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Wednesday, December 29, 2010

A Birth Story

A week ago we were in the hospital...so I figure that a birth story is in order (plus, Brennan is napping and Cate is at Eric's parents' house for the day, so who knows when I'll have free time again).

I wish I could say that it all went as perfectly as I imagined in my head. That we arrived at 7am for our scheduled induction* and that shortly after lunch I was cradling my son. I built it up in my head that way because everyone, and I do mean everyone, including my doctor and the nurses in labor and delivery, kept telling me that the second baby comes so much faster. Unfortunately, that's not how things went.

After being at the hospital and laboring for 7 hours or so (we walked around, I slept, I read, we watched a lot of TV), my contractions started getting painful enough that I asked for an epidural. 15 minutes after getting the epidural, my blood pressure dropped, Brennan's heart rate dropped, and we were a little scared. The doctor and the nurse got everything back to normal within a few minutes, but the whole ordeal pretty much stalled my labor. After 12 hours, we switched tactics, using Cytotek instead of Pitocin to help my contractions along (my contractions were very regular, just "inadequate" for pushing). Incidentally, I had to have another epidural as my other one came out. At 11pm I was at 8 cm and we did another dose of the Cytotek. At 3am, I was still 8 cm and Brennan wasn't moving any farther down. The doctor did a quick exam and also discovered that Brennan, like his big sister, was face up instead of down-- which can complicate things.

I was given two options at this point. One, I could have one more dose of Cytotek to see if it would get me into labor. If it didn't within 4 hours, we'd have a c-section. Two, I could just opt for the c-section now. Given my tired mental state, physical state, etc., I opted for the c-section. We knew we had tried everything, my body just wouldn't go into labor. Which is pretty much what happened with Cate until she decided to cooperate at the last minute. My doctor thought this was a good idea too given that I was low on energy and even if we got to the point of pushing, wasn't sure how much energy I'd even have to push.

So off we went to the operating room and at 4:13am, Brennan Michael arrived.
He had great Apgar scores (a 9 and a 9) and used those lungs of his to cry for a good ten minutes after birth. While being stitched up, I had to be "knocked out" a bit to help with some issues I was having, but I got to see Brennan before hand and when I woke up, he was placed in my arms. Later that day, so many family and friends came by to meet him. Cate handled everything like a champ and loves her little brother. She was proud to give him his present at the hospital. I love the way her "handwriting"/tracing looks. Honestly, the recovery from the c-section has been easier than the recovery I had with Cate (yes, it really was that bad with her). I'm totally in love with the new man in my life. We got to come home on the morning of the 26th and Santa came that afternoon while Cate took a walk with my dad (more on that in a later post). Brennan's going home outfit was the same as Cate's, only with brown and tan dots as opposed to pink ones.

I am so proud of both of my kiddos. Eric helped me commemorate becoming a mama of 2 with this bracelet:
He is the most thoughtful hubby in the world! And he was awesome throughout the whole labor, operation, recovery process.

So now that we're home, my adventure of being a stay-at-home-mom for the next 8 months begins. I kind of cheated today since Cate is at her grandparents and it's Eric's first day back to work. But the one-on-one time with Little B has been great (and so has the sleep). Brennan is a rockstar at breastfeeding and sleeps pretty well at night too. He's a little confused on his days and nights, but we're not exhausted. And if there's a silver lining to the whole c-section thing, it means I get two more weeks of paid leave at work before my paychecks stop coming. But the best thing is just being at home with my family, having Brennan right where he belongs.

~Melody :-)

*Someone I know asked me if I'd do the whole induction thing again if I knew it would end in a c-section. I thought this a rude question at first, but given the ask-er, it wasn't too surprising. And in response, yes we would. Because of some issues I had after delivering Cate, we knew we'd be induced sometime between 39 weeks and my due date unless I went into labor. Could I have waited until due date? Yes. The only "convenience" factor of our induction was that we would possibly be out for Christmas, but there was no guarantee. Anyway, it all could've ended up the same, even on the 27th (my original due date).

4 comments:

Mama Marchand said...

Thanks for posting this - I was eager to hear about it. I'm so glad that everyone is doing well and that YOU are healthy and feeling good. Props to hubby for that adorable bracelet. Congrats to you! :) Praying for your continued healing and that B figures out his nights and days.

5mcintyres said...

Congratulations Melody, Eric and Cate! Brennan is just beautiful! I'm sorry you had such a long labor and so much to deal with. We pray for a speedy recovery (sounds like you are doing great!) and a nice adjustment to family of 4. What a blessing!!! We love you!

LLF said...

Congratulations! Brennen is such a handsome little guy, and Cate looks so proud to be a big sister. Enjoy the next 8 months at home with your family of 4. And hey, that extra 2 weeks of pay really is a blessing- especially if the recovery is still easier than it was with Cate- I hope you take a small portion of it and do something "fun" for yourself that you wouldn't have done without the extra cash. You deserve it after all that hard labor!

Confessions From A Working Mom said...

Thank you for sharing this story!!! I can't wait to hear about your 8-month "SAHM" adventure :)

I'm happy to hear that your recovery is going well; I have a friend who had the same sort of induction/labor story and REFUSED the C-section and ended up being bedridden for weeks because the vaginal birth was just that traumatic for her... so it sounds like (especially given Cate's birth) you made the right choice for you!

~Elizabeth