Saturday, September 29, 2012

Well then. That was one scary ride.

I didn't bother to write out a "birth story" for Sammi, because her's is as it should be  - short and to the point.

Not so much with Grant.

I barely slept Monday night. The nerves from knowing we were going to have  a baby on x day were killing me.  And it was all I could do not to puke everywhere Tuesday morning.

Traffic was terrible and we were late getting to the hospital.  Once we arrived (at 3 cm already) they started the pitocin and off we went. 

They increased that pitocin every.20.minutes.  until I was on the maxxed out dose.

I manage contractions just fine in general. It was uncomfortable, but doable.

But after nearly 8 hours of that I was still only at 3 cm.

The OB called and said he was "aggravated", which pissed me off and to go home and try again another day.  To which I replied No way in hell. I had just lived through 8 hours of massive pitocin. (Let me mention again how much I LOVE doctors that start throwing around hysterectomy in the midst of all this stuff.) Not going. Besides, I reminded him, I either carry on and *might* end up with the c-section or go home and wait and SURELY have c-section as the baby continued to grow.

My first nurse was awesome and told him I wasn't going anywhere. She would get an epidural and then get my water broken. 

I had high hopes as the epidural usually speeds things up for me.

By that time I was READY for it anyway.

Except it took more than 2 hours before I would get it.  2 hours of maxxed out pitocin contractions.

Finally get the epidural in and wait another 2 hours before my cervix was favorable enough to break the amniotic sac.

Break my water and keep waiting. And waiting.

By around midnight the OB is on the phone again saying I am not making enough change and he wants to just do the surgery. I reply again, NO. This has been utter hell. I have been puking everywhere. I have the worst headache of my life. I have not eaten in days. I have not slept in days.  I am progressing, just 1 cm an hour and that's plenty. Just wait I keep saying.

Except then Grant starts having decels with every contraction.

OB shows up around midnight and says you are complete anyway, let's get him out.

And the pushing begins.

And Grant is not moving from a minus 2 station at all.

So after an hour of pushing I say again, you have not waited long enough when he starts booking the OR (!).

He has not had time to descend.  My (much more timid nurse) says, let's try gravity.  And sits me up.  And I throw up again.

Except that time I was pretty sure that was the "stupid transition barf", which always comes right before my kids are born.

More pushing, more waiting. 18 hours of labor at this point.

At some point the meconium appears in the amniotic fluid.

OB starts to panic more and calls for the house doctor.

The lovely house doctor says he is sunny side up and not going to get under the pubic bone, but that there is plenty of room around his head in my pelvis and that he CAN fit  through there.  Use the damn forceps she says.

The OB prefers the vacuum.

The next thing I know, in the space of about 1 minute, I have gone from having a baby who is still not ready to come out to having a baby that has literally just been vacuumed out in the blink of an eye.

Now, if you are unfamiliar with this particular torture, lucky you. It's terrifying. It's beyond traumatic.

And I am hysterical.

(And injured in a million ways I won't get into on the internet.)

And Grant? Not looking so great either. Low apgar, needing intubation apparently and on and on. (Although what the hell did the expect with his apgar? They just RIPPED him out.)

But I was thinking, okay then! That's the worst of it.  He's out, and we can just get on with the quiet part of all this insanity.

But oh no. The insanity hadn't even really started yet.  They decide Grant has very low blood sugar and start poking and prodding him every hour.

Then around 5 am they say they are taking him to the nursery for something (I can't even remember what it was).  And I realize at about 7 am they have not returned my baby.  So I start demanding my baby. And the house ped and NOW.

I get Nurse Ratchet who tries to deflect and keeps carrying about how I have to pee or blah blah. And I keep telling her I don't give a shit about her needing me to pee I NEED MY BABY AND NOW.

Another hour goes by and they still have not returned the baby. (Who, btw, they are bottle feeding every 20 mins in their nursery, despite the fact that I breastfeed the kids.)

And I get louder and louder.

Another nurse comes in for something else and discovers me completely hysterical. Again. She immediately starts trying to figure out just what in the hell is going on and sends in a ped. Who I totally go off on.  They took Grant away for something small and now this guy is standing in front of me going down this list of crap they insist is going to kill the baby any moment now if he doesn't stay in special care. (For the record, NOTHING they were carrying on about was actually life threatening. And I knew that.  At some point in all the yelling the house ped realizes I might know what I am talking about when I Start demanding a CBC and he shuts up and backs off a bit.)

And so I just keep yelling at them to return my child NOW.

And I call my own ped who gets them on the phone to sort out what in the holy hell is going on.

Once my own ped is off the phone, super nurse manages to get him returned to me.

