Wednesday, May 27, 2009

My Baby Girl is 4 Weeks Old

I can't believe Marielle is already 4 weeks old. She is growing so quickly. Last week she learned how to roll over from her stomach to her back. At only 3 weeks old I could not believe it.

I wanted to write down my birthing experience with Marielle so I don't' forget how amazing it was. I apologize for the length of the entry but I didn't want to forget the details.
When I first discovered I was pregnant my thoughts immediately went to how difficult Easton's birth was and how there had to be a better way. With Easton I started having contractions around 11:30 at night. Finally around 4:30 a.m. the contractions were much more painful and I decided I should go to the hospital. My biggest fear was that the hospital would send me home because I wasn't far enough along in labor so I wanted to make sure if I was going the hospital they weren't sending me home. Once I got to the hospital I was found to be dialated to a 7 and they immediately said I could have my epidural. Due to my minor scoliosis it took the anesthesiologist almost an hour and several failed attempts to get the epidural in. Once in however, it was wonderful but at the same time I think that's where all the difficulty with Easton's birth came into play. The doctor told me that around 8:00 a.m. he would come back and we could start pushing at that point. He indicated it was good to just let the baby sit to help things out. Yeah right. Finally around 10:00 a.m., after performing an emergency C-section on another patient, he came back. At this point I knew I was long past the point of needing to push. I needed this baby out 2 hours ago. We started the arduous pushing process, with the doctor coming and going as he pleased. After 2 1/2 hours of pushing and no baby I was terribly worn out, my epidural was wearing off and I could feel Easton in my birth canal. Plus, as Clint always likes to indicate, he had been holding up my leg for all that time and was tired as well. The hospital should have paid him for having to do such work. Finally the doctor came back in, discovered Easton was posterior, did a little flip move to turn him around and out he shot with a giant cone head. Thanks doc, could have used that two hours ago. Needless to say I was completely exhausted and really did not have much desire to even hold my sweet little boy. I felt as though because I had an epidural the doctor and nurses were not that concerned with delivering my baby on both my baby and my body's time table. Instead it was what was convenient for them making it much more difficult for my baby and me.

After that experience I just felt as though there had to be a better way to birth. So, I looked into several birthing options and decided to try hypnobirthing and hiring a doula. Hypnobirthing is simply relaxation techniques which allow you to naturally birth your baby more comfortably. A doula is someone is who there just for you as the birthing mother. They don't take part in any of the medical aspect of the birth, they are simply a coach for the mom. They are normal people unlike many preconceived notions family and friends had when I explained I was hiring one. I found a hypnobirthing instructor named Becky who was also my doula. Clint was expecting some hippy lady but was very surprised to discover she was normal and not weird. The thing I loved most about taking the hypnobirthing class was the fact that Clint and I were doing it together. It wasn't like he did his part and now the rest was up to me. He was as much a part of preparing for the birth experience as I was. Every night he would read me my relaxation exercises and he recorded them for me to listen to on the iPod. I felt more prepared for Marielle's birth and a lot closer to Clint.

May 4th was my due date and even though I was dialated to a 3 and 90% effaced, the day came and went. The next day I had the doctor strip my membranes and Clint, Easton and I hung around the area for the day thinking at any minute I would go into labor. We went shopping, out to lunch with Clint's grandma, to the park and to get ice cream. However, nothing was happening so we came back home. Shortly after arriving home around 6:00 p.m. Clint went outside and started doing yard work and then I started having contractions. I wasn't sure at first if I was in labor but it quickly became apparent that I was. Whenever I had a contraction I would stop what I was doing and proceed to do my breathing exercise. Easton would say, "What's wrong mom?" Finally I knew it was time to go to the hospital. Clint was still outside and I couldn't find him. I told Easton to go find Dad and tell him I needed to go to the hospital but he couldn't find him either. Around 8:15 p.m. I finally found Clint and told him I needed to get to the hospital soon. He quickly began rushing around getting his bag packed and Easton ready. It was funny to watch the flurry of action. Clint revealed that he didn't think I would be going into labor until the next day and so he wasn't quite prepared and felt bad he had left me in the house without checking on me. We left the house around 8:45 p.m. and headed for the hospital. I continued to do my breathing and relaxation exercises on the way. Easton continued to ask, "What's wrong mom?" Once we got to the hospital, I was found to be dialated to a 5. We called my doula to let her know. Clint's parents came and picked up Easton. While walking to my birthing room the lady next door to my room was screaming and yelling. She kept saying, "Help me, I can't do this!" Needless to say it was a bit unnerving. I quickly asked to get in the tub. Shortly after getting in the tub my doula arrived and then my sister Danielle. I listened to my relaxation exercises and just focused on each contraction. Everyone said I looked like I was sleeping. I was slightly cognizant of what was going on around me and could feel the peak of each contraction but I was still relaxed. My doula was able to sense if I needed a little something extra and would help me focus. I remained in the tub for over 2 1/2 hours. I finally felt ready to get out of the tub. At this point the doctor called to check on my status. The nurse found me to be dialated to an 8+ and almost ready. My sister, Clint and my doula were massaging me and helping me stay focused. I began to feel a lot of pressure and contractions were coming really close and hard. The nurse checked me again at which point my water broke. Right then the doctor walked in. At this point I lost all focus and was in need of a little extra help to get me through. I asked Clint for a blessing at which point everyone stopped what they were doing and folded their arms while I received a blessing. Labor was very intense at this point and I remember saying, "I need my baby out" several times and began pushing. A few pushes later and out she came. It happened so quickly. It was 12:53 a.m. when she was born. The doctor laid her on my chest and I was so overwhelmed with her beauty. Outside of the temple, it was the most spiritual, amazing experience I have had. I was on such a natural high and felt so good after her birth. It was the birth I had wanted, prayed for and worked together with Clint to prepare for. Clint was so amazing throughout the whole thing and must have been on a natural high as well because he proceeded to provide quite a bit of comic relief. Marielle was perfect and began to nurse within the hour. I couldn't have asked for a better birthing experience.


Kristin said...

wow. that's an amazing story. Thanks for sharing. Maybe I should have tried hypno birthing w/ Kate, her home birth was my worst.
I was LOL about Clint and your leg. What was that, a whole 5# he had to support? Too funny.

EBWalker said...

Charisse, I am seriously so amazed and impressed by your delivery story. I had no idea Easton's delivery was so awful! I am glad Marielle's went just the way you wanted it to, way to take control of your situation. I am really wondering how my delivery will go this next week, I just don't know what to expect with having a new hospital and doctor for this one.
Marielle is beautiful!

Shelly Lomu said...

You are amazing!!! What a neat story to have to share with your daughter when she gets older. I had all 5 of mine with drugs and lots of em. Only one time did the epidural fail and I thought I might die. It takes a strong woman to do what you did. Congrats-she is beautiful!!