Every birth has a story and my kids love to hear theirs retold. Benjamin will probably want to hear about how big he was and how he peed all the down the front of the doctor. His story isn't the most exciting - Carrie wins that award hands down - but it was eventful.
I was scheduled for induction at 39 weeks 0 days in part because Carrie had been born so fast. No one wanted me to have this baby on I95 trying to get to the hospital. As the time drew near, other reasons were added to the list including my doctor's suspicion that the baby might be big. Our hospital does not allow elective inductions before 39 weeks so we hoped I would go into labor on my own before the big day. Despite being dilated to 4 centimeters for nearly a month, I was not in active labor when I arrived at the hospital Friday morning.
At first check, before my water was broken, I was dilated to 6 cm. and 80% effaced and definitely not in active labor. My blood pressure had spiked, which was unusual because mine is fairly consistent. Once my water was broken, or my bubble popped as the kids say, blood was drawn and tests run to rule out a few complications. I thought labor would commence rapidly as it had with Carrie, but as the first hour turned into two we realized that wasn't going to happen. In fact, as the harder contractions began to hit I realized an epidural was going to be necessary to make it through. All the blood tests came back clear and the nurse called for the anesthesiologist.
An experienced doctor came through the door as I bent over my contracting stomach to expose my back. Someone made sure he knew my spine is curved, but that I'd had two successful epidurals in previous pregnancies. With the first stick and burn, he maneuvered the needle through, but everything went down the right side of my spine. On the second attempt, it all went left. Moving up the bone, he made a third attempt and finally got the needle through to the middle where the medicine could be helpful to me. Once the feed was in, he explained that a spine with scoliosis is not only curved, but slightly twisted, making it all the harder to get in between the vertebrae. He admitted that he had been considering calling for another doctor to try when he finally got it through. Through all of this I kept smiling - and occasionally giggling - except for when the hardest contractions hit... always my coping mechanism.
Once the medicine began to drip, I was able to relax and wait. I sent Michael out to get a snack, worrying that he wouldn't eat again until late afternoon. That was shortly after noon. While he was gone, I knew things were heating up but the phones were out of reach so I couldn't call him back. Thankfully he walked back in the door just minutes before the nurse announced it was time. My doctor, knowing how fast my babies come, was right behind him. With a deep breath and a count to ten, the baby's head appeared and all three people around me said, "WOW!" Not entirely sure what that could mean, I took another breath for another push and ten count. With that Benjamin Josiah was born and he promptly peed all over the front the doctor as she laughed and declared him at least ten pounds. 12:45pm.
She was right. His official weight was ten pounds seven ounces. Apparently they could tell he was big even from the size of his head. The next two hours were spent bonding with Ben as the nurses got us both ready to move to recovery. His blood sugar was low so we started on a path to monitor that. My blood pressure was still doing funny things so I had to be checked often as well. In the end, we were both fine and able to move on to our recovery room.
Just like that, in a mere 4 hours, we became a family of six. Complete and happy. The final Peapod birth story.