I've been waiting for the mood to strike me (and for some quiet time to myself) to tell the story of George's birth. Every mommy enjoys telling their birth story and I'm no different. Here goes...
George was due October 28 (40 weeks). I went for my 40 week check up only to find out that I had only dilated "maybe one tiny centimeter," to quote my doctor. He also told me that I was only 20% effaced. He said I was not a candidate for induction since I had not progressed. So I went back to work another week. David had not been able to go to any of my doctor's visits since the summer. For our 41 week check up (on a Wednesday), his class let out early and he was able to make it! This was a HUGE blessing as we were asked to make some difficult decisions. Dr. Casanova said that he didn't want me to go past 42 weeks, but that I could wait until the 42 week mark to be induced if I wanted to. He mentioned that he would be going out of town for the weekend, but we could induce the next day (Thursday) if we wanted to be sure to have him as our doctor. After ruminating, we decided to go ahead and induce the next day since I didn't want to risk having another doctor in the practice if I went into labor over the weekend. David and I cleaned the house, loaded our things, and went out for a fancy dinner that night.
We checked in to the hospital around 6 am on that Thursday morning. They did not start the pitocin (to induce contractions) until 9 am. David and I were very excited that this day had finally come! My mom arrived shortly after we checked in--I was so glad she made it!
This photo was taken after we checked in to the hospital. I was so pumped!
I was not allowed to eat or drink while on pitocin. After the medicine was started at 9 am, I did not feel any painful contractions until around 5 pm. They gradually increased the pitocin every half hour. Since I was hoping to have a pain med free birth, I did not have any pain meds during these contractions. My doula, Cara, was by my side during my entire stay coaching me through the contractions and giving me massages. After being "checked" several times, we learned that I had only progressed to 3 cm by 6:30 pm that evening. Things were taking much longer than we had anticipated and I was on the maximum dose of pitocin. My doctor suggested breaking my water, but I told him I wasn't ready for that since it would force me into a c-section if I has not progressed within 24 hours. He gave me the option of staying on the pitocin through the night or taking a break. At 10 pm, I opted for the break. I needed to eat and rest.
At 5 am the next morning (Friday) they restarted the pitocin. I was rested and ready to tackle another round of contractions. Soon the contractions hit faster and were more intense. I was very encouraged to feel like things were moving along. Around noon, my doctor stopped by to say goodbye since he was leaving town. He checked me only to find that I had not progressed at all--I was still 3 cm. At this point, I asked him to break my water in hopes that it would speed things along. After he broke my water, he handed me over to another doctor, Dr. Farooqi. I had only heard great things about her.
The contractions were certainly more painful and intense after my water was broken. The doula had me changing positions often and was helping me relax. The contractions were so painful that I was crying during and in between each one. The contractions were very intense and only a minute or two apart. Around 6 pm, Dr. Farooqi wanted to see how much I had progressed. I was still 3 cm. She asked the nurse if my water had been broken (it had). She then asked the nurse for a "hook". The next few minutes would be the most painful and traumatic of my life. With this hook she scraped around the inside of my uterus to pull out the remains of the bag of waters and membranes. It felt like she was scraping my insides with a melon baller (graphic, I know). I was bucking on the table and sobbing uncontrollably. It was much worse than any of the horrible contractions and, to top it off, I was having contractions during this lovely procedure. I am now very grateful that she did this since it ended up speeding things along and probably prevented a c-section. She said that part of my bag of waters was still intact and blocking things from moving.
It was at this point that I decided that the pain was just too much and I asked for an epidural. The anesthesiologist was in the room almost immediately and I was numb from the waist down within the hour. I fell asleep then watched tv--quite a contrast from the pain, moaning, and crying I had experienced the previous 12 hours. The doctor checked me at 11 pm and said that I had already progressed to 7 cm (out of 10 cm). Then the nurses started prepping the room for a baby! This was so exciting to see--I was going to meet George soon!
Dr. Farooqi examined me and told me she could feel the baby's head. She told me that I would need to start pushing. I was completely oblivious of everything that was happening from the waist down since I was numb. Around midnight I started pushing with David counting for me. I did not feel any pain. I pushed for about 45 minutes and FINALLY I got to see baby George.
Fresh out of the womb!
Our first glimpse of one another.
Daddy cutting the cord
He was screaming from the second he drew his first breath. The doctor placed him on my chest immediately--he was perfect. Then he was whisked away to be examined and cleaned. David was able to give him his first sponge bath and hold his hand through everything.
Holding Daddy's hand
George was born on November 6, 2010 at 12:53 am.
He weighed 7 pounds, 12 ounces and was 20 inches long!
His gestational age was 41 weeks and 2 days.
We are so proud to be George's parents and we praise God for His provision.