I guess I had always imagined that when my water broke, there would be this dramatic deluge of liquid coming from between my legs. That’s how they show it on TV anyway. In reality, it doesn’t happen like that. Most people have it manually done at the hospital, like I did my first time. So color me confused when I began to feel liquid slow leaking from my nether-regions on a random Monday.
I don’t know why I couldn’t rationalize that I was in labor. Like…duh. I was two weeks out from my due date, I had already started nesting at home, and here I sit, at work clueless, waiting for the situation to resolve itself. Except it didn’t. I finally decided that my situation was getting a little too “liquidy”, and just maybe a little abnormal. So I drove myself to the OB’s office expecting to be checked out and sent home to rest or something. Instead, she sent me straight to the hospital. Do not collect $200, do not pass “Go”. As a card-carrying member of procrastinators-r-us, I didn’t have a bag packed or any arrangements made for someone to watch my son like a smart, prepared mother would, because well…me.
Three hours later, I finally make it to the hospital. I was able to relax for a quick second before my doctor and nurse came in and started explaining what was about to go down. Apparently I’d been having some pretty healthy contractions already. “Oh? Contractions that you can’t feel?” I thought to myself. This is would be easier than I thought!
You see, some of you may remember that I had an emergency c-section with my first, and I was adamant about trying for a “normal” birth this time–very risky, as is having several c-sections. So, to avoid complications, my doctor advised that I wait until I was 4cm dilated before I got my epidural. Piece of cake right? I’m already having contractions that I can’t feel, so getting to 4cm without pain med’s should be a breeze…RIGHT?!
But then…ohhh but THEN. She started talking some mess about me not being dilated at all. The solution? A foley bulb. They attach a plastic balloon to the end of a catheter, insert that into your cervix and blow it up with saline, or water, or whatever they use. Sounds fun, huh? Not only did that process feel like hell, but Helllloooo contractions! *waves* I can feel you now! AND I can’t even get an epidural until this ball has stretched my cervix to 5cm and it falls out on its own. So I sucked up the pain for the rest of the day…and overnight…and well into the next day until the bulb fell out.
This is a foley bulb. Use your imagination.
I was so relieved to finally be cleared to get an epidural, that I almost didn’t notice I wasn’t in pain anymore! I considered asking for the epidural anyway as a precaution, but hubs coached me to continue “thugging it out”. The pain had subsided anyway, so I tested my gangsta and held off, because I’m trill like that.
But THEN, they started me on a Pitocin drip. And this is where it got real. Pitocin is a drug that basically makes your contractions stronger so they can be more effective. Part of the reason I had to get a c-section last time is because my contractions weren’t strong enough to progress me past 8cm. You can’t push until 10.
Anyway, the pain drastically increased, but I thugged it out like hubs said, until it became unbearable. I quickly traded my gangsta credentials and asked for my epidural, complete with my own button to push when I needed an extra dose of it. All was well…for like 15 minutes until the pain slowly crept its way back in. Y’all. When you get an epidural, you’re not supposed to be able to feel anything from the waist down. I knew something was wrong when I could still feel my legs, not to mention those damn contractions. So I asked epidural guy to come back and he did, armed with another dose of epidural straight into my back. I wait and wait for the pain to go away and for the sensation in my legs to disappear. It didn’t. Guys…GUYS. My epidural wasn’t working and the pain was kicking in. And guess what? The doctor said I couldn’t have another one. By this time, I’m like 9cm. 1 more cm to go. I had to quickly come to terms with the fact that I was about to complete my birthing experience without effective pain meds. Cute. Sure people do it all the time, but I hate it had to be me.
Maybe 30 minutes later I let the entire floor know that I was ready to push. The doctor finally comes in and is basically like “Ok girl,well prop your legs up and push.” Just like that, huh? Did I tell y’all my epidural wasn’t working?
Anyway, I pushed for about 5 minutes and out popped Monroe and that was that. And no I didn’t poop on the table, you nasties. Now give me my gangsta cred back.
That’s all folks!