Jenni Gregory's Comics, Art and Stuff

The digital home of cartoonist Jenni Gregory

Sunday, October 8, 2006

Here’s Molly!


So we had our Doctors appointment on Monday October 2nd. The Doctor came in kinda cheesily grinning and asked what are we doing that afternoon…Barry and I kinda looked at each other and shrugged…nothing really. Dr Reinoso got us scheduled for the induction about 10 hours ahead of time! We were supposed to go to the hospital at 1am the next morning. So we had to run home grab my bag and make it back to the hospital. We got there about 4pm. We got settled into a really lovely room. We had Fox at Celebration Hospital, but a year ago (ha!) it was on the 3rd floor. Now Maternity was on the 4th floor…the whole thing. The labor rooms were awesome…huge! They really were suites. And they had a plasma screen tv!

The good news also was when I got checked, I was dialated to 3cm so we hoped that labor wouldn’t be that long.

It took a long time for the new nurse to come to our room and get us started on pitocin. We were really amazed at how busy they were at the hospital. And with a lot of problem cases.

Anyway, one nurse tried about 5 pm to get an IV going, but it hurt like hell and she kept digging around trying to find a vein. So she gave up and waited for the next shift change. Dr. Lemert stuck his head in our room and watched the monitor and saw I had a contraction and asked if I felt that (I didn’t feel a thing! And I had no idea we were having contractions. I felt a few cramps earier in the day, but didn’t put two and two together–duh!) Then the doctor, Barry and I talked Science Fiction authors and books for the next half hour or longer. It was kinda surreal. I’m thinking let’s get this started and when will the IV get here and we’re discussing Niven and Asimov in the meantime.

Rene’ came over to be with us after she got off work. She was sooooo sweet. She gave me this basket filled with all the coolest stuff in the world: magazines, nail polish, nail polish remover, more magazines…and girlie stuff, too like Allure, and some crossword puzzles!!

We finally got the IV going about 7. In the meantime we just happened across Gunsmoke and watched that for a bit. It looked amazing on the plasma screen. I guess it took our minds off what was coming.

So the IV got started. And I started feeling crampy not long after. About 9 o’clock I asked the nurse if she thought it was too early for an epidural, cuz it was getting a bit rough. She and I had discussed pain options. I was clear…epidural. I told anyone and everyone. EPIDURAL!

the nurse checks me again an hour later. I’d dialated quite a bit more. The pain increased. A lot. So I asked again about the epidural. She said that she’d page the anesthesiologist. She left the room. I was laying on my side. All the sudden I felt this pressure. Intense pressure.

And then this…POP.

I gasped and both Barry and Rene’ were still and rather freaked out…I told them I think my water broke!! It had. It was the most bizzare feeling. The other two inductions I’d had my water broken for me by the doctors, so I didn’t know what to expect. The nurse checks me and is surprised now that I’ve gone from a stage 7 to 9 in less then an hour. I ask about the epidural again. It was massively hurting. She says the Doctor is held up with another case. I told her I needed SOMETHING! She leaves the room and comes back with something. I can’t remember what it was.

Barry comes over to me and is just standing by me holding my hand and stroking my face. I shudder to think how hard I squeezed his poor hand. That and the poor guy stood by me for the next 4 hours. Never sitting, never moving. Just talking softly, and just being there.

She injects it into my IV and says I might start to feel dizzy but I should feel like the pain has eased a bit. Well, things got a little blurry around the edges, I never felt dizzy, but the pain was still pretty intense. I asked again about the epidural and she brushes it aside. By this time, the pain is so freakish. At times it’s like this pressure. Then there were these band types of pain that literally radiated from my tummy and around my hips. It felt like fingers where prying my hips out and around. It really is hard to describe.

So for the next hour I’m trying desperately to keep from alternately crying and screaming. I try to concentrate on breathing. I imagine (yeah, this is stupid, but it helped) an alpine slide and Molly is coming down it, and I imagine the cool, and the greyness of a winter day (hey, I like winter what can I say). The nurse comes in again and checks me. All the sudden I feel like pushing! I beg her for the epidural…she says the doctor isn’t going to make it, and it’s too late. I’m crushed. I can’t imagine what’s coming next, and I tell Barry that I can’t do this. Like I have an option to go home.

Then the midwife comes rushing in, as do a horde of nurses. They get the bed all changed into the delivery table. It was weird. In a way I think watching all the bustling about helped get my mind off the pain for a minute. ONLY for a minute. I feel this intense pain and I couldn’t help but push. It’s like your body just takes over and it’s pushing on it’s own. Then the pain ebbs for a few minutes and the crew finishes getting ready and setting up this and that. I’m told to breathe deep and then PUSH with the next contraction. They compliment me on being a great pusher…where’s my damn epidural! The midwife tells me that she see’s the head and has to push the cervix aside and then we’ll really start to push. Yeah. Right. I still keep saying I can’t do this!

