Tuesday, March 3, 2009

my birth story

Ok...finally. Here is the story of my labor as told by my husband Johnny with help from our doula Shana. The ones in italics & bold are the text messages he sent to a small list of friends and family. It's a LONG story and was a LONG labor. Enjoy!

Friday - 1/23
13:30 - normal OB GYN appointment - Sonya is 2cm dilated and 40% effaced. They send us to St Luke’s for a sonogram and some fetal monitoring. We walk through Central Park from 93rd and CPW to 58th & Amsterdam....30+ blocks! The resident on duty sends us up to Labor & Delivery to get further monitoring (for no real stated reason). We stay there for 4 hours. Sonya sees some minor contractions on the monitor and feels them a bit when we get home.

Saturday - 1/24
07:00 - I get up for work, Sonya is definitely feeling some contractions. I go into the job expecting to be called away by mid afternoon. The call never comes. I get home around 3PM. We finish off the day pretty normally. Sonya gets some napping in, and we go to bed kind of early.

Sunday - 1/25
00:00 - Sonya wakes up to full-on contractions. They start about 7 min apart, and fluctuate between 5 and 8.
00:45 - Sonya goes to the bathroom and has a bit of bloody show and notices mucus discharge is increasing.
01:00 - Contractions start to weaken a bit.
02:00 - Contractions intensify.
04:00 - I make Sonya an omelet.
05:00 - Things slow down a bit, we go back to sleep.
10:00 - We wake up, contractions are about 10-15 min apart, they stay that way most of the day.
17:00 - We take a long walk around the neighborhood. When we got home, things kick back in heavy. Contractions are about 3-5 min apart. We ride them out at home, eat some donuts we had bought on the walk, and start trying some positions to help Sonya deal with the pain.
22:30 - We call our doula Shana to give her a heads up, and call our OB Dr. Langer to tell her things were happening, but we decide to stay home for a while.
22:30 - Sonya takes a bath for about an hour.

Monday - 1/26
01:00 - We ask Shana to come over. She helps Sonya with pain and soothe her. We slowly get gear up for the hospital.
03:00 - - Sonya’s water breaks.
05:30 - We head to the hospital.
06:00 - Sonya is admitted to St. Lukes/Roosevelt.
07:00 - Sonya is checked. She is 3cm dilated and fully effaced. We are sent to our room in Labor & Delivery - Room 26. When we get there, we ask for intermittent monitoring. This is not greeted kindly, but eventually we get our way, and Sonya is free, on her feet again, and contracting on the birthing ball.
09:00 - Sonya is checked and is 5cm dilated. She takes a bit of a rest and lies down “As long as we have her lying down we should get her on the monitor”, they say...we reluctantly allow it.
09:21 - At the hospital...got here around 6AM. She’s 5cm and totally effaced, with pretty much non-stop contractions. This girl is AMAZING.
11:00 - While I was calling my folks, Dr. Lurie (our on duty OB) had come in and explained that she felt like Sonya’s contractions were “not strong enough”. She wants to introduce a intra-utero compression monitor to more accurately measure the contractions. We don’t feel we’re being given much of a choice, and it happens quickly. Sonya lies down for a bit more, and her contractions remain frequent, but weak. Dr. Lurie wants to start Pitocin. I ask for a bit of time to work with her on her feet, which I do. We begin taking contractions standing and on the birthing ball, and her contractions intensify greatly, but Dr Lurie does not like being unable to monitor the fetal heart rate (our movement had rendered the external monitor unreliable). So, she shortly insists if we were going to move around, that we apply the internal heart rate monitor. We’re uncomfortable with that, and talk her out of it.
12:30 - Sonya’s mobility is severely limited with the internal compression monitor, and she is pretty much forced back into a supine position on the bed. Things stall again, and Dr. Lurie says we need to get Pitocin going. She also recommends a Foley to empty her bladder, since she can’t get up or really move around much at all. We allow the Pitocin to be introduced slowly, and it is ramped up over the next few hours.
15:30 - The baby’s heart rate is dipping with each contraction, and they insist on the internal fetal heart rate monitor. A resident inserts it and screws it in.
16:00 - The Pitocin is reintroduced. Sonya’s contractions are now spaced out more, and still fairly weak.
16:27 - Still in fucking labor. Things have not gone as we had hoped them to. One
thing is certain, though. It cannot be underestimated how overwhelmed I am by the strength, will, and selflessness of Sonya. We are all lucky to know such a
creature...seriously - holy shit.

17:15 - Sonya is checked by Dr. Lurie and has dilated to 7cm. There are also traces of light meconium in the water but not enough or dark enough to worry about. Dr. Lurie feels like a Cesarean is around the corner, but knows Sonya wants a vaginal, natural birth. Since she will have to get an epidural to have a Cesarean, she suggests getting that first and seeing if that will relax the cervix enough to open up that last bit.
18:45 - Sonya is administered an epidural.
19:15 - Sonya nods off a bit, the Pitocin is increased, and I step out to get some food.
19:19 - After 44 hours spent riding out steady contractions without a drop of medicine, fetal heart rate issues have forced SK under an epidural. If this relaxes her cervix enough to push our baby out in the next few hours, we can avoid a c-section.
22:00 - Sonya is checked again. She is still 7cm, though the baby has dropped a bit more and is engaged.
23:15 - Depending on Sonya’s position in the bed, the fetal heart rate continues to dip severely during contractions. Dr. Lurie has an amnio-infusion administered to help relieve any pressure on the cord. The Pitocin is stopped for a bit, then reintroduced once the fluid has drained into the uterus.

Tuesday - 1/27
01:00 - Sonya is checked. She is 8.5cm dilated.
03:00 - Sonya is checked. She is 9cm dilated.
05:00 - After HOURS of lying on her back with an epidural on Pitocin, Sonya is finally dilated enough to attempt a push. There is still a lip to the cervix, but Dr. Lurie feels like she can push it aside with her fingers, if Sonya can push the baby through. Sonya’s natural labor has died by this point and the contractions are being created by the Pitocin alone. This is not a sufficient force to work with her, and her attempts to push fail.
06:30 - Sonya is taken to prep and to the OR, and I scrub up.
07:00 - I joined her in the OR for the cesarian.
07:03 - Suited up, and heading into the OR for the C.
07:24 - Angus Anton North is surgically removed from his mother and introduced to the world.
08:26 - Angus Anton North came out into the world at 7:24AM. He weighs about 8
lbs, and has reddish hair.

Wednesday - 1/28
20:45 - SK is asleep and snoring for the first time since Saturday afternoon...YAY!!!

1 comment:

Kate Craig said...

Sonya, Johnny + Angus.

Wow....what a journey! Thank you for sharing so much of your experience with us.

Women have spent too many years in silence on these life experiences and the more that can be shared, the more we all learn, realising that we are not alone in this crazy world.

Sonya, you are amazing! Johnny, you are wonderful! Angus, you are such a beautiful boy!

Enjoy your new family ... live, love and laugh!