Friday, January 27, 2012

The Birth Story

{39 week belly pic. Go HERE to see my 39 week pic with Emme.}

At my last doctor's appointment on Thursday the 18th, I was still 1.5cm dilated and 70% effaced, so my doctor went ahead and stripped my membranes in hopes of moving things along before my induction. On Friday I lost my mucus plug (TMI) and had a few contractions throughout the day. That night we dropped Emme off at my inlaws and Chris and saw a movie for one last date night. During the movie I had two or three hefty contractions. I also got woken up by a few really strong ones during the night that night as I slept. I was hoping that these contractions were making some progress! My biggest fear was that being induced would try to force the baby before my body was ready and I didn't want to do that....but I also didn't want a baby with a giant head to tear my body in half again. I felt like we were treading a fine line.

On Saturday, the 21st we got called into the hospital at about 6:20 am for my induction. Chris and I got there around 7:20 and walked into a rather quiet hospital. They'd had a ton of action the day before due to the storm, but that day was rather quiet and I was the only scheduled induction for the day. Hooray! I saw lots of one-on-one attention from the nurses in our future.

They had me change into a gown (but not before I made Chris snap one last belly pic) and got my IV started with pitosin. When they did my initial cervix check before the pitosin, I was at a 2.5cm and 90%, so those contractions from the day before had been making some change. Yay! We decided to wait to call my mom for a few hours, since it could be a long day. Chris and I watched a movie, read news on the ipad and lounged for a good while. I was having contractions 2 minutes apart, but they were easy to take and I had no trouble laughing at the movie right through them. I was feeling them in my lower belly and the tops of my thighs, which was VERY different from the way I felt contractions with Emme in my back (since she was posterior). I had decided I wanted to brave the contractions as long as I could, because I knew with Emme my progress slowed considerably after my epidural. I felt it would be better for myself and for the baby to let my body progress naturally for as long as I could take it.

At about 11:00 am the doctor arrived and decided to check me and break my water. I was only at 3.5cm. Since I was her only delivery for the day, she headed home and gave the nurses instruction to call her when I was complete. Immediately after they broke my water, my contractions got really intense. They stayed 2 minutes apart, but I had to close my eyes and breathe through them. My mom arrived shortly after they broke my water, and it was such a relief to have her there. She helped remind me to breathe and Chris rubbed my legs and let me squeeze his hand.

At about noon I requested the epidural. The contractions were getting painful and I was beginning to get the shakes. By the time the anesthesiologist got in there and did his thing, it was about 12:30 and I was at 7cm. Relief! I could still feel the contractions under my rear (weird), but nothing in my belly. We watched the monitor for a few minutes and my contractions started to plateau, indicating I was in transition. We sent Chris and then my mom off to get some lunch at the cafeteria, to make sure they got fed before the action started.

About 30 minutes after the epidural, the nurse checked me and I was at 10cm. My mom was still in the cafeteria so we texted her to come back when she was done and we waited for her while the nurses prepped the room. They called the doctor and told her I was complete. Given the fact that I pushed for 4 hours with the last one, the doctor told the nurses to have me give a few practice pushes and to call her when the baby was close. They got the room all set up, handed Chris one leg and a nurse the other and instructed me to push when a contraction came. After one push the nurse held up her hand, smiled and said, "That's great, honey, don't push any more! I'm going to call the doctor."

About 30 minutes later the doctor arrived, prepped and ready to catch. After about 4 pushes, Henry George Spencer entered the world at 2:35 pm, right as it started to snow. It was peaceful and calm and beautiful. They laid him on my chest as they rubbed him down and wiped him off. I never got to have that experience with Emme. I couldn't stop the tears from flowing. It was so miraculous!

We hugged and kissed and cuddled him for a good long while before they finally took him to be weighed & measured. He was 7 lbs, 14 oz and 21 inches of chubby perfection.

On the way up to recovery, Chris and I thanked our labor & delivery nurses, who were amazing. I told the nurse if all my deliveries could be like that, I would have 10 more! Chris got wide eyes and started to shake his head. :) All in all, the second time around couldn't have been more opposite of the first. I only had one small stitch, and I was up and around and dressed & moving within 24 hours. (With Emme, I literally couldn't stand up straight for three days.) Henry is a champion nurser and sleeper, and such a content baby so far. We are just eating up every moment of his precious existence.

Plus, his awesome timing made for fun birthdays for our family so far:
Annalisa - October 21st
Emmeline - November 21st
Chris- December 21st
Henry - January 21st

We love you, Henry George Spencer! Welcome to our family!


Nurse Heidi said...

Sounds like an awesome delivery! My first and second were very similar to yours - super traumatic long drawn out labor with lots of damage to my nethers with Ethan, and then a piece of cake induction with Rachel. 2nd babies are always easier :). Congrats!

Nikki said...

What a great birth story! So glad he's here and you're doing well! Congratulations!!

Em said...

I saw your post about this on FB, and I AM a sucker for a birth story and was shocked at both of your stories (Emme and Henry). My little boys' birth was almost identical to Emme's. He was posterior (and twisted), and I pushed for 4 hours but they ended up using the vacuum instead of forceps. I too, couldn't hold him right after because of the tear/cut and he had horrible swelling and blistering on the top of his head from the vacuum. Needless to say, I was totally relieved to hear the second went smoothly- helps my anxiety about the while thing (if I ever forget and get pregnant's still too fresh for now :)).
Thanks for a fun story! Good luck with two!

Racher said...

This is great Annalisa! I'm so glad you had such a smooth and happy delivery this time! Nice work! Your little boy is lovely.

The Martin Family said...

Why do I cry reading these things? Great story. I am so happy for you guys! It is truly a miracle. Those first minutes are priceless! the name!

Anonymous said...

I'm so glad everything went smoothly! I love the picture of you holding Henry where you can see the snow falling outside. How PERFECT!!! Congrats again! So happy for you guys!!

Anonymous said...

That last comment was from me - Ashley Williams (sorry, I didn't realize George was signed in)

rach said...

Oh I was just thinking I Need to see that cute little spencer baby boy!! I'm so glad you posted that's so neat girly it totally made me cry I'm so glad it went so much better !! Congrats on the new little spirit ! He is perfect!!! Loves!