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Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Time-travel Tuesday: Birth Story

Already posted my birth story in 2006, but I'm participating Time Travels over at Annie's, so here goes the abridged version [still a long one though :-)]:


[week-old Matt]

Maybe This Time (November 13, 2005)

Apart from last night’s tightening of my belly muscles (enough to rob me some sleep), everything’s fine. I even went through my early morning walk even when I was already spotting blood, a result of the “tissue-stripping” performed on me by my OB the day before.

I got pangs of pain, which I also expected but they're gone even before I could finish counting up to ten.

Despite all my assurances, I was, with my parents’ insistence, brought to the hospital at 3PM. Then being a Sunday, my OB was not in the hospital. Instead a not-so gentle resident doctor at the ER IE-ed me. [Thanks God, she’s a "she." I still cringe at the thought of a male DR performing an IE on me!]. My dilation, she said was still at 2 cm but she advised me to stay in the Labor Room.

The LR, where I was ushered was not so big; but it had 1 CR, an examination table, a bed and some tech to monitor the baby’s heartbeat etc... When I got there, I was quite put off because I was made to wear a gown with a big slit at the back. That plus some other things like a woman in labor who was writhing in pain and looking as if she’d collapse any minute, made the LR a nerve-fraying hole. Not to mention that the number of nurses there bothered me. Too many, I noticed.

So when my OB came and advised me to stay in our hosp room, I was glad. Before she left, she made a specific order to call the nurse right away if my labor pains get worse. That night the pain didn’t get worse. Like last night, it would come and minutes later, would go away.

This is the day!

Morning of November 14, 2005, I was still feeling okay- a little anxious but still calm. Anxious because I really had no idea what MY labor would be like. Calm, because I knew I needed to be calm. A nervous wreck would be the last thing I should be, I counseled myself.

In the hope of advancing my labor, I -with my mother accompanying me- walked around the hosp lobby. When there’s still no notable progress, Mama left for work.

It was at almost noontime when I was ushered to the LR again. I was still feeling okay, no “steady pain” felt. However, when an IV tube was inserted on my hand, I flinched ouch! "For what?" I had wanted to ask but forgot to.

Considerable time had passed when I became aware that I was “drugged”. Later on, when I remembered to ask the attending midwife, I would know what that drug was for - to induce my labor. I certainly wouldn’t want to be induced! I had wanted to have a drug-free labor, if possible. No sooner had I thought, Oh well, too late now than I was already feeling its effect by having contractions, though not much and not for long.

But when I was IE-ed again, little after noontime, there’s still no progress. Hence, my dosage of that inducing drug was increased. An hour later, my contractions were getting close at interval, but the extent of pain was still manageable.

About 3PM, because my progress was quite slow, my OB intervened and performed amniocentesis on me (to break my bag of water and hurry the labor). An hour later, I was already having real pain then but still kept my cool. I was not shouting or crying, just acknowledging my pain in silence.

[wee hour in the morning when he turned 11-month old]

I was still composed when my bag of water broke and blood was trickling down on me. I was ready for all of these. I had anticipated more pain – I kept on expecting more and more and some more while remembering my yoga breathing exercise and the tips from my online pregnancy class. I willed myself to stay calm because I am aware of the effect of fear to our organs. And I was at peace. I had never been calmer in my whole life.

Throughout this ordeal, my father silently kept me company [hubby was an overnight boat ride away then]. Mama, who came after the amniocentesis, on the other hand, was a bundle of nerves. Seeing her that way was making me uncomfortable, so I asked for her to wait outside of the LR instead – to which she willingly obliged.

Minutes after 5PM, I was feeling like moving my bowel again (earlier, I had moved my bowel in the LR’s CR). Little did I know that this signaled the later stage of labor [I must have missed this tiny but relevant detail in my online class]. But I had not missed the sense of urgency in the attending midwife’s voice when she requested for a wheelchair [but a stretcher materialized instead -lol].

There was no time to ask questions. As I was rushed to the delivery room (DR), it dawned on me that this must already be “it.” In one corner of the DR, I can hear my OB asking the midwife how far in labor was I. Vaguely, I heard say, “crowning”. Crowning in layman’s term means the head is already coming out.

The next moment, she was coaching me to push and I was trying my darndest to push real hard. As far as I can remember, I only got to push thrice - the third time I pushed, my baby came out.

As I heaved a sigh of relief and whispered a prayer of thanks, I felt my world came to a halt at that instant. While my baby was handed to me, the word “mother” echoed in the far recesses of my mind. “Welcome to this world” were the very first words I heard myself utter to my baby as I lovingly held him in my arms.

[At 21-month old]

I couldn’t believe that after months and months of carrying a heavy and bulging tummy, here he is and I am holding him now. At last! I thought, I am a mother and I am this adorable baby’s mother. It was a very tear-jerker moment. Just amazing. A moment of surreal quality.

And the next thing I knew, I was being stitched already (yes, I had an episiotomy and although I can clearly remember the feel of tissue tearing, I didn’t feel much pain while being slashed. I must have been too numb with all the emotions). But in my euphoric state of mind, I mumbled a request for an anesthesia (And to think I had wanted an all-natural delivery! LOL) but my OB only laughed and said “Do you think you need one?”

Days later, in the confines of my OB’s clinic, I would know that I only had analgesia the entire time I was stitched. The OB said that my tolerance to pain is remarkable. [But then I think that pain must really be all in the mind. I hope I don’t sound smug, but then my mindset must have made the real difference. Thanks to God and to my online pregnancy class!]

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KC said...

what a great story. my oldest sons bithday is November 15 but the year was 1999. my Little Man however was born exactly 6 months after your baby on May 14 2005
great Time Travel Tuesday

Barbara H. said...

I love that moment of wonder when holding our babies for the first time! You expressed that well.

ZAM said...

thanks for the sweet comments..

KC, if you were my neighbor, i would hav liked to visit your place with my son..kiddo loves kids a sure he'd love to play with your little man... there aren't that many in my house, actually he's still my only one for now..or in the neighborhood.

his cousins visit us from time to time though.

ZAM said...

And thanks Barbara for the compliment..indeed seeing the baby first time is an unforgettable moment

bing said...

Ouch! I can feel the pain during your labor lasts that long?

I really thank God i did not have a hard time in giving birth...even with my first child.

annie said...

thanks for sharing your story!!!

Lynn said...


I will be back tomorrow for this read. I am trying to keep on track with the Thankful Thursday posts. I think you were number 12. I am making progress.

I will probably check in again tomorrow or on Sunday. Blessings, Lynn

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