15 September, 2013

Nolan's birth story- Part 2

Now to the good part.. When Baby Nolan actually joins us! As I said, my doctor came in about 6:45 before he went up to his office. He checked my cervix, but sadly I hadn't made much progress even with the oxytocin drip up to 18. I was 4-5cm dilated and about 90% effaced. To speed things along, he went ahead and broke my water. This is a lot more painful than I had expected.

Let me back up, the entire pregnancy I had it in my head that I really wanted to try to labor naturally with no epidural or pain meds. The keyword there was TRY. I wasn't set on it and signed all the consent forms just in case. Well, it was a good thing that I did, because after my water was broken things really kicked into high gear.I had been having decent contractions ever since the drip and monitor were hooked up, but they didn't really phase me. My sister in law had just gotten to the hospital, and she, Stephen, and I were still just talking and carrying on. When my water broke it was like 0-60. My contractions had been registering around the 50 mark, they instantly started registering up to 85-90 and were coming much more frequently. I could barely breathe. Luckily they were only lasting about 30 seconds to a minute each but those were the longest minutes of my life! I asked the nurse if I could go ahead and get the epidural then and she gladly obliged. The wait for the anesthesiologist was torture! Stephen was a big help during all of this, but I still could not have handled that for hours. Finally, she came in to start my epidural and I will openly admit it was not as scary or painful as I had expected it to be. I was so glad to get that going! About 15 minutes after she got it put in and going, it took full effect and I felt MUCH better. I was back to being able to just relax and hang out and wait. I literally felt nothing! I could watch my contractions on the monitor but I didn't even know I was having them, it was amazing. If/when we have another baby I will be taking the epidural as soon as possible. More power to all you ladies who did it naturally, I'm in awe because I could not have done the whole process without the epidural, 45 minutes of those contractions were enough for me!

At this point it was shift change and Lauren left us with Janet. She was just as amazing and both of these ladies made our experience so much better. She came in and checked me and I was already dilated almost 6cm and just about fully effaced. That was a lot of progress in just an hour since he had broken my water. I felt so good just waiting that people took turns coming in and out to visit. My Mom and Dad came in, my in-laws came in, my cousin Mandy and her baby Carmen came to visit. It really helped to pass the time for Stephen and I. An hour later around 9, Janet came to check my dilation again and I was already up to 9 cm! She had a meeting to go to and came back around 10:30 and I was fully dilated already. It was game time! Janet went to call my doctor and get everything ready for delivery. Everyone wished us luck, but vacated my room pretty quickly. Stephen got the room organized and readied himself.

Janet came back and got me hooked up and situated and explained the most effective way to push. She was a lifesaver! About 11:30 I started to push. Dr. Lile came in about 11:45 and took over. This was nothing like the movies or anything we had expected. It was so calm and relaxed. I couldn't have asked for a better delivery experience. My epidural was amazing, I felt nothing. There was no one in the room but Dr. Lile, Janet, and Stephen. Every few minutes when I had a contraction I would push through it, but in the down time in between we just chatted about football, dogs, baby names. It was amazing. After an hour of that the baby nurse was called in, and at 12:31p.m. Nolan Evan was born. I cried as they handed him to me and Stephen cut the cord. (He teared up too, but didn't actually cry.) I got to hold him for a while because they're big on the skin to skin thing right now.

Eventually they took him to be cleaned up and checked out. He weighed in at 7lbs 11oz which shocked us because we just knew he was going to be huge! The nurses thought they heard some fluid in his lungs so they were in a hurry to get him to the nursery. Luckily, we were able to get them to let Stephen hold him first since he hadn't even gotten to touch him yet! I cried again when he was holding him. I couldn't explain how blessed I felt at that moment.

After a few minutes the nurse took him off to the nursery and Stephen went to let our families know they could see him through the window. Once everything was cleaned up, our families came back to see us and wait for the baby to come back. Unfortunately, it was a while. They called our room to tell us they thought they had heard a heart murmur during his exam so he was waiting for an ekg. Talk about nervous parents!

After nearly 4 hours we were moved to a regular room. On the way Janet took us by the nursery where the nurse called out to us and let us know that the cardiologist had checked him out and he was perfectly fine. She said he had just had a bath so she was going to make sure he could hold his body temperature and she would be bringing him to us in about 30 minutes. My epidural had worn off so I could move around at this point and we got to our room and got everything situated while we waited for Nolan.

Finally after about 5 hours they brought us our little prince and we could introduce him to the family. Stephen and I held him for a minute then began the passing around. My mom, his mom, Lindsay, Brittany, my Dad, his Dad. He made his rounds. Lisa and Patrick came later and so did Aunt Michelle with Mandy, Trae and Carmen. He was so sweet and just slept through all the passing around and loving on he had. We were exhausted from the lack of sleep the night before and the big day so our room cleared out about 8 and we settled in to get some rest and enjoy our sweet boy.

09 September, 2013

No more Bumpdates.. Nolan is here!

