I woke up on Tuesday morning around 2:30 am not able to sleep. I was so full of excitement, anxiety and nerves. We were on the road around 5 am or so and made it to the hospital right on time at 6:00 am. Our nurse, Deborah, greeted us and took us to our labor and delivery room. She wasted no time getting things started. She handed me a hospital gown and a cup and pointed me to the restroom.
|In the elevators on the way to the 3rd floor|
|My last picture standing up! haha|
|With my sweet nurse, Deborah|
|My sister's Instagram post|
|Me being silly|
Somewhere around 9 am or so my mom and little sister arrived. Within an hour from then my
sister-in-law arrived as well. I had planned from the beginning to have Sheri present for both labor and delivery. My Granny and Pop had been in town for a doctor's appointment so they showed up as well. Looking back I should NOT have let so many people be present in my labor room. I was in such a fog that I never asked them to leave. I was too worried about hurting people's feelings. When I felt the contractions growing stronger I couldn't even cry because I didn't want everyone to see how badly I was hurting.
|Dr. Mac talking to my family|
|My amazing SIL, Sheri|
The nurse had me text Brandon and let him know that he was allowed back in the room along with everyone else (again I should have said no one but Brandon and Sheri). The rest of the day is much of a blur. They would continue to check me and I was very slow to progress. By this point my Dad had finished working for the day and he was there too. He popped his head in from time to time but tried to stay out of the room when possible. My sister would escort everyone to the cafeteria, and mom worked on sewing. I just laid in the bed. It was nearly impossible to watch TV and reading a book or anything else was out of the question. In all honesty, I have no idea how I passed the time. I do remember at one point beginning to feel very nauseated. They added Zofran to my IV bag and it helped tremendously. Once the nausea had worn off, my step-dad and little brother arrived. Nate was terrified to come near me. I was a site for sore eyes and was growing more and more tired as the day wore on.
|My step-dad, David|
|Granny, Nate, and Sneakers|
At 5:45 pm Dr. Mac checked me and I was 7.5 cm and 0 station. I was definitely progressing, but Ellie was not dropping any. Little did we know that this was a foreshadowing of the evening's events. Ellie would never fully drop into my pelvis and would make pushing hard work. At this time in the evening, Dr. McKenzie was very encouraged and positive that we would be having a baby on May 21 no matter what.
|My hair was awful from laying on it all day long|
|The most amazing nurse EVER|
Somewhere before 9 pm Joy showed up. She left the kids in the waiting room and came in to see me. I was so overwhelmed and tired from the day. My room was filled with people and it felt like everyone was talking and I was just sitting there taking it all in. Brandon and I still have no idea why we didn't ask for some privacy. I should have taken a nap at some point during the day, but had no quiet time. My family was only there because they loved me, but I was so overwhelmed.
On my left I had Sheri and Whitney (nurse). On my right I had Brandon and Joy. There was nothing that could have prepared me for the pushing phase of labor. Because of the epidural it was hard to know if I was doing anything or not. We ended up having the mirror rolled in so I could look and focus on that area. Whitney would tell me that I was doing a good job but I was so unsure. We would push for three sets of ten with each contraction. As time wore on I had to hit my pain button again and again. The feeling came back in my right side and that was NOT pleasant at all. I was eventually given what's called a boost. Brandon actually made that decision for me because I didn't know what to do because I was in so much pain. I am still proud of myself in that I never wasted any of my contractions. There was only set that we didn't push through, and it was because Dr. Mac said to rest.
During my pushing we had so many funny moments. I was strategically placing everyone around me and telling them to push my legs harder or easier. Sheri said that her arms actually hurt the next day! Joy was feeding me ice chips in between contractions, and we had the iPad playing in the background. About an hour into pushing Dr. Mac came back in and I wasn't making much progress. Ellie just couldn't drop. He told me to keep at it hard and he would be back. It's h
It seems like the 2.5 hours of pushing flew by. It was the company I was with. There was a lot of prayer and it was a beautiful time. It must have been nearing 11:30 pm when Dr. Mac returned with a desperate look on his face. He explained to me that I had a narrow pubic arch and Ellie was having trouble descending. She would slip almost past it with each contraction, only to move back inward when it was over. He told me that he would have to use the forceps to deliver my sweet baby. I immediately started crying. I didn't want him to hurt my precious daughter. From there everything flew by.
|Getting ready to really meet my little girl|
|It's almost time!|
|Dr. Mac telling us that it's almost time and that he needs to use greater measures to deliver Miss Ellie|
Brandon was terrified when he saw the forceps. Dr. Mac tried to fit them inside of me to no avail. He then grabbed the scalpel. He cut me from my vagina to my rectum. Brandon didn't even tell me. Dr. Mac was then able to slip the forceps completely inside me and Brandon said that he started crying. The nurses had to take the slippers off of Dr. McKenzie's feet so he could grip the floor to pull Elliana out. They had me pushing with all of my might. Everyone in the room was cheering me on and I was praying out loud calling on Jesus to help me in between .
