I’ll warn you now, that our little guy’s birth story had a scary moment and is very detailed, so if you are squeamish or don’t like things like this, then avoid this post.
Zachary’s Birth Story:
Unlike my pregnancy with the girls, this one had a lot more complications along the way. I was in a lot more pain generally, there were more complications (like the misreading of the ultrasound so we thought there was a cord problem, his hiding so they couldn’t get heartbeats, and my blood pressure) and more scary parts to the birth.
A few weeks before my due date we noticed at the OB office that my blood pressure was getting higher than they like to see. At the last appointment before my due date we noticed my blood pressure had been climbing a bit each week, and I was getting headaches and dizzy spells. I was worried about not seeing my OB again until a few days after my due date, so my OB Dr.Potts booked me in the hospital for a non-stress test on my due date. By the time my due date rolled around and I went into the hospital for the test, I was feeling a bit off. Turned out my blood pressure was getting higher still. At its highest it was 167 and the OB on call ran a bunch of blood work to be extra safe. In the end they let me go when the blood work came back ok. On Friday when I saw Dr. Potts I reported back about my non-stress test and blood pressure results. I told the nurse, and when I mentioned 167 I saw Dr.Potts’ face look at the nurse as he was signing things, and she went and printed out the hospital results. That let me know he wasn’t thrilled. In the room, he asked how I was feeling and I was honest about my dizzy spells getting a bit worse, so he decided that inducing me would be the best option. As he put it “The baby is already backed, so there is no reason not to get him out.” He gave us the choice of Saturday or Sunday, and we picked Sunday hoping it would give him 48 hours to get himself out.
On Sunday, we had to be up early to call the hospital by 7:30am if they didn’t call us. I had to have a light breakfast so I made oatmeal for everyone. When I called, the hospital they were pretty busy so they scheduled a non-stress test at 12pm to see how things were. This test went much better, so both baby and I were okay, but they were still pretty full, and sent us home to wait for the induction call. By 5pm I was wondering if there was a time they would no longer call passed, so I called the hospital to find out. If they wouldn’t call after 5 or 6pm then we’d go out for dinner, but the nurse told us to eat with our kids and then come in around 6ish. Steve started to freak out that it was 5:15 and had to go in for 6! I called him down and told him to get a pizza. Then we had dinner with the girls, and headed to the hospital for 6:15pm.
When we arrived, they signed us in and had us wait a few minutes in the reception area. Then they brought us to the room, I would be in until we were discharged. Just like with the girls I was on the same side of the ward. Always to the left. I had a nurse for about 15 minutes before shift change, and then the nurse who would handle things for the rest of the night arrived. Her name was Jenn. The first nurse tried to set up the IV for Jenn, but she hit a valve in my right arm and after working 12 hours figured she’d let my fresh replacement nurse try instead. Jenn still had some trouble, so my IV was in a bit of an awkward place in my left hand. Shortly after 7pm, the head nurse came in to start the Oxytocin drip for me. They checked my cervix before hand and I was still at 2cm but they said it was very ripe, meaning it was already soft, and ready to really stretch, so that would help the induction.
The induction started at 7pm and by 2am I was at 10cm and at 2:20 he was in my arms, so my induction only lasted just over 7 hours.
Because I was being induced it meant that Jenn had to monitor Zac’s heart rate the whole time and check me every 15 or 30 minutes. My blood pressure stayed fine but they had a really hard time keeping track of the little guy’s heart rate. With Katrina I found the birthing ball very helpful and it did help this time too but it was impossible to track the heart rate. Same thing for the rocking chair or sitting on the toilet or leaning on the bed or any other position that wasn’t standing straight up or lying down. So that left me with really few options for how I could progress through my labour and keep his heart rate on the monitor. Also having so many issues tracking the heart rate meant that the head nurse had to keep coming to the room to help try to track it.
As things progressed the pain was becoming more intense. I had paired contractions where two would hit back to back before I got a bit of a break, and all of it was back labour. The nurses kept checking my progress and at 11pm I was about 5cm, which was not what I wanted to hear. I had got it into my head that if I was 6-7cm or more then I would keep going but less than that I would need an epidural because I couldn’t stand or lay down for that long, and none of the other positions would allow them to track the heart rate. At 11:30pm I asked for the epidural and at 12:30am I got it. The doctor who came in to do the epidural was really funny. I told him how happy I was to see him, and that he must be the favourite doctor in the hospital. He joked that no one ever remembers his name, even if he’s the favourite. I told him I couldn’t remember the doctors who gave me my previous epidurals but I also couldn’t remember the doctor who delivered my second child. That made him laugh. The nurse had everything set up for him when he came in, and there was even a book of how each doctor wanted the equipment set up. Steve laughed because there was an anesthesiologist named Dr. Drone.
After the epidural took, I was so happy. This one took the pain away better than the previous two did. I was happy and chatty and in no pain! The nurses checked me again and by now I was 9cm and fully effaced. There was only a little bit left to go so I got on the phone and called my mother at 1am. She called Lisa to come over and crash on our couch, and headed to the hospital.
We waited a bit longer, and I chatted with Steve and Jenn cracking jokes now that the pain was manageable. Jenn was still having a really hard time keeping Zac’s heart beat and she got the head nurse to come back in. She checked me and realized that I was 10cm and he was trying to come out. So she grabbed the phone to call the OB to get him to come to the room. It was 2am now.
At the same time she was calling the OB by mother arrived at the hospital. It took her a long time to get through the ER to the maternity ward because no one was down there when she arrived. The nurse at the desk tried to call our room to let my mom in but the nurse was calling the doctor so she wasn’t allowed in. The nurses then began to put my legs in place to deliver the baby, and Steve came back from getting water for me. My cell phone went off, and I missed answering it but checked it and saw my mom called. I told Steve confused and the nurse said we missed a call when she was calling the OB so she must be waiting outside. I told Steve to go get my mother since she hadn’t missed a birth yet. Steve ran to get my mother.
When they came back in the room I was already starting to push. The OB, Dr.Holmo was in the room with the resident, and both nurses were at my side. Steve and my mom had to stay on the same side this time so my nurse could track the baby’s heart rate which would drop or disappear at times. In only 15 minutes of pushing Zac arrived, and like Lillian and Katrina he brought the cord with him. Only he decided to outdo his sisters and wrapped it around his neck. He turned his head one way and it tightened. The doctor immediately grabbed his head and turned it back to loosen it. He then delivered the shoulder to unwrap the cord from his shoulder and delivered Zac.
Dr.Holmo tied up the cord, and let my mother cut it and then the nurses took him to be checked over. His head was blue but his heart rate was strong, and he was given the agar score of 6 but after 5 minutes he was moved up to a 9. They cleaned him up, and checked him over, and brought him back for me to hold. It took a bit more time for the doctors to check me over, and make sure that I was okay than with the girls, but that’s okay. Zac was the biggest baby I had, and a full pound heavier than Katrina and with blood pressure issues they had to be safe.
In the end he was healthy and beautiful. He weighed 4020g (8lbs 13.5oz) and 53.5cm long. He arrived at 2:20am, which made him the shortest pregnancy by 23 minutes and the heaviest baby!
- Little man is growing.
- 3 weeks today.