Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Our Birth Story

Well Baby Boy, Dominic, finally made his arrival into the world on Friday May 14th at 6:45p.m.

My doctors appointment on Friday May 6th had me at 1.5cm dilated, well Dr said 2cm but that was being generous. I was hoping that when I went back on the 13th that things would of progressed a little but when Dr. Eason checked I was still only 2cm dilated. She suggested we do a stretch and sweep, but when she did it said that she was doubtful that it would work from what she felt and apologized as it would probably just make me spot a little and be a little crampy. But she hoped that there was a small possibility it may get things moving as Baby Boy was growing, growing, growing!

I came home from the Dr's a little crampy and was quite tired that day and night. This was out of ordinary for me as I had gotten in the routine of going downstairs around 10p.m. everynight while daddy would sleep and mommmy would work on her computer, watch tv and movies! I would usually fall asleep around 2a.m., however that night was fast asleep by midnight.

I woke up crampy around 4a.m. Friday May 14th but thought nothing of it as the Dr had said I would be crampy and I had been crampy over the last few weeks. Adam came down to have a shower around 6:30 and of course asked if there was any pattern (as he had asked for the past 3 weeks whenever I mentioned a small cramp) I said I didn't know and that I was just crampy. I got up to go to the bathroom at 7a.m. and I soaked everywhere! Guess it was a little shock as it definitly was not urine ;)

We called our doula to see whether we should be going to the hospital as we weren't sure if it was my water that had broke our not! She said it sounded like it, so into triage we went arond 7:30a.m.

The nurse at triage did a swab and it came back saying that my membranes had not broken, but I was 3cm dilated and she thought we would be back again soon. She had wanted us to stay at the hospital but we ensured her we would come back if anything changed and would check in via telephone a few hours later. She had informed us that we were to go home and walk around. By the time we got home the cramping had intensified and all I wanted to do was lie down and then be in the warm water bathtub. By 11 we had called Anna to let her know we were indeed in labour and at 11:30 I had Adam call back and tell her I wanted her NOW!

When our doula arrived she informed us that it was time to go to the hospital so off we went. Triage put my iv in and got us registered into a room. The birthing rooms at Montfort are quite beautiful and we were very lucky to be in a newly renovated hospital with large rooms.

The contractions began to quickly intensify and once checked into the hospital I immediately got into the big birthing tub and much of what happened after that was a bit of a blur. You completely forget what time it is as you get into the zone of riding the wave of each contraction. I spent quite a bit of time in the birthing tub as the contractions intensified with each one. The zone I was in was so focused I was under the impression that I had used the same iv bag throughout the entire labour to come and find out from hubby that they changed it 3 times! After the tub our doula had me on the stability ball for a while over the bed. However, each time I was moved from one position to another the contractions would pick back up making it a challenge to re-focus and then I would be back in my zone. We rotated from the bath, to the ball and then to sitting on the toilet. Our doula had informed us that the toilet was a great prop and wonderfully opened the pelvis. I quickly learned that she was indeed right as the contractions would greatly intensify while resting there. I vividly remember sitting on the ball at one point learning over a sink grabbing onto the faucet for dear life. I then remember having the thought of whether we would have to pay for it should I happen to rip it right out of the sink ;)

The nurse we had was a young nurse who seemed quite interested in giving me drugs. I only screamed for an epidural 3 times, and each one was during the height of a contraction. Anna would soothingly tell me to sing my baby out in which my response was to yell for Adam. Poor Adam, the look in his eyes when he would come to my side. The look of helplessness, wishing he could take the pain away but couldn't. He was absolutely amazing at running for water, ice chips and cold packs as I was quite hot throughout the labour. The few times I would scream for an epidural the nurse would look at me with these eyes of "Don't let your doula push you, I will go and get the epidural for yoĆ¼"." However, Anna, Adam & I had discussed our birth plan and my hopes and desires was to have a natural childbirth. At no time did I ask for an epidural during a moment of rest, it was only during the height of the contraction. The nurse used the doppler to locate the babies heart rate quite frequently and would listen for a minute each time. The issue being that when contractions come one on top of another it was hard to find time to check the heartbeat in between them. She would also ask if I was having a contraction and them gently push on my uterus. Little did I know that this pressure would then send me into another contraction!

