Thursday, March 9, 2017

The Birth Story

 I'm sitting in my now quiet bedroom with a tiny human sleeping in the bassinet next to me. As hard as it is to keep my eyes open I can't fall asleep. Jackson's birthday was one of the most surreal days of my entire life. Here's what happened.

I was supposed to be induced Wednesday morning at 6:30 am, but while we were both lying awake with anticipation my water broke at 1:30. I started having contractions pretty much right away and when I got to the hospital was dilated to 6 cm. By the time I reached 8 I was ready for the epidural and it was sweet, sweet relief. I rested for a while until the doctor came in and said I was complete and ready to start pushing. She left me with the nurse and I pushed for three and a half hours. They had turned my epidural down so that I could feel my contractions, and boy, could I. When the doctor came in the baby had hardly moved and the only progress that was made was my exhaustion and frustration.

Finally she said "I know we were really hoping for this to work but he's just not going to come this way". They brought me consent forms for my C-section and I think I cried all the way to the operating room. Justin got gowned up, but when they started the numbing it just wasn't working in the places that it needed to so I had to be put under general anesthesia. Which meant that Justin couldn't be in the room. It's a good thing that gas worked fast because I was a wreck at this point.

After what felt like forever I woke up being wheeled to a recovery room where people were poking and prodding me and telling me that my son was healthy. Soon after that I was groggily brought into the post-partum room and Justin wheeled in the bassinet with our 8 lb. 5 oz. Jackson Henry in it. 

Thanks to new-mom euphoria and pain killers, I smiled as my parents and Justin's parents passed our baby around and welcomed company while nurses and doctors filed in and out checking my vitals and incision. The next three and a half days in the hospital though, weren't as sunshine-y. Between the hormones, exhaustion, and recovery from major surgery I cried a ridiculous amount in those few days. 

When my doctor came in to take the dressing off of my incision, the tape got caught on my IV  line and ripped it out. I had a big itchy stripe of redness from my epidural tape that ran from the back of my neck down to my butt--which was only made worse by sitting in bed against a sheet all day. Nurses were coming in on their shifts all telling me different things; walk here during the day, you can't walk down here, I can give him a pacifier if you want, he shouldn't have a pacifier, I don't know when you're going to go home, you can choose when you go was crazy. 

I was feeling really helpless and terrible. I needed help getting in and out of bed. Justin had to put my socks on for me. I couldn't lift Jackson out of the bassinet or walk around the room with him so people had to bring him to me. It killed me watching other people doing everything for my baby while I couldn't and the one thing that only I could do--feed him--has been a huge struggle for us. 

After surgery when things had calmed down a little bit, the doctor came in to talk with me about everything that happened. I still struggle with a lot of feelings of missing out. I didn't get to deliver my baby the way I always dreamed I would, I didn't get to hear his first cry or have him placed on my chest right away, and it breaks my heart that Justin couldn't be in the room. She told me that she did not regret letting me try pushing, but that the likelihood of me having that kind of delivery in the future is about 10%. It was an overwhelming day and I'm still processing quite a bit of it but in the end I know that it was what needed to happen, and even if it didn't go how I had planned I still have a healthy, beautiful baby boy who makes it all worth it.
   This might be the longest post I've ever written. If you made it all the way through, thanks for reading! 


  1. Oh my gosh, I'm so sorry everything went down like it did! Aside from the obvious reward of having your baby boy finally here, that sounds pretty miserable. But - you're brave and you survived and you are so right - Jackson is absolutely beautiful and healthy and he's lucky to have a mama like you!!

    Did they tell you why he wouldn't move down for delivery or were they just like "sorry, didn't work and probably won't next time"??

  2. I am SO sorry to hear about your experience!!!! I honestly want to cry for you. The misinformation plus the exhaustion and hormones would have killed me. I'm thrilled you have a healthy baby boy, but there's definitely a grieving process when things don't happen the way you had planned and prepared.

  3. Well first of all, I'm so happy for you guys and little Jackson!

    Other than that, I'm so sorry! I can't imagine how hard that must have been to have all your planning go out the window and not even be awake when your son was born.

    Hopefully feeding is going better and your recovery got better. You've got this!