  3. Just so glad to hear that he is here safely. I also love the name!!! Congratulations!

  4. I have been waiting for the birth story! Can't wait to read the rest. I am so so so happy for you that (so far!) it sounds like you got to avoid the pitocin and all that comes with it! Great job mama! Way to make that birth your own!

  5. Your body knew it was time! I wonder if I was actually preeclamptic too then, since I was SO easy to induce. They did give my Pitocin, but after I had the balloon thing up me all night the night before I was dilated to almost 4 and everything went fast from there..hmm... I might have been mis-diagnosed.
    I can't wait for the rest of the story!!! I'm glad you got to move around and have some freedom during labor!!

  6. Ah cliffchanger!!! Post soon!

  7. I can't wait to hear the rest of Jett's birth story. I hope you are settling in well at home.