Friday, March 6, 2009

Lily Danielle's drug free birth

It has always been my wish to have a drug free labor & delivery, but with my first four labor & deliveries I have not accomplished this (due to not enough support, not enough preparation on my part, etc). Here is my story of my first (hopefully not my last!) drug free labor & delivery of Lily Danielle, born 12/27/2008.

I had been experiencing false labor for 2 weeks when FINALLY at 38 1/2 weeks I went into real labor at 6am on 12/27/08. Contractions were regular & gradually got stronger & stronger. Hubby refused to rush into the hospital because of all the false labor symptoms I had experienced before. We both wanted to make sure these contractions were sticking around and got very uncomfortable by the time I went in to the hospital. We parked in the far corner of the hospital parking lot so I could get in some walking to help labor along. I had to stop two times and lean on hubby and breath through contractions, but Nathaniel did a good job of keeping these light and silly.

We walked in and they saw that I was clearly in labor (and this was my fifth) and so they put me straight into a labor & delivery room and got me all comfy and settled. This was so different from all my other labor & deliveries because I was delivering with a midwife instead of an OB. I was invited to put on a hospital gown "if I wanted to" instead of being told to put it on. My midwife was with me the entire time (actually two of them because one was getting back to delivering babies after finishing her degree, so one was supervising & the other was supporting). Anyway :) they checked me & I was about 5.5 cm along (this was about 10:30)

Contractions were about 4-5 minutes apart and over the next two hours, they got a little closer together and progressively more intense (not as bad as I thought it was going to be though) :) By 12ish , the midwife asked to check me and I was at 8cm. She then asked if I was ok with her breaking my water at that point to see if it would speed labor along a little - I said I thought it was a great idea (lol, because at this point I was starting to get a bit worn out.) I was so focused on just getting through contractions that the midwives started coaching me on different positions to try during contractions. I leaned forward on Nathaniel for a few contractions, then the midwives suggested squatting during contractions (OUCH!). At about 12:45 I laid down and labored that way for a few minutes, then @ 1 the midwife checked my progress and Lily's position at that point and I was 9cm and Lily was head was in a persistant occiput transverse position:

OCCIPUT TRANSVERSE: INTRODUCTION — Most fetuses enter the maternal pelvis in the occiput transverse (OT) position; left occiput transverse (LOT) is more common than right (ROT). With progressive dilation and descent, the occiput usually rotates either anteriorly or posteriorly (OA or OP). Only a few fetuses remain in OT position at complete dilation. Most of those will rotate to OA or OP during maternal expulsive efforts.

PERSISTENT OCCIPUT TRANSVERSE — We define persistent OT position as an OT position that persists for an hour after complete cervical dilatation (ie, maintenance of the OT position an hour into the second stage of labor). Some of these fetuses (usually very small ones) will deliver in the OT position. Others will rotate later in the second stage, after the fetal head reaches the pelvic floor. The remainder remain OT and experience an arrest, defined as no descent after one hour of active pushing. Arrest of descent can be divided into two subsets: high transverse arrest (above station +2 on a -5 cm to + 5 cm scale) and deep transverse arrest (below station +2 on a -5 cm to + 5 cm scale). There are no reliable data on the frequency of persistent OT, but it is uncommon.

I continued laboring on my side for the next ten minutes and the midwife said I should change position and suggested flipping over onto my hands and knees (this was at about 1:10) and this is when labor became as painful as I thought it would be - during the second contraction in this position I had the thoughts "I can't do this anymore!" but it kind of encouraged me because I've always read that it's very common for mom's to think this when they are just about to deliver. Two more unbearable contractions and the midwives suggested I flip back over (and with help I did) and that's when the pushing started!!! Lily continued being in the persistant occiput transverse position (hense the word persistant LOL). I pushed once and then the midwife begged me to stop pushing and to relax (which was IMPOSSIBLE at that point, for me anyway) and I remember just apologizing over and over again that I couldn't DO what they were asking. I definitely felt that "ring of fire" that people talk about, but I wouldn't have described it as fire - I just remember it HURT and I wanted it to STOP. Finally I got another urge to push and out FLEW Lily @ 1:19pm on December the 27th 2008. :)

Lily had passed her first meconium in utero and because they had concerns of meconium aspiration they swept her away to the table beside me and suctioned her nose and mouth out immediately (NICU staff was on hand for this, they knew she had passed her meconium when they broke my water, but her heart rate was still good and the midwife was not concerned at that point). She didn't cry and for the first few minutes after and I couldn't see her on the table (which worried me at the time). They told me her weight (6lbs 4oz) which was as I expected, but when the told me she was only 17 inches long I was in shock! I did not know that full term babies were that short lol!! As the midwife helped me to deliver the placenta, I got my first look at Lily and she was so perfect and so tiny and I thought she looked remarkably like her sister Clara :).

The placenta was much bigger than I thought it would be and actually hurt a bit when I pushed it out (which suprised me - but then again, I *am* a wimp). I asked the midwife to show it to me since, for the first time, I was interested to see what it looked like. It was HUGE! Much bigger than I thought it would be and SOOOOO cool! It's amazing how God has created our bodies to make such things and to have them suddenly GONE from our bodies, it's no wonder women go through such emotional ups and downs right after birth.

I had a small tear that needed to be stitched up and it hurt! lol so I asked for some lidocaine (although it made me feel silly, seeing as I had just given birth, but it hurt!) Prior to giving birth I had given instructions for Lily to NOT receive antibiotic eye ointment (since this is to protect against a STD, which I don't have) and Lily was also not to receive the standard vitamin K shot *unless* she experience a traumatic birth (which she did not). And as a side note, she is my ONLY child thus far to not experience Jaundice and I believe that it was because she did not recieve any injections while we were in the hospital (vitamin K or the hepatitis B vaccine which it is now standard to give the first dose in the hospital).

So there it is, the story of Lily's drug free entrance into the world outside my womb! :) I am SO happy to have her here with us and feel very blessed to be her mommy.

@3 days old


today @ 11.5 weeks old



Mandy C. said...

I'm so glad you got to experience a drug free birth. I can't compare the two since I've only had drug free, but friends have told me that the healing process is much quicker.

I found that the placenta burned vs. hurt. But it is so cool what our bodies can do.

She's beautiful!

kbs said...

I'm proud of you!
What a gorgeous baby! Can grandmas say that?

Lisa Marie said...

She is perfect, just perfect! I'm proud of you mama!

Jump on YiM, I tried messaging you ;)

Angela said...

Yeay! Good for you! My three have been drug free too...and deliveries with the midwives are the best! Cool story and such a cute little peanut! On a side note, I don't think it's been long enough since I delivered my last baby though because reading this made me feel like I was in labor too! Yikes! I am not enjoying that feeling right now. LOL.

natedavidscott said...

still a great story - and i even lived it! you did a great job, and i'm very proud of you. i'm glad you got to fulfill the goal of a natural birth.

Vicki said...

Oh what a beautiful story~ Lily is so beautiful, like her Mama!:)