Thursday, February 02, 2012

Ava Joy's Birth Story, Part 5

Ava Joy's Birth Story, Part 1
Ava Joy's Birth Story, Part 2
Ava Joy's Birth Story, Part 3
Ava Joy's Birth Story, Part 4

Once I had said the words, it all made sense. That vague sense of nausea and thinking I might not be up to the task? The thought that it was transition had flitted through my mind but I quickly smothered it, afraid to get my hopes up. But there it was. It had been transition, and now I was ready to push.

I repeated myself. "I need to push." John quickly set me straight. "You can't."

"I know I can't yet, but could someone get the doctor?"

The urge to push surprised me, but the sudden intensity in the need to push was anything but surprising. All that pressure had been the baby making it's way down the birth canal, and like my labor with JohnAndrew, I didn't feel the urge to push until the baby was nearly crowning.

The details get a little hazy here. I know at some point people went looking for the doctor and my sister went to get the kids so that they could be present for the birth. The doulas were telling me that they could see the baby's hair, and John kept telling me that he was not going to catch the baby so I couldn't push.

I do remember firmly and loudly repeating that I needed the contraction to stop. It felt like the contractions were continuous, and in my mind I attributed this to the Pitocin. I wanted them to stop the Pitocin (contractions + urge to push - approval to push= more discomfort than is necessary.) However, somehow the thought "stop the Pit" in my mind turned into "I need this contraction to stop!" on my lips. My sister says I yelled this, but the doulas and John confirm that I spoke in a loud, authoritative voice.

I remember thinking that there was a lot of activity happening around me, but I don't clearly remember what it was. The chief resident came in and apparently saw that I was crowning from across the room then stepped out to call my doctor to come for the delivery. My doctor, bless her, reminded the chief resident that I was not medicated, and therefore telling me not to push for 20 minutes while she came in was not going to be an option.

I continued to work hard to not push. It wasn't painful so much as it was a constant laborious effort to not give in to the natural reflex to push. I used every trick I knew. Chin up. Head back. Mouth open.

It didn't help much. The baby was coming, even without me pushing. There is a reason that Anna still says the baby "crawled out."

Finally, the doctor returned. She must not have seen that the baby was practically out because when I asked if I could push, she said yes. Next thing I knew, she was rushing across the room, pulling gloves on as she came. There was no bother of breaking down the bed, getting into a better position, turning on the bright delivery lights, or even covering her scrubs with a fluid-resistant robe. I began to push, and before she was even there, the head was coming out. She reached down to guide the baby's head up from the sheets. I stopped pushing because I felt the head deliver.

I don't watch when my babies are being born, and I think my eyes must have been closed because I remember feeling the doctor pulling on the baby's head after it was delivered. I figured that if she was pulling on the head, it meant it was okay for me to push and deliver the baby's body. So on the same contraction that delivered the head, I pushed a bit more and out popped the baby's body!

Seconds later I was holding the warm, slimey baby on my belly and staring into dark eyes. My baby had been born! Only 50 minutes after starting that Pitocin infusion my baby was out!

I stared in wonder at the tiny body as my arms instinctively wrapped around... oh, her. My baby was a girl. With a head full of hair!

What I didn't realize was that the flurry of excitement around me wasn't just the normal buzz of a birth, but the frenzy of an emergency.


E and K said...

Bah! What?! What emergency?!

E and K said...

Bah! What?! What emergency?!

Michelle said...

Where's the rest?????

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