* Please note that if you are using Hypnobabies to prepare for your birth, know that there are some parts of my birth story which may interrupt your “bubble of peace” and I do not always use the typical Hypnobabies wording and phrases.
At my 36 week appointment I had my first cervical exam and much to our surprise I was 2 centimeters dilated. I was also having LOTS of somewhat regular and uncomfortable contractions. My midwife said there was a chance I could be having him in a week or two and I was very excited to finally see the end in sight. I started having contractions every 4-6 minutes on Christmas night that made my vomiting so much worse. I was hopeful that “this was it!”….well it wasn’t. I was still pregnant and having regular and uncomfortable contractions at my 37 week appointment. My midwife stripped my membranes in hope that I’d go into labor that night. NOPE! I also tried just about every natural induction method under the sun and none of them helped. My body was just beyond exhausted and my mind was done with it all….with having pre-labor that kept me thinking I was almost done, with the HG…with everything. I absolutely believe that babies will come in their own time and we should let them chose their birthday, but those last few weeks of Hyperemesis are the worst and very hard to deal with. I was dealing with more than just the normal end of pregnancy discomfort and my body and mind couldn’t handle it much longer. I made it again to my 38 week appointment and was making very slow progress. I had my membranes stripped again and of course…it didn’t work.
On Tuesday, January 10th, the day before my 39 week appointment, my home health nurse was there doing my weekly PICC line dressing change and she noticed that my line was looking kinda funky and told me I needed to have my midwife check it out. Ramona took a look at it at my appointment on Wednesday, January 11th and was unsure if it was starting to get infected or it was just irritated but neither of is wanted to take a chance. I still needed to be getting fluids until the HG went away, which of course would be after baby was born, so our choices were to pull the line and just do IV’s again or speed up baby’s birthday. We decided to go over to the hospital to have the PICC line team take a look at it and see if it needed to be pulled right away or if it could handle a little bit longer, then to augment labor with Prostsglandin Gel. I absolutely did not want Pitocin and was trying for the most natural and unmedicated birth possible using Hypnobabies. She stripped my membranes again and we headed to the hospital. Although I was very excited, all of a sudden nervousness took over and I was very emotional. I put in my headphones and listened to my “Fear Clearing” Hypnobabies track and by the time we got to the hospital, my nerves were settled and I was ready to have my baby! We got there around 3pm and a PICC line nurse came in to check out my line and thank goodness it wasn’t infected, just my skin was so irritated and she said it needed to come out within a couple days because my body was starting to reject it. They did three rounds of the gels and my contractions really picked up but I was still progressing so slow that they were unable to keep me at the hospital even though I was in active labor. The charge nurse told me my choices were to get an epidural and start Pitocin, take an Ambien and Loratab and go home or take Phenergen and go home. I was not about to get an Epidural and Pitocin and Ambien makes me very loopey so I decided to take two Phenergen and go home and hopefully sleep. I got about an hour of sleep broken up though the night; it was so difficult to sleep with the nonstop, intense contractions. Early that morning I stopped being able to remember things clearly because I was so focused on my body and baby rather than focusing on the discomfort and pain. I woke up a couple times shaking and crying uncontrollably and my husband and mom had a hard time calming me down. They knew I needed to try and get some protein in so we tried a bunch of different foods and I couldn’t get anything to stay down. My father-in-law went to Jamba Juice and got me a juice with extra protein added and I was able to keep down about half of that and I’m pretty sure that helped my keatones go down which then helped me relax and be able to focus on my Hypnobabies techniques and letting my body do what it’s supposed to do.
That afternoon, on Thursday, January 12th the pressure waves were really picking up but we were unsure of when to go back to the hospital since I was already sent home with strong contractions 4 minutes apart. My mom called my midwife Tiffany and she said to come into the office and she would check me and we would talk about what to do from there. I saw her around 4pm and I was dilated to 5 with very strong, regular contractions. With every wave I would stop and lean on a wall or my husband, close my eyes on focus on the techniques I learned then continue after the contraction ended. She said we could either head over to the hospital and get a shot of morphine to help me sleep some more or be admitted again and break my bag of waters and hope labor speeds up. After thinking and talking about it, we decided that my body was literally done and it wasn’t going to work on it’s own due to the HG and I decided on getting the morphine. We got to the hospital about five teen minutes later and I was checked again before getting the morphine shot and I had dilated to a good six! We were all sure labor was finally starting to move fast! I ended up not getting the shot and was admitted again.
