01 March 2015

Matthew's Birth Story

Ever since I had William my memory has been terrible. It's like persistent, long-term pregnancy brain. For this reason I made sure to keep notes on my phone during the labor process because I didn't want to forget anything. If I was too distressed to make a note, I made Tyson do it.

Spoilers: he's super cute and all I want to do all day long is cuddle him.

Wednesday, February 11
My last day of work! This time around I just kept right on working until I knew for sure this baby was going to be born. I got to attend the second day of BYU's Office Professional's Association Conference (OPAC). My boss was on the publicity committee and I helped out by designing this year's conference booklet. Oh, yeah. It was pretty amazing to see everyone using the booklet I designed. SO COOL. I made sure to grab an extra for my portfolio.
My in-laws came down and took us out to dinner at Outback Steakhouse (I talked about this in another post). We had a great time and then they took William home with them to Ogden. It was weird to say goodbye to him knowing that the next time I saw him he'd be a big brother.
I got my hospital bag ready and tried to work on some homework. Finally, after midnight, I gave up and tried to sleep.

Thursday, February 12
6:00am - called the hospital to confirm that they still have a bed for me. We got up and got the car loaded. I forgot to eat breakfast, which was dumb. Really dumb. 
6:30am - checked in at the hospital. Now we are in our room waiting to answer all the in-take questions.
7:15am - the nurses have not been able to get an IV started in my arm. My veins are notoriously unhelpful but I drank a ton of water yesterday to try and help with that. The nurses have tried three times in my right forearm with lots and LOTS of fishing. It was finally too painful and I lost it. I was already freaking out about today because of the Pitocin and I just can't handle more complications like this. So, they are calling in an anesthesiologist to get my IV in.
8:27am - Pitocin is started. The anesthesiologist tried to put an IV on the underside of my right forearm and failed. So, where did the IV end up?
Yeah, my neck. That was probably the scariest thing ever. The nurses had me lie on my left side and they tipped my bed way back so my feet were higher than my head. The doc used Lidocaine to numb my neck so it wasn't super painful but it was really freaky and I was trying not to cry. The doc kept telling me to breathe so I wouldn't hyperventilate. It wasn't exactly the smooth-sailing labor prep I had been expecting. I'm now afraid to turn my head.
8:41am - my doc, Dr. Whiting, came in and broke my water. I wasn't expecting that since with William my doc didn't break my water until I was ready to push. 
9:30am - I'm having contractions now. They're pretty strong. I'm waiting for the nurses to come and check me again. PS Losing amniotic fluid slowly (like, a bit with each contraction) is super gross. I really don't like it, at all. Every time I have a contraction I end up saying "Ew, ew, ew, ew, ew" rather than some other exclamation of pain. Tyson thinks it's funny. I think he's wrong.
9:32am - my IV got pinched so a bunch of alarms went off. The nurses fixed it. I thought I had to wait to get my epidural but the nurses said I can have it anytime. I do have to finish the current bag of saline though. Now that the IV isn't pinched, that should only take a few more minutes.
10:40am - the epidural is in! It hurt more this time than I remember with William. The nurses had me on my right side for a bit but my blood pressure started dropping and I felt like I was going to faint. Now I'm on my left side. I'm at 5 cm and 80% effaced.
11:40am - the epidural isn't as strong as it was with William. Last time my lower body was totally dead: no feeling whatsoever. This time it just feels like my legs are asleep. The nurse came to check my cervix and I'm at 9cm. That is a 4 cm change in only 40 minutes. This must be a trend with me. With William I went from 3 cm to 9.5 cm in an hour once the epidural was in. My body just does not like labor. 
11:50am - fully dilated. Nurse is calling Dr. Whiting to come down so I can start pushing.
12:15pm - started pushing. (Thoughts while pushing: I don't think I'm doing as well pushing as I did with William. I'm definitely feeling everything a lot more because the epidural isn't very strong. Yeah, this is a lot more painful than I remember. Matthew is a little stuck and his head is tucking back inside. Doc just told a nurse to get forceps just in case. We're having a hard time tracking baby's heartbeat so doc is having me push, even not during a contraction. Doc is helping me get baby out by pushing at the top of my stomach. His head is out and now we're working on his shoulders. William just kind of fell out at this point but I'm having to really push to get this baby out.)
12:22pm - He's here! After only seven minutes of pushing. Seriously. Dr. Whiting had Tyson cut the cord which he didn't get to do with William. The nurses wrapped the baby in a towel and put him on my chest immediately. As soon as I had him in my arms I knew he was supposed to be Matthew. It was one of the names on our list but Tyson and I couldn't agree. So as I held our brand-new son I said to Tyson, "He's Matthew. Is that okay?" That's the time to name your kid because no way is your hubby going to say no after you just pushed a human out of you. There's a free tip for you pregnant ladies ;)

