I’m actually going to start back a bit before I got anywhere near the hospital because there were several things that factored into what happened there.
I knew long before she was thought of that I wanted to use a midwife and a birthing center. My cousin Las had had a home birth (well two really lol) and I researched it all when she first told me out of concern for her. I ended up loving the idea, but didn’t want to actually go through it at home either lol. So the birthing center option sounded great to me.
Skip forward to us finding out we were pregnant. It was much earlier than we’d planned, and we weren’t ready. We both had decent jobs, but Baba’s insurance wouldn’t kick in until June (we found out in January) and my boss didn’t believe in giving her empoyees benefits. I’m not joking about that either lol… she really didn’t. Was fine w/ charity, would pay for a dr’s visit if you needed help or get others to chip in when you’re down (which really is nice) but insurance? Not happening… Because of that we thought we wouldn’t be able to use a birthing center. Instead we figured that I would need to use University Hospital. We also figured, because of that, that we’d need to get a reg Ob. I’m not sure why I didn’t look farther into it and find out for sure, but I didn’t. I could have found out that the center was an option.. and I also could have found out that the hospitals here (including University) have midwives too.
But no… some search for dr’s using that hospital sent us to a clinic where we ended up w/ Dr. P. The first few visits weren’t too bad. Typical dr rushed us out and I never really felt too comfortable with him, but because of our situation I didn’t want to be bouncing around between dr’s either so I stuck with him.
Edit: I’m an idiot I forgot something big lol.
We scheduled our first appointment w/ Dr P to be on Thursday 3 weeks after we found out. The Sunday before that Betsy, my best friend, passed away (Muscular Dystrophy). The funeral was going to be the next Monday (a week from then) in West Texas, but everyone told me not to go because there was a virus floating around and my grandmother had it, they were afraid of me getting it to. Thursday we had that appointment, we thought I was 9 weeks along. It went well but we couldn’t hear a heartbeat yet. He said it was ok… We had dinner w/ my FIL that night and told him about the baby. The next day we had dinner w/ my MIL and her now husband (were dating at that point). We got home to find I was bleeding. First off, I have never been so scared in my life.
We rushed to the closest hospital, not University btw… and ended up waiting in the waiting room (w/ very sick people) for over an hour. In the end we spent more than 3 hours waiting. The upside was that I found out 2 things. 1 – I’m Rh neg and had to get a shot. If I hadn’t gone in bad things could have happened. 2 – They did a sonogram and I was only 7 weeks along. (note my dr didn’t believe this even until his people did an ultrasound at 20 weeks)
They said that I had a 50% chance of miscarrying at this point and I completely freaked out. I was convinced I’d lose the baby… At one point I swear I thought i lost her..
Sunday I started coughing. That night I ended up back at the hospital (we were smart and went to University this time and were seen right away) w/ bronchitis. I was in there for 2 days… but they did another sonogram and there was her little heart beating away.
For several months I was on pins and needles w/ every twinge and cramp. I had morning sickness all day which didn’t help either lol. I was so relieved when I got to 5 months and my risk of miscarriage went back down to the same as if that hadn’t happened, and as an added bonus my “morning” sickness went away that same month (the day of our wedding actually lol).
end of edit.
During the pregnancy I kept doing my research, a good part of that was due to Las lol. (which I’m greatful for btw) So I knew what I wanted and didn’t want. I knew things happen, and sometimes plans change. I knew that some of the things I wanted just weren’t an option in the hospital. So I should have been prepared.
One thing I wasn’t prepared for was my dr being an ass. Sorry there’s no other way to put it. When I made my birth plan (once agian knowing that it may not be followed and that sometimes it just plain can’t be followed) and sat down to talk to him about it he was just plain rude. I asked if there was a way to do water births at the hospital (some do have the option though I doubted this one did, and even if it didn’t there might be a tub I could labour in to help with pain for a time). I figured he’d say no… which he did. What I didn’t expect was for him to laugh at me. He went on to say that it’s a bunch of crap and spout off about how baby’s have to hit the air at some point. Now.. I know that. I’ve heard the arguments for it being easier on them and the arguments against that he was referencing and both make sense… and honestly I don’t give a flying flip about that part. Yes it’s nice if it is easier on the baby, but… it helps with pain!!!! I wanted a natural birth… and I know that sitting in a warm bath helps with cramps, so the idea of a water birth makes perfect sense to me. I’m going to step off my soapbox now before I go off on a tangent. Anyways, it boils down to me being upset at that point. I literally didn’t know what to say, was in shock.
