It took a while for a bed to open on the induction floor. So, by the time Z got there, with the hospital bags in the car, I was starting to feel the contractions and asking for pain meds. My friend had told me to ask for Fentanyl which I did but they wanted to try Visceral first since I was getting anxious. My whole pregnancy I had pretty much been blocking out the whole birth part of things. In my mind, I went to the hospital and then fast forward I was home with a baby. Now that it was here I was starting to freak out. Mostly I was freaking out because I already felt a lot of pain and I have always had a high pain tolerance. This wasn’t going to be pleasant. But also, I was worried about the baby. Why wasn’t he moving? Why did they want to induce? I have had so many fears the whole time. Not getting to meet him even after labor was a persistent one. So, they gave me Visceral pills; which made things 10 times worse since I took them on an empty stomach. I promptly threw up as the contractions got harder. Keep in mind it’s around 10:00-10:30am and I’m still only 1cm dilated and 90% effaced. I still had a LONG way to go.
Finally, I got IV painkillers and an IV of fluids to see if we could space out the contractions since I wasn’t really getting a break in between. I was so tired and hungry. They gave me an oxygen mask as the contractions continued one after another like waves in the ocean. I couldn’t catch my breath, I couldn’t think. I thought I would be in labor playing games on my phone, talking to my mom and Zack until the main event happened. They talked to each other and at me as I cried and squeezed their hands. No book can prepare you for labor. After complaining that I really needed an epidural they checked my cervix again at some time between 11:30am or 12pm. I was 1-2 cm until she checked. And then bam. She helped move things to 4cm, fully effaced. I think scar tissue from a surgery on my cervix years ago had kept my body from progressing at the same pace as the contractions. Anyways, there was no need to induce, I was going to labor and delivery.
It took what felt like an eternity for them to finally take me down. I kept telling them there was pressure and that I really needed to push. They were like “It’s fine, just relax”. Looking back, I think they knew then what I would find out later; just like my Mom, I was going to be too far into labor to really get any help. One of my biggest pregnancy fears come true. I get to L&D and nurses started scrambling. They could tell I was changing fast and were trying to assess me and get the monitor on the baby as fast as possible. I kept saying “I need the epidural” (I hadn’t had any pain meds in hours) and they were like ‘we have to do this first but they’re coming’.
Zack and my Mom were still being a great team allowing me to crush the bones in their hands. I kept telling myself that pain was only temporary. After one particularly bad contraction, I heard a scream and realized it was me. This may be TMI but I think that was around the same time my water EXPLODED. So not like how TV shows. I was like this ‘baby is coming out NOW’, and they were like ‘don’t push, whatever you do don’t push!’
Do you know how hard that is??? I didn’t care what they said (although I should have) I pushed a tiny bit when they looked away. Finally, the doctor from Women’s Care came in and it was someone I had never seen before. I literally spent two months meeting every two weeks with all the doctors that were going to be on call my due week. My actual doctor was on call on my due date, so I doubted she would be delivering my baby. It wasn’t even a doctor from the office I go to. It was a doctor from the Baldwin Park office. I literally couldn’t have cared less. I needed baby boy out.
Dr. Ortiz checked me saying “The head is right there; her cervix is gone.” All I said was “No drugs?” They all said, “No drugs.” Immediately my mind sharpened. There was nothing else I could do, he needed to be born. I was so worn out from the contractions that I couldn’t hold my legs to my chest like they wanted me too. Nurses, Zack, and my mom stepped in to help. I got halfway through one push and began to re-think things. Apparently, I started pushing against everyone trying to put my legs down, but I don’t remember. I glanced down and saw the top of a tiny head full of hair which was all I needed to focus again. I pushed for the second time. And with that second push, my baby was born.
At 2pm my amazing son, Sterling was born NATURALLY at 8 pounds 5.2oz, and 20.5 inches long. It’s been almost a week and I’m still so amazed that I was able to do it. I did have second-degree internal tearing but minus two days of discomfort, I feel fine.
I am so grateful to the amazing staff at Winnie Palmer. I think my boy wasn’t reactive because my body had started labor, but I am still thankful the triage doctor made the decision to admit me. I thank Dr. Chambers for getting me through my pregnancy, anxiety, and constant worrying. I thank my mom for a million different things. She has been truly amazing. I thank Zack for being an amazing partner and giving me my heart outside of my body. I thank God for answering my prayers.
You had an interesting start for sure Sterling. Mommy loves you more than you’ll ever know.
Welcome to the world.