KGsky: Georgia's Birth Story
Tuesday, May 06, 2008 2:22 PM
"Anyone who says you have not 'given birth' if you have a c-section has clearly never had a c-section. You feel the baby coming out of you!"
Scheduling the c-section
Little Georgia Marie was breech from 27 weeks on. Despite my best efforts to get her to turn around, she simply wasn't able to, resulting in a scheduled c-section for April 4. My OB originally wanted to do it at 39 weeks, but having heard story after story about babies turning right before or during labor, I really wanted to give her every chance to turn. So we scheduled the c-section for the following week, the day of which just so happened to be my birthday. The doctor warned me that babies have a mind of their own and that I could end up going into labor, which was fine with me. But so long as we were "scheduling" childbirth , I wanted to make sure that A.) I was as close to full term as possible and B.) that my mom was there. I had my mom tell the baby (in utero) on speaker phone that she had to wait until Grandma got here, then she could come at any time.
Georgia decides to come early
First thing I learned about my baby: watch what you say, she'll take it literally! The night my mother arrived, she made a great dinner for me and DH, which included my favorite veggie: collard greens. A girlfriend of mine said, "Girl, don't you eat those collards, you'll go into labor tonight!" I laughed at the Old Wives Tale and proceeded to chow down. Then came the second thing I learned: some Old Wives Tales are true! At 4 a.m. I got up to go to the bathroom and felt a lot of cramping and pressure (not unlike what I'd been feeling for the past couple of weeks). I also thought I might have a Urinary Tract Infection, so I stumbled back to bed, uncomfortable, angry, and frustrated.
Is this really labor?
At around 4:30, I felt another pain -- more intense, but similar to the last. The doctor said I was having mild contractions since 38 weeks. Some were so mild they couldn't even be felt. She said these were like "warm-up contractions." So I chalked it up to a warm-up and fell back asleep. At 4:57 I was back in the bathroom with another one. By this point DH got up and I was thinking to myself, "Hmmm, could it be.... labor?" But I still wasn't convinced. Ten minutes later, another one came; and then another. This went on for more than half-an-hour. Then they started coming a little less frequently, ranging from 12-15 minutes apart. I told DH we'd give it until 7 a.m. and then call the doctor. We called -- twice -- only to find out the doctor was in delivery and could not get back to us right away.
At this point I was in serious denial, convinced that this was false labor and that the contractions would subside later. My c-section wasn't scheduled for another four days, and I still had stuff I had to do! The doctor called us back and said, "I'm ready at the hospital, come in." The next thing I know , we're driving to the hospital in the middle of rush hour (miraculously there was little traffic). We get there and after admitting me (in about 10 minutes), I'm getting prepped for the O.R. The whole time I was kind of thinking, "For real? We're doing this? Now?"
Prepping for surgery
My husband and my mom sat with me during the O.R. prep, as I dressed, got hooked up to the IV, and gave my surgical history. Then they gave DH his clothes to wear in the O.R. and Mom politely excused herself because her "baby" was about to have a baby and she said she just couldn't take it! The one part hubby stayed out for was the administering of the anesthesia in the spine, which I actually wish he had been there for. My grandmother (after whom Georgia is named) died from a spinal gone wrong and I was extremely nervous. But the OB, the anesthesiologist, and the rest of the docs assured me that this was nothing like that. They told me that even if there was a complication like my grandmother experienced (some 60 years ago), they had ways of addressing it now and there was no way it could be fatal.
A quick delivery
No more than 15 minutes later, I was laid out on the table and DH was there in his surgical mask, scrubs and hat, talking to me and trying to distract me from what they were doing down below. At one point he asked, "Can I kiss her?" and the doctors were like, "Sure!" The next thing I know, I hear them say, "Okay, you're going to feel a lot of pressure." (You think?. I've never felt anything like that in my life. I don't even know how to describe it! Like a 10 lb weight pushing your internal organs into your chest?). Then I hear, "We're pulling her out!"
Anyone who says you have not "given birth" if you have a c-section has clearly never had a c-section. You feel the baby coming out of you!
Doctor: "She's out!"
DH: "She's out?"
Me: "Well, something came out!"
Laughter all around...
Georgia's grand entrance
The doc explained to me about 80 times that the baby would not cry when she first came out because she was coming out butt first. So she said it for the last time right before they got her out, but when they got her, you could hear a sweet little noise and they said, "Awww, she's cooing! How cute! Let's clean her up!" Not so long after, she was screaming bloody murder. I was hoping she would not inherit her father's extremely loud voice, but guess what? She's Daddy's little girl...
I couldn't see her at all, but all I kept hearing from the OR staff was, "Look at all the hair! Oh my God, she has so much hair, she's so beautiful!" By this point I was dying to see her! Then someone came and shoved this cleaned off, wrapped-up shiny baby in my face and said, "Here's your baby!" All I could see was my DH's mouth and nose. And all I could think was, "Wow, my child looks nothing like me!" Then they whisked her away. Right before they took her I touched her little cheek and my heart just melted! I spend the next half-hour or so getting sewed up and DH went with the baby and delivered the good news to my mom.
Waiting to meet baby
I was in recovery for awhile, because they wouldn't release me back to a room and allow me to really see my baby until I could move my lower extremities. So I was trying to do like Beatrice Kiddo in "Kill Bill" and will myself to wiggle my big toe. Once this mission was accomplished, I slowly but surely began to wiggle everything until I could life my knees off the gurney. Finally I got to go back to the room and DH wheeled her in in the hospital bassinet. The nurses gave her to me to nurse for the first time, and I put my breastfeeding class knowledge to work. Lo and behold the little tyke latched on immediately and went to town! They were so impressed! "A natural nurser!" they said. And Georgia finally opened her eyes! Mommy's eyes!
Life with baby Georgia
I love this little girl so much! She has been home one day and is just a joy to be around. She slept in her own room the very first night and is doing great. My recovery is going really well, and I'm actually glad DH and I had the four nights in the hospital together with the baby. He is a champion diaper changer and swaddler, and just the greatest about letting Mommy get her rest so she can recover -- and produce more milk! I resisted how my story was unfolding at every turn. I didn't want her to stay breech, didn't want a c-section, thought it was a false alarm; but in the end, we were first in line for the operation because I went into labor naturally, whereas I would have been fifth on the scheduled list for Friday, and would have been subject to waiting for everyone ahead of me. The doctor was already at the hospital, so there was no waiting, and the day before I left the hospital (the day I was supposed to come in) there was a huge rush of people going into labor. So it all worked out for the best! I wish you all a complication-free delivery and a great baby story!
Read more about Nestie KGsky!