Monday, May 08, 2006

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Did I ever tell you about the time I gave birth to my kids?

Grace's Birth Story...

I had been to the doctor on Wednesday, June 27, 2001 for my 40.5 week appointment. The doctor said I was still only 1 cm dilated, and he stripped my membranes and scheduled me for induction for the following Tuesday at 7AM. I came home that night, hung out with the in-laws, had a beer, and had sex. Still no signs of a baby.

I woke up at 2:00 AM with a hideous contraction and when I had another one 5 minutes later, I realized I should time them. I didn't wake Steve, but came downstairs and timed them. They were all exactly 5 minutes apart and were lasting between 45 and 60 seconds. After an hour of this, I went back upstairs to wake Steve and tell him we may need to go to the hospital, which was about 45 minutes away.

At exactly 3:20 AM I had a huge contraction and my water broke and gushed out all over the bed. I never saw Steve move so fast in my life! LOL!! We immediately got in the car and headed to the hospital. (It was the longest 45 mintues of my life.) By this point, I was having really bad back labor and yelling at Steve that I just wanted a fucking epidural!

We got to the hospital around 4:30 AM and they told me my water hadn't broken (afterwards, they realized that my water HAD broken at home which I told them all along, but that's neither here nor there), and that I was 3 cm and contracting regularly. (Whenever Steve and I were alone in the room I kept telling him to tell the fucking nurse that I wanted a fucking epidural because the back labor was absolutely excrutiating at this point.) Over to the labor and delivery room we went….

They got me to the L&D room and called God (AKA: the epidural guy) who came almost immediately and eased all of my pain. Within minutes I was laughing and joking and couldn't feel a darn thing. Boy did I love that guy. Seriously, if I had given birth to a son, I may have named him after that dude.

At 6AM we called our parents and told them to come down to the hospital. They checked me and I had dialated 3 more centimeters to 6 cm in 2 hours.

My parents, my mother-in-law, and my sister got to the hospital and we all hung out in the room talking and laughing and having a good ol' time. They all went to the cafeteria to grab something to eat around 8AM, the doctor came into my room in the meantime, told me I was complete, and that I should start pushing! Holy crap!

So he left, and Steve, the nurse and I spent the next hour or so pushing in between talking and laughing. (Funny side story: Steve had to keep checking the hallway because we didn't want our family members to get back from the cafeteria and walk right in the room and see me spread-eagled in their direction! No one expected it to go so fast!)

Once they got back from the cafeteria, Steve would go out in the hallway periodically to update the family. They were all sitting on the floor outside the door and couldn't figure out why there were women in all the other rooms moaning and crying and screaming, but whenever my door opened I was cracking up laughing. (Ummm, because I was a big wuss and had an epidural within minutes of arriving at the hospital and couldn’t feel a darn thing from my waist down!)

Anyway, at one point, the doctor called up to the room and said I should stop pushing for about 30 minutes because he wanted to finish the hysterectomy he was performing. No problem. It’s not like I could feel anything anyway… So Steve, the nurse, and I just hung out while we waited for the doctor to finish his surgery.

Around 11:45 AM, the doctor walked in and said the baby was coming. He stuck his head out in the hallway, told our moms and my sister to come in to watch, and told me to push. One push and out came the baby's head. One more and there was the rest of her!

He said "It's a girl!" and our moms let out blood-curdling screams (they had really wanted a girl but we were all absolutely convinced it was a boy... ummm, so much for intuition…) and scared the crap out of my dad in the hallway who thought they had dropped the baby or something.

Grace Elizabeth (AKA: "Gracie") was born at 11:55 AM on Thursday, June 28, 2001. She weighed 7 pounds 11 ounces, was 19.5 inches long, and has a full head of black hair. Her APGAR scores were 8 and 9 and she looked EXACTLY like Steve and his dad (which still freaks me out actually).

As for me, I had started to tear, so the doctor cut me, but then I continued to tear all the way to my rectum (Fun. Fun.) So between my 3rd-degree rip, the hemmeroid, and my damn boobs filling up with milk and then me allowing it to dry up immediately, I was in a bit of pain for a few days.

What's funny is that Hannah's birth story is the complete opposite of Grace's.

Hannah's Birth Story

And oh, is it a doozy...

