Monday, May 18, 2009

The birth story - long version with coles notes at the bottom

(This is long, but I don't want to forget any of the little details so feel free to skip to the bottom for the coles notes version :)

I wasn't exactly keeping it a secret that I don't enjoy pregnancy but when I hit 36 weeks things REALLY started going downhill. Everything hurt, all the time. I couldn't breathe, I couldn't eat without raging heartburn and reflux (despite meds), and lord oh lord was I cranky!
On Monday I went in for my 37 week (ish) appointment and suddenly my blood pressure was 146/102 (translation - wicked high and totally out of the blue). The doctor was concerned so I had to come back in the next day to get it checked again. It was down to 130/96 but still a concern to my doc. He had me to go for some blood work and when I got back he told me he thought it was time to go in and get induced. (yes!) 37 weeks is considered by just about everyone to be a very acceptable arrival date for twins and I was a day short of that. I was sent home to wait to hear when I might expect to be called in for an induction.
The moment I was told I was going to be induced I became calm. I think I just needed to know it was almost over. Unfortunately the anxiety my husband, mother and mother in law all started feeling more than made up for it ;) Just after 5 my doctor's office called to say that the induction would be going ahead and the hospital would be calling me but likely not until morning. I clarified "So, probably in the morning but possible tonight?" and she said "No, I don't think it will be tonight" and I said "OK, so they won't end up calling me in the middle of the night to come in?" and she said "No, it'll be in the morning.". Ok great - Eric made a plan and started putting it into action... for approximately 2 minutes. That's when the hospital called and told me to have a bit to eat and head on in for my induction! Gah! Ok! Eek!
We packed ourselves up, stopped and got some food, brought Kiernan to my parents' house, ate our food and made it to the hospital in about 2 hours. The entire time I beat myself up for not getting a more accurate time frame on how long I should be taking given their vague "eat something and head on down" instructions and my fear of getting things wrong. We finally arrived at the hospital around 7ish.
And it turned out to be one of those hurry up and wait situations since my doctor didn't make it to the hospital until 10 to break my water. We did keep somewhat busy in other ways though... I had to immediately change into a hospital gown. :P Those things don't close around the majority of people but let me tell ya, there was zero chance it was going to close around my massive stomach!
Then the nurse came in and made me do these swabs (from now on known as nose and bum swabs) to test for a strain of bacteria that is resistant to antibiotics that all patients in the hospital are screened for and she took some blood to check on blood pressure related things and to be able to type my blood because I was at higher risk to need a transfusion because of the twin thing. Then, about an hour later another nurse comes in and says
"so, we've been trying to figure out the mystery of all your names"
Ummm... all my names?
turned out they had accidentally registered me into the hospital as someone else! Not a huge deal except you know those blood tests and nose/bum swaps - sent to the lab with another name. And the lab won't just switch names so we got to do them again! Yay.
Oh, and remember how I came in to the hospital because my blood pressure went through the roof? They took it when I got there and it was something ridiculously low like 120/67. My theory really is that the stress of continuing to be pregnant was so overwhelming it caused my bp to go crazy and as soon as I was told it was ending I really and truly did relax and things got better. Thank goodness they didn't send me home because my blood pressure wasn't an issue anymore ;)
So, 10pm and my doctor breaks my water - which he informs me is SUPER tough to break and took 3 tries and that my cervix had retracted or something. Just another sign these babies really weren't inclined to come out at all! Also, I was about 4cm dilated.
Come 1am, nothing was happening so they started me on oxytocin. I was happy to have the drugs started to get things going but what I didn't realize was that once I was on the drugs I'd have to have both babies monitored constantly. And the only way to have both babies monitored constantly was for me to lie on my back. This had to be the most uncomfortable position ever. As the contractions got worse I was in agony, but more from my position than the contractions. All I kept thinking about was when i broke my left in a car accident when I was 13 and they left me on this wooden stretcher for hours as they were checking everything out. And I was in agony, not from the horribly broken leg I had, but because my butt on the wooden stretcher for hours was just NOT tolerable any more. And I was whining and wimpering and a nurse offered me pain medication and I said yes, never letting on that it was because my ass hurt, not my leg. And that's how I felt in labour - give me an epidural because sitting like this is KILLING me. I could totally deal with the contractions if I could just move, but not if I have to SIT LIKE THIS!
At 4 I get the nurse to check me thinking I must have made a ton of progress in the 6 hours since the doctor broke my water. And... NOTHING. VERY discouraging. So we agreed I'd get an epidural. By 5:30 it was in and working and I got to get a bit of rest.
Around 6:45 the nurse came in and I let her know I was having pain that was getting through the epidural - a weird sharp pain just in my pubic bone. But on a scale of 1-10 it was only a 2 - tolerable, just noteworthy. By 7, they weren't so tolerable and nurse seemed a bit confused, saying maybe I had a block in my epidural that made it not work on one area of my body. This seemed very bad because the pain was getting progressively worse, and fast. Fortunately my doctor stopped in around that time to check in on me, having expected to hear from me in the middle of the night to deliver babies. After my description of the pain I'd been having and the nurse's request to screw one of those heart monitors into baby a's head because the tummy one wasn't keeping track anymore he decided to check things out only to discover I was fully dilated and ready to push.
Start mad frantic scene!
After a test push I'm told to stop stop stop while nurses are called and they madly rush me to an OR. My hospital bed apparently had a bum wheel so despite the very painful contractions I have to admit the ride to the OR was quite amusing as the nurses repeatedly almost rammed me into walls. Oh, plus they were trying to keep my IV pole close enough to the bed to not yank out of my arm. (I wonder if someone else would have found that entirely un-funny ;)
Finally we're in the OR and they're all rushing around saying things like "how do we do this again?" which was not entirely calming but I figure they probably don't often have vaginal twin deliveries and essentially everything was fine. When they finally let me push it had been about 20 minutes and within 3 minutes Quinn was out weighing 6 lbs 9 oz (although they told us his weight in grams and someone guessed he was about 6 lbs and it wasn't until hours later we actually realized how much bigger than Juliette he actually was!) and then 6 minutes later, after a quick decent and having her water broken Juliette arrived weighing 5lbs 10 oz.

