My birth story is finally here! I know that some of you requested to read about it and that’s one of the reasons I published it. I know that birth stories can be all different as every pregnancy is. But as a first-time mom, you never know what to expect from the big day. I read and heard so many birth stories, including my mom’s. But, I wanted to make mine or Luciana’s birth story public because I think it can help other moms to be. Yes, that’s the main reason. I want YOU- MOM TO BE- to consider that we are all fearless and strong when the big day comes.
I didn’t have any issues at all during my pregnancy. It was the most amazing and beautiful experience so far. Carrying your child for nine months in the womb makes you a whole different human. You’re thinking about taking care of that tiny human the best way you can.
That’s what I just did! I took care of my diet. That is, I only ate home-cooked meals and if I was out of the home, I will read carefully the menu and choose an appropriate place/restaurant to eat.
Before my pregnancy, my weight was 115 pounds. During pregnancy, my weight was 140 pounds. It was all baby belly! After pregnancy, I am currently at 126 pounds. I know that some people want to lose all the baby weight, but in my case, I don’t. I’ve always struggled with gaining weight. This is due to my fast losing weight metabolism. So, these extra 11 pounds left make me so happy! Guess I’ll make another blog post about it. Lol.
Any-who, I traveled to Europe during my third trimester. I was advised by one of my doctors to take an aspirin a few days before my travel. However, I dismissed it because I thought I would not need it. I’m glad that I didn’t take it as I was perfectly fine during my entire trip in Europe. For those of you wondering: yes, my doctors approved my travels. So, there was not anything that I should have been worried about right?!
As any other human being, I am not painless. I will usually get some back/hips pain due to my pregnancy. But, for any kind of pain I felt during my pregnancy (including migraines) I didn’t take a single painkiller. Every time I will get those horrible hips pain I will remind myself that those pain were a type of training pain. My mindset was that if I could handle them without medication I could get a natural labor. Therefore, for me to be at that stage of mind where I didn’t take a single medication is what makes me ask myself: why did I have to get induced before my due date? I was “induced” although at the end I didn’t. (Keep reading to know how this birth story ends!)
I guess that if I should have gotten more ultrasounds I would have been able to avoid my “induction”. After my trip to Europe, I got one last ultrasound. That’s when doctors discovered that my amniotic liquid was low. Unfortunately, I already suspected it. That’s why I insisted the doctors to perform one last ultrasound. Luckily, one of them agreed. That same day that I had the ultrasound I was told to stay at the hospital and that they were already expecting me to arrive.
You could never imagine how I felt. I felt devastated and happy at the same time. I felt devastated because I wanted to keep my baby until the due date. However, I felt happy because I was going to finally meet her and kiss her. She was at 39 weeks so she was considered full term. That’s why I was not worried. On the other hand, the doctor was worried because he thought the amount of liquid left might not make it until the due date.
When I arrived at the hospital the doctor told me that I was going to get Cervidil and Pitocin. I was already 75% effaced, baby’s head was at -2 and 0 dilated. So, I felt confident that I was going to see my baby soon!
I was having some contractions before and I could handle the pain. So, I didn’t know what a strong birth contraction felt like. I was still in the mindset of getting a natural birth. That is without an epidural or any other painkillers.
I was admitted at 11 in the morning. By 4 in the afternoon the nurse placed the Cervidil into my cervix. Yes, that HURTS so horribly! I guess it hurts more than the actual pushing out the baby. I had to keep myself from going to the restroom for about two hours after the Cervidil was placed. Meanwhile, I kept having some “usual” contractions (Braxton hicks). Although this time I could see on the contractions monitor that their magnitude and amplitude was intense. I felt proud that I could stand those type of contractions. It was around 2 in the morning when I started to feel pretty intense contractions. I was advised by the doctor to sleep through the night. They were able to give me a sleeping pill, but I rejected it. Therefore, I didn’t sleep at all.
It was 2 in the morning, and the nurse came to tell me that she called the doctor and she said that it was time to get that Cervidil out. Okay- here the tremendous pain comes again. After that horrible episode, I am able to have breakfast (I had a grilled cheese sandwich and gelatin) my first meal after 12 hours. Yes, it tasted so yummy!
