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The time is now: The birth of Orion Joe Epidural

The time is now: The birth of Orion Joe

"It was the most love I have ever felt in my entire life when they set my sweet baby boy on my chest."

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On August 11, 2016, I had a scheduled OB appointment around 1:30 p.m. I was 39 weeks and five days pregnant. Once I arrived they took my blood pressure, and it was elevated. (It had been the past few visits.) After my doctor checked baby’s heartbeat and measurements we then checked for any dilation. I was dilated 2 centimeters and 30 percent effaced.

We were about to leave the office when the doctor stopped me and said, “Just to be sure let’s check your blood pressure again.” Not too worried, I agreed, and they took my blood pressure again. It was elevated even more. The doctor looked concerned and ordered me to go get blood work just to be sure I did not have preeclampsia. After my blood work, I was sent home and told to wait for a phone call with the results. I also left with instructions to pee in a huge jug for 24 hours to check the proteins in my urine. Gross.

Around 5 p.m. I got the phone call. I did in fact have preeclampsia. My liver was doing fine, but my kidneys were not doing too hot. I was told to grab my bags and go to the hospital to be admitted. They were going to induce me for my baby’s and my health. Right after I hung up the phone I was not sure whether to be excited or basically crapping my pants at how scared I was.

I called my husband and said, “It’s go time.”

He was home by 6 p.m. My bags were ready to go; we just had to load them up. After telling everyone bye, we were off to set sail on our grand adventure. It was a very different experience than I imagined. We were both calm, joking around, watching the lightening on the drive and saying we were going to name baby boy Thor. It was oddly enjoyable because I was not in pain.

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We got to the hospital and registered. We were settled in our room at about 7 p.m. The doctor came in to introduce herself and the nurse, and then we started game planning. Once they hooked me up and checked my dilation (3 cm, 70 percent effaced), they noticed I was already naturally having contractions. I could not feel them, but I was having them. I got to about five contractions per 10 minutes, which was great! Corey and I started to relax because it was late.

Soon after we started to relax the nurses came rushing in because baby’s heartbeat dropped. Once that happened we knew we had to speed up the process. The doctor came in and gave me the magical pill that would kick my contractions into full gear. And that it did. First, they just felt like lower abdominal cramps. Then all of a sudden I started having coupling contractions, and it felt like the worst pain ever. In fact I even vomited it hurt so bad. My favorite word during all this was the “F” word. So I kept trucking my way through the contractions.

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A little time went by, and my pain went from a 6 to a 10 real fast. So they asked me if I wanted something to ease the pain? A bath? I thought the bath sounded promising, but once that tub got halfway full I was over it. The nurse then checked my dilation again, and I was still at a 3 cm. I had been laboring for 13 to 14 hours and made no progress. The doctor and nurse recommended I got some rest, so my body and baby were not so stressed. The only way to really rest was to have an epidural, which I agreed to.

During all the contractions, a sweet guy came in to do the epidural. He started the process, and it hurt like hell crouched in a ball while he stuck my back with a huge needle. I noticed it was taking him a long time to get it in, and I noticed my husband’s face. It looked worried. I guess the space between my vertebrae was too small, so he had to do it again. On the second go it went a lot smoother and quicker. It was a straight shot he said.

Once the catheter was in place, we got the drugs flowing. It was like instant relief. My husband said I went from being silent and pissed to happy go lucky. I was telling everyone thank you and smiling. As I was trying to rest, baby’s heart rate dropped again. The doctor came in and told us we might not be able to have a vaginal birth. The baby was stressed and scaring us. So the doctor checked one more time for dilation just to see how far away we were …

It was an absolute miracle. I was dilated to a 8 cm and 90 percent effaced. I was almost ready. Thank goodness. I really did not want a C-section. The doctor broke my water, then in no time I was ready to push. Once we got ready it was game time. We started, and baby was still not liking it. His heart rate kept dropping, and he was wrapped up in the cord. The doctor told me we had to get this baby out soon, or we would have to do an emergency C-section.

 

My husband and I got to it. He counted me down, and I pushed with all I had in me. Our baby boy was out in six minutes total. Happy, healthy and ready to snuggle his mommy and daddy.

It was the most love I have ever felt in my entire life when they set my sweet baby boy on my chest. My husband cut the cord, and we just bonded. So in love. My heart grew in that moment. I never thought I could love my husband more than I did already, but I did. He was more than perfect coaching me through the entire labor and delivery. My two boys stole my heart that day, forever.

Keep in mind, I did CrossFit and kept active my entire pregnancy. Truthfully, it doesn’t matter how fit or “to the book” you try to prepare your body for labor and delivery; your body will do what it thinks is best. I never wrote a birth plan because I heard it doesn’t always pan out the way you want, and yes that’s exactly what happened … I did have my hopes of how my labor and delivery would turn out, and it was completely not how I imagined.

Overall, the only thing that matters is my baby boy was healthy. You think I’m just saying that because it’s the right thing to say, but no, when you hear that little cry fresh into the real world you realize you would do anything, go anywhere, fight anyone to protect and nurture this beautiful baby until the day you die.

Send us your birth story! Whether you had a home birth, hospital birth, 37-hour labor or emergency C-section, we’d love to read the tale of your little one’s grand entrance. Write up your birth story (click here for tips on getting started) and email it, along with a few photos, to birthstory@pnmag.com. We’ll share it on our Birth Day blog and may even print it in an upcoming issue!