Birth – Round One

I thought it may be helpful to share my birthin’ experiences. I’ve only had two (that I know of) and I’ll try to keep the graphics and horror to a minimum.

I was 42 weeks pregnant with my first son when my doctor decided it may be worth inducing me. Frankly, I think it was because her waiting room wouldn’t hold me anymore and she was sick of my whining. So I waddled into the hospital all ready to give birth with my extra pillow and overnight bag.

First thing they did was give me a foley induction which is inserting a small balloon into your cervix to get the party started. It’s about as pleasant as it sounds and, to my surprise, I was sent home after being told that if it falls out, it’s a good thing. Er, okay. Well, it didn’t fall out so I shuffled in the next day all ready for step two.

Step two was having my water broken by satan. Yes, he was satan. He was old, mean and seemed like something out of a bad Grey’s Anatomy episode. Now, many women I have spoken to said that this didn’t hurt at all so don’t be scared off by my experience, but he used something that looked like a knitting needle to break my water and you could have peeled me off the ceiling. He kept telling me to relax which seems to be what the medical profession tells you to imply that any pain is self-inflicted rather than having anything to do with what they are up to.

Next step was to give me oxytocin through an IV drip in my hand (ouch!) to start my contractions and, man, did it work. At first I was like “This is no problem. I can handle this.” then the contractions started to get a lot closer together and a lot stronger. Panic set in and I thought “Holy shit. How do women do this!?” In the middle of one of these crazy contractions and nurse popped in to check my IV and said “just let us know if and when you want anything for the pain”. I was like “Now. Now!! Are you kidding me?! How long could I have had drugs!? Get me drugs!!”

Then the most wonderful man in the world walked in, the anesthesiologist. I’m not kidding when I say there was a glowing aura behind him when he walked in but that could have also been the blinding pain I was in. Once again I was told to relax as he gave me an epidural. Did it hurt? Not at all but I was in such pain that you could have taken a shovel to my head and I wouldn’t have cared. Then the drugs kicked in and it was glorious. I thought it was good because I was out of pain but I felt amazing – it was like an all over body buzz. It was fantastic!!

Sadly, I didn’t dilate. I got to 4cm (out of 10) and stalled.

My doctor finally came in a gently suggested that maybe I should consider a c-section. Now some women would be horrified by this but I was pretty game. All I wanted was a healthy baby and I didn’t care how he got here. So I said “go for it”.

They suited me and my husband up and I was wheeled into the operating room where my angel anesthesiologist was waiting for me again to dial up the drugs. My doctor came in and went to work. Everything felt pretty good. Nothing hurt but it really was a strange sensation. Then my doctor told me I would feel a little pressure. She wasn’t kidding. If I didn’t know better I would swear she sat on my chest and jumped up and down but, again, it didn’t hurt so I wasn’t going to complain. All of a sudden she said “Here he is!” and she held up my son.

I’d like to say I burst into tears at the sight of him but it was all so surreal to me. I saw a baby but my mind couldn’t grasp that he was mine. They took the baby and put him in the warmed up cart thing and started checking him out and the rest of them went to work on patching me up. My poor husband didn’t know where to go so I barked at him to follow the baby like some kind of theatrical movie line. I don’t know what the hell I thought was going to happen but I thought it was important for my husband to stay with the display baby at all times.

I felt pretty good lying there but all of a sudden my teeth started to chatter, I got really cold and drowsy and I threw up. Charming, eh? I never did find out what that was all about. I can only assume it was something to do with blood pressure or something but I didn’t care at that point. All I wanted to do was sleep. Then they handed me my baby. My perfect, 10lb 1oz, giant lovely display baby. The nurse asked me if I wanted to try breastfeeding him (that’s a whole other post) so I said “sure” and it seemed easy enough. We got to our room and I slept for about 9 hours (it was the last 9 hours of consecutive sleep I would ever have). When I woke up the next day I felt pretty good and I started getting used to the fact that the display baby was mine and that was pretty cool.

Overall, I was pretty happy with my birth experience. It didn’t take too long for me to recover and I had a beautiful, healthy baby boy. What more could ya want? Maybe to meet that satan doctor in a dark alley with a tire iron. I would tell him to “just relax”.

If you want to hear more, here’s Round Two.

