Saturday, April 5, 2014

Katelyn's Story, Part Two: Labor

When last we left our duo that would soon become a trio, they had just entered the hospital to a security drill and an adorable triage nurse named Kaitlyn.

We once again got situated into the empty triage room, got dressed in the awkward hospital gown, and attached to monitors. It wasn't long before I was checked, dilated to 3 cm, and 50% effaced. At least there was progress (on Monday, at the false alarm, I was 1.5 cm dilated and 0% effaced)!

Soon, they told us to walk all around, feel free to check out the arboretum, keep walking so labor can progress, etc. We walked and walked, for about an hour and a half, then went back to triage to get checked again. Then, I was 4 cm dilated and 50% effaced.

Somewhere around 3:00 a.m., we were transferred into our own room, a labor and delivery room. I couldn't stop thinking of the line from Titanic: "I believe this ship may sink" (which, in retrospect, takes on another meaning, a new level of understanding that I hadn't realized). I didn't want to admit to myself that this was actually happening. I wanted it to be finished, but I didn't want to go through it. I wanted the prize, but I didn't want to play the game.

After that, things are something of a blur, because I was just laboring, living life in three-minute increments. At one point, a nurse tried setting up my IV; first, she tried the back of my hand, and my vein... exploded?... I don't know the proper word, only that it didn't work, and I still have the bruise.

Someone else came in to talk about pain control options, and I decided to try the first, non-numbing option. It. Was. Blissful. Ever since we found out that baby's due date was so close to my birthday, I said that all I wanted for my birthday was drugs (I'm not very pain tolerant). Unfortunately, that option can only last two hours total (one dose lasts an hour, and the body develops a tolerance to it after the second dose). So, after my second dose, I asked for an epidural (against advice to the contrary, which I wish I'd heeded).

The epidural kicked in, and soon enough, a doctor came in to check me. Again, progress: 4.5 cm and 90%!

At some point during all of this, I just got used to being naked, exposed from the waist down to a room full of people, complete strangers. Whatever. I didn't care anymore.

We kept everyone informed of what was going on, mostly just close family and friends, by text. A friend came to say hi (and, whether he knows it or not, to help me relax). It wasn't surprising when Tim's mom showed up late-morning, and mine showed up in the early afternoon; they must've figured that SURELY baby would have been born by then! Nope. But that didn't stop all five of us from visiting, talking, and laughing. But when doctors kept having to up the pitocin, and time kept moving along, up went the stress levels as well.

Around 1:00 p.m., the doctor once again came in to check me, and her announcement gave me hope that it would all be over soon: 9 cm and 90%! Yes! I could do this. "One step at a time" may have been my most effective mantra of all time! I was almost giddy. Just a centimeter and 10% to go until push-time!

The doctor gave me two hours, increased the pitocin, and we would just see what happened. The next time I was checked (at around 3:00), I was 9.5 and 100%; she gave me another two hours and again increased the pitocin. At 5:00, I was still 9.5 and 100%. Frustrated but not ready to give in just yet, we have it another two hours and another increase in pitocin. At 7:00, there was still no change, and she wanted to talk about "options."

I just remember being so confused. What does that mean - "options"? What are "options"? I didn't understand.

"Well," she said, "we can give it another two hours and increase the pitocin again..." Oh crap. Suddenly, I knew what she was going to say. I understood. "...or we can do a C-Section." While I tried to hold back tears, Tim asked about the process of a C-Section. How long does it take? Risks? Recovery? Scar? etc. His questions helped to distract me, but I was still freaking out.

The doctor and nurses left the room to allow us a chance to discuss... and to let me break down for a few minutes. Eventually, as if it were actually in question, we concluded that a C-Section would be the best, and so we told them our decision: C-Section it would be!

Once again: to be continued...

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.