Friday, May 18, 2018

Isla May and Juniper Rose: Birth Story

This was the longest and hardest pregnancy I have had, and the fact that a baby finally coming and joining their family is termed "delivery" only fits my sentiments too well. As it does every time! Ha. But, this time even more so.

We found out we were having twins towards the end of January and in the middle of that horrible flu that it seems every person and their dog caught. My feeling more sick than in other pregnancies now made sense, and to say Karey and I felt overwhelmed with everything at the time is an understatement. But, it also MADE MY LIFE that I was going to get five kids out of four pregnancies. And, it still does :D

The doctor that I wanted to deliver with, Dr. Chalmers, shares his practice with another doctor, Dr. Walker. I delivered my last two babies with a midwife in a birthing suite and HAVE LOVED that experience because I HATE the hospital and the papers and how many people you have to talk to and how they basically just tell you what to do the entire time and that if you want anything to go different than their plans, you better have the character to back yourself up. Anyways, so when we found out we were having twins, I did want to deliver them in the hospital, but I was pretty dang sad I was giving up that great experience of delivering with my midwife again and how much less hectic and stressful and natural it all is. My midwife recommended Dr. Chalmers because he is basically the only doctor in my area who will deliver your baby breach instead of sending you into C-section. Dr. Walker on the other hand (who in character is a lovely and kind lady) doesn't feel comfortable with delivering breach because of the risk (I don't understand what risk, but I know there is some).Dr. Chalmers is also just more open minded and listens to you and what you want and doesn't act like every little thing you want is making their his life hard as an OBGYN.All of this is a long way of saying, I wanted Dr. Chalmers to do my delivery. I trusted him more to do what was best for my babies AND me. The doctors switch off every other week. So I was hoping my entire pregnancy to make it to my week 37 which is when Dr. Chalmers was on call. If I didn't go by week 37 he would induce me, still during his on week, once I hit week 38. Week 36 passed and then week 37 started too and I found he was going out of town IN THE MIDDLE of his on call week. So he would only be on call for about three days during my week 37.

So, my midwife swept me when I was 37.2 days in. Nothing happened. I walked and walked. Nothing happened. I called my doctor and got an extra appointment on Wednesday and he swept me again. He said "I bet you a nickle I'll see you in labor and delivery before 5 (I was 80% effaced and dilated to a five), and nothing happened. I went back in on Thursday morning at 8 at 37.5 days, and he swept me AGAIN. At this point I'm pretty darn sick of people sticking their hands up me, but it pales in comparison to the delivery. He said to walk around for a couple of hours and go back in so he can check me, because if I have moved to a 6 and have semi regular contractions, labor and delivery will keep me(since I have twins and live 30 minutes away). My other babies come incredibly fast and once labor starts, it starts and there is no stopping it. So it was funny to Karey and I that we were walking around a park trying to get my contractions to become more regular and strong. That had NEVER been a problem. But these girls sure wanted to chill in there as long as they could. My contractions would come and were semi-regular so we went back in. He said I was almost at a 6, so to go over to labor and delivery and he would break my water. HALLELUJAH. I had asked him to do that the day before but I wasn't dilated enough for it to be a "medical" reason for him to break my water. Karey and I went over and I put the not fun hospital robe on and they hooked me up to all the machines I dislike and gave me the good old i.v. that I hate, and then a few hours later Chalmers came and broke my water. My contractions had been about every four minutes up to that point and were just mildly uncomfortable. Within fifteen minutes of my water breaking they were coming on much stronger, but still not transition contractions. My midwife got there (she was acting as my doula) and started putting hot towels on my stomach and squeezing my feet (which for some reason feels awesome). I was breathing and relaxing through them pretty dang well. And then I felt transition hit. I was opening up pretty quickly, as usual. And the contractions that make your body feel like its a heat generator were now there. I was sweating like crazy through each one. And they were long, hard, "good" "progressive" contractions. The ones when you start thinking, "Should I get the epidural? Then I could just enjoy this." I delivered my first with an epidural and I knew what I liked and didn't like about it. The two after her were natural and I knew what I did and didn't like about that too. And the only thing any woman doesn't like about natural birth is the pain. HAHA! I told Karey and my midwife that I wanted the epidural and they looked at each other and me curiously. My midwife asked, "Do you want us to try to talk you out of it? Because I seriously don't think you even have time to get one." "NO. I don't want you to talk me out of it. I just want you to go get the guy." Well,she did, even though she didn't want to. For the epidural you have to sit up and hang your legs over the side of the bed and slump forward. Positions can do INSANE things to your birth progress or delay when in labor. Well as soon as I got in position my contractions got insanely intense and my body started trying to push. It feels like when you are heaving and about to throw up, except on the other end and your about to birth a human. There is no stopping it once you are opened up. I was trying to hold her in so badly because I just wanted that freaking epidural that I had decided on, regaurdless of the fact that she was going to come out any second. My midwife started saying to the epi guy, "She's pushing. She's pushing. You see her pushing!" karey was like "she's pushing!" I was like "are you done yet?! He said "I have to re-do it I hit a blood vessel." I was like holy freaking MOTHERRRRR ( in my mind).I was trying as hard as I could to hold my pushing back but when you're open YOU'RE OPEN and the baby is coming. THANK GOODNESS the needle had come out of my back because I shot back and the epi guy caught me, and with a couple of throat tearing good screams baby A (Isla) SHOT OUT and Karey caught her. There was no doctor in the room, and up to that point I had been pretty quiet through my contractions. Then fifty million people ran in, and Dr. Chalmers ran in a few minutes later. Isla was BEATUFIL. She looked perfect. But I still had one more baby to deliver. AND, the epi guy had never taped the tube into my back and so it had slipped out when I shot back on top of him. So, no epidural for me.Chalmers checked me and said Baby B (Juniper) had flipped breach. Surprise surprise (not.). Isla was born at 2:56 and Juniper was delivered breach at 3:06. He reached up and grabbed her by the feet and pulled her down and broke her water and I pushed her out in about four pushes. It's kind of different delivering the head last. Either way, there is NO BETTER FEELING than finally pushing the baby out and the contractions and pressure stopping. Two beautiful babies. Isla May at 6.2 pounds and Juniper Rose at 6.12 pounds. AND I didn't have a c-section!!!! Which I would have, had I delivered them after 5:00 that day. Ha ha.

