Monday, March 23, 2009

Noah's Birth

Ethan's delivery a little over two years ago was a scheduled induction during the 39th week of my pregnancy. It went so well... Matt and I went out to an early breakfast (because I don't believe in being NPO for too long, and I didn't want to be hungry all day), then showed up at the hospital. I had done all the paperwork beforehand, and things got started around seven in the morning. Ethan was born at 4:18, after two doses of pain medication and 40 minutes of pushing. It went so smoothly. Cathy, my labor nurse, likes to say it was her expert titration of pitocin during the induction; I think it was just good timing overall.

Because we had had such a great experience in the past, I asked Dr. Lieb to schedule an induction in the 39th week again. I made plans to finish up papers and do some cooking beforehand, and left that entire week free. However, little Noah had other plans. The night I went into labor, Matt was at work, and Ethan was sound asleep, so I stayed up late working on baby announcements and watching TV. At midnight, as soon as I decided to go to bed, I started having uncomfortable contractions. I tried to sleep, but woke up at 2 am, still contracting. I tried sitting in a nice warm bath (which, contrary to what a lot of water birth proponents say, became a lot less nice when I had my first contraction in the water), took some Tylenol pm, straightened the house a little, and finished packing my bag. By the time 4 rolled around, I was still contracting, and wanted to go to the hospital to be checked. I called Matt. He said he probably couldn't get anyone up to take his place until about 6... could I wait a couple of hours? I thought so. Then I had another contraction. I called Mom, who got to the house in about 20 minutes. By the time she got to the house, I was thinking I might really truly be in labor, and after a couple of minutes of uncertainty, we packed Ethan up and headed to the hospital. The determining factor was that I realized sitting there that I was starting to feel a lot like I had at the end of labor last time. We called Matt on the way to the hospital.

Mom dropped me off at the door, and I walked straight up to the L&D desk. I said something like, "I think I'm in labor, and I'd better be 7 centimeters. If not, I want an epidural NOW." Suzanne was there; she tells me I had a look on my face that made her believe 7 cm. was a lot more likely than, say, 3-4. They put me straight in a room (the same one I was in with Ethan), and checked me (7 centimeters!). At this point, Suz asked if I had made arrangements with Dr. Lieb to come in. I asked who was on call... a fine doctor, but not one I really, really wanted at my delivery. I told Suzanne I'd rather she delivered the baby, and besides, he took so long to get into his astronaut gear and drape, that he'd never make it. Meanwhile, Angela O. started opening a delivery table, Kelly put in an IV, Suz called the MD, and gave me some Demerol and Phenergan (I believe I asked for 50 of Demerol, but she gave me a total of 25mg, in two divided doses). I rolled over to my side for a contraction or two, felt the Demerol start to work, then had to push. My water broke somewhere around this time. I pushed for another two contractions (Dr. Astronaut never would have made it!), and had Noah. Matt made it to the hospital at 5. Noah was born at 5:10. I had been at the hospital since 4:40. All in all, it was a wonderful night. Birth is so much better in retrospect, but I had been dreading labor a little, and it really was much better than I thought it would be.

Noah had the cord wrapped tightly around his neck, but was born too fast for it to be cut. He ended up with a lot of facial bruising and blood-shot eyes. The bruising wore off after a day or two, but his eyes are still a little red. Suzanne delivered the placenta, too, so by the time the MD got there, he didn't have much to do other than check for clots and tearing (none... Good job, Suzanne!) and inform me that next time, I should get checked sooner. Right. Note to self...
Later, Dr. Lieb told me that with her second, she arrived at the hospital completely dilated, and delivered within a minute of arrival. I bet her doctor wasn't there, either. Mom and Ethan came back up to the room around the time they were getting everything cleaned up, so Ethan got to see him right away.

Noah James Morrison weighed 8 lbs. 11 oz., and was 20 inches long. He's been quite a sweetie, and I'd do it again in a heartbeat.

Sunday, March 8, 2009


Now that he is in a big bed, Ethan often gets up during nap time. Today, he apparently preferred the wagon.