Thursday, February 10, 2011

Effie Rose Jordan, by Mama! Abby Jordan

Our Effie turns 3 weeks old tomorrow. I can't believe it has taken me this long to write the story of her birth. What they say is true, everything changes. Time is something I took for granted. I will never do that again. Oh, is it worth it. We are so thrilled to have her here.

Effie's birth was not at all what we planned. I really thought that I could control things and this was my first lesson that I am no longer in charge.

On Thursday, Jan 20 I woke up at 2am with contractions. They, I will later find out, hurt but were not the real thing. We started timing them and they were coming frequent but nothing consistent and nothing too breathtaking. Scott stayed home from work and we took it easy. Everything slowed down and we considered it pre labor. However, I was ready. I wanted to do everything I could to keep things moving. I scheduled some induction acupuncture with Dr. Kate Hanson for 5.30 that evening. I bought Clary Sage and Rosemary oil which in combination are supposed to help "Get the Party Started". I drank a little red wine, ate pineapple and we headed to the mall around 6.30pm to walk. I wanted to stomp around to see if I could shake her out. We came home about 8 and I went to bed. At about 9.30 I had a contraction that woke me up. I didn't think much of it since I had been having some all day. At 10.11 (I'll never forget that time) I felt a thud in my pelvis and then felt some wetness. I stood up and with no mistake, my water had broken. I ran to the bathroom and it just kept coming. Yay!!! It worked!! It worked!! We were getting our baby, soon!

My husband had fallen asleep on the couch so I went out and told him the news. He woke up, got a big smile on his face and then fell back asleep. I wanted to let him sleep while I figured out what to do next. It did not take very long for contractions to start and they were strong, immediately. They were coupling, coming one right after the next, and they hurt, badly. They hurt way worse than any of the ones I had during the day. I called the doctor and rewoke up my husband. He thought he had a dream of me telling him my water broke.

We headed to the hospital and arrived around 12.15am. On the walk from the lobby to labor and delivery I had to stop about 4 times to have contractions. During first check, I was dilated to 3 cm. From then until 6.30 am my awesome labor coach, my husband Scott, and I moved from the jacuzzi to all fours to the birth ball (horrible for me, I was too far along) standing on the side of the bed, on the toilet etc. He kept me moving and I kept dilating. Every time they went to check me, they made me lay down on the bed. OMG! I will never forget how badly I hated getting on that bed. The pressure of lying down or sitting was unbearable, I hated it. So, at 6.30am I was at 8 cm. Awesome! We are on our way now. We were almost there.

This is where I lost control of Effie's birth and things went the opposite way of our wishes. The pressure was getting so strong that during contractions as hard as I tried I could not resist the urge to push and it was NOT time. This was making my cervix swell and almost making it close back up. I stayed at 8 until around 10.30am. At that time, they started talking epidural. I could not stop pushing and I had to stop if I wanted to progress in the right direction. The idea was that an epidural would relax me enough that the last 2cm would come. We fought the idea for a little bit longer. We gave it another half hour of music and what we called the dancing position. I put my hands around his neck while standing and we really danced. When I had a contraction I would move my hips and almost squat to try and get those last 2 measly centimeters. It didn't take.

At noon I received the epidural. I felt defeated but I couldn't do much about it. The epidural numbed the pain but did not move me along. By the way, an epidural seems like a fantastic way to go through labor. We slept and all the screaming and pain were gone. If I had to do it over, I would labor without an epidural but if it's not for you, get an epidural. At 3pm they started a pitocin drip. I, of course, kept saying I didn't want pitocin. I didn't want it because I didn't want the contractions to get worse and since I already had the epidural I went with it.

They upped and upped the pitocin and at 8.30pm I was at 9cm. Effie's heartbeat had taken a couple small dips and my doctor believed that there was a reason I was not progressing. C-section was the answer. OMG! I could not believe that after all of that planning, stressing, laboring etc that I was headed into surgery. Well, I was. I nodded my head, again in defeat, yes and that was it. We had a beautiful baby girl at 9.15pm January 21, 2011. She was finally here.

It turns out, the shape of my sacrum is not the norm. It is straight instead of curved. This explains the pain all through pregnancy and the reason I felt the urge to push. I was awake for surgery and while they had me open my doctor explained this to me. She was not sure if I had gotten to 10cm if Effie would have been able to come through. I'm so glad I didn't get there from the epidural and pitocin, pushed for 2 hours and then had a c-section. That is really the only way I think it could have been extended and gotten worse!

Overall, it all ended up working out. She's here and she's perfect. The bond that my husband and I have from the experience has set into motion the way we are experiencing parenting together. I have really relied on him and he has helped me so much through each step so far. I have also used the experience to remind me that I am no longer in control of every minute and every detail. All she does is eat and sleep right now but somehow there are so many challenges with both of these. Those stories are for another day.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Induction Acupuncture? Yes please! by Mama to be, Abby Jordan

At my last appointment with Dr. Kate, (January 7) she mentioned that if I was ready by the next time she could start some induction acupuncture. Um. That's scary. I don't think so. I'll just wait patiently for this little peanut to make his/her move. On Monday (Jan 17), I signed up for it.

Let's go back a bit. So far, (January 14) my OB says I'm 60% effaced, almost dilated to 1 and at a -1 station. She said she thinks I'll go full term but to go ahead and prove her wrong if I wanted. At that time, I was fine with waiting. Sounds great, I thought. Stuff is going on but nothing major. Sweet. We have time. And then...I thought my water broke. I think it was pee but I was on the toilet so no big whoop. It just felt different. Scott and I went kind of crazy. It was 8 at night and we thought, "this could be it!" We were so excited. I bounced around on the birth ball, we put everything we needed on the dining room table so we were READY. We put the car seat in the car, looked over some birth positions, etc. Now, where were the contractions? And how come I haven't leaked any more fluid? We decided to get in bed, relax and see what happens. Nothing happened. No contractions, no baby. Nothing like a false alarm to make us realize that we were prepared. There was nothing that we felt like we forgot to do. Wow. We did it, we were as prepared as we could be.

