So my sweet, sweet babe is a month old now. I just canNOT believe it. My how time flies when you're having fun..[or when you're flying by the seat of your pants, praying to God to show you the right way to do things..]. When it's just the two of us, I tend to think back on his birth. In fact, I think back on it quite a bit. True, it wasn't what I'd envisioned and planned for during the entire pregnancy. But I had constantly consulted God on it and wanted His will to be done in order for us to have a happy and healthy baby.
I truly believe there was some divine intervention during the last couple of weeks of my pregnancy. I'd gone 37 weeks without so much as a hiccup in my prenatal care. I was starting to feel like the entire thing was a joke. I'd go in for my appointments, they'd check my vitals [weight, BP, pulse, etc], measure my belly, ask if I'd had any symptoms for anything [preterm labor, preeclampsia, etc], I'd ask any questions I had [which weren't many. maybe a total of 5 questions the entire nine months] and then I'd be on my way. Rarely did my visits last more than 15 minutes. All of my bloodwork and tests came back looking perfectly fine. I was on track to have a pretty boring, textbook labor. Or so I thought. Then at my last appointment [Feb 4th], I had high blood pressure. After the entire exam, he had me retake my blood pressure after lying down for twenty minutes or so. Thankfully it went down a few numbers, but it was still high and he wanted me to look out for signs of pre-eclampsia. Fast forward a week and while going over birth plans with Lauren, my best friend, we ended up going into L&D for my ridiculously high blood pressure. I didn't have any of the other signs of pre-eclampsia. Just high blood pressure and an usually high amount of protein in my urine. Had we not checked that night, we wouldn't have known.
Even with all of the signs pointing to it, I was fighting an induction like there was no tomorrow! I did everything but beg the hosp staff...lol. Even once I was admitted, I kept asking for loopholes to the pitocin. They pacified me with lies [telling me I could turn it off once my contrax got to a steady rhythm], but I let it be known that I wasn't one of those girls who just lays on her back and trusts what they say/do. I made it a point to inform myself. I wish more people did. Not once during the entire process was I lost or confused because I understood their lingo. The big, fancy words they used- I came across those many times in the many books and articles I'd come across during my pregnancy. This was a well-researched pregnancy and gosh-darnit- we were gonna do it my way!
I really am thankful to the hospital staff though. I'm sure I wasn't easy to deal with [despite being pretty pleasant with them even throughout the tougher parts of labor...] but they handled it all really well. For the most part, they let me labor by myself. I only saw the doctor who helped deliver Austin three times. Once when she came to introduce herself and strip my membranes, once when she came to check on my progression roughly 6 hours later, and lastly when she caught him and stitched me up afterwards. [Oh wait, then she stopped by the next night when she came on shift...just to visit] The nurses who were in charge of my IV meds and such respected my need to know when exactly they were up-ping my dosages. Overall, I couldn't have asked for a better staff to be a part of the experience.
Looking back, I'm so glad we were at the hospital. For Austin's sake- he was a champ throughout the entire experience! His heart rate stayed steady and strong the entire time. My biggest worry was that the pitocin would send him into overdrive and then they'd try rushing us, but my guy was PERFECTION the entire time. I, on the other hand, was the problem. I could've stroked; I could've retained a ton of water and essentially drowned myself; I had the world's smallest placenta and umbilical cord; I tore and needed 4 stitches. Now had we been at home, it probably wouldn't have been too much of a problem because we live so close to the hospital, but it would've definitely been a hassle. I think also that the "luxury" of having my sheets changed every time I got up and having help at the push of a button was also nice and welcome.
For baby #2 [and potentially others afterwards], rather than at home, I'd be willing to go to the hospital again. I truly believe that Charlie working there making us Command Priority made a big difference, as well. The level of care I received was definitely top notch. I mean, they moved around other patients so I could have my own recovery room! I now know how Madigan operates so it'd be easy to do a second time, if we were stationed here. If we live somewhere else when baby #2 arrives, then a birth center is more our style. I'll shell out the money for the type of birth I want, no problem. I now see that going unassisted, given the chances of preeclampsia and the smallness of what I produce, doesn't make me super comfortable. Don't get me wrong, I'd LOVE to just do it by myself..I just don't think it's wise for me. And while that makes me sad, I'm still happy that I can go as natural as possible if given the chance and I can still have that safety net in case something should go wrong.
God definitely knew what He was doing that night, a month ago. And I thank Him for stepping in, when I was so focused on MY agenda rather than His, and blessing us with this perfect bundle of joy. Our little Austin Mays...