Category Archives: Pregnancy

Cambree’s Birth

Two weeks ago yesterday (I really started writing this on Monday!) I was lying in a hospital bed trying to sleep after nursing a newborn I wasn’t supposed to have in my arms yet. It was an emotional and unforgettable day that went something like this:

7:30am – In shower getting ready for last OB appointment before my scheduled C-Section that upcoming Thursday, contractions began to get more frequent and strong. This was something I was quite used to at this point, after all my false labor and daily Braxton-Hicks bouts. So upon getting dressed, I began to keep track of them – again. Figured it wouldn’t hurt seeing that I was on my way to the doctor anyway.

By the time we were getting out coats on, Derek looked at me and said, “Do you think we should take the hospital bag, just in case?” I shrugged and answered, “Couldn’t hurt.” The contractions were not really letting up, but not bothering me too much either. I kept on writing times and intensities down anyway and ran upstairs to get my glasses and contact case again, ‘just in case’.

8:20am – arrived at my parents house with Ariella in tow and all packed up. I was still timing and writing. Every time I thought I was in the clear, another one would come on a bit stronger than the last one. I didn’t bother getting out of the car. It hurt too much and we were running very late to the doctors.

8:35am – arrived at Hamburg OBGYN, got the closest spot we could (thank God), got my little cup to pee in and headed to the bathroom. I was a bit nervous at this point, because the contractions kept coming and in the back of my head a little voice kept telling me this was it, that they would send me in. I kept arguing with that voice, however telling it that I wasn’t really ready to have a baby that day and I was only getting my hopes up anyway.

8:50am – Got called in to see Dr. Z. Got weighed (172lbs, which hadn’t changed in two weeks), got situated in the room, heard Cambree’s heart beating strongly and then waited for the doc to come in. Not sure what Derek and I talked about then, but I think we argued about something baby related. A few minutes later, Dr. Z. walked in and asked how things were going. I told him about the contractions going on all morning at this point and he said, “Why don’t we send you in and see what happens? If you go in and the contractions keep going like this we’ll do the section today, if they die off, we’ll see you Thursday anyway.” I must have looked a bit spooked, but he kept reassuring me I was only going in to be monitored and that if they did take her that day she would be fine; I was turing 39 weeks the next day. I checked out and made my 6 week appointment with Dr. Z, because I wanted to make sure it was done and Thursday was when I was going to have the baby.

9:50am – I called my parents from the car on the way to the Hospital to let them know we would not be coming right back to the house to pick up Ariella. My Mom was very calm and cool on the phone with me and told me to let them know how things were going.

10:15am – Derek dropped me off at the bridge to the lobby where I waited, still keeping track, until he found a parking spot. Five minutes later he came to meet me and we did our walk to the elevators and up to Labor & Delivery. “We’re checking in!” he told them for the third time this pregnancy and they buzzed us through. When we walked in through the second set of doors and asked for my name, they smiled and exclaimed “Oh! It’s our C-Section!”

My face must have betrayed my panic when I told them, “I’m just here to be monitored.” Because the Nurse taking us to the room said, “Oh, Dr. Z. called and told us you were having contractions and they were delivering you today!” The other Nurses at the station asked me, “Don’t you want to have your baby today?” I was honest with them and said, “I’m a bit nervous about the surgery,” and then we were whisked away into a L&D room.

From there everything moved very quickly, but calmly. They listened to me when I told them again what Dr. Z.had told us at the office, I was only there to be monitored and if it looked like something was happening THEN they would be doing the surgery. But then Dr. C. (who was on call that day) came into the room and basically told me that with all the contractions I was having and the risk of rupture and the fact that I was basically 39 weeks and my section was scheduled only three days away they wanted to just go ahead and get me in before their 1:30pm scheduled section. That everything would be fine, they would take good care of me, the baby was ready and it was a good day to be born.

The Nurse came in with the IV, they took the monitors off me and prepped me for surgery. They gave Derek his little outfit, and gave him instructions about what was going to happen and we got in touch with UNYTS about going in early so I could still donate my placenta. They were able to get someone there quickly.

Derek and I only had a few moments alone before anything was going to be in motion. He made phone calls to Grandparents and made sure I was ok. I asked him if he was ok too and he was not even nervous. That I could tell. Before I knew it, it was time to walk to the OR, which happened to be right next door. I thought I would have more time before being confronted with that room, but it was so close and so cold, sterile and right there in front of me. Wow, this was actually going to happen!

