Get ready for a long post! Also, if you are squeamish, you probably want to skip this one. As usual, I am very up front about what happened and things got interesting…
Jacquelin Anne was born on April 1 at 1:57 pm. She weighed 7 pounds 2 ounces and measured 21 inches long.
I started having contractions on Thursday March 23. They started off an hour apart and got closer together throughout the day. The Husband was in DC in class so I waited at Paris’s house until he was done with class. My dad went and picked him up from the metro and brought him back to the house. Once my contractions were 5 minutes apart, we called the doctor and went to the hospital. Because it was so late, I went through the ER entrance and they put me in a triage room in the Labor and Delivery department. It turns out I was only 1 cm dilated so they sent me home. They told me that I needed to be having contractions 2-3 minutes apart that would keep me from talking before I came back in. The contractions continued the next day. Around 6 pm on Friday, we went back to the hospital. This time, I was seen by my doctor. I had progressed to 2 cm so they decided to keep me at the hospital and have me walk around for 2 hours to see if I had progressed. My contractions were about 5 minutes apart but not so painful that I couldn’t walk when I had one. So The Husband and I walked. Luckily we had our phones and tracked how much we actually walked. 2 hours and 5 miles later, I still had not progressed. But I was having contractions that were fairly painful. Luckily I have a good doctor. She recognized that there was something weird going on. After some tests, she discovered I had a UTI. Pregnant women are very prone to getting UTIs and that late in a pregnancy, they can cause labor like contractions. So they sent me home again, this time with an antibiotic.
On the doctors orders, I spent the weekend resting. On Monday, I went to see my GP because I was really sick. I was diagnosed with Flu B. So I was a mess. Looking back, I think that getting sick was the only way I was ok with waiting longer for Jackie to arrive. I was down for 3 days.
I started having contractions again consistently on Friday March 31. They started around 3 pm at 20 minutes apart. After what had happened the week before, I wouldn’t go to the hospital until I knew for sure it was time. The Husband and I went to see Beauty and the Beast that night. We kept time of the contractions on his watch and then writing it down on our receipt. The contractions got progressively closer together and more intense as the night went on. The Husband and I were laying in bed watching Netflix and any time I had a contraction, I would go flying out of bed, in a ton of pain. Around 5 am on April 1, the contractions were 5 minutes apart and so intense I couldn’t talk. We waited a little and then headed to the hospital. On our way out the door, I started throwing up. That’s huge for me. I never throw up. When they checked me, I was still only 2 cm dilated. I almost cried. I thought they were going to send me home. My doctor did decide to have me walk around for about an hour to see if I would progress any. This was so much different than the week before. I hardly did 5 laps around the floor in an hour and had to stop to grab something during every contraction. After an hour of walking, I had progressed to 3 cm. I had also thrown up again 2 more times. My doctor decided to admit me. Again, I almost cried but this time out of happiness. My parents came to the hospital so that they would be there for the delivery.
Due to my back and hip issues, the contractions were causing a lot of pain in my back. I was desperate for an epidural. Within an hour of being admitted, I received my epidural and luckily the pain was gone instantly. I ended up with the most amazing delivery nurse. She was kind but honest and made sure I always knew what was going on. My contractions were consistently 2-5 minutes apart and I was progressing fairly well. After about 3 hours of this, my doctor decided to give me Pitocin to speed up the delivery. 5 minutes after they started to administer it, I started throwing up again. My nurse came into my room to check how I was progressing and to clean me up. Before she could start cleaning me up, she hit a button and called for a bunch of other nurses. I had suddenly progressed from 4 to 8 cm, baby girl was coming. I was given an oxygen mask and suddenly surrounded by 8 nurses, getting me prepped for delivery. I pushed for about 5 minutes before the doctor told me to stop. Baby girl was coming out a little crooked. So they made me wait to see if she would straighten herself out during contractions. They had me put a giant exercise ball between my legs and wait. They said I would feel intense pressure but I would have to wait awhile before I could push again. There was also a possibility of needing a c-section if she didn’t straighten out.
After about 10 minutes of very intense pressure, I could feel her coming. I had my dad go get the nurse and tell her that I needed them to check me again. I knew baby girl was coming even if the doctor thought I needed more time. My nurse came back in and told me to push but she wasn’t going to call the doctor yet or take the table apart. She got me pushing again, but walked away for a few minutes. The Husband and my mom were there helping me push, I didn’t care that the doctor or the nurse weren’t there. The doctor did show up after a few minutes and Paris kept telling me she could see baby girl’s head. A few pushes later and baby girl was out. The doctor put her on my stomach while The Husband cut her cord. She didn’t cry at first but she was making noises and moving around. From what I have heard, many women push for 2-4 hours with the first baby. This little girl was out in 15 minutes. They then took her to the other side of the room to clean her up and do some tests. In the mean time, doctor started to stitch me up because I had tear some during delivery.
Everything I heard about getting stitches was that if you had an epidural, you wouldn’t even feel the doctor down there. At first I could just feel pressure but after a minute, there was some sharp pain. I let the doctor know and she gave me a shot of lidocaine to numb the area. I could hear Jackie crying in the corner. They were doing all of her measurements and making sure she was ok. I am proud to say, she got an 8 on her Apgar
They kept me in the labor and delivery room for 2 hours to make sure I was ok. After getting the all clear, Jackie and I were taken up to the maternity ward. My parents had brought us dinner, so we all sat in the room and just enjoyed baby Jackie. My parents went home around 7 and The Husband was getting ready to go home and get a good night’s sleep around 8 pm when I felt a gush of blood. Suddenly there was a lot of blood. I called for the nurse and she came in to check me.
Out of no where, I started passing blood clots. Having blood clots after you deliver is normal. Something most women don’t know is that you will bleed for 4-6 weeks after you deliver and you may have blood clots. However, large blood clots, all at once, is a problem. My nurse called in help and there were 6 nurses in my room all at once making sure I was ok. Every time someone checked, I had a new HUGE blood clot. It turns out, after delivery, my doctor had given me a shot because I had bled a little too much. After consulting my doctor, the nurses gave me more Pitcoin to make me have contractions which would help any remaining blood clots pass and they gave me another shot to help the bleeding stop. The nurses were really worried that I was hemorrhaging. But my stats were good and I wasn’t having any other symptoms. I was smiling, talking to the nurses and trying to reassure everyone that I indeed felt ok. This helped the nurses feel better I think. The Husband sat in the corner holding Jackie the entire time. She hardly made a noise. The nurses kept reassuring him that I would be fine. After about two hours of this, I texted my parents to let them know they needed to come back. I didn’t want The Husband and Jackie to be alone if I did indeed start to hemorrhage and they needed to take me to another room. Luckily by the time they got there the clotting had slowed down. I was still having clots and they were not small but they were coming further and further apart. After calling my doctor every hour and only getting medications called in, my doctor finally showed up around 12:30 am. She did an ultrasound to make sure there weren’t any additional clots that hadn’t passed yet. Luckily there wasn’t anything visible on the ultrasound so the doctor was comfortable with saying that I was going to be ok.
At this point, I sent everyone home. The Husband hadn’t slept in 48 hours and my parents were exhausted. Luckily the nurses took Jackie for the night so I could also sleep. I was able to get about 6 hours, which was great. The next morning, I was no longer bleeding and both Jackie and I were doing fine. We were cleared to go home the next day.
Now that she has been home with us for two weeks, I don’t know what we did without her. I know every new parent says that but it really is true. Thanks for sticking around and reading this whole post!