Monday morning I went to my first of two 35 week NST/AFT appointments alone. We figured she wasn’t going to come till next week so Jeremy needed to save his time off. At that appointment we found out that my fluid had dropped to 5.6 cm (anything lower than a 5 your classified as having a condition called Oligohydramnis). The appointment that morning lasted quite a while since the doctors were trying to decide if they should induce me a week earlier than they had planned the amniocentesis.
They finally sent me home but I had to go back the next morning and have another NST/AFI done instead of waiting till Wednesday.
Mom went with me Tuesday morning. We dropped JD off at Trish’s house (THANKS AGAIN) and headed down to UVRMC in Provo. When they checked my fluid this time it was at a 3.7-9? (can’t remember the exact number). Sure enough within 30 minutes or so we were sent to AF Hospital to be induced. With her fluid that low the risk of a cord injury or growth restriction is high.
Mom and I headed north and I called Jeremy to let him know he needed to leave work and meet me at the hospital. We stopped by the house to grab a bag since I’d refused to put one together ahead of time. We got to the hospital around 10:30am.
At first things went pretty quickly. The same doctor that was on call during JD’s delivery was on call for this one so he knew the plan. They started me on Pitocin at noon and I quickly dilated from 1cm to 3+cm by about 3pm. At this point I was given the epidural. Oh that blasted epidural…
I am not given an option with the epidural. I am required to have one because of my heart. With an epidural they usually pump a mom full of liquids to compensate for your blood vessels dilating after you get the pain medication. They restrict my liquids so I have to be started on a very low dose of pain medication and then they will gradually increase it throughout the labor. It was all explained VERY well to us this time around. About 30 minutes after getting the epidural I was chatting with the nurse and immediately knew something wasn’t right. I’d had my blood pressure dip once during JD’s labor and I knew what it felt like. The nurse said I went white as a sheet very suddenly and sure enough I was at 77/44 and dropping(normal is 90/60-130/80). Within minutes I was flat on my back getting oxygen and I was getting my first shot (of 3 during the next 24 hours) of ephedrine to bring my blood pressure back up. The effect is almost instant and within 10 minutes I felt fine. He ended up turning down the epidural even a little more so I honestly could have walked around if they would have let me. My legs were not really numb at all. He explained that if I started to feel pain with the contractions to tell him and he would gradually increase the dose.
After that whole fiasco the doctor came in and broke my water, at this point I was almost at 4cm dilated and we expected things to go quickly. With JD’s labor it took me much longer to get to 4cm and once I hit 5cm he was born within 2 hours.
My pitocin was eventually turned all the way up as high as they go, and finally at 5pm I was dialated to 4cm. Since the contractions weren’t really close together they didn’t check me again till 9pm and there had been no change at all.
At 12:30am I had “maybe” changed 1/2 a cm. By this point in time we were on our 3rd nurse since we kept getting the 6 hour shift nurses and not the 12 hour ones (I don’t think they expected us to be there this long). The doctor ordered my Pitocin stopped and then restarted 30 minutes to “kick start” things a little.
My contractions started to get stronger but every time I’d ask a nurse to call about increasing the epidural . Around 4am I finally got a nurse to call and they did increase the epidural slightly. This was the only time I got it turned up at all. At that point in time I was still hanging out around 4cm and starting to get very discouraged.
My nurse came in and decided to check me at 5:45am since she would be switching with another nurse soon. I was at 4+cm still.
At 6pm I told Jeremy to go get mom and Trish who were down the hall since the contractions were getting really painful. I figured we had about 2 hours left maybe. As soon as he got back I told him to grab a nurse because I was feeling a ton of pressure.
At 6:10am I was 8cm dilated. She was shocked since they had JUST been talking about delivering me c-section. She left the room and no more than 2 minutes after she left I told Jer to get another nurse that I felt the need to push.
At 6:15am I was fully dilated and ready to go. The new nurse that JUST got there told me to “hold on” while she got the doctor and extra staff since Gwen was 5 weeks early. I was not pleased and wanted to just tell her to catch since I was sure Gwen was coming out even if I tried to hold on.
Lucky for all of us my doctor happened to be at the hospital already. When he was ready for me to start pushing I asked him about the forceps and he said he wasn’t going to use them. I was THRILLED at this point and only 3 contractions later Gwen came screaming into the world.
Gwendolyn Olive Brierley M. was born at 6:40am and weighed 6 lbs. 6 oz. and was 19.5 inches long. Her head is full of dark hair and while she still has her daddy’s eyes a little I believe she’s going to look more like mommy.
She was born just one day further into the pregnancy than JD was. Weighed 3 oz less than him and was 1/2 an inch taller.
Since this post is already very long I’ll tell you about the rest of her fist day in this world in a new one.