Dr. Aubin came in to speak to me, and I remember everyone saying that the doctor was there and wanted to speak to me. I kind of looked in her genreally direction while resting in the tub but remember not caring or registering much of what she said. There were people around but it was like I didn't really see them in my vision. I got out of the bath and back to the bed so Dr. Aubin could check me. She had said that I was 10cm at that point, which was a relief as I had dilated 2 whole cm while just resting on the toilet. I was 10cm dilated, 100% effaced but still at 0 station. She made the comment that I was still going to be a few more hours and that she probably would not be there for the birth of the baby.

The pressure was quite intesne and I kept saying I felt like I could push. Anna had me get up over the bed on my hands and knees, as I rocked through the constant contractions. The Dr. had said that if I wanted to push I could, but not to tire myself out as I would have a while. As soon as she said I could push thats all I heard! Anna informed me with the next contraction I could start pushing while over the bed. The instant relief that I felt from the pushing was amazing! I pushed a few times and then the nurse tried to find the babies heartbeat again. She located it for a second and then lost it again. She hit the cold blue and all I remember was all of a suddent there were many nurses and doctors in the room and somebody putting an oxygen mask on my. My thought did not even turn to the baby, something inside me must of known he was just fine, but I did think OOOOHHH YES oxygen, maybe a little break! A more experienced nurse found the heartbeat immediately and everyone left the room. Anna had me push a few more times while on my back and all of a sudden she said the baby is right there! The nurse quickly called the doctor and to my luck Dr. Eason (who I had wished for all along!!!) came in. Adam said she watched me push for a moment and quickly said get me the tray as the baby was right there. I felt some burning as the head began to crown, but was definitely not as intense as I had thought it may be. I pushed the head out, slowed down to get teh shoulders out and a few more pushes he was here!! Adam who had been sitting in the corner by my head, looking in the other direction, finally looked as they placed Dominic on my chest and the tears that ran down his face were absolutely priceless. The proud moment of a new father!

Dominic was born at 6:45p.m.& mommy pushed for a total of 45 minutes, which seemed to go by a lot quicker than that!

Adam wasn't keen on cutting the cord so we had asked Anna to do the honours, as she had helped us through something we would not of been able to do naturally on our own. To be honest we would of had an epidural whtin the first hour of being there.

Adam then took the baby to get weighed and have his APGAR score (which was 9 at 5 minutes and 10 minutes!) while I delivered the placenta. This was more painful than I had thought originally, but absolutely nothing compared to the contractions in labour!

Once Dominic was weighed and measured (9.5lbs 55cm long) he was brought back to my chest where he instantly began rooting for the breast and with little direction latched on right away. This successful latching brought on cramping of the uterus, but with the new love of your life on you you don't notie that much! While I was starting to feed Dom, daddy was out making all the phone calls to let everyone know that our bundle of joy had finally arrived.

Adam and I snuggled as our new family shared the love, hugs, kisses & happiness.

I cannot believe that Dominic is fianlly here! We stare at him and cuddle him all day in amazement of every movement he makes. I highly recommend the use of a doula, as it made my experience everything and more that I had wished and hoped for!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Too Late to Run?

So baby boy is due on Saturday. The clock is ticking and in some ways I am eager to meet him. Eager to have my body back (well my new post baby body), eager to not feel nauseous anymore, eager to not feel like I have a bowling ball stuck between my legs and eager to get on with life after the ride the last 9 months has been. Eager, at this particular moment, to have just a taste of a gin & tonic on a summer patio. Well maybe a teeny bit more than a taste.

