We checked into the hospital at 6 AM on Thursday, September 9, 2010. They started the Pitocin at 7, I was at 2 cm. I didn't feel any contractions at all until about 9 AM when the doctor ruptured my membranes (I was at 4 cm). I’ve heard that this is supposed to hurt, but it didn’t. I mean, it wasn’t the most comfortable thing in the whole world, but I would not describe it as painful. There was meconium in the fluid, which is usually normal for a post term baby. No one was really concerned, but I was told that the NICU people would be in the room for his birth just in case they decided they needed to take him. This is pretty gross, but all throughout the day fluid just kept on coming out. There wasn’t a big gush or anything when the doctor ruptured the membranes, so it came out in spurts throughout the day. Blech.
After breaking my water, the doctor gave the go ahead for the epidural if I wanted it. I wasn't in any pain yet, but I figured I would probably want it later when I was in pain, and the anesthesiologist was going to be in surgery for a while. I decided to get it then. I'm glad I did, because by the time he showed up, I was having some pretty full on contractions! I would describe them as really bad menstrual cramps, which I’m more than familiar with. Painful, but that early on in labor, they didn’t hurt so much that I wouldn’t be able to handle them (but only if they stayed at that pain level - which I knew they wouldn’t!) As soon as I got the epidural, I was feeling awesome. I started watching Project Runway on TV. I don’t normally watch that show, but I couldn’t find anything else to watch.
I was progressing really quickly, and Teague and my parents were having fun reading the machine and telling me when I was having contractions since I couldn't feel a thing. Labor was progressing at a really fast pace until it just came to a halt at 8 cm. I was stuck there for hours! They had me push a little while they manually tried to do some stuff, but that didn't work either. During all this, my epidural would start wearing off and I’d feel some pain, but then the anesthesiologist would come back and top it off. Since I was at 8 cm for so long, they really thought I’d just have the baby already, so they never set up a pump or whatever it is they normally do when you’re in labor for a while - so he had to keep coming back.
While I was resting, I started feeling really strange. I was about to tell Teague to help me reach the nurse call button. Before I could even get the words out, a bunch of people ran in the room and shoved an oxygen mask on my face and rolled me onto my side and they started messing with the Pitocin pump thingy (obviously not a medical term!). Apparently Little Teague Jr. wasn't having any more of this labor stuff. He wasn’t tolerating the contractions well. Poor kid.
My doctor came back to the hospital and checked everything out and said that I was going to have to have a c-section. Here’s where I think I differ from a lot of people. I didn’t want a c-section, but mostly for the fact that I was worried about recovery and the fact that it was a major surgery! I know most women that don’t want a c-section don’t want it because they don’t want to miss out on birthing their babies, but I think I’m missing some gene that is supposed to make me feel that way. Oh well. Ultimately, I was okay with it, since things obviously weren't going well and I trust my doctor to only do what is absolutely necessary.
They prepped me and started to wheel me out and I all of a sudden got terrified. I'd never had surgery before ever, this was actually the first IV I ever had in my life! Laying in that OR strapped to that table without my husband next to me was the scariest thing I've ever done. But as soon as they let him in it was like this calm rushed over me.
The doctor had a hard time getting the baby out. He was stuffed in there pretty good! I could feel him pushing and pulling and trying to work him out of whatever jam he got stuck in. When he finally got him out, Teague Jr. didn't cry for a long time. It was pretty scary to hear the doctor talking to the baby, telling him to breathe. But then he screamed super loud, and I was relieved to know he was okay!
He was born at 7:09 pm on September 9, 2010. He weighed 8 lbs, 12.8 oz and was 20.5 inches long!
Doc held him over the curtain so I could see him and it was the most amazing thing in the whole world! I just about cry every time I think about it. And yes, I’ve got tears streaming down my face right now as I type this. When they handed him to DH I melted and nothing else in the world mattered. I’ll never ever in my life forget such an amazing sight. Both of my Teagues left while they finished sewing me up. Daddy Teague got to walk Baby Teague to the nursery!
Then I was wheeled out to recovery, and that’s when the shaking started. Holy cow - nobody told me about this. I actually still don’t know what exactly caused me to shake uncontrollably, but apparently it’s pretty normal. I must look that up. It was like I was shivering so hard - I could barely even talk! I was freezing and must have had about 6 blankets on me. Teague came and met me in the room and talked about the baby and showed me some pictures. It was getting pretty late and they weren’t going to bring the baby for me to see until I got my own room (which wouldn’t be for hours) so I told Teague to go and get himself something to eat. He hadn’t eaten since around noon and I knew he had to be starving. Plus I was just going to be sleeping off the shakiness anyways. I hadn’t eaten since about 9 pm the night before, and I was starving as well, but I wasn’t allowed to eat for a few more hours, and even then I was only allowed to have clear liquids. Teague brought a big iced tea back for me - I had to save it for later, though.
