Disclaimer: Every birth story is as unique as the mom and baby who went through it. I wrote my birth plan with the knowledge that things may not turn out the way I want them to. It’s obvious that things didn’t end up going according to my “ideal”, but that’s WHY I wrote a plan – so I could be educated and prepared for the unexpected.
We left off Part 2 with the decision to have an epidural. I was tired, and my labour more or less had parked itself painfully at four centimetres. Since my water broke 24 hours before, it was now highly recommended that I take oxytocin to get labour going faster, and I knew that contractions would become much more painful with that drug.
The anesthesiologist came in and spoke to me about the epidural process, risks and what I can expect. In between contractions, I had enough mental control to discuss it with him and with Chris and Brittany to decide to go ahead with it. I had resolved at that point that the benefits outweigh the risks for me anyway.
I won’t describe how an epidural works, but I will say that the whole thing was a lot less scary than I thought it was going to be. Maybe it’s because it was in between and therefore in contrast with my contractions. The nurse commented that it was one of the fastest epidurals she’d ever seen. The anesthesiologist was excellent!
Afterwards, I was still feeling contractions, and began to worry that the epidural didn’t work. I was reassured, though, that it took about 10 minutes for the medication to kick in.
And true to that, soon afterwards, the pain went away. It just disappeared.
I didn’t want the epidural. I didn’t want to have a needle go into my back and stay there. I wanted a “natural” birth. I wanted and didn’t want a lot of things. But when the pain went away, I said to Chris, “it’s like I just woke up from a nightmare”.
Sleeping it off
When I could no longer feel the contractions, exhaustion set in for all of us. I was sleeping through my contractions, Chris was dozing on the pull-out bed, and Brittany went to lay down in the waiting room (apparently the couches were very comfortable).
About half an hour after Brittany left the room, I woke up with a feeling of extreme pressure. The “gotta go” kind of pressure, if you know what I mean. It had only been about two hours since I had the epidural.
I called in the nurse to let her know what was going on. She checked me and…
I was at 9.5 cm!
I was in complete shock that I had almost fully dilated in two hours, but also incredibly excited that we were now so close to meeting our Lil’ Ziggy. Chris went to get Brittany, and the nurses began setting up the delivery equipment.
Hello Lil’ Ziggy!
The pressure was getting even more intense, and I wanted to push. I was actually told by the nurse not to push, obviously because they didn’t have everything set up, but it was SO hard resisting that urge. It felt like forever but I guess it was really only 20 minutes before I was finally in position and ready to push.
By the time I was told to start pushing, Lil’ Ziggy’s head was right there, so close that I could reach down and touch him. He practically half-birthed himself while I slept!
I gave my all with each push, and it was a relief from the overwhelming pressure. Chris and Brittany were by my side the whole time, encouraging me to slow down my breathing between pushes, telling me what a good job I was doing, and coaching me through each contraction. They were my strength through each one.
And after only 25 minutes of pushing (apparently that’s fast!)… Lil’ Ziggy was born.
It all happened so quickly, I can’t even recall every detail of it, but suddenly he was here. My baby boy. With a hearty yell (that has only grown stronger with time!), he came into the world and was placed in my arms.
In keeping with my birth plan, he stayed on my chest while he was cleaned up, and Chris got to cut the cord after a couple of minutes. Ziggy was so alert from the get-go, and latched on and nursed right away. We just spent the next while snuggling together in the room, getting to know each other. Ziggy fell asleep after his long journey, and eventually the nurse swaddled him so that I could get some sleep myself.
And here, at only a few hours old, is my Lil’ Ziggy:
There’s probably a lot more I could say about my birth, but a lot of it was like a dream, I just get pieces of it floating past my mind every once in a while. I will say, though, that Chris was amazing throughout the whole thing. Even when things got crazy, he never left my side. He watched the entire birth and supported me the whole way through. I’m so thankful that he is my husband and the father of Lil’ Ziggy.
I’d like to thank my readers who have been following along with my Birth Story so far, and who have been sharing their stories as well. While having an epidural wasn’t my ideal, I really believe it was the best decision for me. It allowed my body to relax and let the oxytocin do its work without further complications. I didn’t need the vacuum or forceps either.
Birth was an incredible experience for me, and I got my sweet baby boy out of it too! Over 5 weeks out, I’m fully healed and Lil’ Ziggy is doing well. I look forward to writing more about his progress as he grows bigger and bigger!
Feel free to share your stories in the comments as well!
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Weekend Wind Down Party via Snippets of Inspiration
Saturday Sharefest via The SITSGirls