Wednesday, August 23, 2017, 6:06pm
Our baby girl was born!!! Time to tell her story! As most of you have previously read- we had an appointment the Friday before she was born and found out she was possibly 8lb, 10oz. With that news we decided to start the induction process the following Tuesday if she didn’t come on her own, and of course she did not! So, our story begins on Tuesday, August 22, 2017, at 9:00pm at Germantown Methodist Women’s Pavillion.
Will and I were told to check in at the hospital at 9:00pm. I knew there was a chance they may not let me eat anything, so we were sure to have a last dinner out together before we checked in- we went to Carrabba’s- I figured I may as well carb-load!
After finishing, it was time to check-in! Upon checking in, the first thing the doctor was going to start was Round One of Cytotec. Cytotec is supposed to help prepare your body and make it ready for Pitocin, which would be administered if the Cytotec worked. Pitocin was what would be used to actually start labor. So, we began with the first round.
The first round didn’t seem to affect my body at all. Cytotec does make you start contractions which helps your body dilate. Each time they give you a round of Cytotec you lay basically flat for an hour and a half, and then you wait a total of four hours to see if any progress has been made. You can get up to use the bathroom, but other wise you stay in the bed with monitors to check the baby’s heart rate as well as a blood pressure cuff the whole time. Eating and even drinking water are not allowed. Ice chips is all that is allowed! Soon, on to rounds 2, 3, and 4 for us!
With rounds 2, 3, and 4 I started having contractions. With rounds 3 and 4, they DEFINITELY started picking up. With round 4 they had gotten so intense that I was starting to breathe through them, and was sure that SOMETHING had to have finally worked.
When the nurse came in to check, I was completely closed, so still not ready for Pitocin. One thing I can say is our doctor was fantastic- he was incredibly patient and would have continued letting us try the Cytotec to help me dilate, and that meant the world to me. He knew I really wanted to try to deliver naturally, and tried his hardest to help that happen. When the nurse checked after this fourth round and said there had been no change, Will and I really had to debate what our next move would be. My contractions had been big enough that something should have happened… We had the option to start another round of Cytotec, or to decide on a c-section. The biggest complication we were running in to with making this decision was that our baby was on the larger side. If we tried another round of Cytotec, there was a chance I still wouldn’t dilate, or if I did, I may get stuck and not progress…. leading to a c-section. If I did (hopefully) progress from another round, theres a chance she may end up being too big to deliver all the way and I would still need a c-section. But again, my contractions were already so big and frequent, that the odds of me successfully dilating were getting smaller and smaller. Will and I decided to for-go the fifth round and go ahead with a c-section. At this point it was between 2:00pm-3:00pm. My doctor would be in around 5:00pm and could start the c-section at that point.
I slowly started trying to wrap my head around the c-section. This whole pregnancy I had really been looking forward to trying to push through labor and delivery, but at the same time the end goal was to get our sweet girl here, so this was the best decision.
