I figured I would write my birth story. Not very good at writing, but it’s a try.
How It All Started
I was 4 days late and went to my midwife on Jan 25th to get checked. She checked me and I was fully effaced and 2 centimeters dilated. She went ahead and stripped my membranes to hopefully get labor started. I went home and still was not having any contractions or even Braxton-Hicks, or if I was I had no idea it was them. I went through the whole day with nothing, and it was not till 10:30 pm while I was laying on my bed reading, that my water broke. And it was a lot of water. Guess I can blame some of that on my 49 lb weight gain. 🙂
It was not 10 mins later I was having contractions every 2 mins that were about 40 secs long. I called the midwife and she said first-time moms take a while and to call her back when I could not speak while having them.
Heading To The Hospital
Well 30 mins later, my friend, Elizabeth, called her back and told her I was having strong contractions and they were close. She still didn’t think I was ready but told me to come in and she would check me. So we loaded up and went to the hospital.
By the time I got there and walked to the lobby, I was in a lot of pain and I still had all the paperwork. After 20 mins of paperwork, I had to wait in the waiting room for about 20 more mins. I kept walking around till I almost wanted to scream at them to get me a bed. Finally, they came and took me to the exam room.
I Finally Got To The Room And Gave Birth
My midwife came in and hooked me to the monitors and they decided to check me… When she did, she was surprised to find me at 8 centimeters dilated. She called for the nurses to get me to the ABC (alternate birthing clinic) right away. I don’t remember even going, it’s all blur. I just remember thinking, if I have 14 hours of this, I won’t be able to handle it.
I got to the room and did everything I could to ease the pain. It was only a short time later that I started pushing. I had no idea what I was doing, so it was a good thing my midwife did. I pushed and with every 3rd push, I ended up puking. It made it hard to push for long. But Mary, my doula, and my midwife along with my husband Carlos were right there with encouragement.
The baby was close to being out when his heart rate dropped to almost nothing. All I knew was my midwife started saying, you have to push, don’t stop. We have to get the baby out now. So that’s all I did – push and puke. I finally did it and when I looked at him, he was in shock and just laying there. He was born 4 hours after contractions started, at 2:45am. I started crying but the nurses took him to the table to get him moving. I was relieved to hear him scream.
Then They Checked Me For Tears…
Turns out when my midwife checked me for tears, I had a rather extensive tear. Then I started hemoraging. She called another doctor to come evaluate the tear and then they decided I needed to be moved to another room and checked further. I got to hold my little guy for a little bit while they checked me and then had to give him to Carlos.
They put an epidural in and started me on lots of fluids via IVs. I was wheeled to the surgery room for a 3-hour surgery, for a 4th-degree tear. I asked the doctor how bad it was and all she would respond was, really bad.
I asked my midwife to please tell me, and she said I don’t want to, but it would probably be best if you never had a natural birth again.
Surgery And Blood Transfusion
The surgery was long and all I wanted was to sleep, which I did for a bit, but kept shaking and waking up. I was scared and had not seen my baby since the start of surgery. I did everything to keep from crying but it did not last long.. I wanted to call my mom but they wanted me to wait. I felt more alone in a room with 10 people than ever.
I finally got done and asked how many stitches and they told me, too many to count. It was the worst the doctor had ever seen. I had torn all up my vagina and through to my rectum along with outside the vagina tears. I got taken to another room to recover and got hooked to morphine. I tried nursing but I was so spaced out.
Later that day, the came and told me they needed to do a blood transfusion. So for the rest of the day I had IV’s on both arms and blood being put in me. I managed to nurse even with both my arms hooked to tubes.
Elizabeth and Cassie, my friends, came to see me that afternoon and I think I scared both of them pretty bad since they both were pregnant too.
I was able to get up to brush my teeth the next day but that was all. It hurt to even stand.
Going Home And Getting On With Our Life
I spent the next 5 days at the hospital sleeping and spending time with my son, Diego, and Carlos. I got to go home on Saturday but spent Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday going back and forth to DR. appts and the hospital for test on Diego for his jaundice.
So 12 weeks later, I still have a few stitches and some pain, but I am glad to be a mom and I am blessed to have a great husband and wonderful son.
He is a terrible nurser but we have stuck with it and I am glad. He is worth it. I have to say, I am a bit scared to ever have another child. I am glad for the fast labor though.. 4 hours on the first baby, close to a record.
Thanks for reading!
Tammy Mendoza (Providence, RI)
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