Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Kinsley's Birth Story

 All photos by Cassie Idler at

Tuesday, June 4th

 I had a doctor's appointment that afternoon at 3:30. Depending on what Dr. King said, my inlaws were thinking of returning home. They had been at our house for 5 days and needed to do some things at home and would come back when I went into labor. At my appointment Dr. King told me that the nurses at the hospital were surprised that I didn't want to be induced, but she told them "I can't make her be induced, and she's fine." She checked me and I was 5cm dilated. I agreed for her to strip my membranes, and oh my word was that painful. We set another induction date for Thursday the 6th, and I was on board with that - it was baby's due date and I wasn't very comfortable going past that - but was hoping stripping my membranes would work.

 I went back home and played in the back yard with Frank, Lona and the kids. Forrest got home around 5 and began to mow the lawn. I started dinner. I had been having period like cramps every once in a while since my appointment, but sometime between 5:30 and 6 they started to get more painful and consistent.  By 6:15, they were real and about 6 minutes apart. I told Forrest I wanted to head in. He hopped in the shower and I got everything we needed in the car. By 6:45 we were on our way.

 I continued to have contractions every 5-6 minutes in the car and Forrest kept me entertained by asking me every couple of minutes if I was having one. "How about now?" "What about now?" He makes me laugh.  The drive to the hospital is about 20-25 minutes, so it was about 7:15 after we had parked the car.   When we walked into the birth center they took us to the same triage room as we had been in on Thursday. Triage room 3.
They hooked me up to the monitors and after awhile the nurse checked me.  It was seriously the worst cervical check I have ever had.  I felt like I was being manhandled.  Around 8 she announced that I was still a 5 and would need to walk around for an hour to see if I had any change.  I wanted to scream and or cry, but did neither.  I was halfway!  I had waited until I had consistent and more painful contractions!  What else did I need to do?  Would they seriously consider sending me home?  It was maddening, but I started to walk.  Cassie arrived about a half an hour later and started to take pictures.  
This time I had to stop and breathe through the contractions.  Forrest followed me around, occasionally checking the score on the Mariners game.  There was a lot less laughing this time around.  I was concerned that I could be in this much pain and that they would send me home.  
After my hour of walking around was up, we went back into triage.  She hooked me back up to the monitors and I had her turn on the tv so that I could be distracted.  Laboring in a bed was not comfortable.  We were able to finish the last half of a NCIS:LA rerun and then she returned to check me.  I was a 6!  I could stay!  We watched the end of the Mariners game while we waited for our room to be ready.  Our delivery nurse Kathy came and got us around 10:15.  

Our room was pretty fantastic.  It was a corner room so there were two walls with windows and it had a lot more space than the other delivery rooms we had been in. 
I was pretty relieved to be admitted and Kathy gave me the option of walking around some more or getting in the tub.  I chose the tub because "walking around wasn't that much fun the first time."
The tub was heavenly.  I made myself a bikini out of washcloths so that I wouldn't feel exposed and Kathy brought me some ice water.  
Forrest kept me company.  I talked occasionally with him and Cassie and was enjoying feeling relaxed through the contractions.  

