After I knew for sure that I was being transferred to the hospital I was laying in bed, broken down, and letting the world pack around me. I was still having contraction on top of contraction and was not getting any release. I felt like I was sleeping for hours in between contractions but really it was less than a minute of rest. I was shutting down on my self. Having to get dressed at this point was just miserable. I had at least 3 contractions just while trying to get my pj's back on. Here I am at 10 cm and I'm trying to get dressed. NOT fun!
Once we had the cars packed everyone helped escort me out of the birthing center and I realized that it was early afternoon. It was like leaving a casino after going in when it was dark and coming out hours later when it's light out. It's a mind trip. I had a moment of embarrassment while walking out when I realized that it was business hours and some poor other mothers had to listen to me roaring and screaming. I'm sure I terrified them.
We got back in my dad's rental car to go the 5 blocks to the hospital with me in the backseat with my midwife holding me up. Let me tell you, 5 blocks is like a MILLION when you are having contractions every 45 seconds, are in a car, have a baby's head stuck on your pelvis and you CANNOT push!
We got to the hospital and the midwife rushed to get me a wheelchair to get me in. Of course, the only one we found had no footrests so here I am, having contractions, trying to hold my feet up while we get into the hospital. We found one once we got inside but I was not about to try to switch so I just hollered at them to just get me to the room! Cory, the midwife and I got in the elevator and had to go up to level 4 for admissions. We got there and they said "Tiara right? Ok go down to level three to room 321". Yes. That was it. I had to go all the way to level 4 just for them to say ok, we know you are here. I was not very happy with that. So back into the elevator we go, all while contracting and holding my feet up.
When we get into my room the doctor was already there and asked if I wanted an epidural. I really wanted to do this natural. I really wanted to have all the sensations and feeling I possibly could. I REALLY didn't want to hear a single person tell me "I told you so" when they find out I couldn't do a natural birth. My midwife saw the hesitation on my face. She asked me if I remembered what she told me at the beginning of my pregnancy? She said " having an epidural is not losing. It's not giving up. Sometimes we need that break for our bodies and in this case having the epidural is needed."
As soon as I said yes to the epidural the anesthesiologist was in my room. I swear they had him just waiting for me. In about 4 minutes I had three nurses and the anesthesiologist all putting different iv's in different spots and cuffs and monitors everywhere. They put the epidural in during contractions because there was never a moment of no contractions. Trying to not move and stay relaxed while getting a huge needle in your back and contracting is freaking hard!
Once my epidural was in place it was like Disney land. I have never known relief as sweet as that. I felt my back and hips finally relax after 8 hours. I felt like I could catch my breath. I had a very small dose in place and it was just enough. It was heaven. My midwife and new doctor went thru everything that had been going on and then my midwife wished me luck and left me in the charge of the new doctor. Shortly after that everyone came on in after getting a bite to eat, a quick nap or whatever they needed to do. We met my nurse and went thru what to expect.
Turns out Bailey was sunny side up and I was having back labor and that was why it was so rough on me. The Dr. tried to manually turn Bailey and he had some success at first. I got a nice break of having to push for about almost an hour. My nurse Linda was amazing and stayed right by my side with my Doula Ashley. Linda tried to prop me on my side with my leg in a stirrup and it was horribly uncomfortable so my doula asked for a birthing ball to put between my legs and that was so much better. We had my dad, Cory and my momma on the couch cracking jokes with me and the team. Ashley doula was right by my head the whole time while Ashley photographer was doing her amazing thing taking pictures. Then it was go time.
We kept pushing and I was still making no progress with Bailey dropping down. Every contraction and push was making Bailey's heart rate drop. The nurse pushed the emergency button and a whole team of 6 nurses rushed into the room at one point in time and pushed everyone away from me while they tried to get Bailey's heart back up. It was devastating. They didn't tell me anything. They just rushed in and took over with out a word. I was so scared. We got her heart rate up and they decided to put a fetal heart monitor directly on to her head with a little screw since the monitor around my belly kept losing her. That seemed to help with the false drops in heart rate but we were still experiencing them. Sometime around here my contractions and labor started to stall and I was given a little whiff of petocin to help push things along so we could get Bailey out.
Other than the scariness of Bailey's heart, I was feeling great at this point. Just was pushing when they told me since I couldn't feel it and joking and talking with everyone around me. Things started getting more and more serious and every time the doctor came in he was talking to me about emergency c-section and how it was being prepped for me. He discussed the possibility of having to use forceps and vacuum to get her out and that still may result in c-section since she seems to be stuck and kept going back to being sunny side up even after he turned her. I felt like he was humoring us with letting me push for so long. He kept saying he would give me another hour and then another half hour and then another half hour. Every 30 minutes was a fight for me not to have surgery.
My doula and my momma kept asking if we could get a squat bar for me so that I have something to bear down on. Finally we got one in the room and we had them lower the dose of epidural to almost nothing so I could use my contractions to my advantage and have them help me push. We asked to get a mirror brought in so I could see my progress and have that motivate me to keep going. Once all that happened I started making some serious progress. Bailey was still dropping with every contraction so I was given an oxygen mask to try and help.
