I’m sharing part two of my birth story, but it probably doesn’t make sense without part one. So, if you haven’t read part one yet, you may want to head over there to catch up. Or, if you’re like me and enjoy reading spoilers and then watching The Bachelor to witness the drama… read on.
Spoiler alert: There’s a baby at the end of this, and she’s as healthy as can be (praise God!).
I was adamant on having as little intervention in my labor as I could.
So when my water broke, I called my new doctor and shared the news. However, the water was not clear like I had read it would be; it was green. It was a little unsettling, to be honest. There was meconium in the water… which basically means little Felicity pooped in the womb. This can be indicative of fetal distress, because they worry that they could breathe it in. But it’s also pretty common when you go past your due date.
With the meconium and my water breaking before my contractions actually began, my doctor had me go straight to the hospital and he gave me a couple hours to see if my contractions would start on their own because they worry about you getting an infection. My contractions started 3 hours later, and they picked up pretty quickly from there.
Textbook contractions: 1 minute long, every 3-5 minutes… for 29 hours. I started off at 1 cm dilated, 20% effaced. And after 8 hours of contractions, I was 1.5 cm dilated and still, 20% effaced. My cervix was not thinning out (effacing). My doctor decided that we needed to try some prostaglandins to help my cervix start to thin, allowing it to dilate. After consulting our doula and birthing instructor, we decided that we needed to try that.
12 hours of prostaglandin gel and, still, text book contractions. But after 12 hours, I was only 2 cm dilated, 20% effaced.
Note: the average rate of dilation is 0.5-1 cm/hour. So, I was pretty behind the average.
I was getting super discouraged by my lack of progression — but baby looked healthy, I was still doing well, so my doctor allowed us to continue.
We did everything: we used the birthing ball, I was doing squats, moaning through contractions, I was staying hydrated and snacking, I was keeping my pelvis open, pleading with God… and no change.
At hour 28, I asked to be taken off the monitor to take a walk around the labor and delivery unit… in hopes that the walking would help me progress. After an hour, we got hooked back onto the monitor: and this is where the meconium hit the proverbial fan, so to speak.
I got back in the bed to get hooked back up to the monitor so they could check baby’s heart rate. The nurse got me set up and walked out of the room. Less than a minute later, she ran in to “make sure that the monitor was working.” The fear was starting to peak its ugly head.
Felicity’s heart rate was dropping, significantly after each contraction. And switching positions didn’t help.
A couple more minutes go by and our doctor comes in. Her heart rate was tachycardic… which for those of you who aren’t in the medical profession, that means her heart rate was abnormally rapid. Her resting heart rate was 20 beats higher than what it had been throughout my whole labor, and it was already on the high side. There was something about the variability too, but I honestly don’t know what that meant. It did not change, it just kept getting higher. On top of that, my temperature was taken and I had a fever.
Our doctor informed us that she needed to come out. And with all of her heart issues that were presenting themselves, we did not hesitate.
I was terrified.
To be continued…