Not that I was the best at being consistent, but there will be no more "bumpdates" because baby Nolan Evan Volheim entered the world on Wednesday, September 4, 2013! The memory is already starting to run together so before I forget here is his birth story:

We had been very impatiently waiting. I was growing more uncomfortable by the day as I was also just growing by the day! My doctor had told us two weeks ago that I was a good 2 cm dialated and would be having this baby on my own at any minute. We had been sitting on pins and needles. I let work know and I changed my last day to be a week earlier than originally planned so as not to risk my water breaking at work and to get a few last minute things done at home. Well, as you'll soon learn, the doctor's prediction did not come true. I stayed home all week cleaning, organizing, doing laundry, and generally just being bored because I quickly ran out of things to clean and organize. (Stephen teases me because he came home from work one day and I was cleaning the vacuum.) I had been having cramping and contractions(very small and inconsistent ones) for over a week. I thought for sure it would be any minute.We tried all the old wives tales to get this moving. We walked about a mile with our neighbors and the dogs almost every night. I ate spicy foods. I balanced on my yoga ball. Stephen drove over every bump in the road he could find.. you name it, we were up to try it. But this stubborn boy was just way too comfortable to come out.

Finally we went to my 39 week appointment. From the beginning it was planned that I would be induced at 39 weeks due to my Factor V if I didn't go into labor on my own. So we were anxious to see what the doctor would say that day. We got to my 9:50 appt. Got all checked in(I had already lost a pound, YAY!) and waited for the doctor. He came in and checked my cervix and noted there wasn't much change that I was maybe 3cm dialated now and about 70% effaced. He stripped my membranes again, this time I really felt that(not the most pleasant thing in the world!). Then he said the best thing he could have said, they wanted to bring us in that night and begin our induction! I thought Stephen was going to jump out of his chair! I was a little taken aback, but excited! I thought Wednesday or Thursday at the earliest, but that night? I'll take it! So he answered our questions and then sent us to surgery scheduling to arrange a time. They had us come in at 2:30 a.m. Not my first choice of times to be thrown into labor, but at that point I would have gone at anytime they told us! She explained the whole process to us and we headed off to wait.

We called all of our family members to let them know that the waiting was almost over. Stephen went ahead and went back to work since he gets off at 2:30 anyway. I went home to pace get everything ready. I re cleaned anything that needed cleaning, checked and double checked the hospital bags, washed all the laundry we had in the house and did any little thing I could find to keep myself busy and pass the time. I tried to spend some extra time loving on Natty too because I felt unbelievably guilty about having to leave him for a few days. He hates when we're gone. When Stephen got home we tried to relax and get some rest, but it was SO hard!

We decided to go to one last dinner as a couple. We called our neighbors, Matt and Jeanette, and they joined us for some Mexican food at La Hacienda. Perfect "last" meal! Then it was time to try to get some sleep. The key word there was try because we both tossed and turned for hours. Our minds were racing and we were just too excited! Stephen said it was like waiting to go on a Disney World trip on Christmas Day. He was so anxious he just couldn't sleep. Eventually we both managed to fall asleep and maybe got 3-4 hours before our alarms went off at 1:00 a.m. Normally, it would be impossible to get up at that time but we were both wide awake and going 90 to nothing getting ready and making sure we had anything. We took a minute to snap the last belly picture:

We loved on Natty and tried to explain to him where we were going.(Our super sweet neighbors took excellent care of our first baby while we were at the hospital.) After the car was loaded up, we were off. We made our way to Sacred Heart Hospital. Stephen stopped to get some doughnuts and a drink from the gas station which turned out to be a very smart decision since it would be a long time before we would eat again. 
We got to the hospital and headed up to the 2nd floor to get checked in to labor and delivery. It was a really smooth and easy process. (I imagine it's an entirely different experience if you're already in labor, but being induced they just bring you in and do some paperwork with you and then show you to your room.) We were introduced to our nurse for the night, Lauren(great name!), and she got us set up in our room. I changed into the oh so lovely hospital gown, answered all the usual questions and did some paperwork, got hooked up to all the monitors for me and baby, and my least favorite part of the whole thing, was hooked up to the IV. Ouch! Stephen attempted to get our stuff organized and got comfortable for the wait. Our nurse was awesome and made us feel comfortable from the very beginning and was great at explaining every step of the process to us. Once we got through all that good stuff, Lauren hooked up the oxytocin(pitocin) drip bag to my IV and we got the ball rolling. It starts at a level 2 and they up it by 2 every hour until you hit 20. 

After she got me hooked up about 3 a.m., she left us to rest and wait. I started having small contractions but they weren't the least bit uncomfortable. Stephen and I talked, joked, and just hung out and watched TV while we waited. Lauren came in throughout the night to turn up the drip and occasionally check my dilation but other than that, not much happened until my doctor came in at 6:45 that morning. Which is where I'll pick up with part 2 of Nolan's birth story...