Monday, September 5, 2011

Liam Michael Mahoney

Disclaimer: Birth details are in the following post. If you don't want to read it all, feel free to skip this.

Liam Michael was born last Monday.

August 29, 2011 at 9:38AM.

Labor was about 14 hours. He wasn't quite posterior, but was poorly positioned. I also had a cervical lip that the MW had to help with.

I don't remember all the details, but I'll try to get them all straight.

Sunday, Michael(dad) and I went over to his parent's house for lunch or dinner or something along those lines. I had been feeling like I couldn't handle much longer of being pregnant for a while by this point. I couldn't sleep well, I couldn't move without pain. I was just miserable by this point. The only highlights were feeling kicks from the baby and not having to actually take care of him.

So we borrowed my inlaws blender and I decided to make a castor oil shake to see if it would get labor started. It wasn't the most appetizing thing in the world, but it could have tasted worse. This was about 6:30. By 7 I was having some light contractions, but I wasn't sure if it was labor or just the Braxton Hicks contractions I had been feeling on and off for the past few months.

I spent this time with Mike out in the garage while he messed around with a broken TV.  I sent him to work at 9, and he later told me that he was a nervous wreck the entire time he was away from me.

Around 10 I lost my mucus plug, but I thought it was my water breaking with the baby blocking most of it back. I sent Mike a message that I think this is finally labor and that he should come home. He got home just before 11 and got to calling the midwife. He was more excited and worried than I was, I think.

Things were really starting to pick up by this point and the contractions were becoming difficult to deal with. Through each contraction, Mike would stay by my side and support me in any way I asked or he thought I would appreciate.

There were several times he reminded me to breath. I really appreciated that from him, especially since I didn't tell him how he could help me during labor. There wasn't much "do this" or "don't do that" talk between us in regards to labor.

At one point, Michael suggested that a heating pad might help. I thought it was a good idea, but we didn't have one, so he called up his mom to bring hers over. I originally planned on it just being me and Michael for the birth, but I decided that his mom could stay. She didn't spend any time with me during labor, but she was there on site and she helped Mike if he needed anything.

When the midwife got here around 1:30 or 2, she checked my cervix and I was 9cm dilated. I was pretty close. I labored a bit longer, and she offered to break my bag of waters. It was bulging at my cervix not really wanting to break. I agreed, thinking it might get things done with sooner.

She broke my waters and they went everywhere. Contractions died down for a little while at this point before picking up again. I really needed the break at this point, I had been up for a good portion of the day before I took the castor oil.

After a bit longer, I was considering going to the hospital. I knew I was close, but the pain in my back with each contraction was unbearable. (Well, apparently I got through it, but it didn't feel like I could at the time.) My contractions were pretty much one on top of another. I got checked again, and was told it was time to push. I wasn't feeling too pushy at this point, but I did anyway to see if it would help get things going.

I pushed for a while on my hands and knees. It wasn't doing too much for progress' sake, but it felt better than any other position that I could get into. My midwife suggested that I try pushing while on the toilet for a while so I tried that out. I was able to push better from this position and after a while like this I had a few that were involuntary. It felt so good to be pushing with my body rather than just pushing to try to get things done.

I went back to the bedroom and Michael and the midwife propped up pillows on the freshly re-covered bed. (All the mess from my waters breaking and mucus and stuff got cleaned up while I was in the bathroom.)

Michael had to remind me to drink and offered me something to eat. I wouldn't eat. I didn't feel like I would be able to put anything into me while I was trying to get this baby out. I forced myself to drink even though I didn't feel like it. Throughout all of the laboring I had been see-sawing from sweating to freezing cold with the AC. I think I turned it either on or off every 15 or 20 minutes.

I got onto my back to push. I wasn't particularly excited about the method of pushing we had to use. I was pulling my legs back and holding my breath and I had only ever read bad things about pushing like that. I was terrified that I would end up with a tear from it.

I can't even remember how long or how many contractions/pushes I had at this point, but eventually I was able to feel the babies head. Mike was down by the midwife holding my feet and was able to see our baby as he came out. When the head was coming out, I put my hand down and was able to feel a full head of hair! I almost started crying then.

After a few contractions, his head finally came out. It took a couple more to get his shoulders to turn and the rest of his body to follow suit. The midwife put him right onto my belly and I pulled him up to me.

After a few minutes, Michael cut the cord and the midwife and I worked on delivering the placenta.

I ended up bleeding more than I should have, which the midwife said was common with larger babies. She massaged my uterus to make it contract and gave me a couple doses of pitocin as well as another drug I can't remember.

Getting my uterus massaged probably hurt worse than labor. At least it felt like it at the time. It was excruciating. Between all this, I was crying my eyes out that I had made it through all of this and had my baby. He was healthy and screaming his lungs out.

When everything slowed down a bit, Liam and I got into the bath. The tub wasn't holding the water for some reason so we had to cut it short. We got him mostly cleaned off and me as cleaned off as I could be at that point.

I was feeling very weak from the blood loss so Mike helped me get dressed and out of the bathtub after I splashed myself down with some cold water. I was feeling really hot again at this point. Probably my body going into shock from the birth and blood loss. While I was getting dressed, the midwife weighed and measured Liam.

He was 9.08lbs, and had a 35cm head circumference. I didn't catch how long he was/is, but when we took him to a nurse practitioner a few days later she said he was 21 inches long. 

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