Join Date: Jan 2011
The arrival of Andrew (AJ)
Well, the drama started with the arrival of Hurricane Sandy. We were staying with my inlaws in the Philadelphia suburbs. My due date was Nov 5th. The hurricane was scheduled (and came) on the start of my 39th week (Oct 30th). My 39 week appointment was supposed to be that day, but the doctor's office was closed. Appt cancelled, no big deal. I was certain that this baby was coming in October, the husband told me the baby needed to come in November, because there were no good "October" songs. I really did want the baby to come in October, because the sooner the baby came, the sooner I would be able to travel. (Husband starting a new job in Louisiana on Nov 19th, and he would have to leave Nov 12th.) Baby arrival was coming after husband separated from the navy, and before starting new job. After spending two months with my inlaws, I was ready to be under my own roof with my husband again.
So Wednesday when the hurricane passes, I call the doctor and ask to reschedule my appt, and they tell me to come in Monday. I ask them if they have anything that week, because I was 39 weeks, and wanted to get things moving, and they told me I could go in "tomorrow" to the hospital dr office. (Two locations, one in the 'burbs and one at the hospital.) Husband spent a couple hours rubbing my feet which was very nice. (He actually did this almost every night, because I had plantar faciitis.) He was a little bummed that we hadn't dtd for a while, even though he rubbed my feet, so I gave in, even though I felt miserable. Apparently that was all that was needed. Well, that night I start having very minor surges/contractions. Since this was my first I didn't really know what I was waiting for, but I thought it was interesting. I woke up about 3am on Nov 1st, surges were about 8 minutes apart, and I called the doula, just to let her know stuff was moving along, and then went back to bed. Woke up about 8, still very minor contractions, but ever 5 to 6 minutes apart. Checked in with the doula about 10, and asked her what she thought. We decided, unless things got going we would just go in for my "scheduled" appointment.
We went to lunch, ran a few errands and went to the doctor at 1:30. Told the doctor I was having minor contractions, and she checked the baby, checked my cervix, told me I was about 3-4 cm. Told me to go up to the L&D floor for another check. Made it up to the L&D and they kept me in triage for monitoring for about an hour. I was indeed having contractions, but after an hour, and no obvious changes, they told me that if I wanted a natural birth, they I should go home, and come back when things got stronger. We left about three. (In hindsight, these contractions were still very mild. I was walking around, talking, using the restroom, etc. They said that these contractions could last a couple days, or could stop all together. I was a little miffed, because we were staying with family, and I didn't want to be putting on a show at my inlaws house, and subject to constant questions of how I was doing, and offering of snacks and beverages. Truly I just wanted things to be private. But the hospital was kicking me out and told me to come back when the contractions were too painful to bear, so after fighting back a few tears, we left.
Side note: Husband leaving PA for Louisiana regardless of baby status on Nov 12. The plan at the time was that I would fly with the baby when baby was healthy enough. Airline minimums are 14 days.
We went home, and subconsciously I willed him to come out. The contractions started to come on much stronger as we were driving home. We got home, and I laid down a bit to listen to my relaxation 'tunes. I hung out in the shower, but oh baby they were getting much stronger. After exhausting about ever position to try to ease the discomfort, I was tired. The M-I-L came home for a few minutes, and the husband told her I was just napping. When she left, the husband told me that she had gone back to work. I told him, that I couldn't bear it anymore and we needed to go back to the hospital. I was terrified they were going to send me home again.
We left about 5:30, got to the hospital around six, and went to the triage room for about 45 minutes. My doula arrived. I desperately wanted to push, but was still waiting for a doctor to see me in triage. During the contractions, the nursing staff tried to put in the IV twice, once in each hand. Failed both times. It was kind of amusing, because I was standing next to the hospital bed, leaning over the bed with the contractions. So they were trying to stick my hands as I grasped the bar on the bed. Eventually the DR came in, and they told me I was 6-7 YAY. I didn't have to go back home. They said I could go to the delivery room, and asked if I wanted to lay on the gurney, or if I wanted to walk. The contractions were so bad there was no way I could walk, and I thought they were crazy. Husband later said this was their way of getting me to get back on the bed.
We arrived in the L&D room about 6:45 I am told. When Dr checked me again, told me I was 10+1 and said it could still be a while. (Husband heard this, I did not). They started setting up camp there at the end of the bed. But since I needed to push in triage, they told me I could push. I was laying mostly on my side, but Dr said I needed to be on my back. I told them no way to do that, as my back lower back was painful when I laid on it. It had been this way for the last month of my pregnancy, so I was about halfway on my side. At 7:15 the munchkin arrived. He was 5lbs, 14 oz. Cord was wrapped loosely around his neck and he came out BLUE. They checked him, made sure he was breathing, and gave him back to me. Apparently since I was on my left side, I actually tore on the left. It was on the vertical for the position I was in, which I thought was interesting.
They were concerned that his birth weight was very low, and his temp was also low, and they wanted to warm him under the lamps. Nurse Crabby told me If that didn't work they were going to send him to the nursery. I asked when he would come back from nursery they said never, once checked in, doesn't check out until discharge. Because I hadn't had the tour (I never actually got to tour the maternity/recovery floors before that day because the classes were all full. My tour was scheduled for Nov 3. )
I didn't realize that "checking into the nursery" just meant checking into the nursery/recovery floor. I had no idea that I would be following eventually, and the baby could room in with me as soon as his temp was stable.
Nurse Crabby didn't really explain all this and the proceeded to tell me that his blood sugar was low, and that I had to breast feed right away, and if I couldn't then they were giving him a bottle in the nursery. I started to freak out. All this time, the blood pressure machine is taking my BP. Of course baby's sugar stays low and temp is down, and they take him away to the nursery for his bottle. (Husband goes to the nursery with baby.) So I am sitting there wiht my Doula, and she is explaining about going to the nursery. Nurse Crabby comes back in to tell me that my BP is too high, and I don't get to go to recovery until I have three normal readings (min 45 minutes). If BP doesn't come down, I have to take drugs, and have to stay in L&D while I am on the drugs for monitoring. Anybody wonder my by BP is high? So doula and I start to go through breathing exercises to try to get better BP readings, and another knock on the door. I have visitors. Its the the inlaws, and I am trying to get low BP readings. No way this is happening with inlaws in the room asking me questions. Vistors denied. Doula and I continue to chat and do our breathing exercies. Eventually we got 3 good BP readings, and permission to leave L&D. I do think that had the nurse explained a little better about explaining the events, my BP might have been slightly lower.
Baby born Nov 1st. Husband left PA on the 12th, driving. He arrived in LA on Nov 14. I flew to LA on Nov 15th, and we are enjoying every minute as a new family.
In the end the delivery itself wasn't very bad. I only "pushed" for maybe about 20 minutes, and completely natural.