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Miracle – Part 2

November 30, 2007

Continued from Miracle – Part 1

Shortly thereafter everything turned into a little bit of a circus.

Did I mention that military hospitals are teaching hospitals? That means that the one doctor and nurse that might regularly attend to you while you’re in labor becomes 40,000 almost-doctors and 35,000 almost-nurses. Every time we needed to “check the progress of things” I had a whole audience. I pretended like they were just my entourage and called it good. Truth be told, I didn’t really care how many people there were. I didn’t really care what they had to do, either. Funny how that happens.

The Mag Sulfate made me feel a little goofy, and the speed at which everything was moving made things that might otherwise be very important to me (like having 40,000 people at once check my “progress”) became pretty trivial. My “progress” was closed up tight as a drum, however. That didn’t make anything any easier. My little guy was still cooking and he was NOT ready to come out of that nice, warm, albeit small, swimming pool. So we did all sorts of interesting things to help “progress” move along more quickly.

Because Murphy’s Law apparently has my name written into it, absolutely nothing moved along more quickly. Friday afternoon turned into Friday evening, my parents arrived, and then Friday night turned into Saturday morning. Saturday morning turned into Saturday night and I turned into a grouchy person. The nurses didn’t want me to get out of bed for anything, but I was NOT having that. I begged, pleaded, whimpered and cajoled until they agreed to at least let me get up to go to the bathroom. The entire time, I watched the fetal heart monitor and wished that time would fly. I thought of all of the things I wasn’t doing.

My in-laws stopped by the hospital multiple times a day to see how we were doing and I was still concerned about them fending for themselves at my house. “I could be home vacuuming or something,” I thought. “I could be working right now.”

I had planned (you know me, the planner) to begin my maternity leave as soon as he was born… and not a day before. I worried about the days ticking by that I wouldn’t have to spend at home with my little bundle of joy.

Also, there was the slightest possibility that they would have to do a C-Section, or that things could become “an emergency situation” at any moment, so I couldn’t eat either. Just ice chips and popsicles. What fun. When Saturday night became Sunday morning, I had had enough. Although at that point I could claim the longest labor in the history of mankind (at least it felt like it), and I was excited about the prospect of telling the little guy as a teenager, “I was in labor with you for 500 years, young man! You will do (insert thing I want him to do, here),” and labor wasn’t all that bad yet, I just wanted to get ON with it.

My wish was granted. In came the Pitocin Fairy to hook me up to another IV. She explained that the mild labor I was going through would become stronger, that the pitocin would help me to begin contractions in earnest, and she hooked up another monitor to track my contractions. Away she went. After another couple of hours, I was still just barely cramping. I thought, “What’s the big deal? If this is what labor is about, everyone else out there who has had a baby IS a baby. A BIG baby. Seriously. This is cake.”

Then the doctor came back…

With a giant crochet hook…

And broke my water…

I had, to this point, denied that I needed the services of an anesthesiologist. I was doing this naturally, thankyouverymuch. I’m no sissy. Drugs are NOT for me. No sir!


As soon as my water broke, the doctor also split my entire pelvic bone in two (evidently), and the pitocin kicked into high gear, causing me the most excruciating pain I have EVER felt. I hunched, scrunched, begged for mercy, tried breathing, hyperventilated, said some choice words, white-knuckled it on the bed rails, tried breathing some more, decided that breathing thing was a bunch of crap, said some more choice words, grabbed my husband’s arm in a vice-like grip and screamed…

“GET ME THE EPIDURAL MAN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”


He obliged. Heck, he pretty much sprinted from the room. I’m sure it only took the epidural man about 3 minutes to get there, but it felt like an eternity… in hell. Oh boy, was I sorry for all of those things I said about those women who had it so easy before. This was NOT cake. Not even close. It was ridiculously, deliriously, unbelievably painful. In fact, I declared that every woman that has ever gone through childbirth before should be automatically sainted. Especially the ladies that did it naturally. I had respect!

The epidural man showed and stuck a needle about a mile long into my spine. Normally I would shudder, or worry… or something, about the dangers of said procedure. I had no such thoughts. I just wanted the pain GONE.

Once I had the epidural, life was back to beautiful. I watched those giant, ugly contractions that had caused me such agony print out on the monitor and I thanked God, over and over, for the blessing of better living through chemistry. The line would go all the way to the top of the paper, stay there for a very long time, and then come down again only to head right back to the top. Those contractions were SERIOUS.