At this point we would just wait for our doctor to show up. Within 5-10 minutes of making the decision to do the c-section, my water broke! I honestly wasn’t sure what had happened at first because NOTHING had dilated, and water breaking is usually done by a doctor for most people…. but it had happened. The nurse ran in and checked and sure enough I had dilated 2 centimeters, she pushed it to 3 centimeters when she checked me. My contractions quickly progressed and were only a couple minutes apart. They were big and painful and frequent. We still couldn’t do anything until my doctor got there, and there was no need to start pitocin because my body was already (and finally) doing what it was supposed to on it’s own. I breathed through the contractions, waiting to see if maybe now I would be able to deliver the way I had been hoping I could! Shout out to Pure Barre- I breathed in and out through each contraction, with my eyes closed and kept telling myself all the little quotes they say in class all the time- “you are stronger than you think” and “only 10 more seconds” until I would get a break. My doctor did show up, later than planned at 5:30pm. He checked my contractions and said they were beautiful and text book perfect, so then he checked how much more I had dilated….and I was only at 4cm, only 1cm different, and that’s only because the nurse had pushed me an extra cm herself. With all those hours and such big contractions I had only managed to dilate an extra centimeter. He was still as patient and kind and willing to do whatever I wanted. He said we could try waiting it out and hopefully some more progress would be made, or we could go on ahead with the c-section. I like honest opinions and my doctor and the nurse both told us the realities of what could happen, so we decided to continue on with the c-section. I felt a little better about it- mostly because I did get to experience labor, and apparently very strong contractions, which is part of what I wanted to feel when giving birth, and my doctor told us there was still a chance that if we have a future pregnancy, I could still possibly deliver naturally, so on to the c-section we went! At this point I had still not had any form of pain medicine, and was still obviously having very intense contractions very close together. Holding still and not having anything to brace myself on when they did the spinal block was quite the experience…. knowing a needle was going in to my spine and that any movement could mess that up. Once again I held my breath and told myself the famous Pure Barre motto “you are stronger than you think” as I had a huge contraction while they inserted the needle.” Soon it took effect, and they brought Will in to sit with me. I remember telling him that it felt like the worst massage ever! I could have sworn it felt like someone was sitting on me! (There is no pain with the c-section, but there is a lot of pressure while they are doing it.) After seeing the pictures I couldn’t believe that it was just their hands pushing!
Our baby was here!!! Will sat right beside me, and as soon as I heard that sweet little cry, all I could say was “‘my baby!” over and over and over, and that I couldn’t wait to see her! Dr Williams held her up for her first picture! (The anesthesiologist was awesome- he took pictures of everything for us!) (Also- funny side story- Will and I have continuously joked this whole pregnancy that we would be the people who would deliver the baby and “she” would suddenly be a “he.” Well as soon as Annabelle Grace came out, the anesthesiologist quickly goes “What a handsome baby boy!” Will then made a confused face and said “We thought we were having a girl….” He checked and laughed and said “A beautiful baby girl!” Really it was a priceless moment!)
I got a quick glimpse of her and they quickly moved her over to weigh her. Will was able to go to that side of the room with the nurses and was even able to hold her little itty bitty hand while they checked her out!
THEN it was my turn to see this sweet little baby we created!
The anesthesiologist even got part of it on camera as a video too!
They finally unstrapped one of my arms so I could kind of touch her too!
Of course we got our first family photo of 3! Will in his surgical attire, me with my blood-shot, tear-filled, tired eyes, and our beautiful baby girl!
We took some more photos with her, of course!
She had her first hospital bath:
And she of course had lots of great visitors of the course of the few days we were in the hospital! Will’s parents, his Aunt Kitty, Kelly, Elise, Richard, and our favorite monographer, Kelly!
Will learned the technique of burping and changing diapers super fast! He actually changed all of her diapers while we were in the hospital since I couldn’t really get up and down yet/easily from the c-section! He proved himself over and over again at how great of a Dad he is!
Our whole experience was really just wonderful at Germantown Methodist Women’s Pavillion. All of the nurses, doctors, and staff were fantastic. We were there from our initial check in on Tuesday night, until Saturday mid-day when we were discharged. Of course I had to get Annabelle dressed up to leave, in the most perfect outfit, so that she could meet her next round of visitors at home!
Once we made it to Helena, Annabelle Grace got to meet her great-grandmother Ann King, and great-aunt Kelly! Not long after my parents and Nana showed up from North Carolina, so she was also able to meet them!
Our first week with Annabelle Grace was nothing short of perfect! I already have tons more to say and write about her, but that will be for another day! (It is a little difficult to find the time to actually write all of this up! Obviously- since this has taken me 3 weeks to write! But, I wouldn’t have it any other way!!!! If anyone is going to consume my time, it may as well be this rainbow baby of ours!) Look out for more posts soon! Time for me to go wake a sleeping baby!