Around 6pm they finally had a room ready for me with a birth tub full of hot water waiting. As soon as I got in the room I got into the tub for about four hours. It was THE MOST amazing feeling ever and helped so much. I wish I could have stayed in longer but my shoulder was really hurting me from keeping my PICC line out of the water the whole time. I wish so badly I had a better way to keep the PICC line dry so I could have moved around more in the tub. I got out of the tub and within minutes my back started hurting horribly. I tried every position and relaxation technique possible but nothing was helping. I owe it all to Hypnobabies but I can still honestly say that the pressure waves were really not all that painful but that back pain was something else! My mom, mother-in-law, husband and sister swear I was in tons of discomfort and looking back at pictures, maybe I actually was, but I don’t remember the normal labor discomfort at all. We found out during a cervical check that baby was posterior or “sunny side up” which was causing the back pain. My mom used a wrap and had me do some different positions in attempt to help baby face the correct way. We felt him move but he just moved sideways and we were unable to get him to move anymore. My midwife, nurses and support team were all so patient and let me labor for the rest of the night and morning. Finally around 4am I hit transition and my midwife broke my water. It had thick Meconium in it which was very scary but she still let me labor naturally, I just had to wear monitors to keep a close eye on baby the entire time which made getting comfortable nearly impossible. Around 7am I was fully dilated and ready to push. I was having a very hard time getting the energy to focus on pushing and started to hyper-ventilate. My heart rate went up and baby’s started to go down and I had already been pushing for hours so my midwife called the OB from the office to be there just in case. He’s a great Dr. and very patient and just stood in the back of the room and just kept a close eye on me and baby. My body was so tired and I was having such a hard time not hyper-ventilating that my OB and midwives were unsure if I could continue without help. Sadly my midwife Tiffany who had been there all night and morning, had to leave just minutes before he was born but my midwife Maria and OB Dr. Kells were there. As soon as I heard somebody say something about a c-section and needing help, I used every once of everything I had left and in three pushes at 11:36am little Emerson Wayne came sliding into his daddy’s hands. I tore pretty badly and ended up needing quite a few stitches.
My husband put him right into my chest and he had a “wet sounding” cry so I just kept rubbing him down and they suctioned out his mouth then he started crying nice and loud. Then we started trying to breastfeed while we waited for the afterbirth. I was so in love and he already had my heart in seconds. I never knew it was possible to have that much love for another human being, especially one you never met before. It really was the weirdest feeling how the nausea was cut in half after he was born. Within about 2 minutes of him being born I asked for a big glass of ice water and drank 2 whole glasses within about 10 minutes. Then the placenta was out and the nausea was 100% GONE! I asked my hubby to go get me my steak super nachos I had wanted for months, only about 15 minutes after I gave birth. He went and got them for me and the second he brought them in the room I almost started crying…they smelled SO good! I forgot what it was like to enjoy the smell of food. I literally was shaking when I got to eat a bite…they were heavenly! No nausea whatsoever and I was LOVING eating! I was feeling wonderful despite everything then the nurse noticed I was bleeding way too much so I had to be given Pitocin to try and stop the bleeding. She was surprised I was able to even stand up. I was kinda shaky and super pale from the bleeding but still felt much better than being pregnant.
I was moved over to my post-postpartum room and was still bleeding pretty heavily so I had to be given Cytotec which ended up helping much better. I was very anemic though which was making me feel very light headed and dizzy. I figured I would have been able to just get back to eating like normal again but I was having a hard time trying to retrain my taste buds and stomach to eat and learn what tasted good…but I wasn’t having nausea at least!
Our recovery was going wonderful and baby Emerson was doing great despite having a little bit of a hard time nursing but then we noticed that both Emerson and I were super jittery and had the shakes. My mom asked if they had been giving me a medication I’ve been taking for chronic pain for 4 years and I realized that nobody had given it to me in two days!. My nurse finally gave it to me but Emerson was still very shaky and was now nonstop screaming. I was discharged but they had to keep Emerson to keep an eye on him and make sure he was ok. The hospital has what they call “nesting care” where we were able to stay in a room, I just no longer got hospital food and didn’t have a nurse. The special care nurse came in every three hours to do an assessment on him and his nonstop screaming was just getting worse. They decided that he needed to go into the special care nursery so they could keep a better eye on him. I just about fell apart. I hated being away from my baby even though I was allowed in the nursery whenever I wanted and was there about every hour and a half nursing and snuggling him. I just wanted my baby in my arms at home. They kept him two more nights then finally on Tuesday, January 17th, they told us we could go home! They said that it was not withdraws and he was probably just a hungry baby and now that my milk came in and he was doing better nursing he was much happier.
Although I had a horrible pregnancy and my birth was very long, I adore everything about being in labor and giving birth and am so glad I used Hypnobabies. I honestly don’t think I would have been able to have a natural birth without my fantastic midwives, my amazing support team and Hypnobabies. I wish I could just skip pregnancy but experience labor and birth and have a squishy, little newborn all the time!