Thursday, July 3, 2008

The story of Emma's birth

The story of Emma's birth begins a few days ago. Last week Krista was experiencing a lot of changes. She had lost her mucous plug and she had a little bit of blood a few times the following days. These are all normal activities and usually mean birth is coming soon. Looking at our schedule I told Krista she was going to go into labor on Monday 6/30. The reason? Moving day.

All of our stuff from the trailer in Gainesville was arriving on a truck at 8 am. There would be no worse time for Emma to come. The day before the move, I lined up some backup with our neighbors to make sure our stuff made it in the house at least. I had envisioned rushing off to the hospital and having the truck driver call me and me telling him, "just drive around a while." In the end, that wasn't a problem. Krista got up early with me and I dropped her off at the house on my way to work. She then met the truck driver at 8. The movers (two other guys), were late though and their story requires a brief digression.

The movers were about 1 hour and 45 minutes late. When they finally arrived they told Krista and the driver that they got lost. They were locals, but apparently couldn't find our house. They had taken a wrong turn and ended up lost on some country roads. While driving around a while they "accidentally" ran a stop sign in front of a cop. They got pulled over. While speaking with the police officer, they asked for directions. He gave them a warning and they arrived shortly later.
Now back to the story. With the driver and the movers unloading, our house was quickly filling with stuff. Krista was acting as a traffic director, telling them where to take everything. She tried to take it easy, but if you know Krista you know that is not easy for her. Either way, she was stressed and tired and she laid down and rested as much as possible. When I got off work we decided that the house was close enough to put-together for us to spend the night. The only condition, though, was that the kitties had to come.

It was now about 6 pm on Monday and we were heading to the apartment. First, we made a stop at Target and failed to purchase a crib mattress (on recall, the register refused to sell it to us). We did, however, succeed at buying a whole bunch of other stuff. We then got to the house and packed up the clothes and kitty supplies and a variety of other things. We then caught the cats and went back to the apartment. We unloaded the car (I did anyway) and let the cats out of the bags (carriers). After resting for a little bit, we went to Wal-Mart to get some food (they were the only store open at 11 pm and a mattress. This time we succeeded at buying a mattress and when we made it home, we were done for the night. Or so we thought.

Upon arriving at home, we put clean sheets on the bed and set up a shower curtain and took care of the food and a few other random things like that. When we were ready for bed we laid down and were reflecting on the day we just had and on the future ahead. We were in bed for maybe five minutes when Krista said, startled, "Is that a cat?" I said, "No." She then replied,"Oh, so it was you?" I told her her no again and was a little curious at this point. All of a sudden, Krista sprung out of bed and yelled, "My water broke!" After some back and forth about "Really?" and "Yeah!" followed by a "What do I do?" I told her to get ready and clean herself up a little and lets go to the hospital. After about 5 minutes at the house, we were on the road. It was 12:15 am Tuesday, 7/1/08.

Now I must briefly discuss my irritation with the traffic engineers in Charlotte and Monroe. At this time of night in Gainesville I would have expected quite a bit of traffic still and stop lights would be expected. Monroe, however, is the type of town that shuts down at 9 pm. Charlotte isn't much better with everything closing at 10 pm. Well once we were on the road we hit nearly every single stop light between Monroe and Charlotte (about 30 miles). During this time I think I saw 3 cars cross in front of us. We were on the major highway in the area. Come on Charlotte/Monroe, use yellow flashing lights after 12 am! I would appreciate it.

We arrived at the hospital around 1 in the morning. By the time we got there, Krista was having some major contractions. I dropped her off at the emergency room and parked the car. I met her upstairs as she was being moved into a room. The nurse then came in and Krista said as nicely as she was able, "I want my epidural, NOW!" The nurse then questioned her as she was confused. After all, why would you want an epidural when you are coming in for your second C-section? "What?" We have a mistake. Apparently Kristal Wilson was coming in as well for a second C-section. We corrected the nurse and assured her that at no time previously had a baby been cut out of Krista's abdomen. She then left and quickly returned with the correct file. She also immediately told us we had to move. We were not in a labor and delivery room yet.

When we got in our new room, Krista was having really strong, painful contractions. They had to get her admitted and an IV started before they can do the epidural. During this time, Krista's uterus was contracting more than it was "relaxing". On the monitor, her contractions would go off the top of the scale when they start, stay there for 3-4 minutes and then drop to a moderate level for 30-45 seconds before the next one would strike. Finally, around 2:30 am, everything was finished and Krista's epidural was set. The pain almost immediately disappeared. Krista went from screaming/crying pain to pain free inside of 5 minutes. Definitely go for the epidural if you are having a baby. You won't regret it.

When we checked in at 1 am, Krista was around 2 cm. No change from the state she was in for the last two weeks. At 2:30 am, she had progressed to 3 cm. Typically, you can expect about 1 cm/hour during labor. At this point we figured we were on track for a late morning delivery. The doctor said we would basically just try to rest with the epidural 'til morning and then we would get serious about getting the baby out. Krista's body, however, had other plans. While Krista was resting (and I was sleeping) with the epidural her body was working. Around 5 am Krista was feeling a little more pressure and when the nurse came in, there was some blood. She decided to check Krista to see what kind of progress we were having. It was around 5:30 and I was starting to wake up. As the checked Krista, her face changed. She then said, "You're ready to go." I said, immediately awake,"Are you serious?" "Uh-Huh." The baby was coming.

(TMI warning) The doctor came in and decided we would let Krista "labor-down" until 6:30 am. This stage basically allows Krista's uterus to push the baby some more before Krista starts the hard work of pushing. When 6:30 rolled around, the nurse and I held Krista's legs and she started pushing. A few minutes later, Emma was crowning and you could see her hair. A few more minutes of pushing and it was time for the doctor to step in. Krista pushed some more and Emma's heart rate decelerated some. At this point the decision was made to perform an episiotomy (make cuts to Krista's vagina to aid in delivery). Once performed, Emma squirted out within seconds. Squirted is a good word, by the way. The doctor made a funny face and was trying to dodge streams of amniotic fluid. We thought it was pretty funny afterward. Anyway, the good part of the story happened. Emma Ruth was born. It was 6:53 am.

What followed was a rush of movement as they plopped Emma on Krista's chest and starting taking care of her. I cut the cord and they rushed her to the side room. As I mentioned earlier, Emma was pretty quiet. I followed and we checked her out. Following birth, her heart rate was tachycardic (fast) for a couple minutes. She quickly recovered though and checked out healthy. Since then, she has passed all the tests and looks to be as healthy as can be. In retrospect, Krista and I figured Emma just didn't want us spending a night in the new house by ourselves. She wanted us to be there as a family first.

Below I've included the last pictures of Krista while she was pregnant. Both were taken after the epidural had kicked in.



1 comment:

Federico said...

Beautiful!
Brandon’s comments and feeling toward Emma and Krista are, together, what separates a father from an ordinary man…
Federico