Ethan’s Birth Story

It’s really hard writing this. I don’t know where to start to do justice to this story. I don’t want to portray this as a bad experience when such a wonderful gift was given to us in the end. But I do want to be honest and maybe someone can learn something from my experience. It wasn’t all bad but it wasn’t what I wanted and I had to really push my doctor for some things. Anyway, here’s Ethan’s birth story…

12:30 am – I woke up with pain in my back. Worried it’s another gallstone episode but secretly also hoping it’s Ethan on his way.
12:45am – I got into the shower. The warm water was wonderful on my back. But the pain is excruciating.
1:00 am – The back pain is bad. Definitely think it’s gallstone pain. Matthew wakes up at this time.
1:15 am – I try walking around in the lounge but the pain is not subsiding. It’s a constant pain not at all what I think contractions will feel like. I’m feeling tired so I lay down but the pain is too bad. I used the toilet twice.
1:45 am – I wake hubby and tell him we need to go to the hospital. I end up throwing up first.
2:00 am – We drop Matthew with my sister. Hubby flies to hospital. Make it in 15 minutes.
2:20 am – We check in at labour and delivery
2:30 am – I am hooked up to the monitor, pain is receding
2:40 am – The doctor is called. Nurse asks if I want something for the pain, recommending I take the pethidine injection. I refuse and ask to go home. The pain is gone and I feel no contractions
3:00 am – The┬ánurses don’t want me to leave. Pain is gone and I just want to go home and sleep. Nurses push pethidine injection. Saying it’s in my best interest to take it. I get told some women contract better after taking the injection. I still refuse, having to literally shout at the nurses to leave me alone and that if I want pain meds I’ll ask for it. (Had pethidine with Matthew’s labour and it did nothing besides make me tired. The pain was still there. Didn’t want to go through the same thing this time)

3:15 am – The doctor is called again. He says I must wait till he gets there so that he can assess me
4:00 am – I am hooked up to monitors again. Apparently I’m having contractions but I’m not feeling anything
4:30 am – The doctor shows up. He does an internal exam, I am only 1.5 cms dilated
4:35 am – Doctor ruptures my membranes. He didn’t ask if he can. (I feel he did this so that I couldn’t leave, as I was adamant about labouring at home instead of at the hospital). I’m told baby isn’t engaged and being a previous c-sec patient I’m high risk, that’s why I can’t leave.
4:40 am – A drip is inserted for just incase and I have to remain on the monitor
4:45 am – I ask if I can move around and get off the monitors. Doctor agrees saying it should help (I know this, thus requesting to be disconnected). I am still feeling nothing from the contractions
4:50 am – I am feeling down and cry a little. I am disappointed with the rupturing of my membranes, doctor saying that baby isn’t engaged and that if it was up to him he would call the anaesthetist immediately to do spinal block for c-sec (still can’t believe he says this to me)

5:05 am – I am off the monitors and sitting/bouncing on exercise ball. Starting to feel contractions a little bit but it’s not bad, like mild period cramps. More like tightenings of my uterus.
5:15 am – Hubby is snoring on lazy boy – poor guy. Only had about 2 hours sleep

Taking a quick nap

5:30 am – I’m told to walk the halls. The other rooms have filled up now so its a bit uncomfortable roaming the halls in that flattering hospital gown.
6:05 am – I’m put back on the monitors
6:20 am – Starting to feel contractions now. Can anticipate them and then see how strong they are on the monitors

Printout from monitors
7:00 am – Taken off the monitors. Doctor checks again and says I’m heading for 2cms. Says he’ll be back between 10:30 and 11:00 to reassess. I’m starting to give in and waiver about telling the doctor to just go ahead and book the c-sec. I’m starting to feel the strain of fighting for a chance to labour on my own and the way I want. And having to fight to NOT have pain meds.

