Thursday, March 6, 2014

Charlotte's Birth Story

My birth story with Charlotte is a little, shall we say, dramatic. Although everything basically went according to my birth plan, it all happened much quicker than I ever thought it would. My doula warned me that as a first time mother, my labor could last up to 3 days, so that's what I expected although all I wanted was a quick, natural birth. Boy, did I get what I asked for: 

I woke up at 11:45 pm on Monday night (January 17, 2012) with a cramp and the feeling of having to pee. I sat up out of bed after my "cramp" went away and thought I pee'd my pants. I got up and took a quick shower and went to put on new panties when more liquid came out of my vag. Yep, it was my water breaking. No huge gush or anything, just a slow, constant trickle. I woke my husband Lee up (mind you we'd only been sleeping for less than an hr) to tell him and he was less than excited. I think he was in denial about it thinking that I was nowhere near having my baby soon. I went to tell my mom, who was staying with us in the other room, while Lee called and told his mom to fly out in the morning (to make it in time for my labor, ha!). I also called my doula, Stacy, to tell her what was going on. She told me to relax and get some sleep. I got back in bed and then really started having contractions. I told Lee to time them because they were happening quite frequently and they hurt pretty bad. Again, he was reluctant to do anything (still in denial that this baby was coming), but I forced him to wake the heck up and time them. They were pretty random with no real consistency at that point.

After a little while I couldn't lay still and had to get out of bed and move around. As soon as I got out of bed I fell to the ground and puked my brains out. I thought at one point Lee was laughing at me, but turns out he was gagging, haha. My mom came rushing in and helped clean me up. I got into the shower thinking I would get some relief from my contractions from the warm water. I put the exercise ball in to sit on but it was a tight fit and I couldn't really bounce so I got pissed and wanted out of the shower. I literally crawled out of the shower onto the bathroom floor and my body started PUSHING. I couldn't help it. I just had the feeling to push. That scared the crap out of me. Speaking of, I wanted to get on the toilet because I felt like I had to poo. My mom said no way because she knew my body would just keep pushing the baby out. Lee had been getting everything ready to go to the hospital and called our doula when I started pushing. She told Lee to look and see if there was a head coming out but he was too scared so he made my mom do it. I refused to open my legs for fearing my baby would slide out. My poor mom had to pry my legs open and look. Luckily, no baby yet. I lay on the bathroom floor naked and screaming "I'm gonna die! Take me to the hospital! I'm having my baby!" I seriously thought I would have my baby right there in my bathroom. My doula finally got to our apartment and had to convince me that it wasn't time yet, that I wasn't ready to have my baby. WTF, my body was pushing by itself for crying out loud!
We raced to the hospital, which was a half hour drive in the middle of the night without any traffic. My contractions were still strong and it was so tough trying not to push. We got to the hospital after a thirty minute drive and they had to wheel my screaming ass straight back to the delivery room. I got on the bed and the doctor checked me (which totally pissed me off. I remember yelling at her asking what the f*** she was doing to me, lol). I was dilated to a 10 (duh!) and was ready to really push. First I tried squatting but I was too tired to hold myself up so they told me to lay on my back, which is the exact position I did NOT want to deliver in but I was in no mood to really fight with them. They couldn't get a reading on Charlotte's heart beat so the pressure was on (literally) to get her out ASAP. I pushed through 3 contractions and she was out! She came out kicking and screaming and with a full head of hair!
It was unbelievable. The pain of natural birth wasn't nearly as bad as I thought it would be. Yes, it hurt and it burned really bad, but I totally did it! I was so happy and so proud of myself. The worse part of the whole thing was after she came out. They waited for me to deliver my placenta, which was NBD, and then had to start stitching me up since I tore so badly. That was so painful. They couldn't get my nether regions numb so I felt ev-er-y-thing. I felt every pull and poke and tug. I was in so much pain and was crying a lot. Lee said it looked like a murder scene from the blood I lost (although I'm sure he was being a little dramatic). I feel like that part kinda cut my happiness time short. I was holding Charlie skin to skin on my chest trying to enjoy her but it was tough because I was in so much pain. But, luckily I got through it and got to enjoy my baby girl!
I think from the time I arrived at the hospital to the time I had Charlotte it was like, not even a half an hour. We seriously barely made it. So from my water breaking to the time she was born it was exactly 4 hours... 11:45 pm-3:48 am. It was fast and furious! I couldn't be more happy with the way everything went. I had her naturally and quickly, which is exactly what I wanted.
This was just moments after I delivered Charlie and is one of my most cherished images. (There aren't many pictures of me laboring since we didn't have time for any.)

              Lee holding Charlotte for some skin on skin while I was getting stitched up. 

Family snuggles.

Two days old!

Another one of my most cherished pictures ever. I believe that Charlotte was truly smiling at her Daddy. There's so much joy and adoration in her face.

Getting ready to leave the hospital. Fortunately, we were only there for two days. 
I am extremely grateful for the natural and healthy delivery of my baby girl. Although there were issues and some bumps along the road during recovery, things went fairly smoothly and just as I'd hoped. I was very fortunate to have a supportive, loving team with me: my husband, mother, and doula. Without them, it would have been more chaotic and dramatic than it ended up being! I'm getting so excited for my next baby girl to arrive in May and to see how that birth story will all play out.
Until next time,

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