Where to begin?!
(I am going to try really hard to keep up with the blog despite being a little busy. :) Wish me luck!)
So, let's see. My due date was January 4 so I decided to make Dec 20 my last day of work to enjoy the holidays and finish getting stuff ready for Mary Van and our new house. MV was measuring a week ahead in all metrics so I was really hoping she would come early. But, her Shingler genes kicked in and Jan 4 came and went. I didn't really want to induce so we kept waiting. At my 41-week appt, we scheduled an induction for Jan 14. Wow. Jan 14 is my birthday and it was also Brad's mom's birthday. (For those that don't know, Mary Van is named for his mom (she was Mary Jo) and my maiden name (VanSant)). That would have been really cool to all share a birthday but I was miserable and couldn't imagine waiting 10 days after her due date! On Jan 11, I started having really bad Braxton-Hicks contractions. They were not at regular intervals but they were painful and paired with abdominal cramps and back pain. I called the doctor and the on-call doc (not mine and not my favorite) said 'drink some water and take some tylenol, your body is preparing for Tues (Jan 14).' Uh, not cool. But, I followed his advice and felt a little better. I didn't sleep a wink Saturday night due to the pain but started having regular contractions on Sunday morning at 6:30!!
I will detail Sunday below. This is mostly for me so I won't bore you anymore. Here are some pictures!!
Getting cleaned up and her footprints taken
After the epidural, waiting on MV
After her bath in the nursery
Getting warmed up
BB and Pap - smitten
William and Liza
Their Maggie will be born in May!
Monday in our recovery room
Love all that dark hair!
She sticks her tongue out a lot!
The Women's Center is named after Curly Watson (who delivered more babies than anyone ever or some such) and, ironically, the center was dedicated to him on Jan 14. Crazy...
Heading home with my most favorite birthday present ever
All loaded up
First car ride
We have enjoyed every minute with this little one. We are overjoyed and overwhelmed with love. The next post will document our time with her so far!
Ok, so Sunday. Again, I had timed contractions all night and noticed they were 20 minutes apart regularly starting at 6:30. That went to 15 minutes about an hour later and then a few that were 10 minutes apart. At that time (8 am), I woke Brad up and said 'take the dogs out, feed them and load up the car. i think this is it!' We waited around a little while longer and called the doctor again. He said it sounded like the real thing and that we should head on in to University. We got there about 10:30 am and checked in. My contractions were coming every 2-3 minutes and I was three cm dilated. I was admitted and asked for an epidural immediately. Ha.
We had to wait a while for that and the contractions were rough. Brad and Mom were with me and I was squeezing Brad's hand really hard. He complained about his thumb needing a hospital room after my contractions. That didn't go over well with me. :) They came in to give me the epidural and my family had to leave. The epidural went off without a hitch and I was immediately without pain. About ten minutes later, however, I got very light-headed. Thank goodness a nurse was there and she immediately laid me back and on my side. Epidurals can cause your blood pressure to plummet and mine did. My vision started to go and other nurses ran in the room. They put me on oxygen, shot some meds in my IV (epinephrine I believe) and I started to feel better. My BP was 54 over 26, about half what it usually is. Of course, this affected MV too. I was really worried because once I came back I couldn't hear her heartbeat on the monitor and they were banging on my bump. Once the medicine got to her, all was well. Yikes.
Then, we waited. For several hours, I just sat in the room and visited with family. My contractions were about 5 minutes apart and I hadn't dilated much more. So, my doctor ordered some pitocin to speed things along. He (not the on-call doctor, thank God) came in that afternoon and broke my water, around 5 maybe? Of course, MV had already passed her meconium. Not a huge surprise since I was so far past my due date. It's not a huge deal but she did have to get cleaned out several times right after birth.
After waiting a few more hours, MV's heart rate started to drop. This was caused by the pitocin so they turned it down and had me turn from side to side to move her around some. Then, I got really nauseous! I was on oxygen and throwing up, all while rolling from side to side. They turned the epidural down and gave me some zofran to help with nausea. Of course, I started feeling some pain so they turned the epidural back up. I had to sit up or the epidural would numb my chest and breathing would be hard. They finally checked me again at about 7:45 and I was 10 cm dilated. They had me start pushing but Dr Joseph was still 20 minutes out so I had to stop. Turns out I was so nauseous because MV had dropped really quickly. I guess that was a blessing because I only pushed for 30-40 minutes! MV was here at 8:37 pm. She was 7 lbs, 14 oz and 20.25 inches long. I tell ya what, the actual pushing and delivery was one of the easiest things of the day. Of course I was tired and still on oxygen but I felt no pain and it was pretty quick. Afterwards, I was coming down from the meds and adrenaline and could not stop shaking. I mean, violent shakes. I was so tense and couldn't relax. That lasted an hour or so before subsiding.
Then we moved to our recovery room and got to spend quality time with our bundle. Mom, Dad, Bill, Debbie, Megan, Adi, Sela and Damir were all there to see her in the nursery getting a bath. Levi and his girlfriend were around earlier but had to leave about 7 to get back to Athens. The University staff was absolutely wonderful! We were there until Tuesday noon and were so ready to go home.