Birth Story: Part II

23 Aug

Read Part I here.

Suffice to say, I didn’t sleep much that night because I was so anxious (despite the sleeping pill the hospital staff insisted I take). Daddy got to the hospital bright and early Saturday morning and our first labor nurse, Susan, came to get us and take us to our delivery suite. The whole process began at 7 am. Addendum: I made sure to wake up early, shower, blow dry my hair, apply full makeup and put dangly earrings in for this occasion. It was worthless in the end.

After getting settled in, Susan hooked up my IV fluids which kept me hydrated all day, as well as the Pitocin to start my labor.  Mamie came to visit (and snuck in Snickers bite size candies for me since I technically wasn’t supposed to eat anything).  Throughout the day, various visitors stopped in, including Papa, Grandma Anita, Aunt Deedee, Aunt KK and Great Aunt Jill. 

Susan continued to increase my Pitocin dose gradually during the day to help my contractions become more intense.  Daddy and I asked Susan what the maximum dose of Pitocin was (just out of curiosity) to which she replied “20 units per hour” (at the time, I was receiving 10 units per hour).  I was bouncing on the exercise ball and feeling quite good, so I asked for an increase in Pitocin while Daddy stepped outside with Grandma A to get a bite to eat. Susan increased the Pitocin and I returned to bed because the increase was definitely intensifying the pain!! Mamie looked at my Pitocin monitor and noticed it said 36 units PER MINUTE (remember, she had just told us that the maximum dosage was typically 20 units per HOUR).The 36 units per MINUTE was a dangerous amount to be receiving (to say the least). After gently bringing it to Susan’s attention (who was totally panic-stricken and very upset and apologetic about her mistake) the Pitocin was reduced to a safe level and we were able to regroup and proceed safely.  Yet another way God was looking out for us – why in the world would I, someone who knows NOTHING about medicine AT ALL, need to ask about the typical dosage of Pitocin?? THAT’S why!

By afternoon, I still wasn’t very dilated when Susan checked me.  At 2:00, I received a visit from Dr. Ferguson (who had been on call for 100 hours I think by now!!) who confirmed that I still wasn’t quite 2 cm dilated (the minimum dilation to break my water).  However, he was able to break it anyway! I was so happy to make it to that step! Progress! And there was no turning back then! After that, things did progress well, and by evening I was ready for my epidural, which was not the best experience in and of itself. As I had experienced during my spinal tap in the spring, the doctor was struggling to find a space between my vertebrae to fit the needle. I was in pain from both the contractions AND the epidural and Daddy got really woozy from watching the doctor try and fail to administer the epidural. Let’s just say we were glad when it was finally over! I got complete abdominal relief, but my lower body, from my waist down, was unaffected by the block (which would come in very unhandy later on). 

At about 10pm, my new nurse, Michele (who was AWESOME!) noticed that with each contraction, your heartbeat was dipping a bit. The resident doctor suggested putting me on oxygen so that YOU would be adequately oxygenated, and they also decided at that time to put a new type of fetal heart rate monitor on you, which was a tiny screw placed in the top of your head 😦 Poor baby was born with a boo boo. 

For a few hours, I remained on oxygen while my new doctor, Dr. Byrne, was at St. Joe Hospital finishing up a C-Section delivery. It was a bit nerve-racking to be all hooked up to so many machines, and Daddy was especially uneasy, so we were relieved when 1:00 rolled around and it became VERY evident based on some very intense pain (remember, my epidural didn’t work below the belt) that it was time to start pushing. I was in so much pain that I was extremely motivated to get you out!! In 2o minutes from when the doctor arrived, you were born and Daddy made the announcement “It’s a boy!”

It was a very emotional moment, and when they placed you on my chest, I looked at you and could not believe you were actually here. For all the pain, all the stress of being hospitalized, and all of the uncertainty, we couldn’t have had a more perfect delivery.  We felt so strongly that God was guiding everything that happened, and we were SO glad you were healthy and fully cooked even though your due date wasn’t until December 22. 

The doctors told me I slam dunked you, and hence you were born with some bruises on your gourd. Ironically, that was 37 weeks after you were created (I almost just said 37 weeks after the Big Bang, meaning CREATION not y’know, banging, and then I felt that was too graphic, but then I went and said it anyway within the security of parentheses as if that somehow negates the implication of that phrase…). As I was saying, you were born with a bruised head. Now, another 37 weeks later, you have a bruised head from banging around the house like a kamikaze baby ball of head busting, boundless energy. I counted 2 fresh bruises just today, and everywhere I go, I make excuses for why you look like someone beat you with a Fisher Price cell phone (technically SOMEONE did, but that SOMEONE is YOU, so KNOCK IT OFF!).

You’re my sweet, lovable, adorable, handsome, hilarious, toothy, strong, babbly boy. And I love you so much. I love you more than so much. I love you with an aching, powerful, protective depth that you will never understand. But I hope you know, every single day, for the next 37 weeks, months, years and decades, that I’m your mama and I will go to the ends of the earth, I will fight the toughest of battles, I will sacrifice my health, my happiness, my life, to see you thrive and be blessed. You are my boy, and I am your mama. I love you to the end.

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3 Responses to “Birth Story: Part II”

  1. Shelba J. August 23, 2012 at 8:07 pm #

    Courtney – your journal is wonderful… so very moving… thanks for sharing.. xoxo\

  2. Tara August 23, 2012 at 8:12 pm #

    I love this so much, Courtney!! What a wonderful story to share with the “world” and li’l Navy 🙂

  3. Stockton August 23, 2012 at 9:56 pm #

    What a blessing this little boy has been to us. You were so brave in carrying him, delivering him, and caring for him each and every day now. Praise God for a healthy kid.

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