You’re almost two months now sitting in front of me sleeping on your little papasan bouncing chair so I want to tell you about your entry to this crazy world…
It was June 8th, the day before your due date, and I had no idea what was ahead of me. Let me start by saying I was SO ready to start the journey with you and your dad. We wanted to meet you, I wanted to hold you close to me, to protect you, to kiss your little head, to smell your hair, to start our lives together as a family. I was SO ready for you to come that on June 3rd I had my membranes stripped. This process had a 50% chance of putting me into labor within 72 hours or something like that, and well it didn’t! I was so bummed that I had to keep on waiting for you.
I read online that the biggest thing is to relax, that if your body is stressed it can delay labor even more, so I took that into consideration! After your dad got home from work on Monday the 7th I decided it was time to relax. I went for a swim, supposedly that can induce labor, then went back to the apartment and had a little glass of wine. Why the wine? Well, my sister has a friend who went into labor after having a beer, haha, so I thought wine was a good idea! Wine also helps people relax, and I needed to relax!! We then carried on with our evening, continuing to do things people say would put me into labor, and I finally got into bed at 12am. I went to bed with some cramps but that wasn’t really anything new! I got up at 1am and had to pee… what’s new… I always had to pee, but I had some cramping after. I went to bed but was really uncomfortable, so I dozed in and out of sleep and then at 2 am I woke up and thought I had to pee AGAIN. I went, but didn’t need to really, and ended up having BAD cramping. This time I got into bed, couldn’t get comfortable and got right back out.
This is where it all begins…2 am… me on the couch, wondering what was going on. I realized, the cramp was a contraction, but tried not to think anything of it! I had Braxton hicks since I was about 24 weeks pregnant so I was used to getting contractions, these ones were just so uncomfortable. Casey actually woke up and came to the living room and asked what was going on, I just told him I was contracting but it was probably ANOTHER false alarm and for him to go back to bed…and he did. At this point I couldn’t sit anymore. I was walking back and forth, back and forth, across the living room, trying to decide my plan of attack here. I needed to either get these stupid contractions to stop, or get worse. I took a bath, but the water wouldn’t heat up, and so that was not fun at all! My contractions didn’t go away, and baths are supposed to either make them go away or get worse. At this point I was timing the contractions and they were about 5-6 minutes apart with cramping each time. I was texting a friend from back home in CT bc I knew she’d be up and I needed to talk to someone bc I was getting so antsy!
I got out of the bath and by this time it was about 3 am. I said to Andrea that I wanted to go for a walk outside, she advised me that a pregnant woman probably shouldn’t go walk alone at 3 am, so I woke up Casey. I felt bad because if they did go away he’d have to work the next day…eek!! We went outside and started walking. The contractions continued and got a little more intense… at this point we called his parents because they are early risers, and they were right away so excited! I then decided to call my mom and tell her what was going on… meanwhile continuing to tell them all it could be a false alarm! We went inside after only walking a bit because I couldn’t go any farther and sat on the couch. At this point it’d been about an hour and a half, they were continuing to get closer together and still uncomfortable. Usually when I sat on the couch after thinking the contractions were real, they would go away and prove to be Braxton hicks just teasing me, but this time I sat down and they CONTINUED. Due to the pain, I got up and kept pacing, Casey and I looked at each other and said… ok…. I guess we’ll go to the hospital! He quickly took a shower, we got the bag packed up, we Skyped with his sister in China (hahaha!), and headed to the hospital!
At the hospital they brought me up to the maternity ward in a wheelchair even though I requested to walk…After getting up there they checked and monitored me, and thought I could maybe in pre-term labor, so they weren’t sure if we’d be admitted or not. They made us walk for an hour (Casey took many videos through the whole thing), they checked me and I had dilated another cm so I was about 4 cm at this point. When she checked me, it was the worst pain I had ever experienced and through the tears I asked what the heck she was doing and she said she was “stretching” me… SUPER!! They did determine that I was in fact in labor and we’d be having the baby today! (I know this is the longest post EVER, but let’s just take a minute to ponder all the emotions that rushed through my head…. fear and excitement. That was it, just fear and excitement… and the most of each I had ever experienced. What a CRAZY thought it was that I would be having a BABY… THAT DAY!!!) We asked how long the process is, and they said if all goes well we could have him by dinner!!! I COULD HOLD MY LITTLE BOY CLOSE TO ME BY DINNER!?!? Here’s a picture after finding out that it was the day, I’m calling my mom, having a contraction and Casey’s taking a picture!