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59 Comments

  • Hahahaha. I got that line so much. JUST RELAX. hey, when you screw up my epidural because you can’t wait to do it until my contraction has passed, it’s pretty hard to relax! I will punch someone if they tell me to do that while labouring with my second.

  • Omg, I was laughing like a loon at this.. I just had #4 last Nov and they induced me for the very first time due to health reasons ( mine). Ugh. Almost 24 hours later and I had my beautiful little girl.. who ended up with severe jaundice (but that is another comment!) Boy they do not play with that inducement… at the end I was in tears it hurt so bad. My others were like 1.5 hours of hard labor and out came a kid… not this one.

  • I had a similar story. I started at a birth center and at 42 weeks ended up in the hospital. We did a foley bulb for a day coupled with a two mile walk, an herbal induction with two rounds of castor oil (at least, attempted two rounds; I tried one sip of the second round and threw up), a round of cervidel and two rounds of cytotec and breaking my water – five days all told. Breaking the water was really painful for me too, which surprised my OB. After ending up with contractions on top of each other and stalling at 4 cm my OB offered pitocin and I just gave up and went with a c section. (My OB is fantastic and didn’t even utter the words c-section – I was the one who brought it up.) I didn’t want to risk an epidural stalling labor and pitocin stressing the baby and ending up with an emergency c-section. The anesthesiologist was in all honesty a bit of a putz – my OB and I talked about me watching the birth but when the time came the anesthesiologist wouldn’t lower the curtain. I also experienced the shaking – I was told that was very normal after birth, regardless of how the baby was delivered?? I also felt really cold, like the entire lower part of my body was just icy. Our doula took over 150 pictures of the surgery – she was so great!!

    Anyway thank you for posting this. It made me feel so much less alone!

  • My birth experience with my son was nearly identical. Scheduled induction at 41 weeks and started with the cervidel (the thingy that went up the who-ha). That brought the contractions one super hard and less than a minute apart within a few hours and with no dilation to go with the contractions, they took it out. The epidural was a god send that I fought for a couple of hours despite the hours I had spent howling in pain (the doctor was surprised she got it on the first try because I was shaking so bad). After about 35 hours and having been checked by 3 residents (one of them was NOT gentle), it was determined that I still hadn’t progressed past 4.5cm and that my son was presenting face first. All of which meant c section. I insisted on talking to my doctor, thinking that my son could be turned and I would eventually dilate, but agreed that the c section was best and that yes, I could still try for vaginal for kid #2. I was still angry when I was wheeled in to the OR. Obviously I wanted a healthy kid, but my ENTIRE birth guideline (too flimsy to call a plan, but still) had been thrown off a cliff by every medical intervention possible. There wasn’t enough time to wrap my head around it.
    But of course, my little nugget still didn’t want to come out and fought my doctor when he pulled. He eventually came out and my anger disappeared when I saw him for the first time and said "he’s perfect". My husband followed the baby when he was taken upstairs and I promptly passed out for what was apparently a couple of hours.
    I’m hoping for a shorter and better birth story for when we eventually have #2.

  • My first was kind of similar. Was induced at 42 weeks, but they didn’t send me home after the foley balloon. They had me stay the night in the hospital to monitor me, why I don’t know since I wasn’t high risk or anything. In the morning I had only dilated to 1cm, so they started me on pit. Didn’t need the anesthesiologist yet since none of my contractions got bad enough for me to want an epidural. After being on pit for 10 hours and stalling at 1.5cm, my doc suggested a C-section. Maybe it was because I didn’t have an epidural at the time, but the idea of surgery scared me. I was shaking so bad when the wheeled me into the OR that it took quite a few warm towels to calm the shakes long enough for the anesthesiologist to numb me. Not being able to feel anything from the waist down was kinda neat. After a few minutes I hear a woosh of water (they didn’t break my water earlier), a pop, and then a baby cry. At that point I started bawling as they showed me my little angel over the dropcloth. Cool thing was my husband was videotaping the whole thing so a lot of the details are fresher from the tape. Of course he had to stop when they handed him the baby after cleaning him off. I didn’t sleep much that night, had trouble breastfeeding him. Never did get it right, had to pump milk for 8 months. Currently 31 weeks pregnant with my second. Scheduled a c-section since my last one was just 16 months ago and I don’t want to chance a rupture. Now that I know what to expect it probably won’t be so scary this time.