However, in some ways I am getting a little apprehensive that this child actually needs to come out of my body. I want to have a natural birth. Picturing it as a joyous, yet painful experience, which I am able to get through with a strong mind and body connection. It has been a mix of emotions, a roller coaster ride, throughout the pregnancy. The joys of feeling him kick and move, then the realization and bizarre thought that something is actually growing inside me. As a yoga teacher I am used to be in tune with my mind and body. I am used to being in control of my minds thoughts and also have worked very hard in letting things go that I cannot control. However, pregnancy has been a whole new challenge.

The ups of the excitement of what's to come, with the downs of feeling sore, achy and mentally not feeling like my true self. I guess where I have struggled is the fact that I am changing. I am changing from one Amanda to another Amanda. The old Amanda is used to taking care of herself, feeding her own needs, wants & desires. The new Amanda continues to love and support her wonderful husband. The new Amanda who is nurturing and taking care of another human being. A human being that I cannot give back at the end of the work day, take a sick day from or book vacation away from (without organizing childcare and then worrying about what he is doing while I am away and if he is okay). The new Amanda of trying to still find time to be herself, do the things she enjoys and balance it all.

So part of me is ready for this baby, I am finished being pregnancy and ready for the next step. This being said from the mommy to be who is sitting on her stability ball in a squatting position, extremely uncomfortable from the pelvic pressure, but wishfully hoping that I will continue to dilate past 2cm in a fast manner and not be stuck here for another 10 days. Another part of me is wondering am I ready for what is to come next? Wondering if I am selfish for wondering if I will ever have a spare moment to myself again without having to worry about another individual.

To all the wonderful mommies out there, did you ever feel this way while you were pregnant? What thoughts were floating through your mind as the time approached for the big day?

Friday, May 7, 2010

A Mother Is....

This post is inspired by a contest that Loukia is having on her blog Loulou's Views Entrants are asked to write a post about what being a MOTHER means to them.

This has been an extremely exciting year for my husband and I as we embark on the journey of expanding our family. We were extremely blessed in August of 2009 to find out that we were indeed expecting a little one. The excitment, fears, dreams and hopes began to build from that day forward to where we will now meet our little man any day now.

I am forever grateful to my grandmothers, mother, and mother in law for showing me what it means to be a mother. To me they define motherhood above and beyond my expectations. As I look at the years ahead I know if I can be half the mother these amazing women have been my children will be blessed above and beyond anything else.

A mother is someone who nurtures another life inside her for 9 months even when nausea, vomittimg, aches, pains, endless doctors appointments, cravings and swolllen feet seem to take over her days. A mother is a super human, giving her life selflessly to grow another.

A mother is someone who may sometimes feel like she has lost her identity but seeing her childs innocent face her heart melts and she is brought back to the reality of why she did it all in the first place. Out of everlasting love.

A mother continues to work towards her own goals, thriving and being passionate about her own life, needs and desires. In doing so not only does she benefit but so does her family.

A mother is always looking out for her childs best interest, providing an environment for them to thrive and with the intention of ensuring they are always free from harm.

A mother is always there to wipe the tears away as they run down her little ones cheeks, kiss a scraped knee and hold a hand when needed.

A mother is there to offer encouragement, a gentle nudge and set boundaries when she knows it will enable her child to grow into their true self and invites them to show self-expression.

A mothers job often entails snot wiping, vomit cleaning, poop cleaning and wiping up pee. But she does it out of true love for her child, because really...why else would anybody want to do that?

A mother is not afraid to get dirty jumping into piles of leaves, puddle jumping, tree climbing and nature walking. All done for the love of seeing her sweet childs smile.

A mother is a teacher and a coach, always there to cheer on their child at every sports event, school play, and any other special occasion that their child participates in.

A mother knows their childs sweet smell from any other childs. The smell of their freshly bathed bodies to the smell of her child after a fun filled day outside in the sun.

A mothers heart shines when she feels the first kick, sees the heart beating on the ultrasound screen for the first time, sees her childs first smile, hears the first coo, takes their first steps, goes off to their first nursery school, graduations, first loves, marriage events and when her own child becomes a parent for the first time.

A mother is full of love, everlasting and evergrowing.