After I’m done with my yummy meal I get in the shower. While I was in the shower I could barely stand up, I was having super intense contractions. I thought it was due to the Cervidil, but the first one did not do anything, so the doctor told the nurse to put another one into my cervix. That second Cervidil made me cry. The pain was just unbearable. This is because the nurse couldn’t get to my cervix so it was totally painful. Okay, I waited out the two hours and then I went to the restroom. It was around 6:30 in the morning when the contractions were frequent and intense. That’s when I tried all the birth pain management positions and none of them help at all. I got to bed again and my husband was touching and holding my hand, so that’s when I told him to just stand up there as I didn’t want to be touched or held hands. I felt like I could go through the pain without being touched. Lol. I felt also nauseous, so I decided to use my old friends: Sea-Bands. You can read how these wrists bands help me survive my first trimester here. (Yes, these Sea-Bands work!) (No, it’s not an ad.) It was around 7:30 in the morning that I felt the dead sleeping symptom. It was like I wanted to sleep so bad, but the contractions (they were 2-3 minutes apart) were waking me up. So I wanted to sleep, but at the same time, I wanted to be awake. This is because if I was falling asleep when a contraction hit me so bad that I never thought a pain could be that hard.
It was around 9 in the morning when my mom said that I should get checked because I was having symptoms that reminded of her when she gave birth to me. I didn’t want to get checked down there because it was extremely painful due to the contraction pain. My husband was skeptical that I was in labor as I was told to wait until 4 in the afternoon to get out the Cervidil and get the Pitocin. So, I didn’t know what to do.
That’s when the nurse kept asking me if I could allow her to check me. I was in the in between. All I knew is that labor pain plays somehow with your brain that you think you understand what people are saying, but then you fell asleep. When I experienced that I forgot what the nurse said and also why I was there. It’s like you are in another galaxy.
At that point, I didn’t have any painkiller or narcotics to ease the pain. The labor nurse asked me again if I wanted an epidural. I said no. I told her that I wanted a natural birth. That’s when she responded to me: “but, it’s the time to get you one, if not we would not be able to get you an epidural and the labor pain can last until tomorrow afternoon.” I just didn’t care anymore for how long the labor pain could possibly last. I felt like I was already in so much pain and that I could make it.
This is one of the messages my labor nurse wrote to me. She was such as sweet angel!
I trusted God, the Virgin Mary and myself that I could give birth to my baby naturally. I wanted to give birth naturally because having an epidural could lead you to long-lasting secondary effects. So, I prefer to suffer two days but not my whole life if anything would be gotten wrong with the epidural.
…Here Comes Baby Luciana!
Well, it was 9 in the morning when the nurse checked on me and I was already 4 cm dilated. It was 10 in the morning when I was 7-8 cm dilated. at 10:34 I was 9 cm dilated, and that was when my water broke. I felt like my back hips were breaking into two pieces. I could hear and see so many nurses talking to me, moving things, the doctor getting ready and encouraging me by saying “look at all that hair”, “you’re doing great”, “you’re doing it spectacularly”; my mom smiling at me and telling me I was doing it awesome, my husband kept peaceful and confident; all of that helped me so much.
At 10:50 I gave birth to my baby girl Luciana after 16 minutes of pushing (I pushed sometimes for 20-30 seconds, I also didn’t push when the doctor told me not to.) It was a total of 8 hours of labor that I went through. These 8 hours have been the most painful and remarkable of my entire life.
Everyone in the room was amused that I gave birth without an epidural; that I didn’t need a Pitocin; that my labor was super fast and strong and that I could handle it. The nurse told me that only 5% of pregnant women in that hospital gave birth naturally. And that she was amazed that I could make it without a single painkiller dose. The doctor told me that I should write a book about it. Lol.
After giving birth I guess I won’t go to the gym until in 6 months probably. Lol. That was the most tremendous workout a body and mind can go through. I’m glad that hiking the volcanoes, riding road bikes, doing exercise and eating healthy– all of that- help me to get a fast natural labor.
Oh, I almost forgot to mention, the second Cervidil didn’t work as it fell off sometime when I got up to go to the restroom. So, now I can say I was not induced. My baby girl Luciana wanted to make her appearance into this world without any decision other than God’s and herself.
I will live up to the moments, the first time I saw Luciana with the umbilical cord, I held her in my arms and the time we made eye contact. She is and forever be my sweetest baby. She was announced by the Virgin of Monserrat and she is all that I’ve ever dreamed!