That would explain why, within an hour and a half, I was feeling a lot of pain again. All of that “progress” that was sealed up tight as a drum? It went from 2 to 10 in 1 1/2 hours. No working into it for me. No sirree. Let’s just get it moving right along here. I sent my husband to find that epidural man again. He came back with the doctor instead and I considered doing a flying karate leap from the bed directly to his solar plexus. When the doctor said, “It’s time to push,” I reconsidered.

There I was, laboring along, with my Mom and my husband on either side of me. My Mom picked at the socks I had on my feet. I think she was trying to be helpful and straighten them out for me, but got rewarded for her efforts by my deep, gravely demon voice (picture Linda Blair in the Exorcist), “Don’t touch my sock AGAIN!!!!” The nurse at my feet that kept repeating, “Push through the pain, push through the pain, push through the pain,” I really wanted to smother her with a pillow, but I left it alone and muttered under my breath, “YOU push through the pain!” She probably never had kids.

Thankfully, that little stretch was pretty short, too. An hour and a half into pushing, we headed for the delivery room. I think we were just in time because we were only there for about five minutes before my little guy entered the world.

Under those bright lights, my Mom and husband standing there, doctor at my feet, flurries of activity, at 5:04 pm, the world narrowed to a tiny point of light. I saw the doctor pull him away from me and run for the nearest table. I saw them suction him. I saw his little body, purple, lying there on that table, and I said, over and over and over again, “Cry, baby. Cry, baby. Cry, baby.”

It was forever that the flurry continued, but the room was silent. No one said a word.  The medical personnel worked feverishly.  My Mom and my husband stood silently.  I think I held my breath.

And finally… finally… finally… I heard his tiny cry.

It was the most beautiful sound I’ve ever heard.

To be continued…

9 Comments leave one →
  1. November 30, 2007 8:11 am

    Crochet hooks? They DO that? Waiting for part 3….

  2. November 30, 2007 9:08 am

    Sooooooo glad I just had my Depo Provera injection. Mental note to warn everyone, when my time comes, NOT to say things like “Push through the pain” to me! Did that nurse make it out alive?

  3. November 30, 2007 10:36 am

    Yay!!! I loved this post. Especially the demonic growl…heheh reminds me of, “WHAT’S AT GRANDY’S?????”

  4. November 30, 2007 12:49 pm

    I had to have my water broke… But that was because I was already progressed way past my body breaking the water on its own.. Talk about painful… I think the most annoying part of it all…. was the nurse that kept coming in and trying to give me the epidural. I think she was a training staff because she couldn’t read my chart that said in big bold letters, NO EPIDURAL.. Oh well..

  5. November 30, 2007 1:11 pm

    Donna – Yes, medieval isn’t it? It wasn’t as bad as it sounds. The water-breaking part was easy. It was what happened AFTER the water-breaking that was crazy! It’s a good thing the endorphins kick in and make you sort of forget how really painful the whole thing is. Otherwise no one on earth would ever have more than one!

    Smirking Cat – yep, keep right up on those Depo shots, girl! The nurse made it out alive, but barely. It really IS what you’re supposed to do. You push at the height of the contraction and your pushing works together with the contraction to move that little guy (or gal) right on outta there. It’s just that you learn these things ahead of time and when you’re there with your legs up around your ears and the whole world checking out your “progress,” the last thing you want is some lame nurse chanting, “Push through the pain.” Argh. She’s lucky that I was too focused (and in too compromising of a position) to do much else besides curse her under my breath. 🙂

    Daisy – Totally! It was such a “WHAT’S AT GRANDY’S” moment!

    Chelly – Don’t you love it when they don’t pay the least bit of attention to what’s actually written in your chart?

  6. November 30, 2007 5:29 pm

    This is a great series of posts. Thank you for sharing.

  7. November 30, 2007 8:40 pm

    i never had to worry about the crochet hooks because my water always exploded all over my floors…EXPLODED!!! copious amounts of amniotic fluid…all over my bedroom floor with my daughter and my living room floor with my son. thank god i wasn’t at a mall!
    sadly, i never had an epidural. i decided to go the martyr route. the only time i had a spinal…my first born was a c-section. after that, i was too scared to have anyone put anything into my spine, thank you! in retrospect…i think i might be insane. just a thought!
    see you later!

  8. December 1, 2007 8:32 pm

    This is the history of his life. These are the words that will stay with him forever. This is the loving legacy you are giving him, what he will carry to his end, what he will repeat and pass on.

    What a lovely gift!


  1. Miracle - Part 3 « In this house, I’m the Mama…

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