A Labor of Love


48 Hours…

That is how long my labor and delivery lasted…48 hours.

I ended up having to be induced because of multiple reasons. This was not a good start for my “ideal” labor and delivery I had dreamed of having. I was 10 days past my due date with no end in sight. I had no dilation or effacement and so for that and a few other reasons we had to resort to the induction process. 

But that was ok. As long as our baby was coming out healthy I wanted to do what was best.

Dec 20, 2016. 5:00pm

At this time we showed up to the hospital to start the process and get the medications going that were needed to induce the labor. The first medicine was a cervix softening medication that was to be given for 12 hours and was to jump start the dilation before the Pitocin was started. After 12 hours of continuous mild contractions, and a very restless nights sleep, the doctor came in and checked me. 

Dec 21, 2016. 7:00am
No dilation, no effacement.

They were expecting medication to dilate me to at least 3cm by that point with no such results. So, the Pitocin was going to have to do all the work. Thus, the Pitocin was started and we were off for the hardest part…so I thought. 

Dec 21, 2016. 7:30pm

After hours of grueling contractions that were literally off the chart on the monitors, I was checked again and was only dilated to 3cm by this point. The 3cm that I was supposed to be dilated at the end of the first 12 hours there. The pain levels were so intense that I could hardly breath and the contractions were back to back. My goal and yet another dream of doing it without pain medications was going the window with every contraction that came on. Being that I was only at 3cm by this point, I knew that contractions were only going to get worse. So in the end I did end up with an epidural that was probably my life saver. 

One thing that I didn’t even think about with having an epidural, is the fact that since you are numb, there is no way to move, so the nursing staff had to come in and rotate me side to side every hour or so. Talk about no sleep that night. But at least there was no pain involved so I was thankful for that. 

Dec 22, 2016. Morning time. (I don’t remember the exact time)

The medical staff came in and did the morning check. I was finally dilated to about 8cm I think. It was a relief to see progress. At that time as well, they broke my water. More progress. Yay. 

Dec 22, 2016. 12:00pm

At this time I was checked and fully ready. 10cm dilated, 100% effaced.

The time had come to start pushing! That was a somewhat scary moment for me in many ways. I suddenly had thoughts going through my head that I never imagined would be there during that moment. Thoughts like, “Is this really happening?” “Am I even ready for all of this to happen?” “Am I really ready to be a mom?”  

In that moment I knew my life was about to change forever and there was no going back. I am no longer that girl that had dreamed of being a mom her whole life with no end in sight. I am no longer that wife that had been trying for what seemed like eternity to a baby with no success of treatments. I am now about to be a mom. A title that had seemed so far out of reach that I wasn’t sure it would ever be in my life. But we still had one hurdle to get over. The actual pushing part.

The next 5 hours was the hardest and most exhausting thing that I have ever done. They were even saying that after all the hours I had gone through with labor that I might end having to have a c-section if the baby wouldn’t come out faster. But every time they checked her, she had moved just enough more down the birth canal that would let me keep pushing a little bit longer. Making the total pushing time about 5 hours.

In the end though, her shoulder was stuck behind my hip bone. So, yet another item I was not wanting to happen, happened. They had to use the suction cup on her head to get her out. I ended up with a fourth degree tear and countless stitches. 

Dec 22,2016. 5:13pm

Millie Anne Gilbertson was born. Weighing in at 8 pounds and 20 3/4 inches long. 

Due to the nature of my tear and the repair work that needed to be done, I was not that first one to get to hold her. But my husband was. And what a sight it was. It made me fall in love with him all over again. He is such a proud dad. 

As traumatic of an even as this experience was, and having absolutely none of it go as I wanted it to or had planned, I would do it all over again for her. For my little rainbow baby. She is a dream that has come true and an answer to a prayer that has been prayed since I was about 14 years old. There are a few details here and there that I have left out for the sake of not boring you all to death. Just know that even through the most difficult times, God will get you through. 

He got me through the time of infertility. He got me through this pregnancy. And, He got me through a very tough labor and delivery. He is always there. All of this experience has stretched me, grown me, and brought to a place where I am stronger than I have ever been. Don’t give up! He is there!

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