Once I caught glimpse of her sweet little head crowning I was on fire! I was getting that sweet girl out all on my own. I started making more and more progress. Linda stayed right there helping to open me up with every push and trying to work Bailey out. My momma crawled on the bed with me to hold my head up during my pushes while I had my hands wrapped around a sheet on the squat bar to help pull and push. I was getting so excited about my progress. I was joking about how amazing a vagina looks during birth. We were having a ball! I figured out if I wiggle my belly after every push then Bailey's heart would come back up so here I was pushing with all my might then getting oxygen and wiggling with all my might. I'm sure it was quite the sight.
We got to the hospital at 10:30. By 3pm it was time. Bailey was coming! The doctor came in and we were all joking about who would cut the cord and when I should push for a final boost of my epidural before go time. That's when things got serious. They had already set up a special NICU bassinet in the room since we were having issues with her heart. Now all the nurses started trickling in.
I don't remember much. I pushed and pushed and pushed and watched that mirror to see her come out. At some point an alarm was sounded in the nurses station and we had a whole NICU team come rushing in. Bailey was pushed out and the whole room dropped to dead silence. Dead silence.
When you watch movies and shows about birth you know they come out pretty ugly and take a whooping second to breathe and cry. I was prepared for that and I prepared Cory for that. I wasn't prepared for what we got. We had nothing. I saw her plop out and I saw her just dangling there in the doctors hands. She was grayish blue. No oxygen in her tiny little body. The doctor pulled her out and unwrapped my cord from around her neck, around her arm, and around her tiny little tummy and immediately cut it and handed her off to the team of nurses.
I just sat on my bed with my momma behind me, my doula and nurse next to me and Cory just sat down on the couch next to my dad. Ashley H. (the photographer and my good friend) had been right behind the doctor for the birth and she was able to see everything. I just kept staring at my doula wondering why I couldn't hear her. Why wasn't anyone telling me anything? Why couldn't Cory go over to her? Why in the world was no one telling me anything?! I kept looking from face to face to see someone show a happy face. A nurse had purposely stood in front of my line of vision and my doctor was busy delivering my placenta and stitching my tiny tear. I kept asking if she was ok. I kept looking at Ashley H since she had the best view of Bailey. She had stopped taking pictures. She was doing her best not to break down herself. My momma tried to climb down off the bed and everyone told her to just stay and be there for me. I was losing my mind. I have never been more scared. I have never wanted to hear a baby cry more than I did in those first 7 minutes. It was the most silent room full of the most nervous energy I have ever been in.
Finally I heard my baby girl cry and I broke down and heaved and cried. I begged them to let Cory go over to her. They finally let him and as soon as he spoke to her she stopped and looked right at her daddy. He was able to stay next to her for the remaining of them working on her until finally they brought her to me to be placed on my chest. I sat there ripping my gown off and it was so tangled in all the iv lines and blood pressure cuff. I was getting so frustrated I begged them to just take it all off me so I could have my baby. I just pulled it all behind my head and they brought my sweet girl to me and laid her on my chest. Feeling her tiny body move with every breath on my chest was the sweetest feeling even though it was still so raspy and wet sounding.
Bailey had been born with an APGAR score of 2. Ashley H. told me much later how she watched them work on Bailey. She was the only one that had a view point. As soon as the nurses had Bailey they quickly put her on the table and pulled her head back so that they could place the ventilator tube down her throat. She had a breathing tube in while one nurse worked on sucking all the fluid and meconium out of her lungs. Ashley said she was shocked with how rough they seemed to handle her. Her poor body was left completely limp while her chest heaved upwards with every push of air they compressed into her lungs. I can't imagine what she felt as she watched that with out dropping a single tear for me. She stayed strong so that I wouldn't know how scary this situation really was.Bailey moved up to an APGAR of 5 after a few minutes of work and she finally was given a score of 7 when all was said and done.
I'm so thankful for the nurse that stood in my way. For my doula just keeping her eyes on me and telling me that she is going to be just fine and not to worry, that I would have my baby soon they just needed to make sure she was ok. So thankful for my momma staying in bed with me and not leaving me alone when I needed the comfort the most. I'm beyond thankful that Cory had no clue how serious of a situation we were in. He still to this day doesn't understand how close we were to losing her and I'm ok with that. He was spared that horror. I'm beyond thankful for Ashley H. staying strong and not letting me see her fear. My dad for sitting there quietly and being so calm for me when I know he was anything but. I was the luckiest momma in that hospital that day to have such an amazing team with me and a healthy baby girl in my arms.
To see most my birth photos please go tohttps://www.facebook.com/ashleychristinaphotography or directly to the album at https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.698384196892793.1073741889.457151844349364&type=3
To read about my doula please go to http://www.peacefulbeginningsds.com/ or her Facebook site at https://www.facebook.com/PeacefulBeginningsDoulaServices