Tuesday, December 20

Reid Douglas Fenton - Birth Story

I'm not pregnant anymore!!!! Huzzah! Hurray! Caloo, callay! :D

And wow, it's been a while since I wrote a blog. Heh. I do have a very cute excuse as to why I haven't been able to tinker on the computer much, though.... but you can see that cute excuse later. For now, I am going to subject you to a grueling, engrossing (as in, will hold your attention and make you feel gross) birth story. Bwa ha ha!

I started writing this a few days after Reid was born, and didn't finish it until today, so I'm not guaranteeing a perfectly cohesive and coherent story. Read it anyway. No complaining, either.Or the gnomes will get you.


It was the day before Reid was born, and I was feeling more tired and run down than usual. It was a Sunday, but I didn’t feel up to going to church, especially since we were planning on going to Uncle Bernard’s Birthday party later on. We went to the party, and on the way there Ty stopped for gas, reasoning that if I went into labour it would be better to have a full tank than be running on empty in case we needed to rush to the Hospital. He’s a planner. 

We stayed at the party for a little while, and then went home, and I changed into comfy pajamas and spent the rest of the afternoon trying to relax and watch TV. I was uncomfortable, but I had been feeling more and more uncomfortable for weeks so I didn’t think anything was out of the ordinary.  I had never experienced a natural labour before, I was induced with Deklan so I wasn’t sure what to expect, whether my water would break suddenly or I would start having contractions closer and closer together (I had been having very strong Braxton-Hicks contractions almost all of my pregnancy beginning at 10 weeks, and there were a couple times in the last few weeks of this pregnancy that I had thought it was real labour, only to realize after they diminished and went away that “no”, it wasn’t time yet).  I was starting to feel depressed, like I was going to be pregnant forever. It had been a long, long, rough pregnancy, and I was very ready for the end of it.

I went to bed that night not expecting anything to happen. I was convinced that I would be going overdue, because Deklan was only 4 days early and he was absolutely covered in vernix. Based on that, I figured I was just one of those women who cook their babies a little longer than average, and with a new resolve to be patient and trust that baby would come when baby was ready, I fell asleep. 

It was 3:00 a.m. when a particularly strong contraction roused me from sleep. I stayed in bed for fifteen minutes, trying to rest, but in that time I had three contractions, each five minutes apart. I thought perhaps I just needed some water or a spoonful of cal-mag, so I got up and went downstairs. I was also hungry, so I had a couple yogurt cups and then sat down at my desk to check my email. The contractions kept coming, as I browsed a couple websites and posted a poem I liked to facebook. It was a little before 4:00 a.m. when I posted it, and I smiled and thought "Well, Adeena & Heather will know I'm in labour."

I went back upstairs and crawled into bed, and waited another fifteen minutes before I decided it was time to wake Ty up. I poked his shoulder and said "Ty, wake up... I think I'm in labour." 

My Ty is not easy to wake up, and if you do manage to get him to open his eyes he usually falls back asleep instantaneously. This time, he sat right up in bed, and said "Are you sure?" 

Was I sure?? "No, I'm not suuuure... but I've been awake since 3:00 and I've been having contractions every 5 minutes since then, oh here's another one...." 

Ty got up and shut his alarm clock off so it wouldn't scream at us, and then headed to Deklan's room because the commotion woke the little guy up. They went downstairs and Ty turned Sportscentre on, while I scratched my chin and wondered whether I should call Susan (my midwife) or not.
I followed the guys downstairs, doubting myself as to whether I should call and wake Susan up, when a very strong contraction hit. That settled it, so I picked up the phone and called my midwife. She sounded very sleepy, but said she would come out right away. *Okay, guess this is happening then...* I called my Mom to let her know, and she asked if Linda could come to, to which I said "Okey dokey" (or something like that). Then Ty called his Mom.

The damage was done... people were called, woken from their peaceful dreams, the sleepyheads were out of bed.... I thought "I better be in labour!" Nothing would be worse than to call people at 4:00 a.m., have them come to my house in the wee ungodly hours of the morning, then have them say "No you're not in labour after all! Goodbye forever!" Worst thing ever. Ugh.