I was so ready…or so I thought!! So, after the horrific experience of being “checked” they had us walk another hour to try to get my labor to progress and while walking laps the second time, our doctor’s shift started and we were so excited to see a familiar face! She came into the room after we finished walking to “check” me and it wasn’t nearly as bad the second time, and she decided it was time to break my water. Ah! I had no idea what to expect, it was a little painful, not too bad, but then… I started to pee the bed. Ok, it wasn’t pee, it was my amniotic fluid…. EW! What a WIERD feeling, AND with each contraction MORE would come out! I thought it’d NEVER stop!!
At this point they moved us to a delivery room, and started a pitocin drip… pause… I did NOT at this point have my epidural because my contractions were still bearable. Man, the worst decision I made in the labor process was to not get it as soon as they offered it. I WILL get the epidural as soon as I can next time. With the Dr. breaking my water and then starting the drip I was having HORRIBLE, HORRIBLE contractions within 20 minutes…. AH!!!!!! Worst pain I experienced in my life… I will not candy-coat that!!!!!
This is the point in the delivery that things got a little scary for me, and I realized how much I NEEDED my husband. The pitocin took so strongly to my body that I had three large contractions right in a row with no break between them. I was in dying pain, literally thought I might die. I was in writhing pain with these 3 right in a row, and to make it worse, all of a sudden I had an oxygen mask on and nurses were rushing into the room and I was being tossed and turned by them, and all I could say is it seemed to be a time of pure panic. I looked at Casey who was right by my head, with tears STREAMING down my face asking him what was going on, what was wrong with Isaiah, what was wrong with my baby, why were the nurses doing, what was happening… he just kept telling me that all I needed to focus on was breathing (to help the pain). He just kept soothing me, telling me everything was going to be okay, I just needed to breathe. Finally a nurse told me that Isaiah’s heart rate had dropped, they couldn’t get a beat at all, and had to put a fetal monitor on him to get a pulse. They did, he was fine, and I had calmed down because I knew it wasn’t as bad of an emergency as all the panic made it out to be. I literally thought I’d be having an emergency c-section right then and there, man it was scary. I was still in horrible pain with contractions when the nurse told me they’d need to get a catheter in (I still had no epidural), the catheter would empty my bladder and decrease the intensity of the contractions. Now, I understood that bc of the Braxton hicks I had… but I WASN’T NUMB!! I WOULD FEEL IT!!! I asked the nurse if it hurt would she stop, and her response was “No, I’ll just shove it in faster”… oh… okay… sounds like a GREAT plan! So, in it went, and while it was not a great and comfortable experience, it wasn’t as bad as the contractions I was having so I could handle it.
At this point they say it’s finally time for the epidural…. FINALLY… RELIEF!!!!! We get all prepped, I sit up on the edge of the bed (getting to that with the fetal monitor chord and the catheter all between my legs was NOT easy) and they get the epidural in. It didn’t hurt as much as I anticipated, BUT it was not a comfortable experience. Every pain I had, I would compare to the contractions, and well, that was not worse than the contractions so again I could bear it. I was able to lay back down and I waited for relief. I waited, and waited, and realized my right side was numb… but my left… hm NOPE I could feel EVERY contraction! So, they had the genius idea of flipping me on my left side to try to get the epidural to drip to that side of the body… NOPE! Unsuccessful!!! So, we do the epidural AGAIN… Oh fun!! I have to get back on the edge of the bed with all the chords between my legs, STILL feeling that catheter, and out goes the first epidural, in goes the second. This time I knew what to expect and was ready for the discomfort. I laid back down… and my bum started to feel warm… and numb…relief was near. I asked the anesthesiologist if the warm butt was a good sign, and his response was yes. He waited to see if I was feeling contractions, and within a minute or two I thought maybe I was having a contraction, the nurse said that it was in fact a strong contraction. I was so relieved, and the anesthesiologist said “Well that was a good epidural!”… oh really…. REALLY!?!?! The other was a BAD one? If you KNEW it was bad then why did you make me wait!!! WHY would an anesthesiologist say, Oh… that was a good epidural!?!? HA!
