At 1:30am on Dec 8th, 2017, as I laid in bed fast asleep, my water broke. I woke up soaked and thought I must have peed the bed because there was no way my water broke, considering the fact that I was only 31 weeks and 4 days pregnant. I got up and cleaned myself up and went back to bed on a towel. Within the next 15 minutes I was soaked again. So I cleaned myself up one more time and decided if it happened again, my water was definitely broken and if not, maybe I peed myself twice. Sure enough within the next 15 minutes I was soaked a third time. I finally woke Brandon up and told him my water had broken. With tears of fear running down my cheek he tried to calm me and told me it was going to be alright. He then packed my bag while I laid in bed telling him what to pack. Luckily for us, my mother had been at my house the day before (dipping chocolates) and was asleep in the bed downstairs. I texted her telling her my water had broken and she couldn't believe what she had heard. Thankfully she was able to be with the kids the rest of night and the next foreseeable future while Brandon and I headed to the hospital.
Sure enough, my water had broken and I was admitted to the hospital where they started an IV (took them 4 tries which is crazy because I have big veins and no one has ever had any problems with them in the past). I then got my first steroid shot in the bum (it hurt so stinkin bad!). They then started me on a 24 hour dose of Magnesium (thankfully it didn't bother me too much). I was only dilated to a 1 and 50% effaced so that was good news. I then headed to MFM (Maternal Fetal Medicine) to get an ultrasound to see how much fluid I had left and to check on baby. Unbelievably, I had a high normal amount of fluid (normal is 5-24 and I measured at 23). The doctor didn't believe my water had broken so he made them double check (haha! It definitely had broken). 12 hours later I got my second steroid shot (ouch!). Once my 24 hours was up they stopped the magnesium and I got to move to Postpartum/Antipartum which had much better beds! My labor and delivery nurse even delivered my recliner from my first room because it was WAY nicer than the ones in postpartum and she thought I might be there for a while and she knew how much I liked the recliner (I slept most of the night in it because it was much better than the bed).
After spending 3 weeks in the hospital on bed rest (we even celebrated Christmas at the hospital), and getting daily (stressful) NSTs (Non Stress Test) and BPPs (Biophysical Profile) (if baby didn’t pass the NST), the day had finally come (one week earlier than we hoped). It was the day after Christmas… Baby didn’t pass his NST that morning (10am) and then only got a 6 on his BPP because they couldn’t see any breathing (he had been getting 8s every other day). The high risk Doctor recommended since we were already 34 weeks (this was the goal) that we should call it quits and get baby here. He didn't think it was worth taking the risk of waiting. They contacted my OB and discussed it with him to see what he thought and Brandon talked to both the high risk doctor and OB to help make the decision on what to do. We both prayed to know whether this was the right answer or if we should hold off a little and see what the next day brought. B loaded the kids in the car and headed to my Dad’s to drop them off so he could make his way into the hospital. After prayer, we felt like this was probably the right answer and thought baby should do alright because he made it to 34 weeks. If we were to wait, who knows what could happen.
They took away my water and told me no more food or drinks until after baby arrives. Ugh! The nurse dropped me back off at my room and I started packing (after calling my parents and B to update them). Less than 5 minutes later my nurse was back with a wheel chair telling me they were ready for me. I was so confused… “who was ready for me?”. Labor and delivery had a room ready and they were waiting for me. Just like that, off I went, headed to have this sweet baby.
He was transverse on ultrasound (head lower right side vs the day before when his head was upper left) I had that morning which meant there was a very good chance I would need a c-section. (He literally went back and forth from breach, to transverse, to head down the entire 3 weeks.) Because my fluid levels were at least at a 9 (still a normal level, even after losing so much) the option of getting a version was available. So of course I opted for a version to see if we couldn’t get him head down and avoid a c-section.
After signing papers for emergency c-section (because version could cause problems and create the need for an emergency c-section), they gave me a shot to prevent contractions during the version and started an IV. My OB did the version around 1:00pm and was successful at getting baby’s head from the right side to head down!! It was actually quite simple. All the Dr had to do was place his hand firmly above where his head was and gently and slowly move it downwards. Baby feels it and thinks it is the ribcage and moves on his own. While they did this, they kept doing an ultrasound to ensure baby’s heart rate didn’t drop and if it did they would ease off a bit. It worked so great! I was definitely one happy momma. There was a chance baby could still move because he wasn’t fully engaged, but we were hopeful that the contractions would keep him down. My OB checked me and said I was dilated to a 1.5 and 50% effaced, baby at station -3. Then at 1:30pm we started Cytotec. It is just a tiny white pill that I put in the side of my mouth until it dissolved. It is meant to soften the cervix. Contractions started coming regularly every 2-3 minutes. We were in business. They weren’t painful at this point and I was very pleased at how well the cytotec worked.
The nurse checked me again at 4:20pm to see if there was any progress. Baby was at a station -1 and the nurse could feel his head. I was dilated to about 1.5 still and 70% effaced so we made progress which is fabulous! My nurse gave me another dose of cytotec at 4:30pm and then a new nurse came it at 5:30pm.
