Our little man is officially here! His due date was June 20th, 2021, but he made his grand debut on June 14th due to me being induced. I was very happy to be induced because this pregnancy was incredibly uncomfortable, and I got to meet my son a week early!
Although I measured big with Lily and she came out at a completely normal weight, our final ultrasound at week 36 revealed Paul was already on track to be bigger than her. Both the ultrasound and my measurements at my doctor’s office showed he was measuring full-term. This meant by the time I’d reach 40 weeks he’d be close to a nine pound baby.
My first cervical check happened and unfortunately my cervix was still closed. However, the day after my doctor appointment (and chiropractor adjustment) my first round of prodromal labor began. I was no stranger to this as I had this about a week before I delivered Lily. I experienced contractions a few times throughout the week but nothing consistent.
At my 38-week appointment, a few things happened. My doctor checked my cervix, and I was pleasantly surprised to find that I was 2cm dilated and 25% effaced which was a big jump from the previous week.
We also discussed my ultrasound results and decided that if Paul didn’t show up within the week we’d induce me at 39 weeks. There was concern over his size and the risk of shoulder dystocia. Considering how much discomfort I was in I had no problem agreeing to an induction. She scheduled my induction for 7 am on Monday, June 14th.
My blood pressure was slightly elevated, and it was enough of a concern to send me to the hospital for lab work just to make sure I wasn’t developing preeclampsia and needed to be induced sooner. I went to the hospital after my appointment and everything turned out to be fine.
All I could do was take it easy and try to move things along naturally until my induction day. It was weird to spend the week knowing that unless he got here sooner we had an appointment to meet our baby.
Monday, June 14th: Paul’s birthday! Early that morning we packed up the car, said goodbye to Lily and my sister (she looked after Lily and the house while we were gone), and headed over to the hospital.
By the time I got settled in my room, it was about 8:30 am. I was tested for COVID and because I tested negative I didn’t have to wear a mask for the rest of my stay.
Once my doctor arrived, she checked me (3cm dilated and 50% effaced) and determined I was able to go right to the Pitocin; if I wasn’t dilated I would have had to go on other meds first to ripen my cervix. We reviewed my birth plan, which was similar to Lily’s but the big difference was a HELL YES to an epidural as opposed to we shall see. 😆
In the process of getting hooked up to the IV, we had some issues where a vein blew on one hand and then difficulties finding a good spot on the other hand. We eventually got it in, and I was started on my fluids, antibiotics (because I tested GBS positive), and Pitocin.
For the next few hours, I hung out while my body went into labor. They started the Pitocin slow and gradually increased it every hour or so. Even though my contractions were doing their thing, I was starting to get a little discouraged because I wasn’t progressing much with dilation and my water hadn’t even broken. I wanted to meet my baby so badly, and I felt so far from that point.
All that changed when about a quarter to noon my water broke all on its own. I was really proud of my body for doing that since I had to have it broken with Lily. I considered that one of my big wins of the day.
By then the pain was increasing to where I definitely wanted my epidural, but the nurses wanted my dilation to progress a bit more before calling the anesthesiologist. Instead, they gave me two doses of Fentanyl to tie me over until it was epidural time. It helped me relax a ton which is what my body needed in order to move forward. They also assisted me in changing positions and use a peanut ball to help things along. Active labor was in full gear!
Just as my second dose of Fentanyl wore off I finally got my epidural. The experience was slightly different in comparison to Lily’s birth in that I didn’t get a pump to manage my pain. Instead, the anesthesiologist had to administer additional doses, so while the epidural helped take the edge off I definitely felt way more this time around than I did with Lily.
Not too long after my epidural, I moved into transition. My left leg felt very crampy and trembled uncontrollably during contractions plus I had chills, but I was in the home stretch! They started preparing the foot of my bed for delivery and called my doctor back over who was across the street at the time.
While we waited for my doctor to come back the nurses had me do a practice push… except when I pushed I was crowning! I could feel him down low getting ready to come out which put my nurses into panic mode. They were texting/calling my doctor to run back over and we literally saw her running through the parking lot. She made it just in the nick of time because I couldn’t hold for much longer.
11 minutes and barely four pushes later, Paul came out into the world at 4:11 pm and was immediately placed on my skin. His eyes were closed but the moment I started to speak to him he opened his eyes and looked for me. It was so special. He weighed 8lbs 12.2oz and was 21″ long.
Joshua got to cut the umbilical cord again, and once my placenta was delivered he and the nurses prepped it in the cooler for our encapsulator.
Meanwhile, I got to enjoy cuddling with my lil dude while my doctor stitched up a minor perineum tear. I was very fortunate I had minimal damage to my lady parts this time around, so it’s made postpartum recovery a lot more manageable.
Paul and I got off to a fantastic start breastfeeding. He latched right away, and I was able to exclusively breastfeed him my entire stay. He had zero issues while in the hospital and passed all of his screenings. He was a rockstar baby from day one!
I, however, had issues with my blood pressure being sporadically high throughout my stay. During delivery, I had some triggering high blood pressure to where they had to put me on blood pressure medication and then a magnesium drip for the next 24 hours after birth. Up until 38 weeks, I never had high blood pressure, so between that and the high blood pressure I had during delivery, there was concern over preeclampsia. Since then, I’ve been on blood pressure medication and have been monitoring my blood pressure at home. Hopefully, by the time my six-week postpartum checkup rolls around, I’ll be in the clear.
We had a really positive experience overall in the hospital. I delivered Paul in the same hospital as Lily, and since it wasn’t too long ago we saw a lot of the same staff. One of Lily’s delivery nurses was on duty and popped in to say hello, and the doctor that delivered Lily was the same one that circumcised Paul. The lactation consultants I worked with to breastfeed Lily came by to check on me, so it was like a little mini-reunion. I’m so thankful for the whole team that helped bring our kids into the world.
Due to COVID, there were no visitors allowed in the hospital, so it enabled Joshua and I time to really rest and enjoy those precious moments with our little one. Having those boundaries set for us helped us transition to life as a family of four once we got home, and for that, we couldn’t be more grateful. 💖
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The Lovely Geek is a one-woman studio based in Sacramento, CA working with small businesses throughout the United States.