Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Birth Story Week: Baby June part 2

Welcome back for part 2 of Baby June's birth story! Get caught up here on part 1.

So we had the decelerations under control, but sometime in the early morning, I developed a fever. Since my water had broken so long ago, I had more than likely developed chorioamnionitis, a bacterial uterine infection. I was given antibiotics and the nurses told us that Baby would also need antibiotics after she was born, just in case the infection had spread to her. There is a test they could run to see if she had the infection before giving her the meds, but by the time the test came back she could be gravely ill if she was infected. This meant that she would be taken to the NICU soon after delivery and could possibly need to stay there for the first 24 hours for monitoring. This definitely did not fit into our birth plan. But we were willing to do anything that needed to be done to keep her healthy.

Christina Driscoll Photography 

When the day shift came on at 7am, a new nurse and midwife came in to check me. I was...get ready...9cm dilated! Honestly, I was just happy she didn't say 3cm again. However, there was some meconium staining when she checked me. This means that June had her first bowel movement, probably from the stress of the decelerations and infection. The nurses and midwife then began preparing us for what would happen when we delivered. A NICU team would be in the delivery and Baby Girl would immediately be placed under a warmer so she could be assessed and ventilated if needed. Before they're born, babies "breathe" the amniotic fluid for practice. This meant that Baby could possibly inhale the meconium fluid and have trouble breathing and/or develop an infection in her lungs. This also meant that she might need to be stimulated to cry after delivery and that Hubs would not likely get to cut the cord. We were losing every little thing we wanted to experience. But I would've given birth on my head if it meant she'd be ok.

A few hours later, I was finally completely dilated. I started pushing at 11am. Surprisingly, pushing was the easiest part of this whole ordeal. That epidural does wonders! We had a mirror positioned so I could see the whole thing. This is not something I recommend if you're squeamish or easily grossed out. Birth is a beautifully disgusting thing. After being present at so many other births, I was excited to finally see one from this point of view.

When the midwife told us she could see June's hair, we both started crying. I was just so glad she wasn't bald like I was as a baby. Then they said she had dark hair. That was it. We both lost it. We were crying before we even met her!

After 25 minutes of pushing, she was here! She started crying immediately, thank GOD! I could barely see through the waterfall coming out of my eyes. And I've never seen my husband cry so much before. He was able to cut the cord before she was whisked away to the warmer to be checked out. While I mopped up my tears, Daddy went to stand close to the warmer and soak up her first few minutes of life on Earth. The NICU team gave her the all clear and I was able to hold her for just a few short minutes. She looked so much like her Daddy from the very start. I wanted to stay in that moment forever. I had our new baby in my arms and a loving husband at my side. My life was complete.

Christina Driscoll Photography

Christina Driscoll Photography

Christina Driscoll Photography

While Travis went with Aleah and the nurses to the NICU, I stayed in the room and called all the grandparents and other family members to tell them she was finally here! Everyone was so happy to hear that we were both doing well. I even got to eat a quick lunch before Baby and Daddy came back to the room.

He said that they tried at least 12 times to start an IV while she was in there, but that she handled it really well. She would need antibiotics periodically for the next 48 hours , but other than that and her standard newborn medications and vaccine, she didn't need any neonatal interventions, thank the LORD!

Christina Driscoll Photography

We spent the next 48 hours learning how to be a family of 3, at least in a hospital. We learned infinitely more once we brought her home. It may have been a rough couple of days, but she makes it all worth it.

Before I go, I want to say something that might shock you. Or you might be able to completely relate. Here goes...I wasn't head-over-heels, madly in love with our daughter from the moment I saw her. Yes, she was beautiful and healthy and I was so happy to finally meet her. But because I didn't get the immediate bonding experience due to extenuating circumstances, I think our true bonding came a couple of days later. I wouldn't go so far as to say that she didn't initially feel like mine, but I do think that if everything had worked out so that we could've had skin-to-skin and breastfeeding time right after birth, I might've felt closer to her from the start. Maybe it took a couple of days, but we did fall in love and I haven't looked back since. We absolutely love our little girl and we wouldn't change a thing. Our story may not have been the one we had in mind, but it's our story and we're sticking to it!

Christina Driscoll Photography

I encourage you all to be informed about what you would like to happen during your birthing experience. Making decisions while you're in pain is not easy to do. But keep in mind, that plan may get tossed out the window if there are complications. You have to be prepared for that, too.

Did you have the Labor & Delivery experience you planned?
How did you handle it when/if things changed?
Have any questions about the interventions we went through? Just ask!

Don't forget to enter for a chance to win the Birth Story Week giveaway!

God Bless,

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