At 11:34 pm my precious daughter was born and I heard the most beautiful cry in the world. They placed her on my chest and it was a moment that I will never forget. I thanked God for her and kissed her beautiful little head. I was so overwhelmed! They asked me if they could clean her up for a minute and they they brought her right back to me. I don't remember now, but Brandon said that we spent about five minutes just looking at her.
|I love that Joy was able to capture Elliana and the clock in the same picture!|
|Brandon said that his hand was shaking so hard when he was cutting the cord|
|I can still remember this one moment like it was yesterday|
|My beautiful little girl|
|ALL of the girls this time|
|Brandon looking at Elliana|
|It felt amazing holding her for the first time|
|Brandon was in love with our little girl from the first moment he saw her|
|She stopped crying as soon as they placed her back on my chest|
|Elliana enjoyed skin-to-skin with Daddy|
|Our little family grew by two feet|
I was so upset. It was now time for Ellie's first bath and I couldn't even stand up to go into the bathroom to see her get her hair washed. Of course my cell phone was with Sheri in the waiting room. Brandon offered to take pictures with his iPad but I started crying. He went to the waiting room for me and retrieved my cell phone since there was absolutely no way I could get there. Our family had no idea what was going on or taking so long but Brandon assured them that they would come back at some point. It was around 2:30 am. They had been waiting all day but I was not going to share these special moments with anyone other than my husband. I felt like we deserved that. In the back of my head I was hoping that they would understand but I honestly "didn't give a rip" anymore. I was in so much pain and was trying to enjoy those little moments. Brandon took so many pictures of her getting her hair washed. I could hear her little cries and would talk to her so she could hear Mommy's voice. The sweet nurse then brought her back to the little heated table and completed her bath there so I could watch. She knew that I was just devastated that I couldn't get up and move around.
|Miss Elliana loved having her hair washed|
|Holding Daddy's hand|
|We had the sweetest nurse, Kaitlyn|
|Baby girl's head looked awful that first night but is perfectly rounded now|
Ellie was safely swaddled in her little plastic bassinet and we tried to sleep. I assure you that I got maybe 1 hour of sleep in the first TWO days after her birth. Dr. Radbill did rounds and woke all of us up. They never did vitals on us at the same time. The pediatrician also had to come check on her. My nurse checked on us periodically and then lactation came to visit us. Overwhelmed doesn't even begin to describe how I felt. I understand that everyone wanted to visit but we should have limited everyone.
Any time I started to drift off to sleep I would be woken up by someone in the room or Ellie crying. It's all such a blur now. To top things off, I couldn't lay flat in my bed, but had to stay rolled over onto my side. My bottom hurt terribly. When I had to get up out of the bed, it was a planned movement and I needed help to get up. Walking was such a tiring task and I couldn't stand up straight. I actually couldn't stand up straight for days and my back has since paid the price. Also, I could feel gravity pulling everything out of me each and every time I stood up. This feeling also lasted for days.
We were in the hospital from 6 am on Tuesday morning until 2 pm on Friday afternoon. Because I had Elliana so late on Tuesday night we had to stay until Friday. In those days there were many tears from both Brandon and myself. As I began moving more I realized all that my body had endured. I tried to skip my pain medicine one night and paid for it later. I thought I was alright and didn't need it. Boy was I wrong. My entire body ached from pushing for 2.5 hours.
On Thursday in the hospital, a new problem presented itself. I had been so out of it that I hadn't noticed my bladder acting funny. Brandon helped me to the restroom and when I stood up I thought I had lochia/blood pouring from me. As he helped me take off my hospital underwear, we realized that it wasn't blood, but me urinating. I couldn't control it. My entire bladder emptied right there and the nurse saw it too. In that day it happened a total of FIVE times where I couldn't control it. Since then I've little to no more control over my bladder. From the trauma I endured this could be normal until 6 weeks postpartum. The doctors didn't seem too worried at all. (On Saturday 6-25 at home I had a bowel movement and "pushed" and that revealed bright red urine and a nasty UTI. I still have UTI symptoms today over two weeks later).
My story could terrify most women into not having a vaginal delivery. When we decide to have another child we will definitely move forward with a c-section. We had no idea that my body could not tolerate a vaginal delivery. The doctor also had no idea about my narrow pubic arch. I'm here writing now 14 days postpartum and the main part of my episiotomy has healed, but I still have a rather large opening on my perineum. It's going to take a while for it to heal. I am dilligent about keeping it clean and apply Tucks and medicine all day long. I've been using baby wipes on myself to wipe. Unfortunately it must heal from the inside out and who knows how long that could take. Regardless of what I have endured, Elliana is worth every ounce of pain. She's my precious miracle and I would do it all over again in a hearbeat.