One other thing I mentioned at this point was the fact that I did not want an IV. They aren’t necessary unless you’re getting drugs or need a c-section. They also can cause problems…. including causing the baby to be born hypoglycemic. This bothers me because I am hypoglycemic… it runs in my family. Starting a child off that way when they are already at risk for developing it (granted I know it’s a temporary thing after birth) is not something I think is something to chance. He said this would not be an issue.
A few days later I thought I went into labour lol. We got to the hospital and I was checked of course. Dialated to a 2 or 3 (I don’t really remember) and completely effaced (if I remember correctly). They kept me for an hour to see how far I’d progress and said if I didn’t make it to a 4 they wouldn’t keep me. As soon as I got there they tried to give me an IV. I told them I didn’t want it and they said I had to. We argued over it for several minutes… ending with they wouldn’t for now but that I’d need it if I stayed. I was also told I couldn’t eat (oh yeah he said I could do that too). Then the… I’ll be nice… ladies went over to the desk across from us and started talking about us in Spanish. Ok I may be blonde, but I’m not stupid… We understood every word. Obviously I did not progress and I got sent home.
At this point I was so upset that I got online and found the birthing center that we want to use next time.
I also didn’t expect to be given bad information. It’s a good thing I had done my research because if I’d listened to him… I just hope he hasn’t passed any of it on to other mothers really. Backing up lol… My last visit I was 40 weeks along and miserable. Not only was it not time to start talking induction, I don’t believe in doing it unless there’s a real reason and there wasn’t. But I did want to talk to him about some natural methods of hurrying things along that had to be discussed with a dr/midwife. You can have all the sex you want, go for a jog, eat spicy food, etc… but if you want to try herbs (cohash’s) or have your membranes stripped you have to talk to them about it. So I did… and he told me that not only will the cohash’s not start labour but that they’re safe to take at any point in pregnancy!!! ??????? You’ve got to be kidding me!!!! I shouldn’t have been surprised because earlier in the pregnancy I asked about herbal teas (which would be ok) and he said they were all fine for pregnant women…. He did strip my membranes though.. which did exactly what it was supposed to and sent me into labour 🙂
It was 4 in the afternoon when I had that appointment. From there we had to go to the Church because Baba had dance practice for Magic is the Night, which was that Saturday night (this was Thursday btw). I had contractions the entire time we were there and one of his aunts (who is a nurse in the maternity section of another hospital) said that I’d have her that night. We went home and went to bed… still having contractions. About an hour later (1 in the morning at this point) I got up to go to the restroom and was doubled over. I yelled for Baba lol and we headed off to the hospital.
This time around I was dialated to 4 when we got there so I got to stay lol. I was so out of it that I didn’t put up a fight over the IV (although Baba was prepared too lol) and said yes when they asked if I wanted an epidural. I’d gone through the pregnancy not wanting one, but knowing there’s nothing wrong with doing it if needed (even Las stressed that lol)… So I wasn’t too upset about that.
So I went to get the epidural… and what should have only taken 15 minutes took 45. Why? Because I have scolosis… They couldn’t find the middle of my spine! I was poked 5 times w/ that damn needle…. (sorry I’m still bitter about that) Finally it was done though and I got to my room, all was good.
My BIL showed up next about 2am…. bringing all sorts of food and drink for himself and my husband. Yeah… I got to lie there and watch them eat. (and despite having stuffed myself en route to the hospital I was not happy about that… you don’t keep food away from me, makes me very unhappy) Anyways, it really was nice having him there. My MIL came next at 4am. Was nice having her there too actually. We talked, laughed, etc. At one point I drifted off.
They say you can get up and walk a bit during labour, but my legs were non-exsistant, they had me strapped up to the monitor and I have trouble moving period w/ a needle in my arm (have always had that problem… my arm just won’t move) so I could barely even turn. It was a big production for that to even happen lol.
About 45 min to an hour before she was born I started pushing. I really have no complaints about this part.. I had to have help holding my legs lol… Poor Baba was way more involved than he wanted to be lol. My dr was not there btw.. (and as you can imagine I was happy about that) I had a med student and two nurses. It wasn’t that bad.
But… Somewhere in there they switched my IV bag and said that they were giving me more saline. I don’t remember if that was before or after she was born though lol. Another thing that we thought was slightly funny was while I was pushing Baba told me that she had black hair (which she did)… and as her head was delivered, one of the nurses said “Oh look! Another blonde baby!” Blonde??? My daughter has never been blonde (although she’s now turning into a little redhead!). Right about the same time though they saw that her cord was loosely around her neck. As they were telling me this though, they assured me that it was ok and got it off w/ no problems.
