I want to tell you the story of the day I gave birth to my daughter.
The day before I gave birth (a Friday) I started cramping. My husband and I timed the cramping to make sure it wasn’t consistent contractions. It wasn’t. Around 2 p.m. I went to the restroom and there was a little bit of blood. It was enough to make me nervous so we went ahead to the emergency room. After they got me to Labor and Delivery and got me hooked up to the monitors they said that I wasn’t in active labor and there were no signs of distress so they sent me home with orders to come back if I had any more bleeding. At the time, my in-laws lived next door to us and I remember standing on their back porch talking. Every time I would have a contraction I would bend over in pain and my father in law kept telling me to sit down but it was more comfortable for me to stand.
Around 7 that evening we went home and around 10 we decided to lay down and try to get some rest. I didn’t think I would sleep at all because I was in so much pain but I did doze off for about 10 minutes. At around 1 a.m. I went to the restroom and saw more blood so we went back to the E.R. They took me back to L & D and hooked me back up to the monitors and at about 2 a.m. told me that I was in active labor. Those words ‘active labor’ scared the bejeezus out of me. I was actually about to have a baby!
Within the next hour my mom and brother came to hang out with us. We all walked around the L & D floor, trying to help further my labor. I remember walking a few steps and then leaning against the wall for a few minutes. My husband, my mom, my brother, and myself just walked and walked for about an hour. A few hours later my in-laws came and we just all hung out in my hospital room. I remember they gave me pitocin to help move labor along, they also had to break my water. I got to about 7 centimeters before I HAD to have an epidural. I remember every time I would have a contraction I didn’t yell, or cry, I held my breath! Everyone kept telling me to stop but for some reason that was the way that I coped with the pain.
I remember once I started pushing, it only took about 5 minutes to get her out. My nurse was an angel sent from heaven! Seriously! While I was pushing she didn’t yell or get aggressive, she just kind of kept whispering ‘push Amanda, you can do it. Just push.’. My husband and my mom were in the room when my little baby girl was born at 10:29 a.m. She was even more perfect than I imagined she would be and I fell deeper in love than I ever thought possible. They cleaned her up and let me hold her. I tried feeding her but breastfeeding was not easy for us. She wouldn’t latch on at all. Later, I found out that it was because she had a lip tie.
The first picture we took of her! Isn’t she precious?
When I felt like I had the feeling back in my legs the nurse let me go to the restroom. I remember going in there and sitting down but the nurse said I stood up, said I was going to pass out, and then did pass out. She managed to catch me and sit me back on the toilet. I remember waking up to about 6 nurses crowded in the bathroom and right outside the door, calling my name. They helped me to a wheelchair and got me back in bed. It was kind of scary. We still don’t know exactly what made me pass out but I think it was a mix of losing a lot of blood, no sleep, and I had a virus (I just didn’t know yet). I’m also really sensitive when it comes to medicine so it could have been some kind of side effect from the epidural.
So we stayed the normal 3 days and assumed on the third day we would be able to go home, that was not the case. They did blood work on my daughter and found out the she had an infection and she was jaundiced so they needed to keep her in the NICU for 7 days! They took her and I was so upset. After they took her I started throwing up. They told me I couldn’t see her until I went to the E.R. to get checked out. UGH! So I went to the E.R. and they did blood work on me and said they couldn’t find anything so they determined that I just had a virus of some kind. They let me go from the E.R. and I went back to L & D and asked if I could see my baby and they said that they would have to check with infection control first, it would be about an hour! My husband and I stood at the window of the NICU looking at our little tiny baby hooked up to about a billion different wires and we both just cried. She was in the bed furthest from the window so the sweet nurse unplugged her and moved her next to the window so we could see her. The next hour was even harder than the labor. I just wanted to hold my baby!
After about 45 minutes they finally let us in, we were able to hold her and feed her! I was so happy! The nurses let me stay in the room across the hall from the NICU which I was so grateful for! The next 7 days were the longest 7 days but we made it and they finally let us go home! I’m so thankful for the amazing nurses there for helping us through that week. They were the best!