Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Tracey Ann Birth Story -- Long Version Part 5

Yeah... you can't say I didn't warn you.  "Long Version" is right there in the title of these posts I've been writing, and I've been trying to keep each segment a not-too-long readable length, but I really have to wrap up Tracey Ann's birth story.  Check out the first four parts of the story here.

Out of the bathtub, after four or so hours of intense labor, Dr. Katie checked my cervix and said I was dilated to ten centimeters, but there was a problem.  She said that the circle that was my cervix, the back was open at ten centimeters, but the front was swollen, and so it was not ten centimeters.

She cautioned me not to push, because that could cause the cervix to swell even more, which would make the opening less open that it was now.  She suggested I spend a little more time laboring, but encouraged me to try different positions.  So, I squatted at the edge of my bed, and got down on one knee and labored through more contractions.  At this point, I looked at the nurse and said something like, "I guess I have made it through the window of requesting drugs, haven't I?"  And she looked at me, sort of puzzled, and asked if I wanted drugs.  I said that no, I didn't, but if I was dilated to 10 cm, it was comforting to know that I made it through the window when I could ask for them.

I don't remember much about the labor during this time, but I remember, as one contraction began, Chris couldn't reach my back, which he had been lightly rubbing with every contraction, and so he lightly rubbed my neck instead -- really. bad. move.  I didn't have the words to say, "Hubby, please don't touch my neck right now."  Instead, I grabbed his hand with my fingers, and violently removed them from my neck while I verbally let out a sound that was an interesting combination of a growl and a roar.  My poor Hubby got the message, and did not try to touch my neck again during labor.  Come to think of it, I don't think he has touched my neck since.

The other thing I remember is that the doctor got an ice pack and held it in the small of my back during contractions.  She said, it was an old wives tale, that this could help, but she didn't see any harm in helping things along with a natural remedy.  Chris told me later something about the baby turning when Dr. Katie did this, and the baby was then in a better position to be born, but I don't remember any discussion to that effect.

After 30-45 minutes of continued labor, and increasing urge to push, Dr. Katie checked my cervix and said that the swelling was not improving and she was going to go ahead and let me push.

** Side note: I would later find out that this condition of a swollen cervix might have been cause for another doctor to recommend/insist upon an epidural and/or a C-section, but we were incredibly blessed with Dr. Katie allowing us to proceed with a natural birth despite this complication. **

I promise, the next post will be the birth story finale.

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