Not only are we ready, but now we WANT the baby to come. Dr. Kate, here I come! We started with an adjustment, which felt great. I was not in a lot of pain but after the adjustment felt even better. Now, off to the acupuncture table. She put needles in the different pressure points that together should help get contractions started. I was thrilled to have an all natural way to get things moving along. I had been having contractions. Lots of them. All the time. I was so curious to see how this would go. I took the time to relax and to visualize giving birth. I visualized such a nice, quiet, beautiful birth. Fingers crossed. Dr. Kate thought mentioned that the baby might start moving or I actually might have contractions during the treatment. The baby definitely started moving but no contractions, until later. That night I had very strong contractions. By strong, I mean my uterus was harder than I had ever felt it. It was keeping me awake a bit. I probably had about 3-5 of these over 4 hours and then eventually fell asleep and still no baby. I'm going to go back either Thursday or Friday and see if we can continue the process. If I still don't have a baby next week, Dr. Kate said that it would be safe to do daily treatments. Oh, man. Let's have this baby already. We're READY!!

My prediction: labor starts tonight (Jan 18) and I have the baby tomorrow. There is a storm and a full moon. Again, we're READY. I could come up with a reason for everyday.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Dr. Kate, Gotta Love, Dr. Kate by Mama to be, Abby Jordan

I have been making my way to Dr. Kate's table about once a week for the last month. It's so amazing. I get there, she starts pressing around and then I realize all the things that hurt, that ache, that have slipped out of place and are so SORE. Today, she tapped up and down my back, I don't think my neck has ever cracked like this before and then my hips and knees! Yikes. I was in bad shape. I went from working on my feet all day everyday to getting caught up on paperwork and getting our website all shaped up for Valentine's Day. I think sitting shifted my hips all around and typing has made one of my shoulders SOOOO sore. After a few minutes with Dr. Kate, I'm feeling so much better. I thought I better get in to see her since I am 37 weeks and 5 days along. I could have the baby this weekend? I need to be aligned as possible so I can really get down to birthin' business.

I'm also scheduling an Acupuncture session for next week. My first one went really well. I had it about 2 months ago and it was extremely relaxing. I did not have any of the ailments that Dr. Kate might treat with Acupuncture (heartburn, anxiety, depression) but the great thing about Acupuncture is the proactive benefits. As Dr. Kate explained in her blog entry it's really about keeping your energy in balance. As of right now, I feel pretty balanced but who couldn't use a little relaxation and some positive energy. The other thing that we might do is start some induction energy. I am terrified of being medically induced (no pitocin for me!) so why not get the ball rolling? We'll see. I'll keep you posted!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

So, 37 weeks. That's Full Term!! by Mama to be: Abby Jordan

Tomorrow, I am 37 weeks along and we have not had class for weeks!! We decided I better post some stuff about how things are going.

First of all, I feel like my cute basketball belly is a brand new shape that I can hardly describe. It gets a new angle almost everyday. It was round and sticking straight out. It is now sort of round but has some weird flat, plateau like surfaces that make it feel more like an octagon. I think baby is running out of room. Mama wants to be accommodating for at least another two weeks. Yes, I would like to have the baby sometime after January 16 and would prefer January 23. Does that sound like a naive first time mom to you???

I think I have mentioned this before but I work in retail. So, up until late December 24 I run myself ragged. We had our biggest month of online sales ever. AWESOME! This could not be more exciting for us. I was happy to be up and active through this time in my pregnancy as well. At the end of the day, you could knock me over with a feather but all was good for me and baby. We ate and slept enough and we worked REALLY hard. I'm pumped to see the work ethic this baby is going to have. During the last week or so of the holiday rush I started daydreaming about me and my husband settling in at home for a daylong laboring session and then driving to the hospital for a nice "getaway". The thought of labor and delivery was starting to seem like an amazing escape from my non-stop work reality. What!!??? As I'm waking up from that daydream the "getaway" is seeming less and less vacation and calming like and the fears and anxieties that have always been there are creeping there way back into the reality of giving birth.

Last week, I was talking on the phone, carrying six things and not being careful as I was coming into the house. I slipped on the ice and pretty much landed on my 36 week pregnant belly. I'm pretty sure my arm caught most of the weight but I was terrified! I could not feel any tenderness or soreness on my belly and there did not seem like there was much to worry about. I called my mom to tell her and started bawling!! She convinced me to the call the doctor. My doctor was out and the doctor on call did not want to take any chances. I ended up in Labor and Delivery at The Women's Center on a fetal monitor for 4 hours. I was so scared when it happened and then so relieved and glad we got to listen to the heartbeat instead of staying up all night wondering. Everything looked great. No worries. I'm sure I wouldn't have slept a minute. Scott and I have been calling it our dry run and hope we don't have to rush in this next time but at least we know where we're going and a little more of what to expect.

All in all, I still feel pretty great. Sleeping for more than 2 hours without being in a lot of pain from either having to pee or putting to much weight on a hip is starting to be missed. I know this is part of getting me ready for what's to come and I'm a-okay with it. I think a lot of women end up pretty miserable before they actually go into labor and I'm not there yet. I think baby and I will be together for another few weeks. I'll keep you posted!