I have to warn any readers... this could be a bit graphic.
If you've been reading my blog, you know that I was overdue and exhausted. I had plenty of labor signs but no labor. See my post from last week here.
Thursday, July 1st, I checked in to the hospital at 5:00 pm for induction. At first they just hooked me up to the monitors, put in the IV, and had me wait around. They did a cervical check and I was still 3 cm, about 75% effaced, and at -1 station.
My doc came in and said she decided to put me on cervidil for the night with the hopes it would soften my cervix. They put it in at 6:30 pm. It gave me some contractions, so I was hoping that was a good sign. I tried to sleep Thursday night, but pretty much dozed in and out of sleep. It was hard to sleep with the contractions. They weren't terrible, but they weren't comfortable either.
By 6:30 am, they came in to take the cervidil out and see if it worked. It did not. My cervix was unchanged. The doc decided to use cytotec next. They gave me the first dose at 6:30 am. I had to lay down for 30 minutes and then after that they wanted me to walk around or sit on the birthing ball to help the cytotec do it's job. The cytotec gave me MAJOR back labor and rough contractions. My contractions started coming 2 minutes apart from 6:30 am until about 1:00 pm! I tried walking and that seemed to help with the pain of the contractions, but it was still so intense. Two minutes apart is not much time to recover in between. I was pretty miserable.
They came to check me again around noon. I had still no progression but very intense contractions! I was so frustrated. They decided to wait to do anything for a bit and see if my contractions would keep going on their own or if the medicine would wear off and they would taper off. After the cytotec started wearing off the contractions became weaker and spaced further apart. This was a bad sign. It meant I would need more drugs to keep my labor going.
The doctor decided at 1 pm to start pitocin. I'd been dreading pitocin. I was already incredibly fatigued and sore from having back labor from the early morning all day. I became very worried about how I would handle pitocin.
At that point, my nurse and the anesthesiologist came in to talk to me about an epidural. I decided to have one at the same time my pitocin started. I was really worried about my decision at first. I had intended to try to go natural, but at that point decided I needed the epidural. My whole labor was being "forced" by drugs and was about to be "forced" by more drugs. I was also concerned that the intense contractions cause by the cytotec earlier was causing my body to tense up and not allowing my cervix to soften.
So I got the epidural. I am so happy I did. For me, in my situation, it was the best thing I could have done. It didn't hurt getting it and my anesthesiologist did a great job. After the epidural was in, they cranked up the pitocin. The baby was responding beautifully - no distress. They kept me on the pit for a few hours. At about 3:00 pm they came to check my cervix again. Surprisingly, I was 8 cm dilated and 100% effaced and +1 station. They called the doctor.
My doc arrived about 4 pm right as I was ready to push. I pushed for about an hour and 45 minutes. I was afraid it would be hard to push with the epidural in, but I could still feel pressure and bear down. As I got towards the end of pushing the doc could tell the cord was wrapped on something. As the baby crowned they told me she had a full set of hair! As I pushed her head out, her hand shot up. Her arm was wrapped in the cord, stuck straight up, which gave me a nice 2nd degree tear (at least w/ the epi I didn't feel it!).
At 5:47 pm they pulled the rest of her out and my husband said, "It's a girl!" They placed her on my belly. She was "floppy" so she didn't get to stay on my belly for long. They gave her oxygen and suctioned her. My husband stayed next to the baby as they stitched me up. The doc figured that she started getting some oxygen cutoff towards the end because the cord was wrapped around her, pinning her arm up, which is why she was floppy.
Overall I had a great birth experience. Not at all like what I had planned and imagined, but great nonetheless. In the perfect world I wished I would have gone into labor naturally, and not needed labor inducing drugs, leading me to get an epidural. However, in my circumstances, being induced, getting the epidural was the best thing I did. It made my experience so much better, for me, my family and my baby.
Now we have our beautiful daughter - Jenna Celeste Chavez. Born July 2, 2010 at 5:47 pm.