This part feels weird to write about because it is just so weird to write facts about something so traumatic at the time it is happening. But, in the end it is just facts and I am just happy for, say what? Yes. HOSPITALS and people that take care of you when things go wrong.
I started bleeding too much and my contractions WERE KILLER. They had put me on pitocin without telling me hoping it would slow my bleeding. I had major clots building up inside of my uterus, which was making it so the uterus couldn't contract back down to size and stop the bleeding. It's horrible to have non stop labor contractions and no baby coming out, just blood. They had to call Chalmers back (he has to leave at 5 to catch a flight). All of a sudden I'm freezing and they are stacking hot blankets all of my body and around my head and I have an oxygen mask. They give me more pitocin which does nothing, then they give me a shot in my inner thigh to make me contract more which doesn't work, then they stick a bunch of pills up in me, and those don't do anything. The goal of all the medications is to get my contractions strong enough to push out the clots and harden the uterus. But the clots weren't coming. So Chalmers reached up in me and cleaned it all out. I am pretty sure I traumatized every other woman on that floor with first my couple of delivery screams and then even more so with how badly I was yelling. Karey said the biggest clot he pulled out was like the size of a cantaloupe. But, there were plenty of other smaller ones he got out, too. Then Chalmers came to me and said " We don't let people bleed to death anymore. So if that doesn't get you to stop bleeding we will need to take you into the O.R. and open you up and clean you out, and possible do a hysterectomy." Then he turns to Karey and says "Were you guys planning on having anymore kids?" In my head I'm like "No" but I still couldn't stop crying. But I had been crying the whole time. My bleeding slowed! In the end they said a normal person loses about 500 SOMETHING of blood in delivery and that they start to get worried if they lose 1000 Something. I lost 2,700 of that something. And, in other words, they told me I lost 2.5 liters of blood when for my body type you have on average 4.5 liters of blood. So I lost a lot.

They wanted to see if my blood would start to build up over night, but my red blood cell count wouldn't go up and either would my blood pressure. So early Friday morning they gave me two bags of blood (GO BLOOD DONORS!!!) and it helped me feel much better. I was at the hospital for two days and two night, which I still don't consider bad at all. My two baby girls are beautifully healthy!And my parents are here helping for two weeks while my blood volume builds back up which they said takes about two weeks.

I am SO grateful for everyone that helped at the hospital. SO grateful to my midwife for staying there through the WHOLE thing.And for Chalmers keeping me alive and not giving me a c-section!!!!! He's the best. And I'm thankful for the the best huband ever, Karey, for shedding a few tears during the whole ordeal just to remind me that he DOES have feelings and loves me like crazy!!!! HA HA. I will add some pictures later.