Nathaniel’s Birth Story

I know it’s been a while since the birth, but I thought I’d post the story of Nathaniel’s birth for anyone who is interested.

My c-section was scheduled for 7:30 am, and we were in labor and delivery ready to go one hour earlier.  I was pretty nervous, but seeing Patrick in what we think were size 67 scrubs helped lighten the mood.  They were just long enough, but you could have put a pregnant woman in there with him and still had room to spare.  At least it wasn’t the marshmallow suit from last time…it wasn’t quite long enough for him to stand all the way up in.  Oh, the things he goes through for me!

My doctor and midwife showed up around 7:30, and they wheeled me across the hall to the operating room.  I had to sit on the edge of the surgical bed holding a pillow and being very still while Matt, my nurse anesthetist, injected the spinal block.  He is quite a pro, because I barely felt a sting the whole five minutes that he worked on me.  As my legs were quickly going numb, the nurses laid me down and stripped me naked.  There is no modesty in surgery!  After that, they put up the surgical curtain between me and the action, so I couldn’t see what they did after that.  I was more focused on the panic attack I was having anyway.  I started to take shallow breaths and beg Matt to just knock me out because I was so scared!  Fortunately, he had warned me earlier that a panic attack can be a side effect of the medicine in my spinal block, so I had known it was coming.  After asking for (and using!) an emesis tray, I felt much better.  The doctor pinched my stomach hard with some metal instrument, and when I didn’t jump, he told me he was ready to go.  My midwife was there assisting him as he made the incision.  Yikes!  But I didn’t feel anything, and I was at ease after that.

If you’ve never had a c-section, it’s hard to describe what it feels like.  It’s very strange!  I didn’t feel pain, but there was always pressure as people cut things and moved things.  Finally, they told me that they were about to cut into the uterus, and that there would be “a lot of pressure.”  Someone pushed down on the top of my abdomen as the doctor pulled out the head, and with a whoosh of stuff coming out (I’ll leave that to your imagination), Nathaniel was born.  The cord was cut and the doctor quickly showed him to me before handing him off to his own nurses.  Patrick followed, and he stayed with Nathaniel while I stayed in surgery for about 20 minutes longer while they closed me up.  While they were doing this, I got updates on Nathaniel.  First, I heard that he was having just a bit of trouble with his breathing, then they told me that they were thinking about taking him to the NICU.  By the time I had been taken back to my room in L&D, he had been taken to the NICU.  I was scared but hopeful, since they said it was just for a few hours of observation.

I got continuous updates from Patrick, the nurses, and the pediatrician as I lay in bed waiting to see my new son and hold him for the first time.  Finally, it was time to be moved to the postpartum room, but my nurse had arranged for my bed to be wheeled into the NICU so I could see and touch Nathaniel.  It was sad not to be able to hold him yet, but I was able to touch him and see that he looked quite healthy at this point.  He had received some oxygen, some medicine through an IV in his head, and some formula since his blood sugar was a bit low, but he was off the oxygen when I saw him, and he looked pink and healthy.

Nathaniel was finally released from the NICU at about 3:30 pm, and Patrick and I got to hold him and I fed him for the first time.  He was and is so beautiful!  Timothy and his Grandparents Griffin met him later that afternoon as well.

Now, at seven weeks old, he is smiling, laughing a little bit, and very interested in what his older brother is doing.  Both boys are a lot of fun!


1 Response to “Nathaniel’s Birth Story”

  1. 1 aunteee April 20, 2008 at 9:28 am

    I think you are so brave!! I’m glad everything went well with the anesthesia and especially the end result – a happy, healthy Nathaniel!!!

    Extra kudos for successfully breastfeeding post-surgery. You’re a star!!!!!!!

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