A few days ago, I shared part two of my birth story. Here is part three…
I pushed for about 30 minutes (three long pushes and then a minute of rest) with only the nurse and midwife and Mr. Handsome in the room. For the final 40 minutes, a few other medical staff arrived, including a nurse who would tend to the baby and a doctor from the same practice that the midwife worked at.
The midwife was very encouraging and continuously told me that everything was going well and that I was doing great. Looking back, however, I have a feeling that the fact that she brought in a doctor at the end meant that she thought there was a decent chance there would be complications. I’m very glad that no one told me that while I was delivering and that I was too out of it to figure it out for myself.
Pushing with an epidural wasn’t too painful, but it was still a lot of work, and there was a lot of pressure. Mr. Handsome held my hand and talked me through each push. I was so grateful that the baby’s vitals remained strong–that was one less thing to worry about. The process was more calm than I had expected, and the midwife and nurse did a great job keeping me relaxed and focused. When the baby finally arrived and I heard his first cry, I breathed a huge sigh of relief. Suddenly, all my fears of having a C-section or the baby having to be whisked away to the NICU had melted away. He was big, but he was healthy and happy.
Mr. Handsome cut the cord, and the midwife laid the baby on my chest. After a few minutes, the nurse asked if she could take him over to the scale in the corner to weigh and measure him, and I said yes. Mr. Handsome followed and took pictures. Baby was 8 pounds 12 ounces and measured 21 inches long. Within a couple minutes, he was back with me. It took about an hour for the midwife and doctor to finish stitching. Needless to say, I was very thankful for that epidural! My emotions were a mess, and I bawled the entire time. I tried to focus on the beautiful baby in my arms, but it was difficult not to think about the discomfort that the stitching was causing.
It wasn’t long before the medical staff had finished up and left the room, and Mr. Handsome were able to enjoy some time with just the two of us and Mr. H Jr. After about an hour of skin-to-skin, which the hospital is a huge advocate of, Mr. Handsome held Little Buddy for the first time, which was an emotional moment for both of us. The nurse anesthetist returned and removed my epidural, a process that was surprisingly quick and painless.
At that point, I had only consumed clear liquids for the last 32 hours and was absolutely starving. We invited Mr. Handsome’s mom and our sister-in-law, who had been in the waiting room, to come meet the baby, and my father-in-law soon arrived with Panera for all of us. In a blog comment, one of my readers accurately said that “there’s no meal quite like the meal that you eat after giving birth.” Boy was she right! I shoveled that food in so fast that I barely tasted it. I was still exhausted and very out of it, so I really didn’t participate in any of the conversation going on in the room around me. In fact, I’m pretty sure I dozed off a few times.
The nurse wanted me to get up and move around, so I packed my suitcase, and our family carried everything to the hospital room where we would spend the rest of our time. The nurse pushed me in a wheelchair with the baby in my arms.