Levi's Birth

All throughout her pregnancy, Hilary wanted to do what was best for her baby. Her pregnancy was a difficult one being that she had hyperemisis. For those of you that don’t know, hyperemisis is a condition in pregnancy where you are sick for the entire pregnancy. Beginning to end. Because of the constant nausea and vomiting, Hilary was very weak during her pregnancy and was afraid that she would be too weak to have her baby naturally. Despite her fears, she wanted to try. The last 2 months before her birth, she was especially anxious. She was definitely ready to have the baby and be done with feeling sick. Her prayer that Levi would be born early. So when Hilary started to feel crampy a couple of weeks early, she was very excited that her prayers were being answered.

It had been very hard for Hilary and I to get together because she caught the flu, then her husband did the week after and I ended up getting sick right after that. So we had planned to meet Tuesday night the 11th the day she started feeling crampy. Her due date wasn’t until January 25. We met and went over a few last minute things. Hilary and Leo never had a chance to go to birth classes so we had a few extras to go over. During our meeting, Hilary was having contractions and by the time I left they were about 10 minutes apart. Leo seemed a little nervous at this time. I went home to type up Hilary’s birth plan and send it off to her just incase she was going into labor. By 9pm, her contractions were 6 minutes apart.

At 12:13 pm, Leo call me to tell me the contractions were close to 3 minutes apart. I headed over to her house and her spirits were high and she was very upbeat. They also called Hilary’s mom who she really wanted to be at the birth. At 1:15, Hilary’s contractions were pretty consistent at 4 minutes apart. Hilary wanted to make cookies for the nurses at the hospital, she was worried about getting a nice nurse, so she wanted to put things in her favor by bringing them something. So we made cookies and she was getting quite uncomfortable. Hilary moved to the bath and her contractions were quite intense. She split her time from the bath, the couch and the kitchen making cookies. She really had trouble relaxing through them and focusing on anything else then the feelings she was having. We tried to get her to focus on Levi, on what her body was doing, we tried visualizations. Nothing would take her mind away from the pain she was having and the thought that it’s going to get worse before it gets better. Hilary’s contractions were 2-4 minutes apart. It looked like labor was progressing really fast. However, her not being able to relax and the fear that she was having wouldn’t allow her body to work with the contractions.

At about 4:30 Hilary was in the bath with Leo. Leo did a great job comforting her and helping her through the contractions. She lost some of her mucous plug and her contractions were pretty close together. Back to back at one point. Some were more intense then others. So at 5:45 am they decided to go to the hospital. We arrived at 6 am, Hilary and Leo went to triag. Nobody else was aloud back with her until she was admitted and in a room. and Hilary was dialated to 1-2 cm! She was crushed, understandably so. It is so hard when labor starts so intense then you find out you are not very far along. It is almost impossible to get your mind back to where your cervix is. So the nurses told her to walk for an hour and they would see if that helped. If she was at 3 cm, they could admit her. Gratefully it worked and she was admitted at 8 am. The hospital policy was only to have 2 people in the room with the mother, however the nurses were nice enough to allow her mom to be there as well. Hilary was so happy we all could be there. At this time she decided she was going to have something to help her with her pain, but didn’t know what.

After she was admitted she had to be monitored for a while and get all the paperwork done and 2 hours later she was at 4 cm. After that she went into the shower to hold off a little before getting an epidural or narcotic. While she was in the shower with her mom, Leo came out with me to figure out what would be her best option. After talking to the nurse about what each medication does, he decided the epidural would be best for this situation. At 11:15, Hilary got the epidural and her contractions were 1 minute apart. At noon, they were 4 minutes apart again. Her body was taking a little needed rest. By 2pm 1-12, her contractions were 1-2 minutes apart lasting a few minutes. Hilary still hasn’t slept. She was able to rest, but not able to sleep. She was just so excited to be done with her pregnancy and meet her little boy. When the nurse came in to check her at 2:15, she was 5 1/2 cm dilated. Her labor seemed to progress with the movement she did in early dialation, but slowed way down when she would rest. Since Hilary and Leo didn’t want any pitocin, she did nipple stimulation for about a 1/2 hour. After that she started feeling nauseous and couldn’t keep it up. By 4 pm that evening, her contractions were back to 4 minutes apart, but an hour later she was at 8 cm. We were very excited that it was finally so close. Hilary’s spirits were way up after this pelvic exam. She threw up a little about 6:30 and felt better after that.

At 7 pm her doctor came in to see her and he said she was fully dialated with just a little lip. She was told to push through it and was able to. At this point instead of the baby laboring down, the doc wanted her to be actively pushing so she did and by 9 pm, the head was visible. The doctor came in and wanted pitocin, Hilary did not. So she kept pushing. She was having a lot of back pain and shaking off and on. At 9:15 she got more epidural and that kicked in for the pain. She took a little break from pushing from 9-9:40. Hilary started up pushing again after a rest and Levi just wouldn’t get in the right position to move past her bone, so we kept moving her from her left to right to her back to get him to move. We got him to move once, but not the right way. So she kept pushing and pushing while getting more and more tired. Finally she came to a point where she had to make a decision, pitocin to help her push, or push till she can’t push anymore. Levi wasn’t making progress through the birth canal at this point, so Hilary decided on pitocin. She pushed for at least another hour before we all realized he wasn’t going to move without being on her hands and knees, which we couldn’t do because of the epidural or the doc had to use the vacume. Hilary very reluctantly decided the vacume would be the best choice at this point because if not she would have gone to a c-section. The vacume took one suck and Levi was born at 11:52 pm 1-12-11.
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Hilary ended up having 20 hours and 15 minutes for 1st stage labor, pushing lasted 4 hours and 7 minutes (not counting the break from 9-9:40) and 3rd stage (the placenta) lasted 2 minutes. It was amazing that she was allowed to push for that long. Hilary had a great nurse that worked really well with me in guiding her on possible positions to get the baby to move. She was very understanding in letting Hilary go as long as needed before making a new decision. It was wonderful that Hilary was able to go until she had to make a change, rather then choosing to use the vacuum or pitocin too soon. If she had gone for the vacuum much earlier, it may have taken more then just a tiny suck, but instead Levi came right out with a tiny little extra help.
Levi was 5 lbs, 14 oz and 18 inches long.