OK. So Grace woke me up at 1:30 AM on June 12th, 2003. I was standing next to her crib patting her back when I had my first contraction. It felt pretty painful and thought, "Hmmm... this could be it." About 15 minutes later, I had another one. Grace was back to sleep, so I went back to bed and after 2 more contractions 10 minutes apart, I woke Steve. The doctor had said it would be a quick delivery and we have an hour drive to the hospital, so I decided we should go.

I called my parents and they got here around 3:00 AM. In the meantime, Steve and I were enjoying a nice cup of freshly brewed coffee. (See... not so bad yet, right?)

My mom, Steve & I headed to the hospital while my dad stayed at our house to take care of Grace. The contractions weren't too bad on the drive, but by the time we got to the hospital, they were about 5 minutes apart and getting more painful.

We got to the hospital at 4:00 AM and they put me in triage to monitor the contractions. I was already 5 cm dilated with my "waters bulging". Alrighty then. That doesn't sound so pleasant, now does it? OK.

Around 4:45 AM, they decided to move me to a labor room (once they had one open up... t was busy that night) and asked if I wanted an epidural. Um, didn't you get the memo lady? YES, I WANT ONE!!!! Okee dokee...

So I get to the labor room around 5:00 AM. Fine. The contractions start getting REALLY painful and I tell the nurse (and the other 3 people that come in and ask) that YES I want a goddamn epidural and to please tell the epidural guy that I will pay him a hefty sum to come to my room next.

Steve at one point looked at me, laughed, and quoted "Happy Gilmore", saying "Go to your happy place,". I almost ripped his nuts off, but there would've been witnesses, so I refrained.

OK. So the doctor comes in and says I'm now fully dilated (it's about 5:30 AM at this point). He says, "Let's get you your epidural and then I'll break your water." (It still hadn't broken.)

I should mention that at this point, the contractions were about 3 minutes apart and I was moaning and screaming and half crying. (I have no shame.)

I said, "Seriously. Where IS that man?! Give me SOMETHING! I don't care if it's not an epidural! Give me a shot of vodka or something!" They're all laughing. I'm, uh, not.

About 5 minutes later I'm SCREAMING because there is now NO space between contractions. None. I can't catch my breath, I'm writhing in pain and I'm about to rip the bed rail off. My mom's trying to comfort me, Steve's standing there making freakin' phone calls to his employees, and the doctor and nurses ALL leave to go get that DAMN epidural guy.

Just then, I get the incredible urge to push and intense pressure in my butt. I yell that I NEED to push. My mom goes darting out into the hall, grabs a nurse and says, "My daughter wants to push!"

All of a sudden, it was like a scene from ER. Doctors and nurses came flying in, dragging the epidural guy. The epidural guy starts giving his speil, "These are the risks... this is what it is... blah, blah, blah..."

I look at the man with the devil in my eye and scream, "I've HAD one! Give me the epidural!!!!" The nurse is behind him getting ticked off and saying, "Just GIVE her the epidural!" (Not because she was annoyed at me... she was annoyed at the epi guy.)

The doctors and nurses are yelling at each other, the epi guy is getting flustered and running from one side of the bed to the other, they're dropping the bed and hooking up the stirrups, I'm screaming in pain, and Steve's still making phone calls. (Just kidding.)

So all of a sudden, the doctor says, "Allison, I'm going to have you deliver. The baby's heart rate is falling really low and rising again and I don't want to wait 5 minutes for the epidural to kick in. I'll break your water and I promise you'll deliver immediately."

I'm like, "Fine! Just get it OUT!!!"

He breaks my water and yells, "PUSH!!!" I took a deep breath, let out a scream like an Indian warrior woman, and pushed like no other woman ever has (probably not true, but it felt that way).

The head came out and all I saw was black hair. The cord was wrapped around her neck twice (the reason her heart rate had started to drop), so he unwrapped it and yelled, "One more push!" I pushed again and there she was!

I glanced down and said, "It's a girl!!" But then I wasn't sure and said, "IS it a girl?" The doctor looked and said, "Yup!" and looked at Steve and said, "It looks like you're buying a boy puppy if you want testosterone in the house. Now cut this cord!"

I then raised my head, looked at the doctor and said, in all seriousness, "Natural childbirth really sucks." He almost fell off the stool laughing.

