Sweet baby Nash Potato was a month old yesterday. It won’t be long now and he’ll be asking to borrow my car and lying about where he’s headed in it. I was soooooo (did I mention sooooooooo) fortunate to have my Mom with us in Iowa for the first three and a half weeks of his life so I didn’t miss out on all the holding, loving, and cuddling that comes along with a new baby. If my Mom hadn’t been here taking care of my other two kids, I can’t even imagine how fast the past few weeks would have went by. I’m so glad I’ve got to savor every second because at this point, I’m thinking this is going to be the last newborn that ever lives in our house.
Did I just put that in writing?
Ever since we figured out that we could conceive naturally (read that story HERE) I have secretly had my heart set on having four kids. Four little boys to be exact. After having to have a c-section with Nash, I’m pretty sure that this McCloy clan was meant to be a “party of five”. I simply can’t imagine having to go through the whole c-section experience again. I’ve been meaning to blog about it for the past few weeks and I figured Nash’s one month birthday would be a good time to share the story.
With Coop-diddy and G-funk I never had any contractions at home. With both of them I had scheduled inductions (Cooper a few days before my due date because he was getting too big, and with Grady two days after my due date). Both child birth experiences were a breeze. Do my hair, put on make-up, drive to the hospital, start the pitocin, feel a few tiny contractions, get an epidural, doc breaks my water, watch some TV, push six times and I’m holding a baby. In fact, I have always said I’d rather have a baby everyday for nine months straight then be pregnant. Childbirth was always easy… until Nash Potato came along.
I went to the doctor on Tuesday morning and he said I was dilated to a two. This was HUGE news considering that I don’t even know if I was a two when I asked for the epidural with my first two kids. We scheduled my induction for the following Monday morning (the 25th) and I went home to be in agony for six more days. I was sooo stinking uncomfortable. I had been having Braxton Hicks contractions for several weeks, but by Wednesday they were coming a lot more regular. I would finally think “okay, this is for real, we need to go to the hospital” and then they would stop for a few hours. The contractions kept me up all night and not knowing if this was “real” labor and feeling so out of control of the situation was miserable. I just kept thinking “there is no way this is “real” labor… I don’t go in to labor… my babies don’t come out on their own… I’m having this baby on Monday”. By Friday afternoon my contractions were painful enough that I couldn’t do anything else while I was having one. By the time Otey got home from work at five I was pretty sure that we were going to the hospital but decided we would wait and leave once we got Cooper and Grady to bed at 7:30. By about 6:15 there was no more waiting. My contractions were getting regular, close together, and very painful (did I mention PAINFUL???).
This is an entirely different blog post, but my OBGYN’s office sucks (it’s the only one in town). There are a bunch of Dr’s and when you go into labor you just get whoever is on call. I really like my doctor and since I always (not this time) have to be induced, I’ve never worried about the “on call” thing. Thank goodness the Dr. on call was really nice and I felt really comfortable with him. He checked me and said that I was dilated to a four and I was for sure in labor. I laughed and told him I was sorry he had to come in on a Friday night but not to worry I was a super fast baby-haver and he’d be home in bed in no time. I asked for the epidural (by now I was REALLY REALLY REALLLLLYYY in pain). He told me he wanted to see a change in my cervix before he let me have the epidural.
Who was this quack and where the hell did he get his medical degree? He obviously didn’t know how FRICKING bad contractions hurt or he would have let me have my epidural. Remember… this might have been my third kid, but I had never had a contraction that hurt worse than a menstrual cramp. This whole “real” labor thing was for the birds. I needed some drugs and I needed them RIGHT THEN. Finally after a lot of moaning and gnashing of teeth I got my epidural. Ohhh…. my beloved epidural. They broke my water and I quickly dilated to a six.
Now is where things get complicated.
I got stuck.
Stuck at a six for two and a half hours. We would have just waited it out but Nash’s little heart rate was dropping really low during my contractions. Low enough that the doctor started discussing the possibility of a c-section with us. I was stunned and terrified all at the same time. Terrified that Nash wasn’t going to be okay, and terrified of having to have a c-section. When I went in to have Cooper, I was totally mentally prepared for the chance of a c-section. Everyone always warns you that labor doesn’t follow a “plan” so I knew then to expect the unexpected. But not now. I didn’t have c-sections. I had super-uneventful ninja like child births. This was my third time and it was supposed to be just like the other two. Unfortunately, Nash had other plans.
The longer my contractions went on the lower Nash’s heart rate would drop so the doctor told us he thought it would be best to call in the surgical team. Otey and I of course agreed. At this point I didn’t care if they took him out through my nose, I just wanted him out and okay. Otey got on his scrubs and I got my oxygen mask and hair net and they rolled me down the hall to the surgery room. I knew that having a C-section was best for Nash so that was exactly what I wanted to do, but I was so scared of the unknown (and unplanned… I’m a big time planner) that I couldn’t stop crying. They moved me over to the operating table and people buzzed all around me. I tried to control my breathing (I was pretty freaked out by this time) and just focus on the door that they would let Otey come through in just a few minutes. I didn’t know a lot about the actual c-section procedure, but you are completely awake during the whole thing. They strap your legs down, and then have you extend your arms out (like in a crucifix position) and strap your arms down too. They hang a sheet right at your chin so that you can’t see what’s going on and then the fun begins. You don’t feel any pain, but you can feel everything. I know that makes no sense, but you can feel their touch, the pressure, their hands… it was definitely not an experience that I want to go through again. The doctors were wonderful, and of course Otey was right beside me and wonderful as always, but man did I hate it. One of the hardest things for me was having my arms tied down. After Nash was out and he and Otey went to the nursery, I cried and pleaded with the anesthesiologist long enough that he undid them for me while they stitched me up. All in all… the whole c-section experience sure sucked the joy right out of childbirth for me. Don’t get me wrong, getting Nash was worth every second of it, it’s just not at all how I want to have babies. The worst part of the whole experience has been the recovery. We chose to go through a large vertical scar from the abdominal surgery I had as a teenager and the combination of all the old scar tissue and the vertical incision has totally kicked my but. I absolutely despise being incompetent. Not being able to pick up or hold my other kids, needing help just to get up off the couch, crying when I cough or sneeze… not my idea of fun. Otey and my parents deserve trophies for taking care of (and putting up with) me for the past few weeks.
Things are starting to resemble normal around here. Well, as normal as our house ever was. I start back to work this weekend and besides being sleep deprived, I feel ready to get back on the road. Otey is going to travel with us on our first couple of trips out until I get some sort of a routine. The other boys started traveling at three weeks old and even though Nash is going to be five, it’s a whole new ball game with three of them. This first trip out my just confirm that three kids in enough!