MacKenzie’s Birth Story – Part 2

So, we finally arrive at the hospital on Sunday afternoon.  After trying to remember if we needed to enter in the emergency room or the west tower, we remembered in our hospital tour guide lady’s voice that it was indeed entrance C – “C for child birth!” – so Mike dropped me off at the front revolving door.  This was the one time I didn’t fight him on dropping me off first.  I hate when he does that on normal occasions.  I like walking into places WITH my husband.  I know he is trying to do the gallant thing by not making me walk, but it’s usually just awkward for me if I’m standing around at a restaurant and they won’t seat me without him.

I walked into the main lobby, and asked the security guard/ administrator (had to be 70 years old – I seriously LOVE the security guards at hospitals, they are adorable) where I needed to go.  He told me to take the elevators up to labor and delivery, and then buzz in.  He asked me if I needed a wheelchair.  I contemplated it for a second since I had never been offered one before, but was clearly in no pain at all and declined.  I just waited nervously for Mike to walk in.  Turns out, Sunday was a very busy day, so he had to park all the way on the other side.  Longest 10 minutes of my life.

We went up to Labor & Delivery and hit the buzzer.  Thankfully, we went on the hospital tour.  You can’t even get into the labor and delivery wing without buzzing in and having a really good reason to be there.  So we buzzed in, and I shakily said, “I think my water may have broken, and my doctor asked me to come get checked.”  They buzzed us in right away.

As we walked to the nurse station, I was ELATED to see my doctor sitting there with one of the nurses who would check us in!  I suddenly got more comfortable (as comfortable as one can get in the beginning stages of labor), and smiled.  I said, “I hope you didn’t just come in for me!” and she said that she had been there since 7 that morning anyhow, so when I called in, she decided to stick around for me.  So yeah, probably shouldn’t have made that Target trip and stalled for so long, but she had other deliveries going on anyhow.  🙂  So the nurse checked us in, and I even brought my pre-registration forms for insurance purposes.  These ended up doing me no good at all since she was an entire month early.  So much for trying to be prepared.  Screw that in the future!

The Labor and Delivery floor felt very quiet and almost like everyone was on vacation or out to lunch.  I loved it. It made me feel like I wouldn’t be forgotten about.  My doctor then took us into one of the birthing suites and the nurse gave me a nasty hospital gown to put on.  I put the hospital gown on (first, I put it on the wrong way, like a loser…thanks to all of those movies where people walk around with their asses hanging out in hospitals, I switched it around) and then got into the bed.

Here is where things got semi-interesting.  I thought my doctor would be the one to “check me” aka check my cervix/ see if I was dilated at all.  Nope!  Surprise!  It was nurse-lady!  So she goes on to tell me that she was going to check me first, and then determine what tests they would run to see if I was leaking amniotic fluid.  So, she basically shoves her hand up into me feeling around and such.   She took her sweet time, too!  I don’t remember what the hell she was feeling around so much for, but she eventually said, “You are about 1 cm dilated right now” and that she would come back with the test the doctor wanted to do on the fluid.  Shortly after, she came back with two giant q-tip looking items that she would essentially shove up into me and swab around.  I just kept thinking, “OMG, giving birth is going to be 10 times worse than what she is doing to me right now, and I hate this!”  I just didn’t like how much freedom the nurses had, I guess.  I’d rather have heard that from my actual doctor.

The nurse came back about 30 minutes later and said, “Yep!  It’s amniotic fluid!”  Well no shit.  I could have told you that by now, but thanks for the update, since you’ve already informed me that I am 1 centimeter dilated.  Something else I would have preferred to have heard directly from my doctor, but I understand how busy she was and that she was there on a day that she wasn’t even scheduled for, and now would likely be staying another 24 hours for me.

Thankfully, my doctor came in a few minutes later to touch base with us.  My first question was, “Um, does this mean I am staying?”  And of course she said yes, and if everything progresses as it should, I would be giving birth by noon tomorrow.  {Holy shit!  I’m going to be a mom tomorrow!}

Once your water has broken (no matter how much longer you have to go in your pregnancy), there is a chance for infection getting up in there, since there is no longer the protective barrier between the world and baby girl.  So that was that.  Labor would ensue.  She told me that they would wait a little while to see if my contractions would get stronger on their own (evidently, I was already having contractions, but did not feel them).  If the contractions didn’t strengthen, they would give me the dreaded pitocin/ oxytocin to get things going.  I had heard a few horror stories about pitocin not working properly, not getting you dilated enough, and ultimately resulting in a c-section because things don’t progress.  I was not thrilled about this.  I really wanted to just wait it out until I started contractions on my own, but I know that this was in the best interest of baby girl, so we went with it.

My next question to the nurse was this:  “Can I eat anything?”

Her response:  “I can bring you some ice chips if you’d like”

Oh, this is going to be a fun couple of hours.  As I listened to the nurses trying to decide what kind of pizza they were going to order in for dinner.  Assholes.  (I actually did grow to love the ice chips, oddly – they were the perfect size to crunch on).

One thing I wish someone would have told me:  You are constantly leaking nasty fluids out of you onto the bed where you will eventually give birth.  I don’t know if it’s because my water was broken, but every time I moved or adjusted myself to sit up in bed, a surge of stuff would come out.  Sorry for the nastiness, but it’s real and something you might want to know for one day!  And I really wish I would have known.  I don’t even like having semi-damp clothes out of the dryer, so to sit on this pad that resembled a puppy pad (like what you train your dogs to pee on in the house) and just constantly leak was not something I was cool with.  And the best part was when I had to get up to pee (yeah, you still have to do that even though your leaking all over the place), you leak all over the floor on the way there and back!  You also have to roll the IV fluid thing around with you and pray that you don’t slip and slide on your leakages going back to your soaking wet bed, all while trying to hold the back of your gown shut so you don’t give the nurses a show.  Luckily, by the time I got back to the bed, a nice CNA lady changed out the puppy pad for me.  She probably changed it a total of 10 or 15 times while I was there.

More later – baby girl is awake.