Of course, Grant starts to look much more stable once he is returned and super nurse tells them more than once that he should have been with me all the time. That everything they have been freaking out about would have been much more easily resolved had he been allowed kangaroo care and nursing.

And again I think, okay, down hill side. Down hill side.

But no.  Every two hours they decide something else is wrong with him. They just keep it up. And they are relentless.  This doctor and that doctor and on and on.  I can tell they are struggling to find a nurse who can *manage ME* when the shift change comes again.

Some of them clearly get that I am on edge, some of them don't seem to give a shit.

By the time I manage to get them to discharge us (which was another 8 hours of arguing), they have listed  no fewer than 10 things wrong with Grant.  Everything from *floppy* to some bizarre scalp issue to sacral dimple (which of course they wanted to start TESTING immediately never mind that Jackson has one too and it is NOT anything dangerous,) to tongue tied.

And me? TOTALLY TRAUMATIZED. I spent nearly 72 hours REALLY, REALLY fighting for my baby, in every way possible.

For now I am just supremely happy to be home and looking forward to the moment when this is all forgotten. Or at least a lot farther away in the rear view mirror.

P.S. My own ped saw us yesterday and said that the only thing *wrong* with the baby is that he has clogged tear ducts and he does have some floppiness, or low muscle tone.  He doesn't seem to think this will be a big issue in the long run and said we will just wait it out a bit and see what happens.  I think part of is that he is ONE VERY BIG boy (more like the size of an 8 weeker) and it's harder to move himself around. I also very firmly believe that being ripped out like that with no descent through the birth canal had to be physically traumatic for him. (It sure as hell was for me, ouch.) He was so active in the belly that the nurses kept saying they had never seen a monitor reading like that on a baby in labor before, so I know damn good and well he CAN move himself around.

P.P.S. Had I believed for a moment we were ever truly in danger I would have obviously just consented to the section.  This doctor just wanted to hurry. He had ZERO patience in the heat of the moment and I had that fear going in. It was time for yom kippur and not time to just wait on a baby. And no, I am not being snarky, I swear that is what was going on. He was not at all interested in what I was saying, and I have already had two kids. I sort of have a clue as to how my own body works in labor, you know?


  1. Scary ride indeed! Wowsers~good for you, knowing what was best. Not sure I would have been able to keep up with all you went through.
    But you are home now and hopefully those memories will dim soon...
    Hug those kids, Mama and love them!
    So glad the worse is over!

  2. That does sound like a scary ride, and I'm so glad it all turned out well. You're my hero in this story.

    30 years ago I had a C-section with my first born (breech presentation) and developed a fever the evening after the birth. They took my baby away for 3 days until my temperature finally came down (they refused to give me aspirin which the doctor claimed might mask any symptoms from a possible infection) and would not even feed him my breast milk (possibly tainted, they said). I was extremely distressed, but I was in no condition, physically or mentally, to put up a big fight. They never discovered the cause of the fever.

    I wish I could have been more like you at the time -- less intimated and way more aggressive.

  3. Sounds nearly identical to my story. It is indeed, scary. I was timid too since we had recntly lost a baby in our family, so I thought they knew best. Now I know differently. But, that's why I only have one kid.

    So Sarah, You have three kids? Now what are you going to do?

    (*That's supposed to sound like the DisneyWorld commercials. )

    You have what you always wanted! Yeah!

  4. Yikes, yikes, yikes ... I am so glad you are home with your baby but what a terrible experience. Sending healing thoughts your way.

  5. Prayers that you heal quickly, get the rest you need, and that Grant shows them all up as soon as possible. Good for you for standing up for him and for yourself, but I can only imagine you're spent. Love those babies - you did AMAZING.

  6. Sarah...They vacuumed Jerod out too and it was total terror. Big huge knob on his head and all. I loved my OB but despised the nurses. The whole experience can be made by who you have in your room. I am so sorry you had this many problems. I am however thrilled that you have a new baby boy and he is big and healthy and home. BTW we also had a clogged tear duct that healed just fine too. So incredibly happy for you. How's Cheeks. Smiles..Renee

  7. OMG Sarah...I cannot believe what you went through. I had chills the whole time I was reading this post, and all I can say is you are one heck of a strong fighting woman. So glad you're home with your loving family and your beautiful baby boy! You are my hero! *e*

  8. Sarah - You are so COURAGEOUS and STRONG! You did the right thing all the way through. I am in awe of you. It is frustrating when they won't listen to the person who is in labor and the mom. I pray that you heal quickly! You are super mom! Lot of love being sent your way.

  9. Oh man!!! At least you are all happy and healthy at home! Congrats on baby grant- which btw was one of our boy g names:).

  10. Oh man!!! At least you are all happy and healthy at home! Congrats on baby grant- which btw was one of our boy g names:).


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