Can't believe I'm actually sitting down to write this. I'm not gonna lie… kinda impressed with myself right now. Ha. I mean, I still haven't written out Silas' birth story, two years later (partly because it was traumatizing and partly because I've just never had the time), so I'm feeling ahead of the game!
Okay, one month later. Here we go.
I knew I was going to be induced a week early (because I asked to be haha). My mom was coming into town November 4-15 and I really wanted her to be here for the actual baby, since that's what we needed the most help with (obviously). My doctor agreed and we tentatively set the date for 11/2/16.
As we got closer, we got word that the hospital was full on 11/2 and we'd been pushed back to 11/3 (dang those people who actually NEED inductions! Haha, kidding). It's a long story, but it looked like we might be bumped AGAIN so we went in the evening of the 2nd for monitoring and ended up getting admitted.
At this point, I was so ready. Terrified to be in labor again because of how Silas' birth went down, but SO ready to not be pregnant anymore. I'm pretty sure I told Matt, "THIS ENDS TONIGHT." In a deep, scary voice. Haaaha. I had a new-ish nurse, who was super nice but didn't make me super confident in her abilities (blown veins trying to get IV's in, not very knowledgable when I asked questions, READ INSTRUCTIONS OFF THE CERVADIL BEFORE SHE PUT IT IN - insert horrified face here). Again, nice lady.. but almost killed me with her cervical checks. I'm pretty sure those were more painful than actual birth. Haha. She finally inserted the Cervadil at midnight on the 2/3rd and I prepared myself (Cervadil with Silas was awful) since I was only dilated to a 2 and 30% effaced at this point. A few hours passed and nothing was really happening, no contractions, no pain, nothing. Matt and I slept off and on from 12-5, with the exception of me getting up to pee every hour (which is such a freaking chore when you're hooked up to monitors and an IV, by the way). Finally around 5, I asked the nurse if maybe she should check the Cervadil and make sure it was up there far enough since I should've been contracting by then. She agreed and sure enough, once she fixed it, the contractions started instantly.
Even though the plan was always for an epidural (GIVE ME ALL THE DRUGS), my doctor wasn't on until 7am and the on-call doc didn't allow an epi until 4cm. I was able to breathe through most of the contractions for about 45 minutes (knowing what to expect this time helped a lot.. I really thought I was dying last time with Silas haha). But around 6am, they started coming every 2 minutes and they were ROUGH. We originally planned to do the Cervadil for 12 hours but at this point, the nurse checked me (dilated to a 3.5-4), pulled it and called my doc to order the epidural and Pitocin. HALLELUJAH. Because I had just reached the breaking point where I sobbed and told Matt, "I don't want to do this. I can't do it. I changed my mind. Let's leave. I'll just give birth in the wilderness." Haha. But really, I think there's probably that moment in everyone's labor where they realize they're stuck - that there's only one way off this train and it involves a. lot. of. pain. That was that moment.
At this point, it was time to switch nurses and I ended up with the most incredible lady. Super compassionate, super knowledgable, so so helpful. Just so grateful for her, she honestly made the entire experience a 10 out of 10. Around 7:15, the anesthesiologist came in to give me the epidural (he was the BEST) and I'm so glad the nurse was there because HOT DANG. That thing hurt way more than I remembered it hurting (maybe I was just in SO MUCH pain with Silas, I didn't care??). Again, that stuck feeling (the worst part of labor to me): couldn't handle the pain of the contractions anymore but terrified of the epidural and THAT pain. Bah. I HATE that feeling, you guys. Hate it. Anyways, once it was in, it was like heaven. Literally the best epidural I've ever had (you know, out of the 2 I've experienced haha). But seriously, I couldn't feel a dang thing. "I don't know, am I contracting? NO CLUE." Heaven. AND can't forget the catheter. Double heaven.
My doc came around 8am to break my water and told us we'd have a baby before noon. Matt and I fell asleep and ended up sleeping from 8:30-10:30, which was super helpful in the long run. At 11am, the nurse checked me and said I was dilated to a 6 but she thought it was going to happen pretty fast so to tell her when I started feeling a ton of pressure.
Around 11:30, I told her I felt a crazy amount of pressure and when she checked me again, her eyes got wide and she said, "Uhh, you're a 10 and the baby's head is RIGHT THERE. Don't do ANYTHING. The doc is on her way!" So I said, "Okay, great. Let me do my makeup real quick." HAHA. But seriously.. that's really how it went down.
At 11:45, my doc showed up and started getting everything ready. At 11:55, they pulled my catheter and I pushed twice, through 2 contractions and she was born at 11:59am, just before noon like predicted. I literally didn't feel a thing when she came out.. it felt like someone brushed up against me. Again… BEST EPIDURAL EVER.
Matt and I cried when she was born and they put her on me. That was HUGE for me. I didn't cry when Silas was born, I was just in shock. It was such a long labor, the epidural wasn't great and I could still feel a ton of pain and pressure, the room was full of people, it was just a crazy experience and made the bonding process a longer one for me.
This time? 12 hour total labor, 7 hours active. Amazing epidural. Only my doc and my nurse in the room (they called for a few other people but Verity came too fast). Gilmore Girls on in the background, my doc and nurse and Matt and I all joking and laughing and talking. Two pushes and it was over. I can't even tell you how different of an experience it was. Night and day. And I'm SO GRATEFUL. It sounds silly but I really felt like it was almost a healing birth in a lot of ways.
I ended up with a second degree tear again (although I'm pretty sure it was at least a 3rd degree last time because there were way less stitches and WAY less pain this time around… no way those were both 2nd degree tears). I think I could've avoided a tear but she just came so fast AND she was sunny side up, just like Silas. Recovery was still such a better experience, nowhere near as much pain. I mean, I was ready to leave the hospital a few hours later.. staying for 2 days was torture, seriously. And with Silas, I was BEGGING for them to let us stay. Haha!
I'm just feeling grateful, even a month later. Our labor and birth was exactly what we prayed and trusted God for and it left me feeling healed and whole, instead of battered and broken. Thankful for my doc who was able to be there this time, for the nurses we had, for the friends and family who cared for us and visited us, for these two babies of mine. Just a whole lotta thankfulness, y'all.
The end. ;)