Her Birth Story

This post is long overdue and I figured I had better get it written down before I lose the last of my marbles and forget it completely.

Lily's EDD (expected due date) was March 28th, 2010. This particular year the 28th was Palm Sunday. Not only was I born on Palm Sunday, but so was my mom! We thought for sure that it was written in the stars that our little first born lady (my mother and I are both the oldest as well) would arrive on her due date.

I was working as a 7th grade teacher, and my maternity leave was already not going to be enough to carry me through the end of the school year, so I wanted to take off as little time as possible before her birth. I worked up until Friday, March 26th. In homeroom at the end of the day each of the homerooms on my team presented me with giant good luck cards. I will keep them forever as a testament to my fellow teachers; have you ever tried to get a 13 year old boy to participate in a written expression of emotion? My favorite quote, "Mrs. S, you are cool and I hope you have a cool baby!!!!!!!" - me too kiddo, me too!

Much to my dismay and despite trying every wives tale for inducing pregnancy (minus caster oil, gag), I was still very much pregnant the following Friday (April 2nd). Though I have to admit when 11pm on April 1st rolled around and there was still no baby I breathed a sigh of relief...no April Fool's Day baby for us! Throughout my entire pregnancy I had been sure of two things: one, Lily was a girl; and two, that she would be a March baby. I literally could not wrap my head around the fact that she was an April baby, even days after she was born! The weather on Friday was unseasonably warm and I woke up feeling great, "no baby today" I said to my husband. We had a doctors appointment at 11:30 and had planned to go out to lunch and for a long walk along the beach afterwards.  At the appointment an ultrasound revealed that I had very little amniotic fluid; although I was certain my water had not "broken". The Dr. asked if we had our bags packed (of course we did, I was a first timer!) and when we gave him the affirmative he said, "Good, better head to the hospital to have this baby." I was 1cm dilated and only about 20% effaced so we knew an induction was in our future.

We arrived at the hospital where 4 women were already in active labor, which meant they did not have a room for us. We set up shop in a temporary room and proceeded to walk the hospital for 2 hours. When they finally had a room for us it was after 7pm. The first room they set us up in was staggeringly hot and the L&D nurse insisted that we move to a cooler room. At about 8pm I was given Cervidil to begin the labor process, I was told to get some sleep and that labor would likely not start until the morning. I started having contractions almost immediately but was again told to try and sleep; that I was not in labor.

At around midnight I woke Matt up to tell him that if anyone thought I was going to sleep through this kind of pain, they were freaking nuts. I pushed the button for the nurse who after looking at the machines said, "Wow how long have you been lying here in pain, why didn't you call me?!?" Four hours lady...four flippin' hours!  Remember you told me I was not in labor? (She was very sweet, I just remember feeling stupid for having laid there for so long) Two hours later, after trying to walk around, sit on the "labor ball" (which I really detested), and getting in and out of bed I asked to be checked to see how much I had dilated. Much to my relief I was at 5.5cm. As soon as I heard that glorious number I asked for an epidural. If I could have jumped for joy; I would have. The hardest part of my entire labor experience was trying to sit still on the bed while the epidural was put in place...at this point I was starting to panic from the pain and was not happy that Matt had been made to leave the room. After the epidural was in place I was euphoric (and not at all in a drugged up kind of way, it was a kind of relief I have never experienced). At around 6am I was relaxed and labor was moving along slowly. Matt asked the nurses if he had time to run home and let the dog out. (We live 7 minutes from the hospital) They said certainly and I promised him that nothing would happen while he was gone. Soon after he left the delivery doctor came in to check on my progress. I was thrilled to see that the on call doc was a favorite from my group practice.

I should have known something was up when he pulled up a chair and started making small talk, all the while never taking his eyes off of the baby's monitors. After about 15 minutes of chatting I looked him square in the eye and told him to tell me what was going on. His words hit me like a truck, "The baby is under some duress." Because of my non-existent fluid, each contraction was pressing on her umbilical cord and her heart rate was crashing. Of course I started to cry and although he assured me they were keeping an eye on her, I wanted her outa there, like yesterday!

As soon as Matt returned we discussed our options with the doctors (a shift change had occurred) and our doctor agreed to stay and assist at the C-section; I knew there was a reason we liked him! My only complaint about the whole experience is that I felt out of the loop. Matt was trying to pay attention to me (while simultaneously trying not to faint) and none of the nurses in the room seemed to be giving anyone an update. There were several minutes where I cried panicky tears as I stared at the ceiling. Finally...

Lily Victoria was born at 8:52am on April 3rd. Matt cut the cord and for both of us it was love at first sight.