Monday, January 5, 2009

in case you were wondering

That baby finally did come out. Ellis Olivia was born May 3 at 3:03 A.M, after about 60 hours of labor. That's first contractions to me asking Is she still a girl? And if I do say so myself, she's awfully damn cute. Really, have you seen a cuter baby? (I started this post so long ago, Ellis is now 2 months older than in these photos.)

I think I was in denial when I first began having contractions Wednesday afternoon (was 40 weeks of waiting finally here?? and THIS is what contractions feel like??), and by Friday morning, I was ready to throttle my doctor if she dared tell me I was not in labor.
After hooking me up to the monitor, I was thrilled to hear my contractions were 3 minutes apart. Woo hoo!!
I called Adam, who was at Temsco training (his part-time, 8th season, glacier-guide summer job) and said it was time to go to the hospital. Ummm, after I finish packing my hospital bag.....
My doctor appt was around 11 am, and I think we were settled into our hospital room around 2:00 or 3:00 pm.
When the on-call doctor first examined me, I was already 4 cm dilated, and I felt like a first-time-birth-super-star. Of course, I had been in labor for 2 days, so it would stand to reason I would be dilated. I made it to 5 cm within the hour, and that's where the dilation stopped. No amount of walking the hospital corridors or trying a different position would help.
By about 8:30 pm, I decided some IV drugs were in order. And when they say IV drugs just take the edge off, not completely take away the pain, they weren't lying. It was also about this time that the doctor made the call to administer pitocin to kick the contractions into gear.
Another couple hours of that (maybe I had also entered into the "transition" phase?), and I was begging for an epidural, trying to count in my head how many more contractions I would have to endure before the anesthesiologist arrived on site, and (realizing later) completely misjudging the number because I was high on pain meds.
Anyhoo, it was too late for an epidural so I got my wish about a (almost) natural childbirth. I had a hard time looking Adam in the face because I didn't want him to know how much pain I was in. Ha! Ha ha! Who did I think I was kidding? Adam said the wailing sounds coming from my mouth resembled someone trying to climb up the swim ladder on a boat, while being eaten by a shark.
Pushing seemed to take for-ever. Hours, I think. And lots of me saying I can't do this! I think the doctor was a little disappointed in my progress, or lack thereof. He may have a medical degree, but has he ever pushed a human being out of his vagina? What? No vagina? That's what I thought.
And then finally, FINALLY, I pushed her little head out, and I felt her body slither out, and the pain was gone just like that. And then we had a baby! She was perfect & beautiful, and I was so happy she was out. She wrapped her hand around my finger within the first hours of her life & just like that, the connection was made.
Our body's ability to forget the mind-blowing pain that is childbirth is an amazing thing, no? I mean, I was lying in my hospital bed the day Ellis was born, and said to Adam Well, that wasn't so bad; I could totally do that again. His response? How 'bout we wait until we've left the hospital before we discuss another baby, shall we?
For the chance at another Ellis, I'd do it all again in a heartbeat.


Jerusalem said...

She is beautiful and totally worth it again! So glad you are posting - is this a good sign for '09??

Sherrie Soltis said...

She's so cute!! I love that you posted, hope to see more pics of you all! Hope all is well down south, we are in a deep freeze here!

jeanetta said...

You go girl!! Sometimes i think all OBGYN's should be women. At least they can understand what you are going through.

Nancy said...

I was pleasantly surprised to see you're posting again. I've missed reading about your life :O Even though we live, what, five minutes apart! It seems so long ago, doesn't it, that you were walking the corridors. Waiting. And waiting. And waiting. It still brings tears to my eyes. She is a sweetie. Yes she is. mom