My Anesthesiologist was an older foreign gentleman who did not say much and had me extremely nervous. I was surprised I wasn’t passing out at this point knowing what was coming, but I got up onto the table and did what he told me to do. Getting the Spinal was not fun, I felt way too much of it for my liking, but it took effect immediately and I was completely numb before I knew it. Trying to get quickly numbing legs onto that little skinny table is not an easy task, let me tell you. As the Spinal took effect I did almost pass out, but whatever adjustment was made got me back quickly. And after that it was almost fun!

Dr. C. came in and talked with me while he prepped my belly, made sure I couldn’t feel anything and then they started. Derek came in a few minutes later and I almost broke his poor hand squeezing it so tightly. But I was amazed at how good I felt! No passing out, no pain, I even asked for a sandwich because I hadn’t eaten anything all morning (just in case). I kept telling Dr. C. “Just tell me she’s beautiful!”

12:13pm – After a little bit of pulling and tugging, everyone congratulated us at once with “It’s definitely a girl! And she’s beautiful!” I almost remember cheering, but I’m sure that was just in my head! Then I heard her crying, screaming for air, and they held her up to me so I could see her. My eyes welled up and I said hello to our Cambree for the first time. What an experience! She screamed so much and so loudly that everyone was commenting about her lung capacity. It was amazing! Derek ran back with his camera to take pictures and video while I laughed with everyone else about her high octave range. I’ve never heard a newborn scream so much!

The rest of the surgery went relatively quickly, Dr. C. yelled at me for being too skinny and him not having any fat to sew up with and I was still asking for food. They wheeled me back into the L&D room I had been in before and Cambree was there minutes later. She nursed right away, latching on without any difficulty. I got my sandwich, and still felt great! I couldn’t feel anything from my boobs down! About two hours later they gave me pain meds and took me to my room.

All in all, I was amazed at how everything went exactly as I had really wanted it to. I guess I did in fact go into labor, albeit the early stages of it and they found the uterine lining to be extremely thin near the old scar, which would have made for a very dangerous VBAC attempt had I gone that route. I didn’t really have a lot of time to think and worry about the surgery as everything happened so quickly. And, Cambree picked her own birthday!

Still Pregnant

Yes, I know my due date is still a few weeks away. I guess I was just hoping that maybe with the false labor a week ago and now losing my plug it would have made something happen by now. And I also know that I should be enjoying the last few weeks of this pregnancy, seeing that it could be the last time I will ever be pregnant. However, the constant soreness and the painful contractions that come randomly are getting me down. I am always wondering now when I feel a contraction whether they are going to last again, putting me in the Hospital for monitoring, or if it is just a practice run.

I guess with two weeks to go before the scheduled C-Section I am just getting impatient. I want to get back to myself again and meet this baby girl! At least now I’m officially “Full Term” so if something does happen they will not be sending me home and just getting it over with!

False Labor – Take 2!

First of all I want to thank all of you who have been so supportive in your comments and posts wherever they were. I am truly Blessed to have so many wonderful people in my life!

Around 1:30pm yesterday I started having what I thought were the same old Braxton-Hicks that 36 weekers usually get. At 10pm, after almost 9 hours of them getting a bit closer together I decided to call the Doctor and hear his recommendations. Of course that was, “I can’t tell you anything over the phone, your best bet is to go to the Hospital to be monitored to see if anything is really happening.” I knew he was going to say that.

So we packed up all our gear, all Ariella’s gear and headed to my Gramma’s house where my Mom is “babysitting” while my Uncle is in Tahiti. Yes, Tahiti – believe me, he deserves a break! I figured that if we took our time getting ready and dropping her off the contractions might stop by then and we could avoid the whole Hospital thing. I was wrong, they just kept on coming!

At 12:02am we walked into the L&D ward at Mercy and were brought into a labor room. They got me set up with a beautiful gown and checked me. I was 2cm dilated and 50% effaced. That kinda surprised me, but didn’t. I hadn’t been dilated at all at my last appointment Thursday, but I figured the contractions had done something to help it along. That information plus the contractions coming pretty regularly at 7 minutes plus the pain factor which was now in the equation as well made the Nurse Midwife on duty scratch her head at me and not give me food or water. Both of which I wanted.

My Nurse was given the instruction that if the contractions continued the way they were for a certain amount of time I was to get an IV at that point, as signs would be pointing more towards ‘GO’ than false labor. After an hour or so, I got an IV and immediately began to freak out. I guess I am not as prepared or ready for the C-Section as I had thought. I also almost passed out. Needles are not always my favorite things and I was running on a huge lack of sleep.Then the Nurse says to me, “This is going to feel cold” and hooks up a baggie of something to the IV. I think I was shaking for the next 30 minutes before getting myself under control. Derek stood next to me and rubbed my hand to try and warm me up, it was a miracle I didn’t shake the IV out of my arm! Or myself out of the bed!

