Elliot is two weeks old. I didn’t post much about our birth plan before E was born, even though it’s something we put a LOT of research and planning into [that’s probably a drastic understatement]… we decided to have a natural birth with the best midwife ever at Carolina Community Maternity Center in Fort Mill, SC.
I’m writing about Elliot’s birth now for two reasons.
1. I don’t want to forget it.
2. To all of you jokers who said I would be begging for drugs, BOOM.
So, birthing a baby.
As of the Friday before Elliot was born, I was pretty sure we were having a baby over the weekend. I didn’t feel well and was having random contractions. But, I really had no idea if anything was happening or not.
Saturday morning [January 19th and Elliot’s due date] I woke up a little before 2am with contractions. Our midwife told us if this happened [even if my water broke during the night] to go back to sleep. Well, I couldn’t really sleep, so I went upstairs to take a bath. I thought the bath would help… unfortunately it didn’t help at all. While I was in the bath, Dustin woke up to a “drip, drip, drip”… umm, yeah, the bathtub leaked through the ceiling [the new ceiling in the kitchen]. Very luckily the ceiling wasn’t damaged, but I was banned from taking baths.
After the bath and water situation, I went back to bed. I slept a little, but mostly just noticed the contractions were getting closer together. I was really hopeful because my mom told me I was born in 6 hours. *Note: Elliot was NOT, in fact, born in 6 hours.*
Around 5:30 or 6am, I took a shower and fixed my hair/makeup. You know, because who wants to look awful while having a baby? *Note: I am really glad I did this.*
A little after 7 I finally told D that I thought I was in labor and maybe he should shower just in case. This ended up being a little premature, but, hey, I still had that 6 hour number in my head.
We waited until after 8 to call Damaris [the best midwife ever] to let her know I was in labor. Our plan was to wait on going to the birth center… not leaving the house until contractions were 1 minute long and 3 minutes or less apart for an hour.
The next few hours were pretty boring. Basically, I found out that I couldn’t eat anything… it would all come back up. I walked up and down the stairs a bajillion times and walked circles around the inside of the house. I wanted to go to the birth center, but Damaris said no. Turns out she knew what she was talking about. [= best midwife ever].
After HOURS of walking around the house, I was finally allowed to go to the birth center. We arrived around 4pm and I was 6cm dilated and fully effaced. This was good because Damaris didn’t send us home. That would have been bad. For me.
At 6cm, I was hopeful that we would have Elliot on her due date. But, hours passed. I spent a lot of time in the tub at the birth center [a HUGE jetted tub, which was way nice]… a lot of time on the toilet [everyone told me the toilet was a good place for labor… they were right], annnnd some time walking laps around the birth center. Laying down was extremely painful, so Dustin and the best midwife ever made me do it.
I also spent a good amount of time eating and throwing up. Dustin and Damaris made me eat [shot blocks, clif bars, chicken noodle soup, crackers, a Luna bar…] and then I would get sick. The strategy was that I would get some energy from this. Who knows.
At some point I asked for Damaris to check and see if we were making progress. I have no idea what time this was, but it definitely seemed like we had already spent eternity at the birth center. 7cm. Dude. Not good.
*Sidetrack here*. D and I took Bradley Method classes [okay, we technically dropped out several weeks before the end of class, but we got a diploma]. During class I said they were a waste of time and that we didn’t learn anything new. Not true. During class we learned that there is such a thing as a plateau… you can dilate very quickly or steadily to a point and then it seems to just stop… but not to worry because then all of a sudden you can quickly dilate a lot more. It’s just a temporary plateau. Remembering that is what honestly got me through the rest of labor and it was worth the $200 we spent on class just to learn that one thing.
Elliot was not born on her due date. Obviously. The night continued to pass and we were very very close to being ready to push. I was pretty ready for this little activity to be over. I [by I, I mean Dustin] asked the best midwife ever if there was anything we could do to make this happen. She suggested a coffee enema.
People, this is not something you want to do. Putting coffee in yourself in an unnatural way is seriously not fun. However, due to the fact that I needed energy and couldn’t eat or drink or otherwise obtain energy AND I had been in labor for a solid day, I went with it. And you know, maybe it worked.
Soon[ish] we were ready to start pushing. I have absolutely no clue how long this took, but it didn’t seem too long or bad. [Coffee must have helped]. The toilet was good for this too. Seriously, it’s how Elliot’s head first started to come out. Gross, huh? [PS. This almost made D cry, so how gross could it be?]
We moved to the bed and soon Elliot’s head was really coming out. D thinks it is really important that guys watch this… must have been cool. I know they could see her hair and apparently her coloring. Technically, this was pretty painful, but not really THAT bad because I knew it was almost over.
*I have this sprint to the end program that I do. Sprint to the end is this program developed by my, I think, 9th grade social studies teacher. Then it meant that we would really push ourselves at the end of the semester. I think about it in races to use up all of my energy and literally try to sprint/push to the finish. I used the sprint to the end program in labor too. Why not?*
At 8:42am on Sunday, January 20, Elliot Anders Logan finally made her appearance into the world. She was kind of wiped off and came straight onto me. D cried.
We waited for her cord to stop pulsating and D cut it. Then Elliot ate for the first time [she has barely stopped since].
At this point we waited for the placenta to come out… and we waited… and we waited. The best midwife ever started to get concerned, so I got a shot of pitocin in my leg [pitocin causes contractions].
I was also eating A LOT of random stuff, drinking coconut water, drinking ginger tea.
The best midwife ever tried to REACH IN and pull the placenta out. No joke. Pretty painful.
When she tried to pull the placenta out, it started to fall apart.
There had been a LOT of blood at this point. Blood clots gushing out everywhere, best midwife ever scooping them into a bucket… seriously, it was like an episode of Dexter gone wrong. A LOT of blood.
Alas, the assisting midwife called 911.
Soon the ambulance arrived to take me away to CMC Pineville. The best midwife ever went with me [after changing out of her bloody clothes]. D had to stay with Elliot at the birth center so they could finish her newborn measurements. D cried… and this time it was pretty sad.
The long and the short of it is, I went to the hospital. I was okay when I got to the hospital, and they started preparing me for surgery to remove the placenta. The nurse was the best nurse ever… D and Elliot arrived before I went into surgery and the nurse got permission for Elliot to be a visitor [the hospital has a rule against this right now because of the flu…]. Best midwife ever helped Elliot eat again.
After a really long time, I was taken to pre-op. [The hospital moved ultra slow… I was still bleeding]. While in pre-op, I started to feel light headed and told the medical geniuses that I needed blood. They finally decided to rush me into the operating room where I passed out. I’m guessing I had a successful surgery following this… and got two units of blood.
That pretty much sums up Elliot’s birth. Dustin, Elliot, and I spent the night in the hospital, but we were able to go home early on Monday morning.
I’m so glad everything went according to our plan, and everything happened the way we wanted… at least up to the point where Elliot was born. She is perfect and healthy and the placenta surgery was a bummer, but not a big deal in the grand scheme of things. [Yes, we had to stay in the hospital for a night and my recovery was pretty long from the blood loss, but now I’m back to normal.]
And we got to go home with this.