So then comes this push. and breathing and more pushing. The nurses tell me to grab my knees and that will help with it comes time to push. I couldn’t get comfortable and I was so scared of really breaking Barry’s hands even though I just wanted to hold them that I just grabbed the bed rails and squeezed and pushed. The pain is tremendous…it’s a burning feelings…think of it as the body adjusting to the head and shoulders of the baby as she makes her way out. Things gotta give way and sometimes things tear. The burn? That was tearing. When you have and epidural you DON”T feel that.

More pushing and then suddenly there’s this incredible feeling of burning, BURNING pain followed by…empty! and her head was out. Then another push…the pain still intense but lessening and her shoulders popped out and then she was pulled the rest of the way. The pain in my hips and tummy pretty much stopped immediately. Then these horrible shakes start in. My whole body starts trembling uncontrolled. The nurse tells me it’s the bodies reaction to stress. No duh! Stress, eh? Where was my damn epidural!?!

At some point between not being able to stop pushing and the head coming out, a nurse came up to chat with my midwife and told her another lady was asking for pain meds. The nurse further said that the lady was telling them to send her to another hospital if she didn’t get something. So in the midst of all this…I remember thinking DAMN…that’s what I neglected to threaten! But I also learned that there were other pain things they could have given me. I was cheesed…after the fact. AND there was no anesthesiologist still there.

Molly was out! She was here. I didn’t know why at the time, but Barry was oddly still as he was looking down at Molly. Turns out the cord was wrapped around her neck. Nobody was telling me anything, but nobody seemed distressed or worried. In fact the midwife gives Barry the sissors and tells hims to cut the cord. He was trying to back out of it because he was scared of the cord around her neck being so close to her face and that there might be a need to rush so he thought they might want to do it, but cut it he did.

Molly started softly crying and the nurses whisked her over to the infant table to check out her reflexes and run some tests. She got 8’s and 9’s on her APGAR test. But I didn’t hear a lot of crying. I kept asking Barry if she ok, if he could see her…he kept saying she was fine. And she was.

Barry made me laugh. He said he was in awe of me. Then he said that he was a little bit frightened of me. It cracked me up.

While all this was going on, the placenta was delivered…which was kinda like labor without the huge pain…just this sudden need to push…hard! Then the stitching began. Thank GOD for an injectible drug called lidocaine. I don’t know how you’d get stitches without it. 37ish stitches. Yep. Ouch.

Shortly after that, they brought Molly over to me and put her on my chest underneath the hospital gown against my skin. She was beautiful. Absolutely beautiful…in a newly born, lizard looking kinda way. She was wonderful to hold. She was eagerly looking around. I got to touch her and stroke her.

Molly has DARK hair…much to Barry’s chagrin. He pretty much thought it a sure thing that she’d look like Chloe and Fox and be really fair. But nope. She has beautiful hair and blue eyes. I don’t know if the eyes will stay blue. Most likely they’ll go hazel like her siblings.

We called Barry’s folks shortly after 2 am to let them know about Molly. Then we called Rene’…I con’t remember when she left the room. That’s all hazy. Things were starting to go down hill painwise at that point. But she was all happy.

I don’t remember what time we went sleep. We moved to a different room…much smaller but ok. No plasma screen tv. But what sleep we did get wasn’t for long. Molly wouldn’t stay asleep for nothing. She either wanted to nurse, or had to have her diaper changed. It was rough.

The hospital isn’t the most restful place to be. Every two hours they’d wake us up to take my blood pressure and test Molly’s blood. That was the most worrisome. Because of my having gestational diabetes we were concerned about diabetes in both her and Fox. Her blood sugars were REALLY low. For a baby they want sugars above 45. Her first one was 41. She would have to have sugar tests 7 more times before they’d let us go home. Her lowest was 38. And her highest was 74. Like with Fox, I hated, hated, hated each time they had to prick her tiny heel with the needle to draw blood. And when her sugar was low, they had to draw a little vial of her blood to get a more accurate reading. She had that done 3 times. That was really hard when she cried. I felt so low and so guilty.

Morning came and more blood pressure, temp checks, and blood sugar tests. Later in the morning Thomas came by. I had to work hard, but I actually got him to hold Molly AND I got pictures to prove it! It was funny.

Barry briefly went home and brought his parents and Chloe and Fox up to meet Molly. It was wonderful to watch Chloe meet her sister. She said exactly like we’d practised…she said “Welcome to our family, Molly”. She was eager to hold Molly. Fox was to interested in running around the room and pounding on things. My lunch had just been delivered and both kids tore into it. First to go was the broccoli, followed by the turkey sandwhich. I had to laugh at them. But it was wonderful to see our complete family.

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