Deklan fell back to sleep (thanks to Daddy's cuddles and rocking in the big comfy chair) so Ty took him back up to bed, and then Ty helped me tidy up the house (Yes, really... I am that insane) and put a load of laundry on.

This will probably make some of you blush, but oh well! Susan checked my cervix to see how dilated I was, and I was already 5 centimetres! For the noobs among you, that's halfway. 

I was like "Rock on! Actually in labour! Yes! And already 5 centimetres! Double yes!"
I was feeling pretty good overall, the contractions were painful (to be expected) but they were pretty far apart so I was able to rest in between them and gather my strength.

The morning went on, and my labour stayed pretty constant, the contractions were long and strong but stayed an average of 4 minutes apart. I was able to eat and drink without tossing it all back up (yay!) unlike my labour with Deklan, so that was a plus. 

I had an exercise ball to sit on, and I pretty much spent 80% of the time sitting on it, bouncing and rocking, having a bit of fun. Because even when you're in labour, it's fun to bounce on a big bouncy ball. It was even pink! Which is awesome. 

I tried to watch a movie that I borrowed from my Dad, "Star Trek", but my Mother-in-law and my sister were too chatty and I couldn't hear any stinking thing of the dialogue! The pretty colours and lasers going "pew pew" were okay, but I didn't know what the heck was going on. So I gave up on watching the movie after a while. 

Tyler and I had the spare bed set up in our living room, a short walk away from our downstairs bathroom, and when I got tired of the ball I laid on the bed for a while, then I got into the shower and laboured for a while in the shower... water is nice. Very nice. I highly recommend water for soothing you through a contraction, oh pregnant and soon to be labouring ladies of the world.
This is the part of the story that kinda gets boring, my labour started to drag a bit, it didn't really seem like the contractions were doing much. Susan suggested that maybe it was time to break my water, and I said "Sure" because I was starting to get bored of being in labour. 

After my water was broken, the contractions got more painful. It wasn't as fun. I stayed in the bathroom more, away from people, because although I wanted my Mom and Ty's Mom there, I didn't want them there every second. I didn't want anyone there every second, except for Ty. Everyone was really super amazing about giving me my space, I didn't even have to ask! Ty's Mom just stayed on the couch with her knitting, Linda played with Deklan and kept him busy for me, and my Mom and the midwives mostly hung out in my kitchen. Ty stayed with me, sat with me and comforted me after every contraction. 

Finally (finally) I was fully dilated and ready to start pushing, my Mom drove Deklan to Adeena's house so he wouldn't have to see Mommy in too much pain. Susan told me I was ready to push, and I thought "Okay..."

I had no urge to push. It just wasn't there. With Deklan, my body started pushing before I even knew I was fully dilated. This time, nothing. Nada. Not a wick of sensation telling me that the baby was there ready to come out. 

I pushed, or tried to push, but it wasn't working. It didn't feel right. It also did nothing. I tried different birthing positions, squatting, sitting, laying down, but nothing worked.

I was starting to get a little desperate, and I got into the bath to try to relax. I pushed in the bath for a while, with no success. I was really tired, and I said to Ty "I don't know if I can do this much longer!" I didn't know how much time had passed, but it was about 2 hours of pushing, with nothing to show for it.

My midwife suggested I get out of the bath and get on my hands and knees on the bed, with my head touching the bed and my butt high in the air. (Yes, I said butt. I do have one.) I said "Okay", really I was ready to try anything to get the baby out. 

I stayed there for I'm not sure how long, maybe 15 minutes, I pushed through a few contractions, and then HALLELUJAH I felt the urge to push! It was working! 

I laid on my side, Tyler was beside me holding my hand, and I buried my face in his shoulder because it was better than facing the pain. It was a very ouchie, ouchie pain. I think I said "Owie owie owie ow!" more than once, because DAMN. It hurt. 

