Daily Archives: January 5, 2012

My birth story–part 2

Sawyer is officially over a week old and I am loving every single minute of being a mom.  Even the middle-of-the-night feedings aren’t so bad, especially when I wake up to his little face!

I’m glad you enjoyed part 1 of my birth story.  It really was a wonderful experience and so different than the somewhat chaotic painful experience I expected.  Part of me thinks it’s because I had been so ready to have him for so long that the (minimal) pain seemed nonexistent compared to the anxiousness I was feeling for him to arrive.  Oh and thank you for the kind comments on my picture.  I was so elated to be in the process that I think it just shined through Winking smile

We left off at Sawyer just being born and laid on my chest.  After a relatively short time, I started to get very woozy and felt like I was losing my hold on him and had him be taken to be weighed and checked.

I began to notice a lot more frenzied – yet controlled – activity happening around me with the doctor releasing commands continuously.   I was apparently hemorrhaging really bad.  I didn’t know at the time, but it was considered an emergency situation.  They quickly administered a shot in my thigh to help stop the bleeding, but that evidently wasn’t helping since they gave me the same shot in the other thigh moments later.  Side note: hemorrhaging is the number one cause of death during birth..yikes!!!

During this time, I was feeling some pressure and tugging – again nothing painful thanks to the epi, but I was keenly aware of a lot of ‘action’ going on down there.  I could hear the doctors calling out the number of gauze pads in me so they could account for them when pulled out.  Also in the background is when I heard Sawyer’s stats: 8 lbs, 10 oz, 20 inches!  BIG BOY!  I was conscious enough to be in awe by this.  Complete and total awe!   It was no wonder they were going to town on me.  Meep! 

Clearly I wasn’t able to breastfeed during this time because I was essentially going into shock.  I was talking as if things were normal, but was shaking so much they had to layer me in heated blankets and hook up a whole new IV drip in my other arm to pump fluids in me. 

It was around this time that I also overheard ‘9 stitches’ being mentioned.  Oye.  Poor me!  I think I feared stiches more than child birth, but with a big boy like Sawyer, it was inevitable.  Oh and can I just tell you that right before I gave birth, the delivery nurse was convinced the baby was 6-7 lbs?  Where he was hiding in my belly I have no idea!

They tried giving me a Vicodin, but I immediately threw that up and continued to spit up off and on (from what I remember).

I’m not sure how much time passed before they finally gave me a dose of Fentanyl in my IV, which certainly helped but made me beyond loopy. I  felt like I was speaking from a different body and was not in the room with my family.  Very weird sensation. 

I politely asked them if they minded if I fell asleep for a bit.  Ha! 

After I woke up (an hour?), I did try to breastfeed and quite honestly, I remember absolutely nothing of it.  I think I had some success (?);  throughout the rest of my hospital experience I was very much supported in my breastfeeding so overall I’m not concerned with how the first time went.

Once my epi wore off and I was pending being moved to the mother and baby suite, I wanted to get up to try to pee.  2 nurses had to assist me and I could care less about any modesty at this point.  I just knew I had to go. 

Big mistake.  Big.

Walking to the bathroom was okay, but the rest was a hot mess.  Ewww. 

I did everything in my power not to keel over and keep myself where I was supposed to sit, but the shaking started almost immediately.  Not just a shiver shake, but violent full body convulsion-like shaking.  It didn’t help to notice the blood pouring out of me.  Yeah, not fun.

Getting back to my hospital bed was a monumental feat followed by nearly passing out.  My poor family was witness to this and I think it scared the bejesus out of them.  Apparently I was shades of grey that are just not human.  They couldn’t get the blankets on soon enough. 

Eventually I calmed down and they were able to move me to my more permanent room. 

Prior to this ‘emergency’ I was told my IV could come out 6 hours after the epi, but now I was hooked to two machines and at high risk for a blood transfusion so that meant taking my blood every few hours to do a blood count until the following AM.  Ugh.  I swear the IV was the bane of my existence.  There is something unbelievably unsettling about having a needle permanently in your arm and not being able to move freely without that tugging sensation.  {cringe}

The pain I experienced after giving birth was far far worse than labor.  Infinitely worse in fact.  I am so grateful I chose an epidural because had I experienced the work they were doing to stop the hemorrhaging, I would have been writhing and screaming. 

Recovery over the next few days was pretty miserable.  I had to wear ginormous pads and couldn’t find a comfortable spot to sit or lay without feeling pressure and pain.  It wasn’t fun my friends.  Walking to and from the bathroom exhausted me and my biggest venture was on day 2 and that was taking a <10 minute walk around the mother / baby unit.  My lower back ached.  I felt like I couldn’t stand straight.  I was overly aware of the pain down below and there wasn’t a darn thing I could do, but listen to my body and absolutely not push my limits. 

A week later I am still taking it very very easy.  Only small excursions, walks to the mail box, and mild stretching.  I am beyond fearful of tearing my stiches so I’m going to wait it out as long as I have to. 

I’m incredibly grateful to my Mom (Obbie), and in-laws (Cookie and Poppy) for helping out so much.  Cookie did most of the grocery shopping and cooking for us (with leftovers to freeze) and Obbie has been on dog duty and cleaning duty – even folding our laundry!

Oh and I can’t forget the hubby.  I have yet to change one single diaper – he has been the diaper man this whole past week.  He’s becoming a pro. 

And since I’ve bombarded you with enough text.  Here are some more hospital and Sawyer pics Open-mouthed smile



I wrote a pretty condensed version of my birth story and stay in the hospital.  Please let me know if you are interested in hearing more of something or if you have any more personal questions, email me at shannamccord [at] gmail [dot] com


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