It was a shockingly quick turn of events from a long night of nothing that I expected to continue on that way for hours.

So that's the story of Quinn and Juliette's arrival. Stay tuned when, sometime in the next few months, I get around to my rant about hospital stays ;)


Coles notes version
May 12 11am - doctor decides my blood pressure is too high and I will be sent for an induction
May 12 5pm - hospital calls to have me come in
7pm - arrive at hospital
10 pm - Doctor breaks my water
1 am - nothing happening - start an IV of oxytocin
4am - nurse checks me - I've made no progress and want to cry. We decide I'm going to get an epidural to ride things out
5:30 - Epidural in and working. Time for a nap
6:45 - I tell the nurse I'm starting to have these mild-ish pains through the epidural. Nothing to be concerned about in terms of pain management but I thought I'd mention it
6:55 - You know those pains that were like a 2/10 5 minutes ago? they're now at least a 7!
7:05 Doctor arrives to check on me. Pains now a 9 or a 10. He gets ready to check me.
7:15 Doctor announces I am fully dilated and ready to push. Can I give a test push? Ok stop stop! Let's get this girl to an OR
7:15- 7:35 wheeled to the OR and told not to push. Struggling through contractions and trying to ignore people trying to introduce themselves to me.
7:35 - start pushing
7:38 Quinn Dante Wellman born weighing 6 lbs 9 oz
7:44 Juliette Lorelai Wellman born weighing 5 lbs 10 oz

1 comment:

Kelly Wolfe said...

That was not long at all. I love reading stories like this. I can't wait to hear about the hospital stay...