Georgia's birth story
It was 10pm and I had just crawled into bed when Scarlett woke up. I decided to let her sleep in bed with me because I was really tired and just didn't want to argue with her about sleeping in her own room. She dosed off immediately and I was just about to fall asleep when, out of nowhere, I started having contractions. They started off small but quickly became more intense and closer together. I started timing them and they were consistently three minutes apart but I still was unsure about going to the hospital. With Scarlett, I was sent home several times before I was actually admitted so I was sure that this time would be the same and I didn't want to have to go in unless I was sure especially since it was nighttime. However, around 1:30am my contractions had become incredibly intense and I knew it was time. I assembled the birth team immediately. Chris was working out of town but thankfully he was only two hours away. I called him to say it was go-time, my mom came to watch Scarlett, my dad drove me to the hospital, and my sister was on her way to meet us there. Just as we were pulling up to the hospital my water broke... in the car (yuck!). Thankfully, it only broke a little.
Soaking wet and cringing from the pain of my contractions, I slowly made my way to the maternity ward. When I got there they gave me a hospital gown to change into and while I was changing I realized that there was meconium in the fluid which made my heart drop because we had the same issue with Scarlett who had to go to the nicu for swallowing it. They immediately got me to a birthing room and hooked me up to the heart monitor to check her heart rate. I was 5cm dilated and my contractions were way more intense and painful than my first birth. I laboured until about 3:30 am when I broke down and yelled for the epidural. Chris arrived and, upon hearing my screams from the hall, came running in thinking I was already birthing. An hour later I received the epidural and was able to sleep a little bit.
When I woke up at 7am, I was 7cm dilated and my contractions had slowed down. I was given Oxytocin to speed things up. The doctor came in to check my cervix and, with a surprised look on her face, says, "you're not going to believe this but... your baby is bum down. We are going to need to get you into a c-section right now". I felt immediate panic. I could barely hear what the doctor was telling me and within 5 minutes there were more people filling up my room and running around. I looked at Chris while he was being handed scrubs and being told to change. He reassured me it was going to be alright and I tried to calm down so that I could think. I asked the surgeon and my doctor if I could still deliver this baby without the c-section and they informed me that our hospital wasn't really equipped to deliver breached babies and that there wasn't anyone who would be able to do it. For these reasons, the only option was the c-section and with much hesitation I accepted this.
Since I already had the epidural in place, we decided to use it for the c-section rather than the spinal tap for the sake of getting Georgia out as soon as possible. I felt everything. There was no pain but I could feeling everything that was happening and it was disturbing on so many levels. It made me panic and I got extremely sick during the operation. At one point, there was an insane amount of pressure and I heard the surgeon say "this babies head is huge!". Chris and I looked at each other in disbelief. They had a bit of difficulty but finally she was out!
This is where I really struggled. When you have a c-section, you don't get to hold your baby immediately afterwards. I didn't even see her once she was out because she was taken to the pediatric team to assess. I was so emotional from the entire birth and not being able to see her made me feel horrible. After a little while, Chris was able to hold her and we got to have a couple of minutes with her before she was whisked off the the nicu and I was taken to recovery where I spent a painfully long hour waiting to go visit her. Finally we were reunited and I couldn't have been happier. She was born at 8lbs 3oz with dark hair and Chris's facial features. :)
The first week was tough. My milk supply went away due to the stress of my c-section the day after Georgia was born. I sat there desperately trying to feed her as she grew hungrier and hungrier. When I realized I had nothing to give her I broke down. I cried as I explained to the nurse I wasn't able to feed her. Everything was going perfectly otherwise; Georgia was latching and sucking great but there was nothing there for her and I felt like I was failing her. I know now that I was being too hard on myself and that I was making it a bigger deal than it was but at the time it felt HUGE. We gave her formula and she was happy. The next day my milk supply came back which was a huge relief. The recovery in the first week was very difficult but I had Chris and my family to help me and slowly I started to feel like myself again.
Nothing went according to plan nor was it the beautiful natural birth I had envisioned for myself. However, in it's own way, my birth still had beauty in it and that beauty is what I will always remember.