The nurse checked me again at 7:30pm. I was still effaced to 70% and station -2 (this can be different nurse to nurse), and dilated to a 3. So progress is being made. Baby seems to be doing well, but every once in a while he has a decel (heart rate slows down for a bit) and it worried me, but he seemed to be doing alright. He was moving around a bit too which was good for momma to feel.
Started pitocin at 8:00pm. I thought for sure things would start moving along and we would have a baby before midnight, but I was wrong. Contractions started coming regularly, but thankfully I wasn’t in much pain yet and I was able to get a little bit of sleep, but it seemed like every time I fell asleep when I would wake up I would notice baby’s heart rate had decelled. This seemed to happen every time I slept and I was afraid if it kept happening they would say baby was in distress and send me to get a c-section, so unfortunately I was unable to sleep much even though I was exhausted already.
They checked me at 11:30pm. I was hoping for a little progress, but unfortunately that was not the case. I was still dilated to a 3 and only 80% effaced. I asked for a birthing ball and tried that in order to get baby’s head to drop down in better and engage more in order to put pressure so I would make more progress.
Since Brandon was suppose to work a 24 hour shift the next day, he laid down on the couch to try and get sleep before baby made his grand entrance. This was what was best, but I was left to labor by myself, and that stunk. I tried to be as quiet as I could so i didn’t wake him, although any time I would adjust my bed a little he would wake up because it was so loud.
I was starving by now which definitely did not help out my situation at all... tire, hungy, and in pain. At 2:30am things started to hurt really bad. For one hour I was hurting so badly that I thought for sure when the nurse checked me that I would be at least dilated to a 5. I was really hoping for progress, because if I had to deal with this pain for a whole lot longer, I wouldn’t be able to do it, and I really wanted to make it to a 5 before an epidural because I didn’t want to chance slowing progress down due to the fact that things had already been moving along so slowly. I thought they would call it quits and give me a c-section after all this, and I was not okay with that.
At 3:30am the nurse checked me... only dilated to a 3.5 and 85% effaced. UGH!!!! That was the worst news yet. I was practically in tears, and wanted to tell the nurse my pain level was at least an 8, but I didn’t want that epidural yet so I said only about a 6. I then asked when the next time I would be checked was because I could not wait another 4 hours before being checked again. She said I would get a new nurse at 5:30am and she would check me then. Thank goodness. 2 more hours of this horrible pain and hopefully then I could get an epidural.
After the worst 2 hours of my life (LOL, so much pain!) The new nurse came and checked me. If I hadn’t progressed I was going to be so upset. Thankfully at 5:30am I had progressed to a 6 and was 100% effaced!! Hooray! Happy day! They called my OB and told him to head in. Now I had to decide if I was going to get an epidural or just suck it up and finish this off without one. Since this was going to be my last baby and was by far my smallest (plus with Azaleah I went from a 5 to a 10 in like 5-10 minutes), I decided I had endured the last 2 hours so why not finish it off (unless things went longer that expected). About 5 minutes after the nurse left the room I thought I was feeling a little pressure and got a little paniced so I told B to call the nurse in to check me again (I could hardly talk due to my contractions. It was all I could do to not cry.). I knew it seemed silly because she had just checked me, but I didn’t care. It felt like B was so slow to call the nurse (though I'm sure he wasn't). I really started to panic. “PLEASE CALL THE NURSE!! NOW!!” She came in and checked me and sure enough I was dilated to a 9. They quickly unhooked my bed and pushed me to the operating room (because it was right next to the NICU and they wanted to be able to get baby to the NICU as quickly as possible once he was born.) The minute I get to the OR my body started pushing. There was not anything I could do to stop it. They told me to breath quick short breaths and try not to push until the Dr got there, but I seriously had zero control of my body. The told me to keep my legs shut to hopefully keep him from coming until the Dr came. I couldn’t stop pushing and kept telling them… “HE’S COMING!! HE’S COMING!” They had called the in hospital OB and he was headed our way. Finally after I kept telling them his head was there and he was coming the nurse finally spread my legs and caught his head just in time. Then the in hospital OB caught the rest of his body. And not long after that my OB walked in, just in time to deliver the placenta. One thing I was really, really hoping and praying for was that he would come out and give me at least one little cry si I would know he was well, and he definitely did that. He was crying his little heart out. Made me so happy. The Dr said, “where’s the premature baby?” because he was so big. The minute I saw him, I was in love. The umbilical cord was really short, so we are lucky everything turned out as well as it did. I can’t believe he was able to flip from breach to head down and back again so many times. He’s our champ. He was born at 6:04am and weighed 6lbs 7oz and was 18 inches long. They had the cpap machine out to help him breath, but he looked really healthy. We were so happy to have our sweetheart here safely. I felt so amazing afterwards and almost told them I didn't need any pain meds because I felt great. I was so happy I could feel my legs. I wish I would have gone epidural free with my last two babies. It was incredible.