madhatter2003: Prodromal labor story
Thursday, October 25, 2007 9:33 PM
Alexandra was born Jan 8, 2007! I had prodromal labor, which is sometimes mistaken for 'false' labor...but make no mistake about it, what I was feeling was definitely NOT false labor!!!
I woke up early Thursday morning (January 4) at about 2 am with some mild contractions. I laid there and thought 'these sure feel different than my braxton hicks' that I'd been having for weeks by this point. So I got up and moved to the sofa to get comfortable. They were coming every 30 mintues or so. At about 5 am my DH woke up, and asked if I was ok. I told him I thought today might be the day. He got up with me and started timing them too, and they were now about 20 minutes apart and lasting about 45 seconds to 1 minutes. He started taking down the Christmas stuff, as we planned to do it that weekend but figured now was as good a time as any.
Contractions continued all morning, and I called the doctor at 9 am when they were about 15 minutes apart. He told me to come in. When he checked me at 10 am I was still only fingertip dialated, same as I had been at my Tuesday checkup. I went home and rested, took a few walks, and just tried to relax. They got to be about 10 minutes apart. We went back to the doctor's office at 4pm for another check. Still on fingertip dialated!! That is when he 'diagnosed' me with having prodromal labor....basically labor but no dialation. He prescribed Ambien to help me sleep that night, and told me to come back the next morning.
So we start Friday....contractions still 10 minutes apart and pretty strong. I go in to the doctor, but no further progress. He said the best option was to ride it out, as prodromal labors will usually 'get going' in a couple of days and then progress very quickly. The other option was an 'induction', which I was scheduled for the next week for having gestational diabetes, but I wanted to avoid this. So I went back home, and just tried to settle in for the long weekend. I wasn't in too much pain, but just very tired which was making it hard to handle. My doctor told me to keep taking the ambien, so basically I was pretty drugged all weekend and so wasn't 'feeling' much, but slept as much as I could. Saturday was more of the same, contractions stayed about 8-10 minutes apart and were pretty painful and tiring. My doctor kept in close phone contact, and said to call him when they got to 5 mintues or my water broke.
Finally Getting Moving
On to Sunday...I was excited as it was a rainy Sunday and I hoped that the storm my spur things along (I would believe any old wives' tale by then!!) I ran to the grocery store with my husband, as we needed dinner stuff and got my car battery changed. Then I went home and took a nap. I woke up about 4 pm, and immediately knew something was different. The contractions were much stronger, and coming about 6-7 minutes apart now. We started timing them again, and by 8pm they were 5 minutes apart, so we called the doctor and headed into the hospital.
To the Hospital
I got to the hospital and was now about 1.5 cm dialated. The nurse said I could either stay or go back home, and after speaking with my doctor by phone again I said I wasn't going to leave without a baby! So they admitted me, and I got into the whirlpool for awhile, and also walked the halls some. Around midnight I had progressed to 2cm, so they started an IV and gave me a shot of painkiller to help me sleep. I got a shot of painkillers each hour for most of the night. My doctor came at 3 am to check me, and I was about 3 cm, so at least we were making progress.
Induction it Will Be...
Monday morning (my 5th DAY of labor mind you!!) my doctor came back at 7 am and checked me again. I was about 4 cm, so he discussed the options. He really wanted me to get an epidural to help me relax, and to break my water and start pitocin. He said this meant I would have my baby in the next 24 hours, even if that meant a c-section. By that point I couldn't care less, I just wanted the baby OUT! So they got the epidural in (not bad at all, although it initially only took on the right side, but they fixed that with another dose of drugs), and broke my water. At 10 am I was 5 cm, so they started the pitocin. I finally fell asleep about 11 am, I was utterly exhausted by then but now wasn't feeling any pain, just pressure which was great.
Time to Push
I woke up at 1:30 pm and told the nurse I felt some pressure. She checked me, and I was fully 10 cm and the baby's head was *right there*. So they rushed to call the doctor to get him back to the hospital so I could push. That was the longest 15 minutes ever, as my body wanted to push so bad and I had to hold back. My doctor arrived around 2 pm, and we started pushing. I could still feel the pressure of the contractions so it was very easy to push. They were a bit worried as her heart rate kept dropping (they thought her cord was around her neck) but it kept recovering so they let me continue, although they thought they might have to 'help' me with a vac. or head for a c-section.
Alexandra was born at 2:40 pm after about 8 pushes. The doctor delivered her head, and unwrapped her cord which was indeed around her neck, and then on the next push had me reach down and pull her up to my chest. It was totally unplanned, but was the BEST experience ever. I just looked down at this wonderful little person, and fell completely in love.
I only had a small tear, and a surprisingly easy recovery given how rough my labor was. I was up and walking to the nursery by 5:30 pm (just under 3 hours after birth), and felt fine pretty much right away. She got right down to breastfeeding and didn't seem to have any effects from the drugs I got during labor...and boy did I have a lot of them!! I'm so grateful to the wonderful team I had, and that my doctor was willing to support me through the long labor rather than pushing me into a c-section. And I can honestly look back now and truly say it was all worth it.
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