Saturday, April 27, 2013

Henry's Birth Story

This story is long... very long.

Like his older sister, Henry took his time coming into our world. He is the product of a very long labour that was worth every pain and hour passed. I had a regularly scheduled OB appointment on Monday April 22, the day before my due date. My doctor and I had previously discussed the potential of inducing early. Sydney was such a large baby that we were very worried about how big this baby would be. The problem is that she cannot induce earlier than 41 weeks without an excuse. Well, that week I had an excuse.

I had developed PUPP. It is an incredibly itchy rash that covers your entire body and the only way to cure it is to have the baby. I had it with Sydney and it was back with a vengeance  When I told Dr. McCubbin that it had returned, she decided right then and there that we were going to induce the next morning. I was shocked to say the least! David and Syd were at home and David was scheduled to work a night shift that night. I sent him a message telling him to call in to work and when I got home I told him the news. We spent that night getting a few last minute items together and organizing childcare for Sydney with my step-dad.

The next morning was very similar to our experience with Sydney. We went to the hospital, got checked in, had the cervadil inserted to start the process, got hooked up to the monitors for 2 hours and got sent home to wait for something to start happening. I had a long nap that afternoon and we had a casual dinner with my parents. At 7pm I started having very spaced our irregular contractions. I went upstairs to lay down and relax and by 8:30pm they were timeable and consistent at about 4 minutes apart. I spent the next several hours resting and breathing through contractions. By 2am they were 2 and a half minutes apart and getting painful. I woke Dave and we decided to head to the hospital.

The drive to the hospital was unbearable. My contractions picked up and I could barely walk into the ER. We went up to L&D, got changed, monitored and checked and were told that I was still only 1cm dilated. I was so disappointed and exhausted. At this point it was 3:30am and we knew we had to be back at the hospital by 8am. We decided to stay and sleep in the early labour lounge rather than drive home and come back. I managed to rest through contractions while David got some sleep. At 7am we had some breakfast and went upstairs to check in. Dr. McCubbin came in to check on me and told me that I was favourable to begin Oxytocin.

We settled into our L&D room and met our nurse Rhonda. She was absolutely incredible. A 37 year nursing veteran, she was forceful when she needed to be and encouraging beyond belief. It was like having the perfect mom in the room who knew exactly what you needed to do to get the baby out. 

I started to receive Oxytocin through my IV and my pain instantly increased tenfold. Rhonda had me moving and breathing through the pain. Once I could get off of the monitors she encouraged me to try to labour without the epidural for a while to speed up the process. I had progressed far enough to receive it but it has been known to slow contractions. She encouraged me into the shower and sent David out to get me a slurpee. I sat in the shower on a stool drinking my slurpee while David directed the shower head on my stomach and lower back. We timed contractions and Rhonda came in intermittently to check Henry's heartrate. The shower was blissful. It took away so much of the pain and helped me relax. I went into a place of serious concentration and relaxation. At a certain point the contractions were too painful for me to breathe through and I finally asked for the epidural. 

Once the epidural was in everything changed. Rhonda propped me into a comfortable position with pillows and dimmed the lights. She sent David to get some lunch and told him to sleep once he returned. We rested until about 3:45pm when Dr. McCubbin came in to break my water. I was dilated to 5cm and thought that we still had a long way to go. Once she was finished so told us she was going to step out and that we were to page her if we needed to. It was at this point that my dear friend Conni arrived. David had surprised me by asking her to be there to take photos of Henry's birth. I was so overwhelmed with emotion and happiness to see her. Over the past almost 10 years we have developed a close bond. Conni has had 3 beautiful children during that time and I often look to her for parenting advice and she has been an incredible support through both of my pregnancies. 

Less than half an hour later I felt the most incredible pressure and pain. I cannot even explain to you how much pain I was in. I looked at David to see that he was concerned and asked him to get Rhonda to top up my epidural and do a check. She called for more medication for me and came in to check my progress. I was 10cm! They called Dr. McCubbin who seemed to show up in record time. I breathed through the pain and asked her if it was ok for me to get up and push in a different position. As she whipped on a gown and gloves she shot me a funny look and told me that I didn't have time and Henry was coming now! One contraction and two pushes later his head was out. One more contraction and three small pushes and he was born at 4:50pm.

Rhonda helped me lift my gown and she placed him on my chest for skin to skin contact. I sobbed hysterically, so overcome by emotion and how fast it had all happened. David found out that he had a son and he could not have been prouder. He cut the cord and we covered him with a towel. Rhonda gave us as much time as we wanted to bond before taking him to get weighed and checked. I looked over at Conni to see that she too was very emotional. The whole experience was perfect. 

Henry shocked us all with his smaller size and fast entrance into the world. We are so happy that he is finally here. My recovery has been substantially better this time around. I feel better, Henry is a fantastic breast feeder, my stomach is getting smaller faster and I feel a lot  more confident in my parenting skills this time. 

I will post some of the photos that Conni took once we get them. But for now, I am off to enjoy my new little boy. 

Mrs. E


  1. Replies
    1. Thank you for reading! We loved travelling through Australia. Our little Sydney is named for your city!