Monday, April 8, 2013

The Birth pt 1

I'm a mother. And it came about in spectacularly terrible fashion on April 3. I have a son, his name is John (Though I want to nickname him Jack and the Dude is only calling him John. We'll see who wins), and he is, if I may say so, stupid cute. He doesn't look at all like a newborn, probably because he cooked for 43 weeks.

We went in on April Fools Day and I didn't get my C section. The OB on that day felt it was important to give labour a chance. He sold me a bill of goods about this Cervidil induction, how it's gentler because it takes 12 hours to fully take effect and it ripens your cervix. FYI, I'm going to get graphic from here on out. If this ain't your bag, I'd suggest stop reading now. I'll understand.

My midwife inserted it for me. This was painful. Generally speaking I don't enjoy hands putting foreign unwanted objects into my private crevices. I'm especially protective of my holiest of holies. However, this was the first of many such experiences and I was lucky my midwife was there to do this for me because I know and trust her, whereas I didn't know the OB from Bob.

Cervidil is not gentle, at least not to me. I could feel it chafing my vagina. My cervix, which was clamped shut, began to burn. I could barely walk. 12 hours of a burning nether region is a long time. Couple this with being hooked up to a fetal monitor around your belly and a nurse coming in every 30 minutes to check your vitals. This went on till 4:00 a.m. and meant no sleep for me.

Something this small and innocent looking was the cause of much suffering.

I was able to remove the Cervidil tag (Yes, it's a long tag-like thing. Bizarre.) even though my midwife was called to come back and do it herself. Silliness. There was a slight amount of relief there, but then the resident insisted she check my cervix. My burning, long suffering cervix, which didn't deserve such torture, was not having it. I wanted a cooling off period for it to not feel like it was dying. So I said no. I said no again when she asked me 15 minutes later. And then the Dude said no. That actually got her to stop harassing me.

8:00 a.m. the new OB arrived and she wanted to check for dilation. I'd had bloody show, finally (Don't Google this if you don't know what it is and are squeamish about intimate female matters) and was hopeful that something had happened to make the Cervidil worth it. As the burning had stopped, I let her, and after 12 hours of suffering, the gain was 0 cm. I don't know that "disappointment" is the appropriate word, because I was feeling an otherworldly version of that.

Giving birth should not be this effing complicated.

She wanted to insert a foley catheter. It's a balloon-like object that goes in, yes, the damn cervix. It expands it manually and hopefully painlessly and is not supposed to harm the mother or baby at all. That's all well and good, but I couldn't bear the thought of having something pry open Fort Knox (By this time I had casually named my cervix since it had become such a big part of my life and yet had motivations and goals seemingly opposite to my own).

So they gave me morphine. I was accepting of this. Yes, I was pregnant, yes the effect on the baby, but seriously? At this point, he was cooked, he was healthy and he was coming out and I'm no martyr. They said it would wear off by the time he was born and I went with it.

The morphine was something of a mental vacation from what was happening to me. The insertion didn't feel good, but I kind of didn't care. I stayed in bed hooked up to this monitor and zoned out for a few hours.

The catheter was a success. I got to 4 cm and the OB broke my waters. Now that was weird. It's like peeing yourself except with no pressure, cramping or anything. And it keeps leaking and leaking. At this point I thought I was supposed to be able to walk around and get labour moving. But instead I was re-hooked up to the monitor and kept in bed for an hour. I was let off for 15 minutes to get moving around and when labour didn't start in that time frame, it was declared a failure and that I needed pitocin.

At this point I'm going to have to leave part 2 until later. I need a nap something fierce and there's a ridiculous amount of crazy shit left to tell.


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