Thursday, October 30, 2014

Ryan's Birth Story

This is ridiculously long, but I wanted to be sure to document Ryan’s birth story so I can remember it.

My due date was September 27th. I was absolutely convinced this baby would be coming early, so imagine my surprise when I finished my last day at work on the 26th. It was probably around that time that I started “early labor”. I couldn’t exactly explain it, but I just didn’t feel right. I wasn’t having painful contractions, but I was absolutely uncomfortable.  I only stayed a little bit that day and headed home to take my seat in the recliner and wait things out. I was pretty disappointed it hadn’t happened yet.

At my last appointment my doctor scheduled me for an induction the morning of October 2. It was both really exciting and a little depressing. Going into labor spontaneously with David was probably one of the most exciting moments of my life, so I was hoping for a repeat.

That weekend was miserable. I was so uncomfortable and so tired, but made myself keep doing things. We took David to Oktoberfest in Downtown Lee’s Summit Friday night which totally about did me in! Something that really surprised me was how awful I truly felt the further along I became. Every day I would think there’s no way I could feel any worse and then the next day I would absolutely feel even more terrible. Saturday (my due date) we took David to a birthday party across the street and everyone was shocked to see me there. Yep, still pregnant!!  I don’t really remember doing much else that weekend. I was hot and just wanted to try to rest and be comfortable. Sunday night we did watch the Royals clinch the wild card and that was pretty darn exciting!

Monday I decided to kick off my maternity leave with some shopping and walking around. I went to about 4 stores and then just couldn’t take it anymore. Walking was so painful and I was exhausted. I headed home, took a nap and then picked David up from the sitter. I noticed this day that I started having some bathroom issues that were….questionable and indicated that perhaps things were getting going. The Chiefs were playing Monday Night Football and Zach was working the game. I went into labor with David the day after a Chiefs Monday Night game so I was thinking it would be cool if we could repeat! While watching the game I noticed I was having contractions. They weren’t super painful or anything but I could tell they were more than the Braxton Hicks I was feeling. My parents offered to come pick up David but I said no, it was likely nothing. I couldn’t even really time them. Well, the Chiefs won and I went to bed and the contractions totally stopped.

Tuesday I got up and hung around the house. I sat in the recliner and watched TV and was having contractions again. This time they started to hurt. I was timing them and some got as close as 6 minutes apart but then others were up to 12-15 minutes apart. I took a shower and everything stopped as I was drying my hair. I was so disappointed. I decided to go get a pedicure and some ice cream. The pedicure was awful, they didn’t even scrub my feet! I was getting really mad but did notice I was having a few contractions here and there. I was massively uncomfortable and was mad at myself for wasting the money. My Sheridans concrete on the other hand, was freaking fantastic. I got home and contractions started again. They weren’t super close together, but they were getting really painful.  I picked David up from daycare and ordered pizza for dinner. Delivery even because the thought of doing anything more than opening the door and getting out a couple plates was more than I could handle.  Zach worked a little later than normal that night and by the time he got home I was in a horrible mood and had just HAD IT. 

We turned on the Royals game as they were playing their wild card game and it was all anyone could talk about. Around this time I noticed I felt like I was needing to go to the bathroom a lot. I didn’t feel like my water had broken like it had with David, but I still felt a little tiny bit leaky. At the same time my contractions were picking back up and were about 6-8 minutes apart. As Zach was giving David a bath I decided to have my parents come pick him up and we should go get checked out. I was 95% positive that we’d be sent home and I felt stupid even calling the doctor, but she said to come in (the same doctor that delivered David!). My parents got here at 8:30pm and I thought David would get upset about having my parents come get him, but he seemed excited to go, so that made me feel a lot better. The drive to the hospital was alright. My neighbor totally saw us leaving and got really excited. Ha! The drive to the hospital was pretty calm. We listened to the Royals game and I kept telling Zach he didn’t’ have to drive so fast. I had 4 contractions on the way there. They were about 6 minutes apart and REALLY hurt, but I was able to get through them alright and still thought we’d be sent home.

Once at the hospital they brought us back to a room and everyone we talked to was sure we were staying even before checking me out. Apparently if you waltz into the hospital after your due date they just go ahead and keep you. Oh. OK.  They did a quick test for my water and it was “faintly positive” so they started admitting me at 9pm. After about an hour I got up to use the rest room and my water definitely broke. At the same time I had my first very intense contraction that lasted over a minute. I couldn’t talk through it and it really hurt. They noticed my blood pressure was very high at this point too. The nurse chalked it up to being nervous but I normally have pretty low blood pressure so I was a little concerned. The doctor finally came and was even more concerned because there was also protein in my urine. She diagnosed me with preeclampsia and mentioned I’d be starting some medicine after I delivered. I was bummed, but didn’t think much about it at that point, figuring delivery was ‘the cure’.

I told Zach he could turn on the TV to watch the Royals game. All the nurses were talking about it and I was curious what was going on too. Several people asked if we were at the game and I mostly just looked at them like they were insane. Around this time my contractions started getting SUPER painful. I couldn’t talk through them. I couldn’t do anything besides try to stay calm. Zach kept offering for me to squeeze his hand, but that made it worse, all I wanted to do was relax everything I had control of relaxing. The nurse said I could get the epidural anytime I wanted and I remember saying “yeah, might as well, this is stupid” ha! 