About an hour later I was starting to get hot, but I didn't want to get out of the tub. 
Kathy had to check baby's heartbeat before, during, and after a contraction.  
She brought me a popsicle (grape- my favorite) and then the resident OB came in to talk with me.  He had some basic history questions and then wanted to know a little bit more about my lovenox and heparin use.  He wasn't very familiar with them being used during pregnancy and wanted to know my doses and what they had me do post partum.  
I was starting to get really warm so I decided to get out of the tub.  
The rocking chair seemed like the most comfortable place to be.  
Kathy had me move the rocking chair closer to the monitors so that we could monitor baby.  
Baby was doing great the whole time.  Kathy said I was doing a great job handling my contractions.  So far I had been able to just breathe through them.  I wasn't making any noise, and felt calm.  
The contractions were getting more painful, but still very breathable.  Kathy brought me another popsicle.  :)
Around midnight, Dr. Belskus came in with the resident.  I had never met her before, but she was very friendly.  She guessed that this baby was going to be bigger than my other two by the size of my stomach.  Dr. Belskus wanted me to get on the bed so we could check me and then break my water if I wasn't progressing.  I got her to agree that if I was a 7.5 to an 8 that we wouldn't break my water, since that would be decent progress since I was last checked.  
When she checked me I was still a 6.  What a bummer to have just dealt with contractions for two hours to have a stalled labor.  She broke my water and then told me that I could get back in the tub after baby had been monitored for about 10 minutes.  
Shortly after the doctors left - maybe a contraction or two, things started to get intense.  
I had handed my popsicle over to Forrest and he got to enjoy it instead of me.  
My contractions started to get A LOT stronger and come closer together.  
I was trying my hardest to just breathe through them, but it wasn't working.  
I began to say "ow, ow, ow"
By this time my contractions were coming every two minutes and lasting a minute and a half.  Those 30 seconds were not restful and I felt like I couldn't catch my breath.  
Kathy tried to encourage me to get back in the tub, but I was too hot.  She had me roll on my side to help baby get in the perfect position and once I was there I couldn't move.  The contractions were so on top of each other that all I could do was moan.  Forrest calls them my "walrus noises."
Kathy gave Forrest the pamphlet of papers that we were supposed to take home to use as a fan to help cool me down.  
It felt so nice, as silly as it looks to have him fanning me.  
The contractions coming so close together was exhausting me and I asked for "something."  Kathy gave me the option of an epidural or Fentanyl.  I knew that I didn't want an epidural so I asked for fentanyl.  Since fentanyl can affect baby, she had to check me before she gave it to me.  I was at an 8 and that was too far along to get it.  
Kathy brought me an ice cold wash cloth (it was heaven - seriously) and called the doctors and baby nurse into the room.  She encouraged me to make my moans lower pitched which helped.  
All of the medical personnel came into our room.  It had only been about a half an hour since they had left.  Dr. Belskus joked that I hadn't let her have a nap.  She asked to check me and I said no.  I was in too much pain to let someone do that.  They decided to get the bed ready for me to have the baby and while they were doing that I began to spontaneously push.  It was the weirdest sensation and I couldn't do anything to stop it.  
They had me roll onto my back so I could push better.  My contractions were still coming really close together and I couldn't relax in between them.  I was keeping my legs really tense, which wasn't helping.  The nurse for the baby kept trying to get me to relax the leg she was helping me hold up, but I couldn't do it.  I was doing a good job of pushing (I remembered the right way to do it from Selah) I just wasn't letting my body relax in between contractions.  I started to struggle when baby was beginning to crown.  I don't know if it was exhaustion, or if the ring of fire was bad, but it was hard.  As in "I don't think I can do this" hard.  As if I had a choice at this point.  I remember not really pushing during a contraction to get myself ready and then really focusing on the next one.  Forrest was encouraging me by saying "Go! Go! Go!"  Her head came out, but then I had to push hard to get the rest of her out - something I don't remember having to do last time - but finally she was here.  At 1:14AM, on June 5th, Kinsley Ann Arnold made her appearance.  
They immediately placed her on my chest and she began to cry.  It was so sweet to finally have her here.  
Forrest got to cut the cord.  
I began to snuggle our new arrival while they tried to deliver my placenta.  
Forrest checking out what the doctors where doing.  If he seems a bit concerned - he was.  
I tried to smile at him and said "we did it!"
A celebratory kiss. 
My placenta did not want to deliver.  I was still having painful contractions - not labor strong, but definitely painful.  Both doctors were strongly massaging my uterus, trying to get the placenta to detach.  
They had put pitocin in my IV right after she was born, but it didn't seem to be doing it's job.  Dr. Belskus also had them put a small dose of fentanyl in my IV since I was still in so much pain.  I didn't feel a difference.  
I tried to focus on seeing what Kinsley looked like, but it was really hard to look at her when I was still in so much pain and having to focus through contractions. 

Dr. Belskus told me that I needed to push again to see if my placenta would come out.  I remember her saying that if it didn't, they would have to go in and get it.  A few pushes and it finally came out.  
Sweet Kinsley getting used to the world. 
After my placenta delivered they had me nurse Kinsley while I was stitched up.  
I was really swollen and had a pretty long 2nd degree tear, so the stitches hurt even though they had numbed me. 
They finally finished and Forrest and I got to enjoy Kinsley.  
Forrest holding her for the first time.  
Getting cleaned up and weighed.  
A whopping 8 pounds and 7 ounces.  My biggest baby by 11 ounces.  
Getting dressed.  
Her first footprints.  

After the footprints, Cassie left.  It was after 2 in the morning.  I got to snuggle with Kinsley again under a warming blanket to get her body temperature up.  Forrest was given a voucher to take to the cafeteria to get us some food, and had to hurry since it closed at 2:30.  He got me an apple juice, pudding and a turkey sandwich and himself a pudding and a mountain dew.  I stayed in bed until after 3 when Kathy had me get up to go to the bathroom.  With Selah I had felt so great I took a shower within an hour of having her.  This time I was super shaky just walking to the bathroom and had no desire to stand and take a shower.  I nursed Kinsley again around 4 and she and Forrest were able to sleep.  I was still wide awake on adrenaline so I watched a movie.  

The kids showed up around 10.  We had Frank and Lona wait in the lobby and Forrest brought them in.  It was a great decision.  There faces were adorable as they peeked in the room and saw me holding her.  We spent about 10 minutes as a new family before the kids got to go get Frank and Lona.  

1 comment :

Melissa said...

Oh Amy. I loved reading this birth story and your pictures are amazing. She really captured the ENTIRE experience. Kinsley is beautiful.