TTC Journal: Still Dreaming of a Family (pg ment)
Pregnancy Journal: Expecting Our First Little One

Arland Jace is finally here!!!

Really, he's 4 weeks old today. It's been quite a journey getting here, from the 18 months of TTC (including one miscarriage), to the 3 weeks that we spent in hospital after he was born. But let's start with his birth story (also posted at the end of my pregnancy journal)...

The day before our due date I went into labour. It started in the morning and at first I just thought I was having tummy troubles. Then I realized that the crampiness was coming at fairly regular intervals. I slept through the first couple hours, so I can't be sure exactly how long I was in labour for, but I would estimate about 10 hours of early labour (which was very easy). The timing was pretty good as far as everyone's work schedules go. My mom only left work a little bit early, came straight over & helped me get ready to head to the hospital. My brother & Ryan both arrived home around 5pm, and that's when we headed out. The contractions were still really easy and my water hadn't broken yet, but my mom wanted to head up to the hospital right away since the contractions were only 4 minutes apart and it takes a while to get to the hospital (especially since it would be rush hour traffic).

When we got to the hospital the doc wanted to break my water & get things going, but we decided to hold off. He didn't seem happy about it, but things landed up starting on their own right away anyway as I started active labour shortly after he examined me. I was around 2.5 - 3 cm already, according to the doc. They admitted me & then it was just a matter of waiting. My brother stuck around for quite a while, and then it was just my mom & Ryan with me towards the end. They were very helpful and tried to do anything they could to help me through the contractions, but it seemed that I was only comfortable laying on my sides in bed (much different from what I expected), and it turns out I had back labour.

After a while the nurse came by with drugs. I chose not to get the epi, but she & the doc wanted me to have a mix of morphine & gravol to help me sleep through some of labour since they figured it would be a long night. When she told me I was still only at 3 cm then I accepted. They promised that it wouldn't affect the baby, and that it would be worn off a few hours before he was born. Thing is, the drugs really didn't feel like they did anything to me. Then they gave me a bit of the gas which only made me kinda dopey, but then I was able to sleep between contrax. It was really weird - being WIDE awake for each contrax, and asleep for the 2 minutes between.

Once I got to the transition phase I started screaming for the nurse to get the doc b/c the baby was coming. She didn't believe me b/c it had only been 8 hours of active labour, but then when she checked me I was almost fully dialated (she said it was like 9 & 3/4). A few minutes later she checked again and just as she was looking my water broke & came rushing out. I'm pretty sure she was drenched... She tried to get the doc as quickly as she could, and there was merconium in the water so they also grabbed a pediatrician.

When I started pushing, I suppose I was a little too good at it b/c the doc told me to slow down to make it easier on my son. He kept telling me to push just a little bit, then stop, then a little bit again, then suddenly he was shouting to stop but my son just came flying out. Ryan & my mom said it looked like the nurse only barely caught him!

Ryan watched the whole thing, including the afterbirth, even though he planned to only look at my face the whole time. Turns out he has a stronger stomach than he thought.

When Arland came out, he was "sunny side up" (hence the back labour), was a brow presentation (his forehead first rather than the back of his head), and the umbilical cord was wrapped around his neck twice. Yeah, talk about a statistical anomaly. His face was completely bruised, his nose pushed down & off to one side, and his chin was all pushed in. He looked like he had taken a real beating. The first thing I heard the pediatrician say was "Wow, that's the funniest looking kid I've ever seen". Ok, that probably wasn't the most appropriate thing for him to say, but honestly I didn't care. At least he was MY funny looking kid!

Arland was born 7lbs 15oz, Oct 23 @ 3:48am - right on his due date!

I had to have a few stitches, which unfortunately was done by a doc that was still training. I started screaming from the pain & the other doc came over & gave her heck b/c she messed up the local freezing (maybe she forgot to give it to me or something??) It took about a 1/2 hour for her to finish & I really wanted to kick her in the head! Otherwise I healed quite quickly & nicely, as I was walking around on my own right away & what not. All the nurses kept saying that I'm made for having babies & I'll have to come back next year...

More on the following weeks to come...