The morning of April 29th, I woke up with slight contractions, ranging anywhere from 8-15 minutes apart. From past experience with Alana, you could stay like this for days, so I wasn’t getting too excited. As the day went on however, I noticed them getting pretty regular and making me stop and concentrate. Me and Jason went to go get Alana from school, and I was excited! I knew it was going to happen soon, and I couldn’t wait to meet Isabel. I was prouncing around the playground, holding Jason and Alana’s hands, just on top of the world, and everyone around me was equally as excited. We left there, and I was STARVING, so we went to Mama Fu’s (one of mine and Jason’s favorite places to eat). About halfway through the meal, I realized that the contractions were now 4-5 minutes apart, and reeaaally starting to hurt. We finished our food, and planned on a day of laboring at home for as long as possible. It was me, Jason, Alana, and my parents. We were in our living room just sitting, talking, and laughing, enjoying our time as a family. I bounced on my yoga ball for awhile, and that got my contractions really going good. After a couple hours, my contractions were now 3-4 minutes apart. We called the doctor, and he told us to come in, YAY! I cant believe this was happening. Since the hospital was 4 blocks away from our home, we decided to walk there, yes WALK there in active labor. It was so much fun! And me and Jason got a chance to talk and really connect on the way there, it was such a moment for us. Once we got there, they hooked me up to the monitors, and I went through a healthy dose of “fun” tests before they checked my cervix. Well come to find out I am 3 cm’s dilated and 75% effaced!! I couldn’t believe it, I always had a hard time dilating, they almost though they were going to have to induce me because I was overdue by 3 days already (Due date was on April 26th). So Dr. Smoak told the nurse by phone that I was to start doing laps around the maternity wing to get things going. My contractions starting getting pretty strong though, so by the time Dr. Smoak got there (1 hour later) he checked my cervix and I was dilated to 4-5 cm’s, and he broke my waters, and I went straight to 6 cm’s (in 1 hour!). Him breaking my water was actually pretty cool! Very warm. So at that time, they ask me if I want any pain medication (epidural). I had always planned on getting it, so I agreed. When the epidural man came in, I started to get really nervous. I started to shake kind of nervous. It’s like my body knew something was going to go wrong, I just didn’t feel peace getting it..so weird. Well he proceeded to put it in, and the first one started putting stabbing feelings in my back, and pretty much scared the crap out of me. He then tells me he has to redo it to get it in a better spot. Great. This one seems to be in a good spot he says. After inserting the medicine, I got a little numb, but not completely. I could still move my legs and feel everything. All I got was a little tingly. They call him back in, and he then puts in whats called a “bolus” shot, which is stronger medication than the epidural anesthesia. This got me a little number, but I could still feel the pain. During this time, we underwent a shift change, and I got a new nurse. The one I had until this time was great, so sweet and knowledgeable. Barbara is the new nurse, a little older, but seems great. She checked in with me to make sure I was ok, then left. When she left an alarm went off on the monitor. She came back in, turned it off then left. When Jason looked at the monitor, he saw my BP had dropped to 90/50. A couple minutes later, the alarm went off again, and he saw my BP had dropped to 80/40. The nurse came running in, and saw the BP, and said “wow, I hadn’t even noticed the first drop”, and frantically started saying she needed to call my dr back in. The epidural man came back in and was LIVID that the nurse hadn’t noticed it the first time. He had a huge shot of ephedrine ready to go to give me to bring it back up. Dr Smoak came in, also mad as heck that the nurse hadn’t told him about the blood pressure drop. He had noticed at this time that the baby was in distress, and her heart rate was getting dangerously high. Instead of giving me ephedrine, the epidural man said he was going to turn down my epidural. It really didn’t mean that much to me since I could still feel the pain anyways. After he did turn it down, holy crap, a new pain kicked in. I was not numb at all, nothing. They gave me a shot of stadol, but that lasted only 10 minutes though. My BP finally evened out, and that was that. I started to feel the urge to push, which was the strangest feeling in the world. I told the nurse, “I feel like I have to poop really bad.” She kind of snickered, and said, “well time to check your cervix again!” Keep in mind through all this, I am having die hard, painful contractions that are making me cry, and I am violently shaking. When she checked, I was 9 cm’s dilated!! They started to bring everything into place, and kick people out of the room. Jason took his spot by my side, and I told him to pray. He shook his head and we both began to cry. A wave of emotions I have never felt before hit me and I knew my life was going to change again, forever. The urge to push began to take over, and become overwhelming. The pain I felt of little Isabel moving through my birth canal can only be described as a bowling ball trying to force it’s way out. The pain is the worst pain you could ever describe, and I started to scream. I mean, really scream. I was crying, yelling that I can’t do this, it hurts, take this baby out of me, and screaming, crying..all of it. As I’m trying to write this, it’s hard for me to put into words..the pain, mixed with this overflowing love for my husband. For him to be there, crying with me, telling me that I’m doing great, that he loves me, that I’m bringing our daughter into this world..it’s hard to describe these intense feelings of pure love. I started to feel Isabel’s head making it’s entrance. The expression “ring of fire” can give you somewhat of an idea of what it feels like. Dr. Smoak yelled “heads out!”, and I knew it would be over soon. With one more push I felt her shoulders coming through, and the rest of her little body slid out. Let me tell you, that moment..that first moment of hearing her cry for the first time..was the closest I have ever felt to God. It was perfection, and pure joy. I looked at Jason, and to tell you that we cryed would be an understatement. That was the hardest we have both cryed in our whole life, just balling..looking at our little miracle and yelling how beautiful she was. I looked at Jason, and I swear our love for eachother just multiplied over and over instantly. Words cannot describe how we felt for eachother at that moment. All we could do then was say I love you over and over and praise God at the same time.
That moment will forever be cherished in my heart for all time.
How can I describe this little miracle? Perfect. She looks like her daddy. She’s unbelievably beautiful. And this moment just got better when little Alana came in and held her for the first time. To see our new family all together, was just priceless. This, my friend, is what life is all about.
On another note..come to find out, my epidural line also had a kink in it. After they turned it down when the BP drop happened, there was no medicine getting to me. Hello natural birth!! I wouldn’t have changed a thing about it though, and who knows, if more kids are in our future, I might go natural again!
A note on friends..I have the best friends ever. At a drop of a hat they all came to the hospital around 1030 or so and stayed until she was born at 244 am. I love them