Sunday, December 28, 2008

Birth Story

Hey everyone, I had my baby December 26th at 1:12am. Ethan Emerson weighed 8lbs 4oz and was 22 inches long. This little guy cooperated and was born on his due date! Let's just say that Christmas day was eventful for me! I started having contractions on Chrismas eve, but they weren't too bad. We had dinner at my in-laws house and I went home that night and couldn't go to sleep because the contractions began to be more intense, but still tolerable. I was timing them on and they were anywhere from 5-11 minutes apart. I was having more pain in my lower back than anywhere else, so I got into the tub around 1am and kept filling it with warm water whenever it cooled off. Mark was sleeping at this time and I considered waking him up to support me through the contractions, but I felt like I could handle it on my own for awhile, so I let him sleep. I called Jean at 1am and asked her if there was anything I could do to help me sleep and she suggested a glass of wine. Well, I tried that and threw up a few hours later. By 6:30am, I just got up and started moving about my day. I called my mom and sister and they came up. My sister has had two natural home births so I figured she would have some nice tricks/advice to help me get through the contractions. She filled up the tub for me and began pouring warm water over my belly and when I would have a ctx I'd get up and lean over on the edge of the tub and she would pour water on my lower back. After about an hour and a half, I got out and just sort of walked around the house between contractions. I found that leaning on someone, squatting and having tennis balls rolled on my back helped the most, so we did this most of the day and evening. I had a tens unit that I was going to use but I couldn't figure out where to place the sensors exactly, so I gave that up. By 6pm my contractions were 3-5 minutes apart and lasting over a minute. We ended up meeting Betty up at the birthing center at 7pm and I immediately got into the tub right after Betty broke my water. The contractions began to get stronger and closer together, but I labored like this for a couple of hours. She checked my cervix and I was 5cm when I came in, 100 percent effaced and at 0 station. By the time I got to 7 cm, I asked for some pain relief. Betty didn't hesitate to give me the nubain, so I guess she thought I could use it. I really think as much as I didn't want to use drugs that it helped me get through those last couple of hours. The pain coping techniques worked pretty well in early labor, but by this point I felt like I had lost control of myself and needed to relax again. It definitely didn't stop the pain, just made it more managable. It wasn't long before I hit 10 cm and began feeling like pushing. I got onto the bed and laid on my back and began to push with each contraction. I pushed for about an hour before he finally made it out. Betty mentioned something about possibly having to do an episiotomy if I didn't get him out and that was all it took to push with all of my might. Apparently he had been face up most of the labor, so that was why my back was hurting so much, but he turned before delivery. I felt the ring of fire, but it was nothing! It actually felt like a bit of a relief to feel him finally making it past that point. I pushed him out and she immediately placed him on my belly and all I could do was just stare at him. I delivered the placenta and continued bleeding for a bit. Betty was a little concerned with the bleeding, so I accepted the cytotec to stop bleeding and she gave me some pitocin to help my uterus contract back. I also had some sugar water and other stuff to help from all the blood loss. I did tear and need stitches, which wasn't the most pleasant experience, but it was way better than labor! I ate some food, went to the bathroom and we were out of the birthing center by 4:30am. We are all doing really well now, it only took 2 days for my milk to come in and he's nursing like a champ! Merry Christmas, everyone! I'll type more later :)

Monday, December 22, 2008

The home stretch

Well, I know it's been awhile. I may as well admit that I'm not good at keeping up with a blog. But, I have this week off, so maybe I'll just blog every day since I'll have the time. Baby Ethan is due on Friday so Mark and I are just sitting around and waiting now! We've got the nursery all ready, his car seat in the car, bags packed, clothing and diapers washed and ready to go. Now we're just waiting for him to show up! I was a little sick over the weekend, vomiting and other nastiness, but I'm feeling better now, and I'm trying to take it easy, as hard as that is for me. I never take this much time off without having plans like going out of town or something, so this is going to be hard for me. But, my brother is in town, and I have lots of projects that I have wanted to get done, so maybe I'll have the time to do them now. Oh yeah, and it's Christmas, so there's that too! It will be a nice break from sitting all day making jewelry(which lately has been killing my back). The photo above with the henna art on my belly was taken at my baby shower about a month ago, so I was about 34 weeks there. Mark and I took some pregnancy photos a couple of weeks ago at my dad's studio, and that was a lot of fun.. I'm about 37 weeks there. I know, lying down I barely look pregnant, but trust me, I am! Our organic baby mattress came today that my brother bought for us. So we put the mattress protector and sheet on it and folded his blankets up and made the crib look all pretty :), even though he won't be sleeping in it for awhile. Not sure how long it will be before he makes it to his own room. We'll just see how everything goes. Also, we received an adorable newborn shirt from my Grandma from in the mail. Thanks, Merrylynne! We were also able to get all of our Christmas presents wrapped and put under the tree today. It's amazing what you can get done with a whole day off! I think that this is the earliest I've gotten done Christmas shopping and wrapping presents ever. Normally I'm wrapping presents the day before or day of Christmas. It's nice to see presents under the tree before Christmas!
Tomorrow, my family is coming up to cook some lasagne for us to freeze for postpartum meals and eat dinner with us. My mom's also going to make some gluten free cakeballs. If you haven't had cakeballs yet, you should! They're so good! Yesterday my mom, sister and Kerry came up to my house and cleaned it from top to bottom, dog hair and all! Thanks guys! It's stayed pretty clean so far. Then Mark and I went down to Jason's mom's house to eat dinner and play Mexican train dominoes. It was a lot of fun! After leaving there, Jason and Tamara came back to our house and we watched Wanted with Angelina Jolie. Tamara and I both fell asleep in the middle of the movie, but apparently it was pretty good! I wish I could have stayed awake to watch the whole thing, but sleep is more important at this point.
Well, I had a midwife appointment on Friday and was told that I'm about 2 cm dialated and 80% effaced, which is a good thing! Maybe this kid will actually be born on his due date. But, I know that whenever he is born is the right time, regardless of when that may be. Well that's all I got for today. Maybe I'll post again tomorrow!