I finally got a room at around 11 pm. Poor Teague had to sleep on a pull out chair. He looked so uncomfortable. I was hooked up to a bunch of stuff (IV, heart monitor, my legs were chained to the bed by these compression thingies, catheter in my bladder) and was feeling pretty miserable myself. From this point on, this part would be the absolute worst part of our whole experience. We found the staff to be pretty unfriendly and uninformative. When they finally brought the baby in, the nurse was not helpful at all and just kind of shoved him at me and told me to feed him. I really thought there would be someone there to kind of help and guide me for my first time, but no. It was awkward and frustrating and overwhelming all at once. I could barely move at all. The first time I held my son, he was shoved at me while writhing and screaming. I am really sad to think about it. It wasn’t magical at all. Then I’m sitting there trying to calm him down, only a few hours old, meeting him for the first time and some brute of a woman comes in and demands that I put him down so she can take my vitals. Because it had to be done RIGHT THAT SECOND. I’m surprised my blood pressure was so low, because I was about to punch the lady. Maybe she’s lucky that I could barely move. ;)
Things didn’t get any better. I was still coming off of the anesthesia (remember the shaking?), I was freezing and then burning up off and on, I couldn’t move, I the parts of me that I could move were attached to tubes and wires and machines, I had a giant hole in my abdomen (or so I imagined), I was starving, I knew my husband was miserable (though he’d never say anything!), I had to go through one humiliating experience after another, and there was no hope for sleeping because someone came in the room every hour either to monitor my vital signs or see if I was feeding my kid and at what time and for how long. It seemed like every time the shifts changed, the nurses got more and more condescending and unfriendly. It got to the point that I would cry anytime there was a knock at the door. I just wanted everyone to leave us alone. When I was finally released from my bonds, I took a shower in which I had the option to choose from burning hot water or scalding hot water. I cried like a little baby the whole time I was in there. I just wanted to go home.
The next day, Teague talked to a patient liaison lady and explained that we weren’t feeling happy with our experience, and that the friendliest person we encountered was the nice lady that brought food for me. She was very apologetic and said that she would take care of the problem. It seems that worked because that night we got the most upbeat, friendly, helpful, and knowledgeable nurse. We really liked her and she helped us to not feel as overwhelmed.
Both the baby and I were discharged the next morning, and I couldn’t wait to get home. I just wanted to be in my house with my family and relax. As soon as we got home, my mood changed for the better. The baby was calm and sleepy and we put him right into his crib. And then we got right into our bed. And slept. It was the most glorious nap I think I’ve ever taken.
From then on, things have been wonderful for the most part. I love everything about being a mommy except for breastfeeding. Since that first night in the hospital, my kid has never wanted to nurse. He’s kicked and fought and screamed anytime I put him to my breast. He would only latch on with the help of a nipple shield. From what I’ve read, use of nipple shields is frowned upon and they’re not meant for long term use. Plus they lead to very hurty nipples. Ouch!
By day 9, I was over it. I know I’m going to be harshly judged by all the moms out there that are better than me and were able to successfully breastfeed their baby. I am going to be told that I didn’t give it enough time. I’m going to be told that I broke my kid by giving him a bottle at such a young age. I’m going to be given a tongue lashing because I suck so bad at this that I don’t deserve to have a kid. And you know what? Go right ahead. Because I don’t care what anyone else thinks about our decision. I was miserable trying to feed my kid, my kid was miserable while trying to get something to eat, my husband could only sit by and watch our plight and do nothing to help. We weren’t bonding - he was too busy kicking and screaming and I was too busy trying to stay calm and not cry.
I knew I had the option to consult with a lactation specialist about our problem, but ultimately I decided that I’d rather just pump exclusively and then bottle feed the expressed milk to our son. The pump I had was not cut out for that job at all, so we rented a Medela Symphony from a lactation consultant. Let me tell you that I no longer dread feeding the baby! It’s amazing what this decision has done for my overall mood. I had felt so negatively towards feeding Teague Jr. before, and now I love it. I feel like we are bonding now, because he just gazes at me while he’s eating and he doesn’t fight and claw at me. I am not tense and frustrated anymore. It’s really a nice experience and I don’t regret anything.
So there you have it. Baby Teague’s birth story and a little update on how we’re doing so far. We’re doing really well and loving life as a family of four (counting big brother Kosmo!). If you made it this far, congratulations! You have way more patience than I do. It took me forever just to write this long ass post. :)
7 hours ago