12:00 pm on Friday the 17th: Started pushing.
Knocked out 3 sets of 3 pushes.
12:08 pm: Luce is here.
Just kidding, but basically that's the story. I can't help but laugh lol. This is so far removed from Henry's birth story. This time around I had an elective induction. I went this route for a few reasons. One being that Sean only had one week of vacation and it was already scheduled for the 20th through the 24th. And the other big reason was my platelet count that they had been monitoring for months. If it was too low (which it was for the longest time), then I couldn't have an epidural if I chose to. We wanted to make our move while we were in the clear. An induction meant we had to go in Thursday night so that I could receive a Cervadil. Thursday night involved a lot of poking and prodding and laying in bed. Sean and I spent our last few hours alone together. We talked, laughed watched some tv and ate Jimmy John's as my "last meal." They stop letting you eat Thursday night, which is tough haha. They woke us pretty early Friday morning, about 4:30 am. They started me on fluids and checked on my progress. Around 7 am they started my Pitocin. By 8 am they broke my water. I elected to get an epidural and to get it early because I tried to ride it out with Henry and ended up waiting too long. They called the anesthesiologist in at 8:15. This was the point where I became emotional. It was painful and I felt extra pressure on my right side and every horrid memory from my last birth came rushing back. The nurse immediately asked me if I was ok and I had to describe the pain to her and let her know that I was just emotional. I started feeling like I couldn't do it again and I was embarrassed that Sean was seeing me in such a vulnerable state. Sean has seen me at my worst and most vulnerable many times before, but never when I was about to give birth to his daughter. My nurse was amazing though and reassured me that everything was going to be incredible, quick and easy. It helped that the epidural kicked in immediately and I literally could not feel a thing. Which was the complete opposite with H. Every time she checked me, when she broke my water and even hooked up my catheter, I couldn't feel a thing. With Henry, I swear I felt every single detail, no exaggeration. They upped my Pitocin from a 2 to an 8 around 10:30 am and continued to monitor me and check my progression. Every 20 minutes or so she'd let me know that we were getting closer. Around 11:40 am she checked me and said I was at a 6. She had me do a practice push and she was like, "Yep, that's it, she's there! We're going to have a baby!!" I thought to myself "Well yeah we all knew I'd have a baby today." Next thing I know she's on her phone and the nurses start flooding in. They wheeled in carts of tools, a light and mirror descended from the ceiling and the doc popped in to get an update. I was like, "OH, we're going to have a baby NOW!" I kid you not, I looked at the clock at straight up noon. The nurse had me do one set of pushes and proceeded to tell me, "Excellent job, the doc will be right over to catch your baby." Catch my baby, WHAT?! Haha. The pushes were fairly easy, all I could feel was the pressure from the top of each contraction. Sean had to hold my legs and push them to my chest because they were literally lifeless. On the third set of pushes I could feel the release. I felt Luce leave my body. Luce was born at 12:08 pm, Friday the 17th of February. I leaned up to see her and tried to grab her. Sean stood by my side and cut her little cord. My doctor got me stitched up (I didn't have to feel every stitch this time) while they placed Luce on my chest for skin to skin, all goopy and all. It was perfect. It was amazing. It was the experience of a lifetime and what I always imagined childbirth to be like. I feel like that experience was stolen from me with Henry. Things didn't go as planned at all and I was not properly taken care of by the staff. This time, however, I felt overwhelmed with joy, I felt the chance to immediately bond with my baby, I felt taken care of, I felt HAPPY. I cried like a baby because I'd never felt anything like it. Sean cried too and the nurses and my doctor praised us. They told us we were rockstars and that we made a beautiful baby girl. Of course they thought she was so beautiful that they asked if my doctor could take her picture with her to blow up on a canvas for the hospital. Luce and I immediately started working on nursing and we spent the next few hours loving on her and soaking up our first moments together. The night was spent getting to know Luce and welcoming visitors. It was the best day. We are so fortunate and so blessed. Thank you to all of our visitors, our families and our friends. Thank you to the hospital staff. Thank you Sean for standing by my side, being supportive and encouraging me the entire way. We did it, babe. She's beautiful and they say she looks just like you. You've given me an amazing gift and I'll treasure her forever. I love you. <3
I am extremely sore and soooo crazy swollen, but somehow the pain feels like nothing this time around. It is nowhere near the recovery that last time was. We've already made trips to the mall, target, the park and little walks here and there. The worst part now is getting used to a tongue-tied baby nursing again.