It actually started August 30, 2010. I was in an abnormal amount of pain even though I was carrying around a giant baby. Noah and I decided that we needed to go to the hospital to have everything checked out. We went and spent the afternoon hooked up to the CTG machine only to be sent home with a couple of pain killers and orders to go get some rest. We went home and tried to relax, but at 5:30 a.m. on the morning of the 31st my water broke. After I adequately explained to my husband (a.k.a. Noah being an ass) that this was the real thing, we were off to the hospital. I was so excited to know that in a few short hours I would be holding the baby girl I’ve been waiting the last 39 weeks to meet. We had no idea what we were in for…
As soon as we got to the hospital, they hooked me back up to the same CTG machine I’d spent hours on the day before. My contractions were strong but irregular. They had us go for a walk and set us up in a hospital room. After being at the hospital for about 4 hours I was still only 4 centimeters dilated. Around 2 they decided to start me on Oxytocin to strengthen my contractions. I finally needed an epidural at that point. The anesthesiologist came in and set me up with a back catheter and some medicine that made things much easier for the time being. Unfortunately, that wonderful medicine wears off quite quickly. By the time my first one wore off I was still only 7 cm. They increased my Oxytocin to try to speed things along, but that just put stress on me and the baby. The doctor on duty came in to do an internal exam on the baby just about the time my most recent epidural wore off. I was in so much pain that I couldn’t even see straight. The baby was stressed, I was in immense pain, and Noah was just about at his wits end watching this train wreck. Even my midwife, Julia, that held a striking resemblance to my best friend was about to lose it.
At around 10:30pm the doctor came in and decided that we had given the “natural way” the best shot we could, but after being on 70ml of Oxytocin for 3 hours (I’m not sure how that is considered natural, but whatever) and still only being 9cm an emergency c-section was going to be necessary. I told my horribly exhausted husband to go lay down for a little while because things were about to get really hard. The hospital called in “Das A Team” which included the head OB, head anesthesiologist, and a number of nurses and midwives. They started me on Partusisten drip to counteract the Oxytocin and stop my contractions. Now, this may have stopped my uterus from contracting, but it caused severe convulsions in every other muscle in my body. I basically had a 3 hour seizure once this started. Noah came back to put on his scrubs unaware of what he was about to see. I’m not sure exactly what it looked like him when he walked in the operating room, but I know what it felt like. I was laying on an operating table, I was strapped down, and uncontrollably convulsing. He sat down next to me and didn’t leave my side. He watched as they gutted me like a fish, and he held the bucket as I puked all over myself unable to turn my head due to being strapped down. Then, I heard the doctor yell, “It’s a big one!” A sense of relief fell over me as I heard the cry of the little person that had been living in my belly the last 9 months. Sylvia Grey Davis 3930 grams, 53cm, born at 11:19pm on August 31, 2010. She was healthy. That was all that mattered. The 17 hours of labor and worst surgery of my life was worth every second, every pain, and the battle scar across my abdomen I’ll wear with pride.
The aftermath was harder than I imagined. I stay in pain, and I probably will for the next few weeks. I have a hard time lifting Sylvia. Hell, I have a hard time getting out of the bed or going to the bathroom. I lose feeling in my legs from my back catheter being left in so long. All the drugs made me feel pretty sick. I have a severe case of anemia and can’t get my blood pressure up to a normal level. I basically feel and look like a walking corpse. I can’t breastfeed. I pump every 2 hours trying to stimulate milk production, but they say when you have a complicated delivery like I did that it can inhibit my ability. The incision is bigger than I thought it would be, and I am sporting black bruises from hip to hip. That is giving me a hard knock lesson in vanity. I’ll be retiring my string bikinis now, and I have to come to grips with the fact that my belly will never be something to be envied again. I’m having a hard time dealing with it all. We told them ahead of time that I was going to need a c-section, but they refused our request because it wasn’t the “natural way” to do it. All I can do at this point is be thankful for my beautiful, healthy girl. There was a reason I was challenged this way. I may be paying for my sins, or I may just be a little unlucky. It doesn’t matter either way, we’re making the best of it. My mommy will be here on Friday!!!!