Thursday, July 24, 2014

Meet Kate.

I suppose a proper introduction is needed for our little sleepy addition.

Meet Kathryn Olivia Hannibal, better known as Kate. She joined us on June 30, 2014 at 2:55 pm. She weighed in at 7 pounds 11 ounces and was 19.5 inches long.

I'm a planner and thus I opted for an induction. I also didn't mind that this meant having Kate early, because no one wants to be 40 weeks pregnant. We got a phone call around 0530 saying we could still come in at 0600 to get the ball rolling. I was thrilled, but after a night of poor sleep (can you say pregnant and antsy?) I was already exhausted.

Our previous experience with L&D was not great. I expressed this to my nurse. She totally understood and did everything in her power to make this experience the complete opposite. And so she did! Kirstin was the best nurse I could have asked for. We also had a student nurse. I have a soft spot for students since my BYU days are still fresh in my mind. It's frightening to walk into a patient's room and ask to do procedures that you don;t even want to do because you're inexperienced! Luckily, I'm an awesome patient and give the students ample opportunity to practice.

Paul was a doll and kept a timeline of events for me. Check out this man's handiwork:

Baby Timeline
6:10 am - Arrive at hospital.  Nurse Kirstin and student Sandra
7:10 am - IV in, very fainty, lay back, get ice chips. Tight 3 cm, 80% effaced, -2 station
7:40 am - Started Pitocin (contractions were about every 10 min naturally)
8:00 am - Contractions getting closer (about every 3 minutes since starting Pitocin)
8:10 am - turn up Pitocin (contractions every 2 to 6 min, ranging between 10 and 50 sec)
8:30 am - Break Water, estimated baby wieght: 7.5 lbs
8:40 am - turn up Pitocin (12mu/min)
9:15 am - Turn up Pitocin (16mu/min)
9:35 am - Anesthesiologist comes in
9:45 am - Epidural is in.  Anesthesiologist said he went into a vein, but pulled it out, into the epidural space.  95% chance he did it right, but he might have to come back in if pain won't go away with the anesthesia.
10:00 am - Blood pressure dropped to 60/30. Pushed 10 ml of ephedrine to get it back up. It took 15 minutes to get it back up to normal (100/60).
11: 15 am - Pitocin up to 20 mu/min
12:15 pm - 4.5 cm, 90% effaced, -1 station
1:45 pm - 8 cm, 95% effaced,
2:00 pm - baby is moving down. Early decelerations. Baby's head moving down. Nurses prepare room for delivery.
2:30 pm - 9 to 10 cm, fully effaced, call doctor. Baby might be posterior.
2:40 pm - Doctor Heather Dabling arrives.
2:55 pm - After 3 contractions, Kathryn Olivia Hannibal is born.
3:23 pm - Skin to skin and breast feeding.
About 5 pm - move over to mother baby area.

Phew, did you make it through all of that? Anyway, the part where I said I'm an awesome patient might have been a lie. I was very faint throughout the day and thus required a lot of attention. Turns out Kate was extremely unhappy with me when I was turned on my right side. My blood pressure would plummet and I would get nauseous. I spent most of the time on my left side to keep both baby and myself comfortable.

Other items of mention: My epidural was a dream. We had a bit of a scare but it all worked out. I could move my legs (which freaked me out since they were completely dead with Vincent) but still felt no pain! I had one "hotspot" where a few pain receptors shouted at me, but it was worth it to be able to move so quickly after labor. 

Also, I felt so different after labor this time! I think I was overly drugged with Vincent and the beauty of the moment went over my head. I was exhausted and couldn't help but cry after his birth. Not happy tears, but empty & helpless tears. I was starving and couldn't stop shaking. With Kate, though... oh it was so very different. They put her on my chest and the very first thing I noticed were her fuzzy, rolly arms. The second I saw her I knew she was going to be a squishy baby. She also latched and began nursing like a pro. What a relief!

For a long time I felt guilty that Vincent's arrival wasn't that perfect moment that so many people describe. With time and the opportunity to compare birth stories, I've realized that there is no reason to feel ashamed. Circumstances were so different between the two and there was nothing I could do. In the end, the important thing is that both instances resulted in perfectly healthy babies. What a blessed woman I am.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Worth it.

Nine months of pregnancy. Contractions. Pain. Severe Hypotension. Epidural. Pushing. Tearing. Bleeding. Nursing. Sleepless Nights. Exhaustion. Tears. Infection. Fever. Chills. Hot Flashes. More Medication.


You're worth every bit of it.