The nurses let me hold Matthew for a long time. Then they took him and cleaned him up while my doc helped me deliver the placenta and he checked to see if I needed any repair work (i.e. did I tear and do I need stitches?) No repair work needed! Hurray! I had an episiotomy with William and had to have stitches. No stitches means my recovery will be much easier. Since I didn't need any repair work the nurses gave Matthew right back to me for skin-to-skin. Tyson didn't get a chance to hold Matthew for quite a long time. I asked Tyson if he wanted to hold Matthew but he said that he knew skin-to-skin with mom and baby is really important and he didn't want to interfere. What a good daddy!
By the time we were ready to move into our recovery room I had nursed Matthew and I had the feeling totally back in my legs. I was actually feeling pretty freaking fantastic but the nurses still had to "officially" help me into a wheelchair and wheel me down the hall to recovery.
It was really important to me that Matthew be wrapped in the blanket shown here and wear the hat I brought, not the ones provided by the hospital. The hat was made by my Grandma Pat (my mom's stepmom) and the blanket was made by my Grandma Sumsion (my mom's mom who died in 2009). Grandma Sumsion had made a ton of these baby blankets and when she died my aunt Sherry took them all to save and give out to new grandbabies in the family. William and Matthew both have one now and it is so special to me. I'm not a very sentimental person when it comes to stuff but these blankets are different. I still have the blanket my grandma made for me when I was a baby.
I had to keep the IV in my neck for a long time which was annoying. But I was thrilled to finally get it off even though the tape left a sore on my neck.

I felt really great on Thursday. It wasn't until Friday that I began to have some more pain. No one had warned me about the uterine contractions brought on by nursing. I mean, I knew about them but no one told me that those contractions get more painful with each pregnancy. It felt like I was in labor all over again! It was really nice to stay in the hospital until Saturday and just hang out with Tyson and Matthew. We watched lots of HGTV and the Food Network, much to Tyson's dismay and my delight. My sister Jane, my boss, Tyson's mom, and my brother all came to visit us in the hospital. We loved having visitors.
On Friday some ladies came by to take Matthew's newborn photos. It's a separate company who comes in and takes the photos. They give you a link so you can view the photos and then you can purchase them, if you like them. We did it with William and I knew we'd do it again with Matthew. It was a different company this time but I love the photos they took. And I love that they included Tyson and me in the photos this time.

Tyson's mom brought William to see us later on Friday. He seemed so huge! It's like he grew a few inches and gained a ton of weight in only two days. They brought us some flowers and treats. It made my heart so happy to see my boys together.
Going home on Saturday was awesome. Except that my doc prescribed me Percocet, which does absolutely nothing for me. So all I had to manage my pain was Ibuprofen and some other meds I had at the house already. It was NOT ideal but I did okay.
We are so happy to have Matthew in our family. I've been very blessed to receive lots of help in many ways. I have only had a few moments of crazy, hormonal crying. After William I was so tired but this time recovery was easier and I've been able to manage things better. 

Matthew is two weeks old now and things get a little better every day. I'm looking forward to being done with school so I can spend all my time outside of work being with my boys.