Well, anyways it was noon at this point, Casey had something to eat and we were able to relax. I couldn’t sleep, but man I enjoyed not feeling those contractions!! My girlfriend Chelsea came and hung out with us as we waited, and waited, and waited. At about 4:15 a nurse came in to see how far along I was, and she looked at me and said, well your 10 cm… we’re going to start pushing. BIG PAUSE…. I’m WHAT!?!?! 10 cm!!! I can what!?!? PUSH!?!?! ME!? These are just SOME of the thoughts I had… and the overwhelming emotion was fear this time…. excitement? NO. I was about to push out Isaiah, and nothing in me at that moment wanted to do that. She asked me to give her a push, and I gave a half-ass push… excuse the french, but that’s what it was. I was SO hesitant and I looked at her and literally said, I don’t want to push, I don’t want you to deliver my baby! She explained that I wasn’t going to deliver him with her, and I needed to just get things moving. At this point, she leaves the room to get prepped and call my Dr. I looked over to Chelsea and Casey, tears started to flow down my face, and I asked them to pray for me because I was so scared in that moment. They came over and the two of them held my hands and prayed for me…. it was so calming, I just knew I would get through this and that I would be okay and so would Isaiah. Chelsea left to go to the waiting room, the nurse came in and it was about 5:40 at this point. We started to push, breathing in and pushing out….1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10…. that would be Casey’s job. He’d count and then I’d take a break and do it again… with each contraction I’d do that 3 times. I’d push like I was pooping… nasty eh!? Well that’s what you have to do!!! So, just after 5 my Dr came in and away we went!! I was so scared… so many emotions… this was literally a moment that in my head I thought to myself, I really can not do this! I can’t push a baby out, I can’t push my baby out!!! But there was no turning back and I went to work…. every contraction I’d push for ten seconds and we’d do this 3 times! It was a very exciting process, I could feel the energy in the room as Casey’s counting and encouragement was so empowering! At one point I asked him to count a little quieter because it was a little loud in my ear. 🙂 He did just that and was so great!!!
Now, prior to having Isaiah he said he didn’t want to look, I didn’t want to see him being pushed out, we just needed to get the job done. Well, funny how things change! As I’m pushing, they Dr says I can see his head! He has a head of hair!! I looked at Casey and told him to LOOK!!!!! It was so funny! He looked down and started laughing!! He was so excited!! Then they kept saying to me, OKAY TANYA!! He’s RIGHT THERE!!! JUST PUSH!!! THoughts in my head… again… I can’t do this… I can’t do this I can’t do this…. I HAVE TO DO THIS!!! SO, I pushed, but apparently I wasn’t giving it my all…. and they all knew it! My Dr looked at my and said that if I didn’t get him out with the next few pushes she’d have to get the vacuum. I looked at her and remember just simply saying…no way… and with that I pushed as hard as I possibly could… three times in a row…. I felt the lovely ring of fire that I feared (tearing…woohoo!!!). I could hear all the excitement around me, feel the excitement and kept on going, an d suddenly my doctor told me to open my eyes amidst my pushing and LOOK!!! As I open my eyes I see my child coming into the world, it was SO overwhelming, I laid my head back on the bed and just sobbed. I literally sobbed!!!!! I couldn’t believe I had done it!!! It was so relieving…. all the pressure in my stomach was gone, it was like the best poop ever!!! AND I had a child! I had a son! We did it!! It was about 5:28 pm and we had a son! Casey was so excited, he got the flip and started videoing and taking pictures! They put our child on my chest and while wiping him off I got to look and hold my baby boy. If Casey didn’t video this I wouldn’t remember it so clearly. Before giving birth I said I didn’t want to see him until he was cleaned up… haha… just the other day I watched the video again and realized that he was totally nasty on me, but I had NO idea in the moment of it all!!
I did it. I did what seemed impossible…. We did it… Casey and I, we had a son. Casey coached me through the whole day, and was SUCH an amazing support!! I don’t know what I would have done without Casey….
<–Isaiah and I right after he was cleaned off
<– Casey & Isaiah
<– Dr. Pelopida and I right after he was born.
After giving birth and finishing up the whole process, I literally only wanted to eat pancakes and have a coke! After 12 hours of labor… yup only 12 hours… all I could think of was food!!! So, while they were checking out Isaiah and doing all that stuff in the nursery, I ate!!