My little guy is 6 months old today! What better time than to finally tell his birth story! Before we get started with that, a little about his doctor visit. He saw his pediatrician yesterday for the standard 6 month check up. Weight was 13lb 11oz (2.15%), height was 24.75” (4.75%), and head circumference was 16.54” (10.4%). He rolled over from back to front at 4.5 months, laughed at 5 months, and started sitting up on his own by 6 months. I have been really blessed with a great baby (hopefully he will continue to be awesome well into adulthood). Now for the story about his journey into this world:
Cian was due on the 30th of January. We had our usual check up on the 9th (37 weeks along). Well, after she looked at Cian, she told me that I should be induced. My placenta had matured too fast (he wasn’t gaining enough weight, but don’t panic), so how did the end of the week sound? Oh my, I had never felt so unprepared in my life. We at least had the car seat, but we still needed other things for him as well as for myself. Friday the 13th was going to be the day of my induction.
My birthing plan: water birth, no epidural, just gas and air as needed.
Thursday night came and Chris let me know that our visas would not be renewed as initially planned. Meaning, we had to be out of the country by the 31st of January. Oh joy! But nothing we could do, because we had to get ready for the hospital. I had to be checked in by 8, but I wasn’t actually admitted until about 9. I had my first membrane sweep around 9:30 and the little strip of something to induce me was inserted right after. Then came the waiting game. A lot of waiting.
I couldn’t sit still. I was uncomfortable and in a bit of pain. I was thankful that Chris got to be with me for most of it. The food was good. The midwives were great. They would check me to see how my progress was every few hours. Not a lot was happening, though, besides the pain increasing. It was nighttime and Chris had to leave.
Chris had been writing all these details about the hospital stay, but since we left Belfast, I have no idea where that notebook currently is. So, I’m doing all of this off of memory.
My midwife that I had during my pregnancy was now on duty. Around 2 a.m., the strip got to be checked to make sure it was still in place and I had another membrane sweep. Tears were streaming down my face, as I was in so much pain. That was really hard for her to do since she actually knew me. She offered me pethidine (not sure if it’s in the U.S., but it’s a painkiller injection) and I took her up on that without hesitation. There went part of my birthing plan, but that didn’t bother me. I was prepared to be flexible. I hadn’t been able to sleep, but the pethidine helped me get a couple of hours in. I woke up and was in so much pain. Time had gone by so fast during the day but at night it just dragged on and on. My midwife checked on me again around 4 a.m. I thought I got another shot of pethidine sometime after that, but I don’t recall when.
Luckily the obstetrician I had during pregnancy was able to be there in the morning, but unfortunately right away she would be trying to make my waters break again. Thankfully at 8:15 a.m., an hour before she was due to arrive, my waters broke. The midwives had a shift change, so I had a new midwife. Chris actually arrived a few minutes beforehand. Chris got the midwife to check me. I had heard contractions are super painful after being induced, and I completely agree. I was begging for the epidural. The midwife told me that it was too early for that. I guess the epidural slows down the labor and would wear off before the actual giving birth part if given too early.
Have I mentioned how much pain I was in? Gas and air was NOT helping in the least bit. She asked if I’d like her to check to see if I was dilated enough to get that epidural. This wasn’t that much longer, but I think she just asked me for my benefit. I don’t think she expected me to be ready for a while. So, she checked and was like, oh we better get the anesthesiologist in here right away. Maybe I was about 5cm at that point.
The anesthesiologist came in and got me hooked up. I had to sit up on the side of the bed. My body was trying to push that baby out and there was nothing I could do to stop it. The midwife kept telling me not to push. I couldn’t control it! Nothing I could do! The anesthesiologist was great with setting the epidural up. But apparently he told Chris that he didn’t think the epidural would take effect in time. I was so thankful for that epidural. I still had the feeling that I was having contractions, just not the actual pain. This made it great for the rest of my labor. Probably a little after 11 a.m., it was time to start pushing. Half an hour later, at 11:41, Cian Benjamin was born. I was given a shot and out popped the placenta. Cian was apparently waiting to pee until he was out because he started peeing for a very long time. Then he was put on my chest and peed again for a very long time. I was filthy, but I didn’t care. I could only look at this tiny baby that Chris and I had created.
I was taken to the ward. Chris could only be there during visiting hours, which was unfortunate. It was hard for him to leave us. Cian and I got to spend the night and we were discharged Sunday afternoon. I had a couple of tears and lacerations. I was definitely in bed for at least a week.