Derek kept falling asleep in his chair and I couldn’t sleep at all. It was early in the morning, no one was awake to chat with on-line and I was contracting like crazy! Also thinking that this might be the day we have our new baby! However, when I asked if I could lay on my side, I finally got comfortable enough to be fast asleep in seconds. Next thing I knew, they were back in the room to check me again. Nothing had changed at that point and the contractions were lessening and spreading apart. Thankfully, even at 3am, we were sent home.

The end of this pregnancy is turning out to be quite the adventure! My thought is the 3rd time is the charm, so if Cambree decides to go at it again, they’ll probably take her. I was given strict orders for a few things – 1. Don’t wait so long to come into the Hospital if I have contractions again. Because I am a repeat section, they want me in and being monitored if I think something is happening again. They also told me not to bother calling my Dr either, to just go right in. 2. Don’t eat if I start having contractions. I ate a huge dinner, because I was starving, but because of the section, they want my belly empty. 3. Get help with the Toddler for the next 3 weeks so I can rest as much as possible to give Cambree some more time to cook.

Not sure what the next 3 weeks is going to bring, but I am desperately trying to get all my action plans in order with people and have them ‘on call’ for us if need be. Hopefully, the need will not be there again until Feb 10th!!!

Birth Controversy – My Take on VBAC vs. C-Section

Throughout the pregnancy I have been researching and asking Moms, Doctors and Nurses all over the place opinions on this topic. Everywhere you turn you hear another differing opinion depending on which side the person stands on. For example, on my first OB appointment for this baby the first doctor we saw came in told me that I was NOT going to have a VBAC – no how, no way. It was too dangerous, he didn’t think any statistics were true to life and didn’t want me or the baby to be in danger. That was the FIRST thing out of his mouth. I wasn’t even sure if the baby had taken at that point with all the blood work I had to have done. It left me a little disappointed.

Then I saw the Female Doctor at my practice. She said that there was no way I shouldn’t try for a VBAC. That it was so much safer and there was no reason for me NOT to try. She was so supportive I left feeling like it was all possible again.

I looked on-line and found the same confusing information. If you read something from the VBAC supporters they all have “statistics” that say multiple Cesareans are dangerous and unnecessary in most situations. That the rupture rate isn’t big at all and there’s more of a danger in surgery. If you read supporters of Multiple Cesareans they say the opposite about having a VBAC. Rupture rates are higher than previously thought, surgery is safer due to control in bleeding and what happens during the surgery.

Then you go to some blog sites where the opinion is that if you don’t have a VBAC you are doing the wrong thing for yourself and your baby. As if having, or needing a C-Section makes you less of a woman because you are not delivering “naturally”.

I have all the respect in the world for women who can pop out kids without drugs, or at home, without complications. But some of us do have issues that necessitate surgery. Ariella was in ‘Arrested Decent’ when I pushed for 4 hours trying to birth her. Everything else went naturally for me, dilating, contractions. But my hips were not separated enough to allow her head to descend into the birth canal. They could see her trying, but she couldn’t turn even after 4 hours. She was in no danger, thankfully, her heart rate stayed up the entire time – what a trooper! And when they finally said it was time to have the Cesarean I was devastated – this was not the way it was supposed to go! But my Doctor had given me plenty of time to try and do what Mother Nature intended, it just didn’t work. What else could I do? I was exhausted, and the baby was not coming!

So with this one, ALL 5 Doctors who I have been seeing throughout the pregnancy agree that it is safer and necessary to schedule this surgery. All of them are supportive of my trying for a VBAC, even with my previous history. However, when the Female Doc, who was SO pro-VBAC in that first appointment with her also said she thought I would most likely end up having another C-Section anyway, I knew that was it for me.

Do I want surgery? NO WAY! Who does? But I do want my baby to be delivered safely and not go through unnecessary stress. I also don’t want to go through the disappointment that I went through last time, no matter how selfish that sounds. I cried for 2 hours the other night when I received all the information about surgery prep. I am a nervous wreck sometimes when I think about it. But this baby has to be born somehow and this is how it is going to have to be.

I also received information about donating my placenta during the birth. It contains Aminon, which can promote healing after certain surgeries, (such as eye or dental) and is also used in neurological reconstructive procedures. The ONLY time a woman can donate this is during a C-Section. So I feel blessed to be able to possibly help someone in this way. My surgery is not only birthing my baby girl, but also allowing me to help someone in need out there in the world.

I just wish that some of the home birth/natural birth advocates would keep in mind that there are Mamas out there who have one reason or another to have surgery to birth their babies. It’s not always inept Doctors making bad decisions for the Mother or baby. Some choose Cesareans on their own, but it doesn’t matter how you birth your child – you are STILL a Mama!