Friday, January 31, 2014

Shelton's Birth Story

I always heard that it is best to write down a birth story as soon as possible while the experience is fresh in your mind.  Well it's 6:00am and after a quick nursing session for the little one I can't quite fall asleep so now is as good a time as any.

This pregnancy was not unlike my last.  I dealt with the same back pain that can only be described as if somebody had a grip around around my spine.  This one had the added bonus of sciatica as well.  Baby never made me sick the whole time which I am very thankful for.  I hadn't thought much about the fact that he had been lying in a breech position since most babies flip themselves to the head down position later in the third trimester.  Well that time came and went and Baby was still snug as a bug with his head resting against my ribs when we started to worry.  Our Obstetrician, who had been an amazing doctor so far, suggested an external cephalic version to help coax him into the right position.  The experience wasn't very pleasant but it wasn't painful since I chose to have an epidural during the procedure.  Two doctors used their hands to manipulate the baby from the outside trying to turn my baby over.  I felt like a ball of pizza dough getting kneaded.  Unfortunately it was unsuccessful and we had to make the hard decision to schedule a cesarean section for the safety of the baby.  

Our c-section was scheduled for Wednesday January 22nd (GU time) and we started getting everything ready for our hospital stay.  CAUTION TMI AHEAD : Monday morning I noticed I couldn't control what I thought was pee and that continued all day.  I questioned whether my water had broken because I never experienced it with Kiley's birth.  I thought it was like in the movies where it would be obvious if it had happened.  I went about my day without saying much about it to Alex other than I wasn't sure what was going on.  We went for a two mile walk that I would have happily kept going on (if you know me I would have walked my usual 5 miles) but my body was telling me it was time to go home.  Alex, Kiley, and I went out to dinner around 7:00pm.  I started feeling a little crampy while we were waiting to order.  When it happened again I thought I had slyly looked at my watch to begin timing it.  Apparently not.  Alex was on alert from that moment and I kept trying to brush it off like it was probably just braxton hicks contractions.  Truth be told I was hungry and I wanted to eat!  While we ate Alex called the hospital.  They asked us to come in since we weren't sure whether my water had broken based on what I was describing to them and they wanted to check me out.  We let our friend Sarah know that she'd be getting a 4 year old visitor that night even though I was hopeful that we'd be coming back for her in a few hours.  I was wrong.

At the hospital Baby was still in the breech position of course.  Snug as a bug still.  Contractions were consistent and getting more painful.  When the nurse checked me she said my water had broken so I wasn't going home....Baby was on his way!  All the staff got called in around 9:30pm to start prepping for the c-section and Alex got changed into scrubs.  He made them look really good!  I declined to ride down to the operating room in the bed and walked instead.  I knew I'd be spending a lot of time in that bed after the procedure so I wasn't eager to give up my freedom of movement just yet.  

The c-section itself wasn't that bad.  All the people prepping in the OR with tubes, gases, needles, and masks made me more anxious than anything else.  There was one male nurse that tried to make me comfortable by joking a lot but I just thought he was annoying.  The only thing I would have wanted would to have been able to lean on Alex while I got the spinal instead of the nurse.  He's much more calming.  Around 11:00pm I was ready to go and Alex could come in.  He sat by my head and the anesthesiologist stood behind him.  They distracted me from the tugging sensations I was feeling behind the blue sheet draped in front of me.  At 11:20pm and weighing in at 6lbs 6oz and 19.3 inches long our son Shelton was born feet first but perfectly healthy!  Alex got to cut the cord...and I got to have him laid on my chest where he began nursing after just a minute.  Holding him, watching him root around and finally find his target and be satisfied was amazing.  It was the perfect distraction away from the sewing me back up that I knew was going on behind the blue sheet.  

Shelton makes being a parent to a newborn pretty easy.  He only fusses when he's flat on his back, possibly getting a new diaper, and ready to eat.  He's pretty easy to read so far.  We get lots of sleep already and he nurses like a pro.  The hardest part for me is obviously healing.  I'm so active that I have a hard time taking it easy, although I'm giving it all my effort right now.  Kiley has been helpful, handing us wipes and diapers when it's time to change him.  Shelton gets lots of hugs and tickles from his big sister.  Having Alex home to help me has been amazing, although I know he's exhausted.  I love watching him with his son.  He takes the role of new dad and fully embraces it.  


When I have lived through such a dark and devastating tragedy of losing my first husband I am eternally grateful for his sacrifice and for the divine intervention that brought Alex into our lives.  For without Alex, Kiley, and now baby Shelton I just do not know what kind of a person I would be right now.  I'm happy.  I'm excited for the future.  I'm going to go snuggle my baby now :).