Today is my due date. Today marks the day that I should have greeted my baby into the world. But Finnegan had other plans. We had a good feeling that I would have him early. I had the girls at 37 weeks so we assumed I would have Finnegan around the same time.
Boy was I right. I like being right. At 37 weeks and 2 days Finnegan decided to enter the world. This is Finnegan’s birth story. The good, the bad, and most definitely the ugly.
4:30am– Half asleep, as I shifted from one side to the other in bed I have a moment, “Oh my word, I am peeing the bed.” Oh wait, nope that is not pee, that is my water breaking. It is like the flood gates opened and 5 gallons of water was spewing out of me. I never had it happen before. I tried to get up. I was terrified to make my way to the bathroom knowing that I would make a trail throughout my house.
5:00am– I am now experiencing contractions. The contractions were five minutes apart. I tried calmly to get things together and to help any way I could to get the girls ready to leave. As we load up in the car, I am still gushing water (how much is in there I think to myself). I have to admit I put a towel in my pants. Too much information? Maybe but the truth is sometimes you will gush and gush and gush. Some women only trickle. Some do not experience it until it is broken for them. But for me this time around I had the pleasure of stuffing a hand towel in my pants to keep me from wetting the car.
At this time I would like to mention that we live 40 minutes away from the hospital. This worried us a bit because the weather is less than stellar in January. Sure enough this morning it was pure ice on the roads therefore causing the trip to be a little slower. I had a moment of panic in the car. I tried to stay cool as a cucumber for the sake of my husband. But I was a wreck. What if we get in a accident? What if he decides to come right now? I do not want to birth this baby in the back of the Yukon. Not today. Not in front of my children.
6:00am– We made it safely to the hospital. I am taken to a little room where they like to monitor first. In other words, they want to check me to make sure I am not a paranoid freak that cannot tell the difference between my water breaking and urine.
6:30am– Surprise, Surprise! I was right. I should get a medal for this recognition. I am toted off to my room. I get nice and comfy in my bed. The girls ask a bunch of questions.They look a little terrified about everything that is happening to me. Not long after we get settled Josh’s parents arrive to take care of the girls.
7:00am– My mom, sister, and aunt arrive to the party. At this point I am still in good spirits. My contractions are still five minutes apart and are not very intense. We all sit and wait it out. We laugh and giggle. They eat in front of me (wicked, wicked family).
Little funny story I have to share. During the wait my mom takes off her boots. She makes mention that her socks are wet and that it is the worst feeling in the world. My sister looks at her and says “really?” We all begin to laugh knowing that I am about to experience one of the most painful (but beautiful) things in my life.
8:30am– My contractions move backwards. Are you flipping kidding me? They are now seven minutes apart. The nurse wants me to walk the halls. This will help jump start the contractions she says. Oh yay I get to move in my awfully hideous hospital gown around the halls for all to see. My sister and I walked around a few times. One nurse that we walk by says “oh you are so cute”. Yeah right. Ok lady move on and take your compliments with you. I do not feel cute. I feel like a whale, waddling my way to having a baby. So do you think the walking worked? Nope not at all.
10:00am– This is when it all begins to be a blur for me. The second they said pitocin I knew I was in for a real treat. I experienced it before with Annaliese and I definitely did not want to go down that path again. But there I was getting hooked up to a bag full of pain. They said it was going to be a low dose. I laughed on the inside.
It seemed almost instant. I could feel things changing as the pitocin seeped through my veins. I do not remember my contractions getting closer and closer. One minute they were five minutes apart. The next, one minute apart. I could not breathe. I could not focus. Everyone keeps telling me to breathe. “You have to breathe, Kristen” they would say. I wanted to tell everyone to shut up, even Josh. Stop telling me what to do. I know what I have to do but you telling me to do it does not make me do it. I needed to focus. I did eventually tell them (politely I think) to stop.
During all this time I was waiting impatiently for my epidural. I wanted the drugs. I knew going in I wanted to get the good stuff. When they asked if I had a birth plan, there was only one thing on that plan-epidural. I applaud those that do it all natural. But it was not my plan. It was not for me.
At one point I heard someone say they were waiting for the drugs. There was a hold up or something. Excuse me? I hold up on drugs? Has someone taken all the epidurals hostage? Shouldn’t there be an endless supply of epidurals in a hospital full of pregnant ladies?
During the agonizing contractions they tell me that I have to get up and empty my bladder so I can get the epidural. Like seriously? Get off the bed and walk? But I knew the faster I did it the faster I would get my drugs and it was all about the drugs at this point. So I got up, moved to the toilet and sat down. Let’s just say going to the bathroom and having a contraction at the same time is a whole lot of fun. Once the contraction was over I made my way back to the bed. I only made it to the side of the bed when another contraction came. It was severe and agonizing. I wanted to scream “get me my drugs”. As the contraction stopped I was able to get on the bed.
10:55am- I do not think I was fully in position on the bed when another contraction hit. This was it. I screamed “he is here” and I had lost all control. I think I kept screaming he is coming he is coming. I can hear the nurse telling me not to push. Excuse me lady but there is a baby coming out of my vagina. I am pushing this kid out. Now. I can hear them screaming for my midwife as one of the nurses literally hold in Finnegan. Panic swept over me realizing that I am doing this with no drugs. Wow it is painful. I mean it is still painful with drugs but the drugs take the edge off. I was terrified that I would not be able to do it. But I guess I had no choice in the matter. I was going to push this baby out and get him out as fast as I could.
11:00am- He is out. Two pushes and he was here. As he was placed on my chest I could not believe that I just birthed a child with no drugs. It was exhausting and something I never want to do again. But I did it. I felt like a champion. After my brief moment of feeling like I was on top of the world, things began to turn. I could notice people becoming a little frantic.
I began to hemorrhage. I had experienced this before with my first pregnancy. But this time it was worse. Let me tell you, the pushing on the uterus is for the birds. They continue to do this to get the blood out. Over and over again they mash on my stomach as if they are pounding out dough. I could not breathe. I could not hold my newborn baby comfortably in my arms. As they continue to work on the hemorrhaging, people are coming in and out to try to help. Two nurses are trying to run another IV in my arm. It keeps ballooning and after two times my midwife tells them to stop. Other nurses are coming in to shoot my leg full of drugs to try to help with the bleeding. I am getting pushed and pulled in every direction. I am crying and by this point I am beginning to get scared. For a split moment I look into their eyes. There was panic and fear. I have my mom and Josh on my left side. My mom is crying and Josh looks like he is dead. I try to focus on everything but at the same time cannot focus on anything. I want them to take Finnegan off of me. I do not want our first encounter to be this. But what if this is our only encounter? I scream out “I’m so terrified” This is when my midwife reassures me that she has this and it will all be okay. It is amazing how calm and comforting she can be. I fall into a state of focus and determination to get through this. I am not sure how long this goes on. But eventually the bleeding slows down. Finally it is under control.
Just like that I am once again holding my sweet precious boy. Gosh he is beautiful. This moment I will cherish forever. As painful as giving birth is, the moment he is placed safely in my arms all the pain washes away.
Welcome to the world Finnegan Raymond Lee! We love you so much!