Since Bennett’s just turned a year and a half I thought I would share Bennett’s Birth Story. We did VLOG the birth on our youtube channel (here) but there is a lot that got left out.
Let’s Begin, Warning it is LONG, but also CRAZY.
My pregnancy with Bennett had been an actually easy one, until my 3rd trimester. Even then it had been easy, there we just some complications. At 28 weeks I was hospitalized for 4 days, because of a kidney infection. Around 35 Weeks I ended up getting a gnarly sinus infection and at 36 weeks I had an ultrasound that showed my placenta was deteriorating earlier than anticipated. So for the next 3 weeks, I was spending about 2 hours every week at the doctors office, taking non-stress tests, peeing in a cup to make sure my kidney infection didn’t re-occur and getting an ultrasound to make sure my amniotic fluids were okay and then checking to see how far dilated I was.
From 38 Weeks I was dilated at a 2, almost a 3 and my doctor was pretty convinced that I was going to go into to labor soon. Which half of me was excited for, but also not. For dumb reasons. Bennett’s due date was April 3rd. The last weeks of March are filled with family members birthdays, Easter landed exactly on the day I was 39 weeks and then April Fools Day happens right before then. Which is also my cousin’s birthday. So I was pretty determined to not have his birthday fall on any of those days, but also I wanted him OUT. As I am sure many 3rd trimester moms can sympathize with. Towards the end of 38 weeks my membranes were stripped and NOTHING happened.
So, on April 1st, 2016 at 39 weeks and 5 days. I went on a walk around our neighborhood, like I had been doing pretty often throughout my pregnancy, but very often the last week to get labor started. Nothing happened. That night Andrew and I went out to a late dinner, fully aware this would probably be out last dinner as just the two of us and pretty stoked that even if I went into labor at this point; I would most likely not deliver on April Fools Day. We walked over to Alexander’s Patisserie and grabbed some Macaron’s and on our walk back to the car I started to have some contractions. They were a little strong but I wasn’t immediately expecting that this was labor, since I got Braxton Hicks contractions A LOT especially when walking. Never the less, I began tracking them and we went home.
Once we got home, Andrew was hovering over me, waiting for the signal that it was go time. The contractions were pretty consistent, so I told him I thought this was the real thing but we didn’t need to leave yet they were only 8-9 minutes apart and that he should go to sleep and I will wake him if it progresses. He eventually went to sleep and although, I tried… I was more concerned about making sure we had everything packed. So I spent my time cleaning Bennett’s nursery and packing. until around 1:30AM when they were about 5-6 minutes apart. I called my Mom to let her know, since she would be driving from Idaho, texted my Doctor to let him know (cause even though it is his job, I didn’t want to wake him so early in the morning) I woke Andrew and we headed to the hospital.
Once we arrived we were led to an L&D room, where a nurse checked my vitals, hooked me up to the machines that monitor the baby’s heart rate and my contractions and then checked me for dilation. What took place next had to have been the most awkward exchange I have ever had; the nurse a tiny older asian lady went to check and had the absolute most difficult time. I swear it felt like she was elbow deep in me. She was holding tightly to the side of the hospital bed. STRUGGLING. The look on Andrew’s face was mortified at what he was witnessing. Final after about 15 minutes, she says well you are definitely beginning labor… but you are only 2cm Dilated. (which didn’t make sense since at my most recent doctors appointment a day before I was 3cm) however, 2cm was not enough for me to earn a permanent room and they sent me home.
I should mention we live about 15-20 minutes from our hospital in a city about 3-4 towns away. Since we live in the Silicon Valley one of my biggest concerns was that I would go into labor during Morning or Evening traffic. Which can easily that 15-20 minute drive into 2 hours. So, at around 3AM we are on the way back home and as we are driving we my contractions are getting stronger. I get a text from my doctor apologizing that I am being sent home and that if my contractions start getting super strong to just go back to the hospital. So we get home and I decided that I need to take a bath. While I am in the bath I have Andrew head to Safeway to get me Chicken Broth. Because I knew I would need nutrients in me for labor and delivery but I was (and still am) absolutely paranoid about pooping during birth.