Anyways, here’s where our real problems started. Kalila was born at 8:56 that morning (not the problem of course lol)… I saw this beautiful purple bundled being passed by… They asked Baba if he wanted to cut the cord, which he didn’t lol and did it themselves w/out letting it pulse – which I’d asked for… and they took her over to a table to clean her up – another thing I did not want done right then. Baba went over there while they were doing so… and a nurse and the med student went on to pull out the placenta. Didn’t deliver it… pulled it out. Which caused me to bleed… scaring everyone of course. They reassured us, but they were worried at first themselves. By the time that was all done and they handed Kalila over to me she was a whole hour old! Poor thing was so hungry she latched on right away and ate really good that first time lol. No probs at all there…
I’m not sure at what point I realized that I was lied to. We were in the other room for awhile though. I remember getting up to use the restroom and when they moved my IV line I saw the word pitocin on it. I asked the nurse what was going on because I wasn’t supposed to be given that. She told me that it’s standard procedure to do so. Now.. a – I told them not to give it to me!!!! and b – They told me that they were giving me saline!!!! I’m still pissed over this… I have no idea at what point it was given either. After we noticed it I told the nurse to take it out and she said she’d get someone in to do it… and they didn’t show up for another hour.
Now Kalila was supposed to stay with me in the room… and Baba was supposed to be with her if she went in the nursery. Well, she did stay with me overnight… but they did keep taking her for tests in the nursery (understandable) and leaving her there for hours and wouldn’t let him near her. I can’t even begin to tell you how many times we called the stupid nursery. And she’d come back with a pacifier of course… which we told them not to give her.
I was lucky and it is a very pro-breastfeeding hospital. A nurse came in to help me with it several times. Unfortunately the lady had me so scared it’s not even funny. We had to log in every time she ate and every diaper change for one… And she insisted that I feed Kalila every two hours (even though I said I was feeding on demand and she replied good that’s for the best) to the point of waking her up if she was sleeping. Problem with that is that if Kalila’s sleeping there’s no waking her up if she doesn’t want to. Even then! So I was afraid she wasn’t getting enough. Plus… the lady insisted that I nurse on one side for 15 minutes and then switch to the other every single feeding. Now I knew that you don’t have to do that and tht its’ best to drain the first side and then offer the other, but she kept insisting on it so I tried… and it didn’t work. Kalila would fuss like crazy when I’d try to switch sides and she’d refuse to latch on again. We fought that every feeding, but I stopped asking advice after awhile lol. I figured Kalila would eat when she’s hungry and I’d just keep trying… I wish I’d stuck to my guns and let her finish off one side first, would have saved me a lot of worry and we never would have had the foremilk/hindmilk imbalance issues that we did from it. As soon as we realized why her diapers looked like they did I switched to one side per feeding (or one side per two if she didn’t drain me in one) and it completely went away. And of course they still sent me home w/ formula despite the fact that I said I would be exclusively breastfeeding…
In the midst of all this… Baba still had to dance Sat night and I was in the hospital. Not as bad as it could have been lol. We’d been joking about him getting the call that I was in labour when he’s on stage!
We were released Sunday afternoon. Too late to make it to Church, but honestly I’m not sure if I’d really have been up to it lol. I’m not going to get into all the drama that happened after we got home (isn’t really necessary) but I will skip ahead another month because it’s related to this.
Obviously I was going to be sore afterwards. It’s a given lol. I knew my back would hurt from the epi for instance… that didn’t surprise me at all. But it continued…. I felt like someone had punched me in the back. I had bruises from the needle (not to mention 5 hole marks in my back). Then it started to feel like something was pulling when I’d bend over. Finally a month later I got so sick it’s not even funny. My fever was up to 103 or 104 (something like that) and we rushed to the med clinic. It’s kind of a funny story because we thought Kalila had a fever too and there was a huge mixup about who was who because the receptionist thought I was 13, Baba’s daughter and Kalila’s sister! But that’s beside the point.. I had a kidney infection that had gone way too long because I hadn’t noticed the pain because I already was in pain.
Like I said earlier, I’m not disappointed that I had the epi… and a good part of that is because I now know that I never want another. Between being overpoked, the pain of it afterwards and the creepy feeling of not having any feeling in my legs (which lasted way too long)… I just don’t… but at least I know that now lol
In the end, despite all the aggrivation and things not going the way I wanted… I have a healthy baby girl and that’s what’s important. But I want better for next time if that makes any sense.