Our labor/delivery experience was definitely not what we had planned. I was supposed to be induced on Tuesday the 4th but instead went into labor on Saturday the 1st at 1:41 am. By 3:30 am we were at the hospital and checked into labor & delivery. Within a matter of minutes they were rushing me from the observation/check-in to a room and had called the docs & all the nurses. I was already 7-8 cm. I was Strep B positive so they kept telling me to not push as they needed to give me meds before I delivered. Well I have tiny veins and they couldn’t get an IV started to give me the meds and that also meant that I wouldn’t be able to get an epidural. Within an hour of being checked in I had no IV, no meds, no epidural and I couldn’t not push so the doc said it was time and we just had to go for it. I pushed, my water broke and thankfully my body went from 9-10 cm to 6 cm and the baby went from +1 to -2. We had more time to try to get the IV and hopefully the epidural. After 6 sticks with a needle, they were finally able to get the IV in. My contractions were 3 mins or less apart (they felt like they were on top of each other and they were still really strong). After the IV was in, the prepped me for the epidural and then told me to stay still. I had a contraction during the “you absolutely must not move or risk being paralyzed” moment of putting the epi in. Then my baby boy went into distress. His heart rate dropped to 60 and they had to give me a shot to slow the contractions because they were so close it was like one long one and that was the cause of his distress. Luckily the shot did the trick and his heart rate went back up. The other “bad” news – he was “sunny side up” so I was to lay in strange positions to get him to rotate.
At 10:30 we started pushing. He had rotated and was not sunny side up so that was good. With the final pushes the doctor called for more help. My room was filled with nurses, NICU, a second OBGYN, the anesthesiologist and more people that I couldn’t even tell you who they were. I had one nurse pushing on my uterus, a nurse on each leg pushing my knees towards me, a nurse on either side working to “open” me and two docs trying to pull my baby out (his head was already out). My husband describes it as if they were working on a wishbone and I was the wishbone. He thought they were going to break my pelvis.
What I didn’t know at the time was that my son had decided to turn after his head came out. His should was stuck and had compressed the umbilical cord between him and my pelvic bone and cut off his oxygen. He was turning blue. When he was born, he was blue, limp and unresponsive and NICU had to give him CPR to get him breathing.
I am thankful that I had an amazing doctor and hospital staff that responded with such knowledge and timing that there are no permanent side effects for my little boy. I’ve done research on what happened and it’s called Shoulder Dystocia. It happens in 2% of pregnancies and can have an outcome as great as mine or as awful as death.
It was a very stressful day for my husband and I and my son didn’t eat for almost 6 hours after his birth. He had to be force fed an ounce of formula and there was the risk of needing to give him a feeding tube if we couldn’t get him to eat. He lost almost 1 lb from birth to the day after we went home. He has since gained 4 oz back and is starting to become a very healthy eater.
The experience, while difficult, still had the best end result – my beautiful baby boy.