7:35 am – Hubby needs to pop in at work. Says he will be back in an hour and I mustn’t do anything without him

8:45 am – Hubby is back. Contractions start to feel a bit stronger and more often
9:00 am – I’m placed back on the monitor
10:00 am – Doctor is back and I’m assessed again
10:15 am – He claims that baby’s head is not engaged and that in his opinion I should throw in the towel. After my earlier crying bout and wanting to give in, I relent and agree to the c-sec. Just too tired of fighting the hospital staff. I’m worried I’m being a hard ass and if something happens to my baby then I will regret it for the rest of my life. I just want to trust my doctor.

The OR is booked for 10:45. Everything is a rush now. Papers are thrushed into my face. Medication is given with no explanations. I have to literally take a breath and calm myself down to ask what the meds are for, what the paperwork says before I sign. Hubby looks like he’s in shock. I can’t rely on him at this moment to help me. I need to stay calm to keep him calm. The nurse comes in and just opens my gown to start shaving me. No one asks anything. I feel like my rights have been taken away and they just want to get this over and done with so that they can clean the room and get another patient in there.

I am rushed to the OR with hubby pushing the incubator. Get to the theater and hubby is given scrubs to change into. I get taken into the OR alone to get prepped (with Matthew, hubby never left my side). The anaesthetist was fantastic. All this time my contractions are coming stronger and faster. He calmed me down because I was starting to panic. The rush, no hubby, worry, distress….

My very own McSteamy!

The spinal block is inserted and I feel the heaviness in my legs. I start to get short of breath and try not to panic. I know why this is happening but it’s uncontrollable. Hubby is eventually let in. I panic. My chest feels heavy, I can’t breath. They start cutting and I feel this pushing pressure on my abdomen.

Busy taking him out

Again, I know what is happening but the lack of control is causing me to panic. Doctors tell hubby to get the camera ready. I hear the shutters go off, photos are being taken. But I don’t hear him. I don’t hear him cry. Hubby looks worried. I am getting scared. I ask if everything is ok. No one answers me. I ask again if everything is ok. Someone says everything is fine. I don’t believe them. I don’t hear him cry. Just as the panic starts to set in, I hear my baby cry. The sweetest sound in the whole world.

Happy Birthday Baby Boy

Ethan Brent Muller is born on 21 August 2014 at 11:22 am, weighing 3.77 kgs and 50.5 cms long. He is taken away to get cleaned. I get this lopsided view of my baby by my face. My hand with the drip is released and I can stroke his face. I just get enough time to say happy birthday to him before he is whisked away to the nursery. Hubby tags along and I have to get sewn back up. I start getting the shakes. This is normal but such a strange and foreign feeling. I get taken to recovery and stay there for the longest time. I have a male nurse assigned to me and it’s so uncomfortable when he checks my pad to see how the bleeding is. These people don’t know of asking if they can do something. I know that it’s something they probably have to do but it would’ve still been nice to be asked.

First weigh in
I want my Mommy!
I am eventually taken to my room. I have to ask where my baby is. It’s now been 2 hours since he was taken from me. The nurse says she’ll go see where they are. Hubby comes to my room alone. No baby. They eventually bring him to me. He was crying because he was hungry. I can’t believe they keep babies away from the mom for so long after birth.

It’s 3 hours after surgery and I have to request something to drink and eat. I haven’t eaten since dinner the previous night. I get told I am on a strict liquid diet until the next day. Whatever, I just want to get out of this place and go home and enjoy my baby.

Ethan had a bit of a “cone head”. Meaning that he was starting to descend into the birth canal. Why would the doctor say that baby wasn’t engaged? I am not very happy with this doctor….

My biggest regret is not having maternity and newborn photos professionally done. With finances being tight this year there just wasn’t extra funds for this. I wish I had just found some way to make it work as my pregnancy was such a joy and I wish I had documented this. And with Ethan growing so quickly, I wish I had been able to afford professional newborn pics. But we have a healthy baby and a big brother that adores him.

So sleepy. Day 2 in this world
Big Brother Loves
So proud!

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