OK. Now once things calmed down, the doctor explained that he hadn't wanted to wait for the epidural to take effect b/c he wasn't sure why the baby's heart rate was dropping. And since he knew it wouldn't take long, he decided he wanted me to deliver instead.

He explained all of this to me, and then looked at the nurse and said, "Did you see her yell at Dr. Large?" (Dr. Large is the epi guy.) "When she screamed that she still wanted the epidural, after his big speech, I almost laughed out loud!" (Gee, glad I could entertain all of you as I as I felt my loins being ripped apart.)

The good news was that I didn't rip at all and didn't need even a single stitch (one good thing in the fiasco).

So two different labors, two different deliveries, and two different kids. But with the same result... the people that make my world go round.


Belynda said...

Both stories are so great...and scary (at least for me...I haven't had any kiddos yet.) Thanks for sharing!

Chelle Y. said...

I am sorry, but you had me laughing through your pain ("Go to your happy place?"). Makes me happy I adopted. :o)

You have such a beautiful family! Thank you for sharing your stories.

Amber said...

You do have such a beautiful family, I agree with Chelle!

I was LOL at Steve when your water broke on the bed! Holy crap, I BET! Ha!

I love to hear people's birth stories. I am thinking I am going to get certified as a doula, as part of my practice when I go back to work. I love the whole pregnancy, birth-delievery process! And yes, I am one of those who would have been cheering you on "You can do it! Epidural? You don't need no stinking Epidural!" You are WOMAN! LOL!

Made me smile to read these!


Tink said...

I don't know why, but I've always loved birth stories. And I LMFAO at

"and scared the crap out of my dad in the hallway who thought they had dropped the baby or something."

Poor guy! Everyone's already scared enough that something bad is going to happen.

The second one sounded HORRIBLE. You've totally convinced me that I want drugs. Screw pain. And I don't mind saying that I wanted to throttle your husband when you said he was on the phone while you were screaming. Men just don't know...

Emily said...

Those are great....and so different! LOL

Your girlies rock...

Chelle Y. said...

I "stole" your Monday Memories picture. I hope you do not mind. If so, let me know and I'll delete it.

Kim said...

Awwww! I've read Gracie's birth story many times, but had never heard Hannah's. I knew that you delivered naturally though. We were in the midst of moving when you had Hannah and I was praying that I'd hear some news before we had to take down our computer. She came before we moved though! LOL!

Gosh that seems like yesterday! ;)

EE said...

I will always remember Hannah's birth story the most vividly bc the entire time we were pg you were SO adamant about that epidural. LMAO

I love birth stories. [happy sigh]

mama_tulip said...

I actually thought of you after I delivered Oliver, because I was in so much pain I thought I might kill someone. Crying, swearing, clutching the bedrail...yeah. I was a mess.

Your stories are awesome.

Melissa said...

Awww, those were great birth stories. Sniff sniff

And Belynda, be afraid, be very afraid. LOL Just kidding.

Alien said...

Amber: You'd be a WONDERFUL doula! Do it! Do it! And I must say, I'm a proud supporter of the epidural. As much as I liked NOT having one for Hannah's birth, I will say that I wouldn't change Grace's birth for the world. She was our first child, we didn't know what to expect, etc. And because I had that needle full of joy, we could actually enjoy the birth. No pain, lots of laughter, etc. I'd go that route again (for a first child) if asked. But IF we have a third one day, I'll probably try to go the natural route again. ;)

Tink: LOL! He kind of had no choice. He owns a concrete flatwork company, so he was calling his employees to tell them they wouldn't be working that day. Totally understandable. But as luck should have it, he was on the phone right as I had the mother of all contractions. I just wanted him to hang up the damn phone so I could let out the banshee scream I had brewing in me. LOL!

Chelle: LOL! It isn't "my" picture to steal. You can grab a bunch of them here...

EE: I still believe that the epidural was one the greatest inventions EVER and that epidurals are a girl's best friend. :)

Katherine: I think of you every single time I re-read/post Hannah's birth story because I know how you always laugh whenever you read it. Thanks for that, pal. You're swell. ;)

beth said...

I needed a nice cry and a good laugh. Thanks! Those were terrific stories.

You look beautiful in Hannah's delivery picture. I would never have guessed you had just been dragged through hell. ;-)