Everyone was saying encouraging things, some of it I heard, most of it was like "Wuh wuh wuh wuh" a trombone sound, probably because I didn't have much blood going to my brain, my body was diverting it to other areas that needed it more (although I think brains need blood too, body!) I did hear "Baby's almost here! Couple more pushes!" and I thought "So close!!!!" and that gave me the boost I needed.  Couple more pushes, extreme amount of burning pain, then I felt the baby's head come out! I didn't need to consciously push after that, my body did the rest and I heard my baby cry for the first time, at 3:06 p.m. 12 hours of labour, same as my first.

Actually, "cry" doesn't really describe it. It was more like a scream, a wild scream. He (a boy! I totally knew it, too) was a very unhappy baby! And it was no wonder, he had terrible bruises on the top of his poor little head, from being in a bad position when I was pushing on him.... for two hours.

They put him on my chest right away, and I had tears in my eyes as I held him, tears of relief as well as joy. I held him and hugged him and told him it was okay, and suddenly my pain was gone, because he was here and he was safe and healthy and I had him in my arms. Pain? What pain!

Someone asked what his name was, and I looked at Ty.... "Reid?" Ty nodded, and that was it. "Reid Douglas!" 

He was such a big boy... 9 lbs 5 oz, 21 & 1/2 inches long. And chubby! So chubby. I had my skinny boy Deklan, 7 lbs 2 oz and 19 & 3/4 inches, and now I had my chubby boy, Reid. :)

He nursed for the first time in his first half hour of life, and he nursed like a boss I tell you! Latched on with no trouble, nursed for ten minutes straight. He was hungry after all that screaming. 

I don't remember who held him first after me, I think it was Ty, then after that I completely lost track. I was busy doing other things (like pushing out the afterbirth.... and then getting some stitches, ugh). 

I had a herbal bath, and Reid came into the water with me. I held his tiny hands against his chest so he would feel secure, and let his body float in the warm bath, and he relaxed and let his feet float. He was so beautiful and big, his skin was so soft and he was so perfect... I fell in love with him all over again.  I loved him when he was in my womb, but I didn't know it was him. It was fun to be able to hug and love my second-born son and call him by name instead of saying "baby".

Adeena brought Deklan home, and he came in to see the baby. Tyler and I said "This is our baby! He came out! See? His name is Reid!" It was awesome. :D

We got out of the bath and got dressed, and while we were in the bath the elves had been at work tearing the messy sheets off the bed and putting clean ones on it, they moved the bed against the wall so I could lay down and watch TV, and someone had made me a snack of cheese and crackers and a glass of chocolate almond milk. I got into bed and got comfy while the others held my baby and oohed and aahed over him, then they gave him back to me to nurse again (like a BOSS I tell you, he nursed so well!). Deklan had some cuddle with Mommy time, while Daddy held the baby, and we had a family picture taken. 

Adeena held the baby, both Granny & Grandma held him again, and Auntie Linda, then one by one they all packed up and left. 

Deklan, Ty, Reid and I all settled down to rest. I laid on the bed with Reid, and Tyler had Deklan in his big comfy chair. We watched sports together, a football game and a hockey game, before Ty took Deklan upstairs to bed and Reid and I stayed downstairs on the single bed in the living room. I had strict orders from my midwife to feed the baby every 2 hours, get a drink for myself every 2 hours, and go to the bathroom every 2 hours. So Ty put everything I needed, a jug of water and a glass, diapers, wipes, tylenol and cal-mag on our little washstand and set it by my bed within my reach, then he kissed me and Reid goodnight and went to bed. We were all exhausted. 

I did follow the midwife's orders, mostly... I think the longest stretch of sleep I had that night was 3 hours. But still, pretty good... especially since I didn't have an alarm clock. 

And that's it, the end of the birth story. Hope you enjoyed it, and hope you suffered through the squeamish parts. 

To Reid Douglas Fenton: Momma loves you. You were worth it. All of it. The long, long months of awful pregnancy symptoms, the posterior (extremely painful) birth, yes... you were worth it. Remember that when you're all grown up and annoyed with me 90% of the time. I'll still love you forever. (And probably enjoy annoying you... because I'm evil like that. XD) 

Kisses and hugs, 
Love, Mommy

(To all you other people: I'll post pictures later. Right now I have to go feed my very fat, yet somehow very hungry 4 week old baby.)