Welcome Esther {Part 1}

I’ve had to force myself to sit down and write this. Before I forget everything…

February 27th I went to the hospital to get an External Cephalic Version. Fancy talk for turning the baby around. Sometime in the two weeks or so previous Esther decided to turn breech. She had been head down according to our previous ultrasounds. I had gone in to the hospital on the 24th for a non stress test and ultrasound and that’s when we found out she was breech.
I was so disappointed and certain I would have to have a c-section. There aren’t any dr.’s in Seattle who will deliver a breech baby vaginally. Ironically, I had just read someone’s birth story that morning about delivering a breech baby and said I would never want to do that. It sounded terrible.

At first I wasn’t going to do the version. There are risks involved; placental abruption (which I already possibly had a minor one of those) or baby’s cord getting tangled and knotted. My midwife, however, encouraged me to try for it because recovery from a c-section would not be fun. I also had quite a bit of amniotic fluid which was supposed to make it more likely to be successful.
So, back to the 27th… I talked with the Dr. who would be doing the version about my concerns. He didn’t sugar coat anything and said, yes those were possibilities but I could stop him at any point if I changed my mind or felt uncomfortable.
They gave me a shot in the arm of something to relax my uterus muscles. The medicine also makes you feel like you chugged 5 coffees… The Dr. pushed Esther’s butt up and her head down. Despite all the horror stories I had been reading (because that’s what you do when you’re going into something you know nothing about… google) he was able to get her turned around rather quickly. I would say the whole thing took no more than 10 minutes. It also was not painful. Uncomfortable, for sure. Most of the discomfort actually came from the medicine that gave me the jitters.

Now I just had to wait for labor and hope she didn’t try to turn back around.

During this time my mom was visiting but would be leaving on the 2nd. We were all hoping I would go into labor before then. My body teased me for the next week with contractions off and on. Always 10 minutes apart, but always stopping after about 4 contractions. That was new to me. All my previous babies waited until about midnight before I had any contractions. This baby has been different for most of the last half of pregnancy. First, in January with a small bleed. Then, turning breech… And now, a week of contractions.

 

Mom and I got a pedicure before she left 🙂

Sadly, she didn’t make her appearance while my mom was here. But, the day my mom left I came down with a cold/flu. I didn’t go in to get diagnosed, but my midwife said it sounded like the flu. So that was fun. I coughed so much that I joked with a friend I was pretty sure I would cough this baby out.

That’s kind of what happened. Thursday, I was losing my mucus plug (sorry, it’s a part of labor and important because it usually means baby time). I was pretty sure I would go into labor that night because of all my babies being born at night. I considered calling Staci that evening to tell her it could be soon. But, I wasn’t having contractions so I tried to sleep.

Also, that whole week I had been waking up at 2am every single morning. No contractions, just woken up for unknown reasons. So, Friday, I woke up at 2. Then, Elena woke me up again at 4. I stayed awake that time. I couldn’t go back to sleep. About 5:45am I had some leaking, my water broke. yay! Finally, something to suggest I was definitely having a baby soon. But, still no contractions. My water broke before contractions started with Vera, but contractions started soon after that. This time, however, it wouldn’t be that way.

I called my midwife at this point. She said they usually had moms come into the hospital once their water breaks, but I could get there as soon as I wanted to. Considering my last labor was only 2 hours I decided I should go sooner rather than later. About 7am I called Staci and asked if she would give me a ride to the hospital. Jamin and all the kids were sick, so we decided it would be best if they stayed home and kept the germs to themselves. (The nurse in triage thanked me for that). I was sad that Jamin wouldn’t be there and I really didn’t want to go to the hospital. I wanted to stay home and just have Esther there… You know, like my original plan. 😦

Staci and her daughter, Jaelan, picked me up. Traffic wasn’t too terrible but I was glad to not be in active labor. Another reason why I liked having late night deliveries. No traffic… We got to the hospital about 9 and I was finally getting some contractions but they were off and on just like the past week had been. My midwife came in not too much later. Since it was one of the midwives I hadn’t met with yet I made sure to show her my birth plan. I was glad to have my own copy because even though my midwife I had been seeing sent it to the hospital, nobody seemed to have read it or even acknowledged its existence. She did a quick ultrasound just to make sure Esther was still head down. She was! I didn’t really think otherwise, but it was good to be absolutely sure.

The whole time in triage I would get contractions 4 minutes apart, 6 minutes apart… then back to 10 minutes. And then nothing for a while. It was so infuriating. I now feel like I can empathize with people who are in labor for days.

This is about what my room looked like. I was too busy not being in labor to take very many pictures 😛

It took forever to get into a room. Apparently a lot of babies were being born that day. Another good reason for my slow start. I didn’t want to give birth in the hallway, like I had read someone else doing at that hospital. Although, I don’t think they would have kicked me out of triage to deliver my baby in a hallway 😛
I think it was about 11am when I finally got into my room. This whole time my midwife had not checked my cervix. I didn’t mind of course, but I had been expecting it. I didn’t want to be checked since my water had already broken. It makes it easier to pass bacteria up to the uterus when you do. Which was the exact reason she hadn’t checked me.

Staci and Jaelan came in and we ordered lunch. Which was the other surprising thing about the hospital. They let you eat during labor. Thank you, Lord. lol.

And that began the rest of our waiting.

{Click here for part 2}