At 11:30 the anesthesiologist placed the epidural and it started working really fast. I was really trying to focus on the Royals game but I could hardly keep my eyes open and forming clear thoughts was out the window. I noticed they kept mentioning how low my blood pressure suddenly was and kept checking lots of stuff. They started me on some oxygen. After a few minutes I mentioned that the right side of my face felt droopy and my eye was blurry. I also was noticing my arm was numb. That alarmed the anesthesiologist quite a bit and they turned down the epidural and leaned me over to the left with some pillows. At 11:57pm the Royals won (Zach kept detailed notes for me, lol!) and everyone was really excited. I was all “Hello! Having a baby over here!!”  They finally got the epidural about right but the anesthesiologist stayed in the room and kept a pretty close watch on me because my blood pressure was still pretty low.

I was very much looking forward that glorious epidural nap and was feeling very comfortable when the doctor came in to check me. She announced that I was complete and ready to push. WHAT?! So they got everything ready and I started pushing. With David I had an overwhelming urge to push, not so much this time. I could barely feel contractions and had to force myself to push with them. I could tell the baby was still really high and had a bad feeling I’d be pushing for a long time again.  I pushed and pushed and pushed. Around 12:40am the nurse called everyone in to prep for delivery! I got really excited thinking it was almost over! The room flooded with people and I pushed and pushed some more.  Then…. Everyone started leaving. One by one. This really discouraged me and I got really frustrated. I knew I had lots more work to do. More pushing and pushing and pushing. I was getting really frustrated but finally started making some progress once I could feel the contractions more.

Finally I felt the head start to come down. This is a feeling I could never describe. All I know is that I NEEDED THE BABY OUT NOW. I started kind of freaking out and saying “someone needs to get the baby out now. Get it out now” over and over again. Zach kept telling me that it was going to happen but I was totally kind of freaking out at this point.  A few more pushes and the head was out! I wanted to keep pushing but they made me stop to suction him out. Then finally I was able to push him all the way out.

They lifted him up but I couldn’t see the goods. I hollered at Zach “what is it!?” and after what felt like a thousand years he said “It’s a boy!” I knew it!!!! I was so incredibly relieved to have him out. Everyone kept saying “wow that’s a big baby!!” He actually didn’t feel as heavy as David did when they put him on my chest but he had some shoulder rolls and the chubbiest cheeks! After they wiped him up a bit they took him over to be weighed and measured. 9lbs 7oz, 21 inches long. I guess he was a big baby!!! Everyone was also quite impressed with all his hair! I thought he was super cute and I was so happy to finally have him here!

After delivery they noticed that I was bleeding quite a bit more than they like to see. It freaked me out quite a bit because I could feel it gushing out at points. After lots and lots of painful pushing on my stomach they felt like it was under control. At this point they also let me know I was going to have to start a 24 hour round of a magnesium drip for the preeclampsia. I was told that I’d be stuck in bed the entire time and of the side effects which included feeling very hot, extreme muscle weakness, blurred vision, slurred speech, confusion and nausea. Oh yay! It started to take effect pretty quick and by far the most annoying part was the muscle weakness. I couldn’t even move my leg and I was horribly, horribly, horribly uncomfortable in the hospital bed. I was hooked up to so many different monitors and was being pumped full of fluid, I was miserable.

They continued to watch my bleeding and it wasn’t getting better. The nurse seemed really concerned and left to go talk to the doctor, mentioning surgery is a possibility.  She came back and said they were going to try an injection first. This should help the bleeding but came with a risk of horrible bathroom issues as a side effect. Seeing as how I couldn’t get out of bed this was really concerning for me. I avoided eating to help minimize my risk and luckily nothing ever happened. But it all certainly made for a pretty miserable first 24 hours. I only let my parents, David and my brother come see me. I felt so out of it all day and had trouble even answering questions at points. I was really upset that I didn’t get to be more involved with David meeting his brother and it’s all kind of a foggy memory at this point and I’m a little upset that I don’t remember much of that first day, but at least we are both healthy now.

We stayed in the hospital 3 days because of the preeclampsia. It was a better experience than with David, we had consistent nurses and they pretty much left us alone aside from helping when I asked them and the occasional check in.  We headed home on Friday and things have been a little crazy ever since. David is adjusting but I can tell he misses being the center of all my attention and it breaks my heart a little bit. Luckily he adores Ryan and is always very gentle and loving toward him.

So, here we go. Our family is complete and I’m looking forward to getting out of the newborn fog (it’s not my favorite phase quite honestly) and getting into our family of four routine. Should be a fun ride!  

Saturday, October 11, 2014



Ryan Curtis
October 1, 2014
2:20 am
9 pounds 7 ounces
21 inches

I'll be back soon (hopefully) with his birth story and updates. As it turns out, having two kids is a bit time consuming... :)

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Greenwood, Missouri, United States