5AM rolls around, the contractions are getting painful and we decide to head back to the hospital and this time we are admitted! Even in the same room as before. Then from 5AM – 9PM the day was kind of boring. When we arrived, the asked me if I wanted morphine and I was like ” I didn’t realize that was an option during labor and I was like “HELL YEA!’ and pretty much they confirmed I was in labor but I still wasn’t progressing. I slept A LOT, sometime during midday my Doctor came in and broke my water. I got an epidural. Which the anesthesiologist said went absolutely perfect. I was progressing but still not as quickly as they wanted. I was given Pitocin. My dad stopped by to visit, I slept some more, TWO women in the room next to me had already given birth to their babies and I was still waiting. Around 9pm ish is when I could feel the head and the urge to push. This is also when my mom miraculously showed up from her drive down from Idaho (which is a 12 hour-ish drive)!
So we began pushing. It wasn’t horrible, the one downside was that my epidural was so perfect that I couldn’t even feel when my contractions were happening to push, so my nurse had to tell me when. I pushed and I pushed and his head was RIGHT there, it was almost time for the doctor to come in and we would deliver Bennett! And then I all of a sudden felt a distinguished pain in my right hip. A pain I was familiar with and at the only time could equate it to. It was similar to the pain I had, had when I had a hernia. So in my mind thats what it could have been. BUT nevertheless I knew something wasn’t right. The pain hurt so much that I couldn’t even push and that is when I knew I wanted him out and I needed a C-Section. I looked at Andrew, I looked at the new nurse who had just switched and I told them “I want a c-section”.
The nurse was the most rude and condescending person. She essentially acted like I was over-reacting and that I couldn’t possibly understand my body that well. ( a little note, growing up I have had A LOT of medical issues, I am quite in tune with my body). I remember looking at Andrew mid panic attack, like “help me.” but he didn’t know what to do. Here was someone in a position of power, refusing to do what I asked. Luckily, my mom was in the room and my mom knows that when I say something is wrong, I’m not messing around. So she went full mama bear and demanded to get my doctor and that my c-section was going to happen.
My doctor comes in and he explains that Bennett’s head is literally RIGHT THERE, he really doesn’t want to do a c-section and would I be willing to try the vacuum, if it fails I get my c-section regardless. At first, I said No. But a very sweet nurse came in and asked if I would be willing to try if they numbed the area where I had pain. The way she asked calmed down and I had agreed to try the vacuum. Within minutes my rooms was filled with all sorts of doctors and nurses. My doctor attempted the vacuum to no avail. Bennett was NOT coming out. So, they quickly rushed me to the OR.
I should mention that for my size, I have a very high tolerance to regular anesthesia. Andrew, joined me in the OR and I am lying on this table loudly moaning as I can feel all the tugging, pretty painfully. I remember the table vigorously shaking and looking over and seeing an observing doctor just completely wide-eyed and shocked and thinking “that’s not normal”. After this, I cannot tell you from personal experience what happened. It’s second hand from Andrew. Without warning the anesthesiologist had put me under. Since I was essentially screaming on the table, loudly moaning more so. Andrew thought I had died. So he is panicking that I had died and then Bennett is born and he wasn’t breathing so he is quickly whisked off to the NICU. Andrew followed Bennett and everything ended up being fine with him.
At 12:39AM on his due April 3rd, 2016 Bennett was born. It wasn’t until somewhere around 2AM that I woke up from being knocked out and got to meet him. I was so terrified cause when I first woke, I looked over to an empty islet and Andrew no where near. My mom was nearby and let me know that everything was fine and Andrew came in shortly to show me a picture of Bennett on my phone. I told him ” I probably won’t remember this” lol I did. But I was quite drugged up. The nurses soon brought Bennett in. So that we could have some skin to skin as soon as possible. It was such an uncomfortable was the meet him, I was so drugged up and in laying down position that I couldn’t really see him.
Eventually, I was told that what happened what although, Bennett’s head was right there. He was trying to come out at an angle,shoulder first. When they went to take him out during the C-section, he wouldn’t come out because the Vacuum had created a suction in my birth canal and he was stuck. So another doctor had the push him back up my birth canal, while my doctor pulled him out. Right after my doctor apologized to Andrew but it wasn’t until later in the morning that I saw him and he profusely apologized. He said, had he known Bennett was in the wrong position, I would have had a C-Section immediately and essentially, Bennett was NEVER going to have come out no matter how many times I pushed.
We ended up being in the hospital for about 5 days, so that I could recover and because Bennett has jaundice and eventually, got to take him. For being a traumatic birth, I am very happy that at the end of the day I had a healthy baby boy, who is currently 1 1/2 years old, sitting on the living room floor, playing with his race cars and watching Curious George as I type this.