Wednesday, October 23, 2013

A story of birth and a shmorgishborg of pictures.

After moving having a baby, moving houses and unpacking, I thought it was finally time to sit down and write Greyleigh's story.
At nearly 40 weeks pregnant, I was desperate to meet this baby!  So desperate I was trying anything!--walking, eating a whole pineapple, castor oil, any little thing I could to get things going!  In my mind, she was totally going to come early just like her big brother, but clearly she had different plans!
On Sunday, September 8th in the early evening, I started to have some uncomfortable and regular contractions.  Since Everett's birth started with my water breaking, I was unsure of what labor started like when contractions were the ones to start it.  So, unsure, but thinking I was in labor, we sent Everett off to grandma and grandpa Larson and went to the hospital. 
After lots of paper work, testing and waiting, we were soon notified that I would be heading home the next morning due to not improvement in my cervix to tell them that I was in labor.  Feeling defeated and exhausted, we went home--but not before we got a free hospital breakfast out of it!
Because they had given me a sleeping aid the night before, I went home as hung over as a drunk and slept for a good 4 hours.  It was a very lazy and unproductive day.  All went on like normal--even Curtis cooking dinner, because God knows I'm no cook!
We tuned in to our favorite tv shows that Monday evening and then headed to bed around 11:00.
Soon after laying in bed and trying to sleep, I noticed that my usual contractions were becoming a bit more painful and closer together.  Around midnight, I got up to walk around a bit to see if they'd subside.  I decided to park myself on the couch for awhile to try to rest and breathe through them without waking Curtis---the boy needs his beauty sleep.  I also didn't want to make the same mistake of going to the hospital only to be sent home again, then I'd feel really silly.  So I waited, and breathed, and waited and breathed...until I decided I was in labor and NOT going in was silly.  I quickly woke Curtis up from his dead sleep and told him that we needed to soon as possible.
He proceeded to stumble to his phone to call his dad and have him come and get Everett.  He got him all ready and got our things ready to go as well.  All the while I am vigorously rocking the heck out of our rocking chair and breathing while writhing in pain.
Finally around 2:30, Jeff was at our home to get Everett. We made the handoff and we were out the door---sure to run every red light and stop sign we ran into. I's really the only time we had a good excuse to, so why the heck not?!
Nearing 3:00 a.m. , we entered the hospital like a you would see in a movie.  Husband running while pushing his wife in a wheel-chair to the triage unit while she breathes and heee heeee whooooooo's.  Very glamorous. 
Thankfully I called right before we left so they were expecting me and had a team ready to get the party started.
By 3:30 I was all hooked up to my IV and monitors and they had already check to see that I was dilated to a 4.  They had asked what I wanted for my birth plan/pain management and before they could even finish, I proclaimed my desire for an epidural.  Having had a natural birth with Everett and knowing the pain I had in store, I felt I had nothing to prove this time and mama was gonna get some pain relief and get it now!
Around 4:00, that lovely anesthesiologist came in to give me the magic.  I was nervous at first, but as soon as it started to kick in, my decision was validated by a peaceful and relaxing numbness.  Also a silly numbness....I can't even remember how many times my leg was falling off the bed and I had no idea.  Crazy.
The next couple of hours went by fast, but a lot was happening.  First they gave me a catheter, then they took my blood for, well, I guess I don't know why they took my blood, but I let them.  Then around 5:00 the doctor came in to check me again--still 4.  What the what?! grr.  Soon after that check, she decided that breaking my water would be the best thing to advance this labor, so with that, my waters were broken.  Later on in that 5:00 hour, they came in check me again and we saw that I had progressed to a 7--breaking my water was clearly the key to advancing this labor!  It was really going fast, so we new for sure within the next few hours we'd be holding our babe!  They also came in to inform me that my blood test came back with a very high white blood cell count and they had determined that I had an infection in my waters called chorioamnionitis.  (So THATS why they take your blood!)  Chorioamnionitis is harmful to both the mother and child, but is also very common and easily monitored and fixed.  Sadly though, this meant that my baby would only be able to be in my arms for a few moments before they would rush her away to the infant care nursery to be hooked up to her own set of IV's to pump her with antibiotics and fluids for 48 hours.  So, because of this, I was hooked up to antibiotics and had my temperature checked every hour.
As 6:30 was approaching, I was just getting settled in and ready to wait it out.  Texting friends, taking instagrams, Facebooking.  Then they came in to check my progress again. The two nurses spread my legs a part and as soon as they did, one of them proclaimed, "Oh my gosh, the head is coming out!"  Of course I feel absolutely nothing, so I'm all like, Umm, what?  You're telling me that my baby is just slipping right out on her own?  Is that normal?!
She quickly closed my legs and informed me to hold them together and not to let them separate.  They urgently paged the doctor, I woke up Curtis and got my mom back in the room.  Within about 90 seconds there were about 6 more people in my room ready to deliver this baby.  As soon as she put her robe and mask on, she told me to spread my legs and give a push.  I think I maybe a half of one, and then at 6:40, wam bam, she was here.  She literally just slid. right. out. 
So on September 10th--my due date, the FULL 40 weeks, 6:40 a.m. Greyleigh Mae Larson was born in the world and into our lives!

This part is always a blur--so much adrenaline and emotion and commotion!  I remember my body shaking uncontrollably because of the adrenaline. I remember them putting her right on my chest and look at her and thinking she didn't look like any of us.  I remember that she was bigger than Everett.  I remember she had a good loud cry. I remember thinking about the precious little life I lost before her and being grateful for the gift of Greyleigh and not having to be scared of loss anymore.
They took her away to take measurements and check vitals, cut the cord and wrap her up.  Then they gave us our bundle again.  First Curtis, for a bit, then me.
I gave her her first feeding and then soon after a few snuggles, they whisked her away to the special care nursery to get her special needs met.  I was sad and it was heartbreaking to see her hooked up to so many things, but also relieved it was nothing too serious and that she was getting what her body required to get better. 
The next 48 hours were filled with family visiting, trips to the nursery to nurse her, her first bath and learning how to go potty again after an epidural :)
We were in all love the second she breathed her first breath and that love has continued to grow exponentially!  After our patient little lady waited to come out until her due date, we are excited to see more of her spirit come alive.  Will she always be on time?  Will she be stubborn to get her way?  Will she be an individual that swims against the flow? 
Can't wait to see.
We love you Greyleigh Mae!

(Thanks to shutterfly, I still have some pictures to cherish after my computer was stolen!)
And now a little glimpse of what we've been up to....



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