Well, I know that I had been saying all throughout my pregnancy that I wanted a true labor experience, and we got it. Probably even a little more than I wanted. I went in with my birth plan, a list of things that would be nice if they happened, but knowing nothing was set in stone and that ultimately, I wanted a healthy baby.
I had a Dr's appointment on Tuesday and things were progressing slowly, but nothing major. I spent the rest of Tuesday and that night in "false labor". I was eventually exhausted and knew they didn't want me to labor at home for very long since I was going to attempt a vaginal delivery after a c-section. I woke Danny up, not really thinking this was true labor but wanting to know what was going on, and we went in to the hospital. While I was having regular contractions, they weren't doing anything. I got a shot of morphine and was asleep by the time I got in the car. I slept the entire day Wednesday. Wednesday evening our doula came over to work some magic and so we could try and get Ezra in a better position and get things moving. It was suspected that he was head down, but face up. After that we went on a long walk and sure enough things started happening. I decided just to go to bed early and not worry about it and see what would happen.
About 1 am I woke up having contractions and a lot of pain in my back. I took a shower, made sure things were going to continue on, then woke Danny up and told him it was real this time. We called my mom to come over and stay with Cohen while we headed into the hospital. They checked me in and agreed that I was in labor. We called our doula and had my mom call my sister Karen, who was going to be taking pictures for us.
Around 3 am we got checked into our room and spent the next hours in labor. After a few hours of back labor I begged for my epidural. I work with the anesthesiologists whenever I am at work so it was weird to be on the "patient" side for a change. People always say 2 things about nurses: We "make the worst patients", and "if anything is going to happen, it will happen to a nurse". I think I may have lived up to both of those in the hours to come.
I got my epidural and was much more comfortable. I felt a little like I was cheating as I laid in bed and waited to get to the pushing phase. After a little while the doctor came in and told me they were seeing some decelerations in Ezra's heart rate and they wanted to put on another monitor to see more accurately what was going on. She also decided to break my water while she was there. They found out he had meconium in the fluid and that there would need to be a respiratory therapist and pediatrician there when he was born in case he had gotten any in his lungs. Everything looked fine with his heart when they got the monitor on. Then they thought Ezra was having some extra heart beats which they were also mildly concerned about and put on an additional monitor.
Eventually I was dilated to 10 cm and it was time to start pushing. We knew that Ezra was in a funny position but were hoping that he would cooperate and we could avoid a c-section. We tried everything to get him to change position, me changing positions, the doctor manually trying to position him but he was being a stubborn boy. He earned himself an ultrasound to check his position and to check on some extra beats his heart was having. We found out he hadn't moved and that he was having the extra beats that were showing up on the monitor, which was something they just wanted to watch. I was starting to have a lot more back pain through my epidural so anesthesia came back in to give me some more medication in my epidural. When he went to put the medication in it was one of the worst pains I have ever felt. It made my back seize up and I could hardly move. After a few minutes it got better and we continued on.
After nearly 4 hours of pushing, numerous monitors and little issues, he wasn't coming down. He was stuck. They emptied the room to let Danny and I chat. I didn't want to give in and have a c-section, but I also didn't think I had enough energy to keep trying. Our doctor came back and Danny told her I didn't want to say I needed a c-section and she told me that I really did need one because we had tried everything and he just wasn't making any progress. I was nervous about how I would do and whether my epidural would have the same issues as it had earlier. I remember thinking how slow everything was moving as this was clearly different from my last c-section. I asked that Danny be allowed to be in the room with me the whole time as the previous time he hadn't been allowed in until right before they started and I wanted him with me, which they allowed thankfully.
I laid down on the table and the anesthesiologist went to give me more medication in my epidural. Sure enough the same thing happened and I was in horrible pain. I was also only numb on one side. We talked about just putting me all the way to sleep, but after a few minutes the pain got better and I was numb on both sides. The anesthesiologist then asked if he could put a mask on my face. I should have known, but didn't realize until I woke up later that he was giving me gas in the mask and medications in my IV to make me sleepy. I should have known the ole "breathe in this 'oxygen'" trick as it happens all the time at work as people go to sleep for surgery, but I was just too nervous about everything else I think.
I woke up drowsily after who knows how long and wondered how I had fallen asleep during my c-section. Ezra was born at 11:21 pm that night , after nearly 24 hours since labor started. Ezra was out and had been taken over to be worked on by the pediatrician and respiratory therapist as he wasn't breathing who had been called to be in the room because of the meconium, which didn't end up being an issue. His Apgar scores were 1, 4 and 5 ( Cohen's were 4, 5 and 6) so he wasn't cooperating very well. They couldn't hear air moving in his right lung and he wasn't breathing well on his own. He earned himself a trip to the special care nursery for a few hours while I was in recovery. I was still so out of it from the cocktail they slipped me that I didn't really know what was going on. I remember trying to see him and hear if he was okay but I was so drowsy. By the time he got to the SCN he was doing much better.
I had to be in the recovery room for 2 hours so I had Danny going back and forth to give me updates. Someone brought me pictures of Ezra as I hadn't actually seen him before they took him away. It almost didn't seem real that my baby was finally here. After I had done my time in recovery, they took me back to my room and brought Ezra back to stay with us. He was a big boy at 8 lbs 7 oz, 21 inches long. He had giant chubby cheeks and a nice conehead from being stuck for so long. Welcome, little boy. It's good to finally meet you!