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Birth Stories at StorkNet ~ your pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding and parenting community
Jennifer and Alexa
epidural, induced with pitocin, stripped membranes, vaginal birth

The day was October 22, 1998. I was in my doctor's office for my weekly check-up. I was 38 weeks along and had been off of bedrest for three weeks. I was tired and cranky, just sick of being pregnant. I complained to my doctor, and he said he would help me along. Boy did he ever! He stripped my membranes, and it was uncomfortable! It hurt to walk for the rest of the day. I had bad cramping that night. I didn't go to work the next day, instead I stayed home and cleaned the house.

That night I woke up at 2:30 in the morning with pretty bad cramps. They were every 10 minutes but nothing I couldn't tolerate so I went back to bed. I sat around the house with my husband the next afternoon still having cramps. By 3:00 that afternoon they were pretty bad. I was just getting ready to call the doctor when I had to make a mad dash for the bathroom. I squatted down on the floor to try and relieve the pain and my water broke.

I called for my husband to come in there. He cleaned up the mess and said, "Go call the doctor." I had my doctor paged and he told me to go check into labor and delivery; he would meet me there. I raced around making sure we had everything in order. My husband was as calm as could be. I think the roles were reversed. I was having contractions every 3-5 minutes. We were about 40 minutes away from the hospital. (I drove ~ I wouldn't have it any other way. My husband just kept time of the contractions all the way there.

Finally we made it to the hospital, and I got into my room. They got me into one of those stupid robes and into bed. Now the fun begins. It is now about 6:30 Saturday evening. First they put the belts around my stomach to monitor the baby and the contractions. Then we had to get an IV going. Okay, I can handle this. Then my doctor comes in. In a tuxedo I might add. I felt bad I had spoiled his plans. He checked me and right away he ordered internal monitors. Not what I had wanted. The reason being my water was stained with meconium. He said he would see me later and gave the nurses their instructions. Next the anesthesiologist came to talk to me about an epidural. I wanted one from the time I found out I was pregnant. By this time the contractions were getting stronger, and I was dilated to 4 cm. I had to get to 5 before they would give me the epidural. I was in pain by now. The nurse gave me a shot but it didn't help. I was getting upset. They also had me on pitocin.

Finally the anesthesiologist came in to give me the epidural. The nurse had to give me another shot because I couldn't sit still long enough for them to place the epidural. Whatever she gave me worked. I fell over into her arms and felt wonderful. Now the epidural was in place and I was feeling good. They had me hooked up to a blood pressure machine and inserted a catheter. I had more tubes and wires attached to me. You'd have thought I was dying. I wasn't happy I wasn't allowed to move around or get out of bed. Then my left side started hurting very bad. I was crying. They came in and gave me a shot but it only lasted about an hour. Then I was in pain again. I was scared. I was shaking. I started to panic. I had to wait an hour before they gave me another shot. Then I was good for another hour. It was about 2 in the morning. It hurt bad. I was pissed. My right side felt nothing and my left felt everything. I was crying and yelling. They had to come in and adjust my epidural catheter. I had what is called a hot spot. They shot some medication in the tube, and I was out for two hours.

The nurse came in and woke me up at about 4:45 in the morning. My doctor was back in jeans and a T-shirt this time. He was mad. The nurse had left me dilated at 9 cm for three hours. He was yelling. I was pretty out of it.

Now it was time to start pushing. It was 5:00 in the morning. I remember my doctor telling the nurses to come and get him at 6:05 for the next shift. Well I was bound and determined that there wouldn't be a next shift! I started to push. My husband was on one side and a nurse on the other holding my legs trying to pull them to my ears. (It seemed like) About 10 minutes into pushing, the epidural wore off. I pushed and pushed. I remember watching the clock. I was crying. It was about 5:30, and the doctor came back in. I wasn't going to make it till the next shift. My baby girl was born at 5:59 a.m. on the 25th of October.

Finally it was over! She was beautiful. They put her on my stomach after she was born, and my husband and I cleaned her off. She looked into my eyes, and I was so happy. That was truly the most magical moment in my entire life. Although it was rough in labor and delivery, my pregnancy wasn't bad. I didn't get sick. I ate all the time and gained only 23 pounds. It has been 12 days since I had her and I fit into most of my old clothes. I must say it was all worth it. I have a precious little daughter whom I adore with all of my heart!

I just want to thank my husband Johnny for all of his support and for giving me a beautiful little girl! I love you both.

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