It's been awhile since I've updated this Xanga thing. The world is moving in the direction of less blogging and more Facebooking and Tweeting, and it's easy to forget the ol' blog.
I ended up being two weeks overdue with Baby Brown #3 (I even got to go to Christopher and Carrie's wedding in Indianapolis!), and in fact, I was scheduled for an induction for Monday, July 11th at 6 a.m. Willis and I prepared all weekend for the induction appointment, and when 5:10 a.m. rolled around on Monday, we received a call from the hospital. There was no room at Labor and Delivery, and they told us we would have to wait. They also told us to call them at about 8 a.m. We called at 8 a.m., and then, they told us that they would call us when there would be room.
What's interesting, however, is that at about 6 or 6:30 a.m., I noticed that I started having some contractions. I didn't think much about it because, shoot, I'd been having contractions for WEEKS with nothing real to show for it. Those contractions kept on going throughout the day, though. They lasted through the awesome storm, they lasted through the post-storm walk that we did with my parents (they came to town to watch the kids for us), and they lasted until Labor and Delivery called us at about 2 p.m. to let us know there was finally room.
We got to the hospital at about 3, I think, and we got set up in a sweet LDR room (Labor, Delivery, and Recovery, that is). I kept having contractions. At some point in the first couple of hours of being in the LDR, I took advantage of this awesome tub for a few contractions. Henry wasn't there at the time, though. Hah. (Yes. That's his bum to the left.)
Also, at some point (and Willis is better about knowing the timing of everything than I am—as usual), they checked me and determined that I was at about 2-3 cm and very soft (which has never happened before). Even in early labor, I tend to still be at one centimeter, very thick, and I take forever to make any sort of dilation or effacement (we're talking days).
So, the actual induction process was unnecessary at that point. I labored for a few hours before Dr. Ellis came in and asked if we'd like to break my water. We knew that this would be asked (because, technically, I was supposed to be induced that day), and we had decided that we'd prefer to do the breaking of the water before doing anything else. (In my previous labor, my water had to be broken before I could move on with dilation with Henry. Once it was broken, things moved a lot faster, and they needed to because I was getting to be too tired.) So, this time, I was willing to have my water broken if we knew for certain I was in active labor. I think that my water was broken at around 5:30 p.m., and prior to that, my contractions weren't terribly consistent when it came to strength and timing.
We had an incredible nurse named Judy who had been an OB nurse for 40 years. She knew fairly early on that this baby was large, and she also knew fairly early that he was hitting me in the pelvis instead of moving down where he needed to be to turn out. So, she suggested several different (and specific) positions for labor. Every time we tried what she suggested, things kept progressing.
When the time came where I was physically appearing that I should be ready to push, I still didn't quite feel like I could push yet (in my two previous labors, I had the urge to push long before I was supposed to be able to do so—like, hours). In fact, it was really frustrating that I couldn't quite get the oomph to push because I knew I needed to push. I just didn't have the power to do it (and the baby wasn't moving down on his own without the pushing). So, eventually, pitocin was suggested, and we agreed. Something had to be done quickly because I was running out of steam (and was really starting to doubt whether I could do this). (By the way, Willis never gave me a hint of thinking that I couldn't do it, and I don't think he realizes how much that helped.)
Once the pitocin was started (it didn't take long at all), the contractions picked up the power a bit, and I was able to push. I tried a number of pushing positions, and to my dismay, none of the ones I expected would work were working properly. Luckily, Judy suggested some positions to try (I think one of them was called the Texas Roll or something crazy like that), and it was working! I got to a point where the baby was coming down, but he wouldn't go any further. Judy suspected that it was due to a full bladder, so they tried to get me to go to the bathroom. I had several hard, pushing contractions on the toilet (and really, really tried to pee) before it was determined that the baby must be blocking my urethra. (Can you believe that!?) So, Judy had me get back into bed so she could put a catheter in. As soon as the catheter was done, the baby came down and started crowning. I was absolutely shocked at how many stinking pushes it took to get the head out (he got stuck at the nose and the cheeks), and I remember kind-of freaking out that in the middle of the crowning, I suddenly had a lack of hard, pushing contractions again. I remember having to wait what seemed like forever before I could push out the rest of his head.
When I knew the head was through, I was expecting the huge relief that comes with being done with pregnancy, but that relief didn't happen. It turns out, the shoulders were stuck. (Huh!?) It took something like six pushes for me to get the shoulders out, too. All in all, though, I probably only pushed for something like 30 minutes at the very end. The entire labor lasted something like 16 hours, about which I am absolutely thrilled to pieces. Seriously. That was my shortest labor ever, and it made a world of difference.
I'm still in shock about the weight of this kid, though: 10 pounds, 7 ounces. I really did not expect that number when they weighed him (I thought, "maybe nine pounds or so," but not over ten). Yikes. His head circumference was 15 centimeters, too, but after his head came through, the shoulders were stuck as well. I'm not sure what that means, but . . . there it is.
After all that, we were absolutely ecstatic that we actually got to stay in the LDR room (they are called LDR rooms, but with our previous two kids, we got kicked out of the LDR rooms to tiny, horrible, little closets for the remainder of our stay. This is largely why we left the hospital early with Henry). It was awesome. Look. Willis even had a decent place to sleep!
The view was pretty awesome, too. It really made up for the other two times. I still didn't get much sleep, but it was definitely much easier to recover in this situation than before (and probably still easier to recover there rather than being at home with my still-adjusting monkeys).
Without further ado, I'll share some photos from our time at the hospital.
Everett Allen Brown. 10 pounds, 7 ounces. 1:20 a.m. July 12, 2011. 21.25 inches. Two weeks late.
We're glad to be home, and I'm absolutely thrilled to no longer be pregnant. And now, it's time to adjust. Wish us luck.