At 6am on December 3, 2012 Zach and I were preparing to leave for the hospital. Our friend, Rebekah, had arrived to watch Cora and Owen and off we went. I was not nearly as nervous as I thought I would be…I was just more anxious than anything to FINALLY meet this little guy. We arrived at the hospital around 6:20 to find our pastor, Reggie, waiting for us. He prayed with us in the waiting room and off we went. That was such a blessing.
The nurses had our room all ready and I immediately changed, so they could hook me up to the monitors to hear Henry until the surgery. One nurse started on that while another started my IV. Neither was easy. It took a good 15-20 minutes to find Henry’s heartbeat. This was terrifying after a while, but eventually they found it. Apparently, he was in a VERY strange position. Then the IV took two tries…again…no fun, but the second one was quite comfortable for the 36 hours I had to have it in. Impressive, because I hate those things.
Zach and I proceeded to answer a ton of questions and fill out a bunch of paperwork. Finally, around 8:05 they wheeled me to the operating room. It was crowded and cold. I honestly didn’t expect there to be 10 people in there! And everybody had masks on…so while most of them introduced themselves to me in my room, I don’t really remember any faces. The nurse anesthetist was my buddy. She didn’t leave my side and was so sweet about telling me every little thing. After my spinal, they laid me down, at which point I got very nauseous. They gave me medicine to help my blood pressure come up, but I didn’t respond to it. So they gave me anti-nausea meds AND more blood pressure medicine and then I felt better.
All of a sudden they were starting the surgery and Zach wasn’t in there! I started to panic a bit. That was probably my most anxious moment during the surgery. They assured me he was coming, but it was really odd that they started first. I guess it was in case they had to put me all the way under for whatever reason. They were right. He came in quickly and was right there by my side. I was so relieved and almost cried when he took my hand.
Before I knew it I felt this AMAZING relief as they delivered Henry’s bottom and legs. I could breathe!! It took a good 20-30 seconds to get the rest of him out. Not only was he footling breach (rare and risky) but he had his arms over his head which made him harder to get out. THEN…he had the cord wrapped around his neck twice (probably why he didn’t want to flip…he couldn’t!). The doctor said later my placenta had two HUGE veins in it which means a version would have been very risky in terms of abruption. So all in all, it is great I had a c-section because we were both safe. Henry was born at 8:27am on December 3rd….we will share a birthday! Fun fun!
Despite the medical necessity I am still not crazy about the c-section experience. It was very impersonal and there was no intimacy….with my husband, my nurses, or my doctor! Everybody had masks and I had no real active part in the process. I never understood why people would care about that aspect if it was medically necessary but I’ve found myself grieving the lack of my “ideal birth”. Again, I’m so grateful to have the option and have Henry here safe, but I will never understand why people simply choose to do c-sections for convenience or “appearance” purposes. Another major thing I didn’t care for it was the inability to hold, nurse and snuggle my baby right after birth. That was just plain awful. More on that in a later post.
After Henry came out, Zach was able to go over and see him. It seemed to take a while for him to cry after he came out, but once he did I just burst into tears. It was such a relief. They brought him over to me and I could tell he was not breathing right. He was grunting and sounded quite full of fluid. Zach, the baby nurse and Henry all left and I was stitched back up and headed to recovery….