  • I had a very similar birth, 10 days late, induction, but I got all the way to 7cm before I stopped progressing. Then C-section, uncontrollable shaking and vomiting. My lovely anesthesiologist was sitting by my shoulder and turned my head and held my hair back while I was sick in the dish he held. He was wonderful.

  • Oh my gosh! Having my water broken by the doctor was the WORST experience of my entire life, doc didn’t even warn me! I literally screamed and immediately started crying (my labor was alright up until that point). That cued the back labor which promoted the eidural (best decision ever), I also didnt think the epidural hurt, but I was having horrid back labor and contractions that started as soon as the first one ended, so I couldn’t tell if it was the needle or the contractions. All in all I had an ok labor, nothing tramatic happened and all went well.

  • This comment may be way more than a day late and significantly more than a dollar short, but the chills are usually from IV fluids. They pump you full of fluids to keep you hydrated and your blood volume up but the stuff is room temperature so it can make you feel really cold when you’ve been on it for awhile. I think the vomiting was probably due to the drugs and the stress on your body.

  • Sounds like my birth experience too, anesthesiologist was a life saver! We had to do the foley, inducing and in the end c-section, but we had too as baby’s heart rate was dropping and it turned out she had a true knot in her cord, so thank God for the c-section. I wanted a natural birth no drugs, but inducing was hard!! Ad in the end was totally okay with the drugs and c-section, had a really quick recovery and we’ll see how the next one goes! Thanks for sharing 🙂

  • I’m 31 weeks pregnant and I seriously love your blog! The way you write makes everything fun and funny, even the scary/gross stuff. It’s so nice to hear because everyone around me has been so negative and discouraging and I’m already stressed beyond belief.

  • Sounds like your inducing experience was identical to mine. My water broke but I wasn’t progressing and they had to give me oxytocin. At first I thought, "oh yeah, I can totally handle these contractions." Then shit hit the fan in a matter of 30 minutes and I was picturing women who do this naturally as both saints and idiots. How could ANYONE handle that pain?! Guess I’m just a wuss.
    My anesthesiologist also had a halo of light around her. Ours must’ve went to the same school.

  • wow your birth story sounds almost exactly the same as mine! Down to the throwing up after the c section while they were cleaning up the baby. The only thing that was different for me was that i didn’t sleep at all after it. I have heard a lot of birth stories but never one SO like my own. Thanks for posting!

  • Oh my god, I totally know what you mean about the pain with breaking your water. When my doctor broke mine during my induction (that ended up being a c-section), I broke out into a full body sweat instantaneously and my eye balls almost popped out of my head. It was NOT an enjoyable experience. I'll take the c-section, thank you. I love your website. I have laughed so much since finding it.

  • I just found your site today and this had me laughing – I went through exactly the same thing: Induction, pitocin, stuck at 4cm, C-section followed by chattering teeth/shaking/vomiting. I thought I was the only one! I am jealous of your 9 hours of sleep though. My hospital had just changed the baby-napping alarms the day I was admitted and there was a "kink" in the system that they had to work out. I was awakened numerous times by alarms going off and nurses running in thinking someone had taken my child out of the hospital. (Funny side note – they upgraded the alarms 19 months later: The day before my 2nd child was born. They had to work out similar kinks that time.)

  • My anesthesiologist's name (seriously) was Dr. Love. And boy did he fit that name. I loved him from the second he walked in. And even more when they had to start the 2nd bag of epidural. But never so much as when I got the 3rd bag…

  • I fell in love with my anesthesiologist too! After hours of having contractions and having the doctors telling me they wouldn't give me an epidural because I wasn't dilated enough I finally convinced them that I was going to die if I wasn't quickly drugged. Then, my gorgeous, young, blond, Brad Pitt look-a-like hero walked into my life. And I asked him if I could kiss him…. Six months have passed and I still think of him lovingly!

  • I didn't have any drugs with my second baby, but I got the chills really bad, too…like they have me covered in 4 of those warmed up blankets and I still was shaking like I was naked at the south pole. I think it's something to do with the adrenaline leaving your body, or something. Who knows?

  • From what I’ve read, your chills and vomiting were likely due to the drugs. Glad you were happy with this first birth experience. So many people don’t feel comfortable going with the flow like you did.

  • It’s coming! I want to write a post about the "joys" of breastfeeding my first son before I launch into the birth of my second. You’ve given me an excellent kick in the ass though. Stay tuned.

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