Claire Madelyn Bertoch is here!! She made her debut on April 11th!
So Saturday night April 9th I started having some braxton hicks contractions. Now I am lucky in the fact that 1. I never get them until it is close to giving birth, and 2. They dont hurt. It is just a really tightening sensation that makes it harder me to breath for a few seconds. I was so excited when I started having those because when it happened last time with Bailey, I went into labor early that next morning. Well Sunday morning came and nothing happened. The braxton hicks stopped and it was like any other day. My due date was Tuesday the 12th, so it shouldn’t have been a huge surprise, but I was definitely disappointed that nothing was progressing. I had no idea if I was dilated or not because my cervix hadnt been checked at all since I wasnt having any contraction signs. Plus I mentioned to my doctor that with Bailey, I was a zero pretty much up til labor, so I never had a cervix check.
Sunday comes and goes and we head to bed. I am a bit cranky and tired of the aches and pains that come with being so close to the end of pregnancy. Plus, Bailey had been waking up the last few nights from nightmares, so I was pretty exhausted.
Well, at about 3am I wake up for my usual turn over so my hips can share the load of the weight while I sleep, when I feel a gush. Did I wet the bed? I sit up even further and another huge gush comes. This time I am sure. My water broke! This came as a huge surprise since my water never broke on it’s own with Bailey, and my doctor said that because of that, the likelihood of it breaking on it’s own was pretty minimal. So this was the last thing I was expecting to start my labor! I nudge Adam and exclaim that my water broke and I think he levitated out of bed and into clothes so fast he looked like a blur. Meanwhile since I still wasnt having any contractions, I decided I wanted to at least take a shower since I felt like I had plenty of time and wanted to feel clean. Adam was hesitant…but made me promise it would be quick haha. On our way out we left the baby monitor with Adam’s mom Stacey to listen for Bailey while we left for the hospital. She flew in Thursday because we felt like Claire would come a bit early; we are so grateful she was here with us! She was a life savor! Bailey had so much fun with Gramma!
We made it to labor and delivery around 3:45am and they set us up in a room to check things out before admitting me. I still wasnt having any contractions at this point, so they were trying to figure out how much or if my water had broken. A speculum and cervix check later and they said I was “grossly ruptured” for my amniotic sac (so my water definitely broke…which I could have told them myself…) and I was dilated to a 2/3. Since I tested positive once again for the strep b bacteria like I did with Bailey, I needed to get started on antibiotics.
Once I get admitted to my room to wait for my IV placement and get all hooked to the machines at around 4:20am, my contractions start coming, but they are pretty minimal. There were some crazy things going on in the hospital, they had 3 ladies check in for having babies around the same time I did that were having babies right that second…2 of them had them in the car on the way there! So things were pretty intense haha but I wasnt in pain, so waiting wasnt an issue for me at that moment.
UMC is a medical training hospital, so I have seen many medical students during my pregnancy check ups. Since I have pretty textbook pregnancies, it doesnt bother me, doctors have to learn somehow right? The only exception this entire time of seeing students that I had a tougher experience with, was the girl who put in my IV. She searched around for a vein and decided to do it in my wrist instead of my hand. I was hesitant because I have really good hand veins and was confused for her choice in my wrist, but I decided to trust her and let her make the call. Now, those who know me know I have 2 fears: needles and blood. So anytime I get blood taken or shots or whatever, I cannot look at it without getting a bit woozy or anything. So I get ready and she pokes my wrist with the large needle and I get electricity throughout my hand. It hurt soooo bad! She is trying to maneuver it around and find the right spot and I am trying to pick a spot to focus on rather than the pain, and she says she is having a hard time filling the last vial of blood she has to take because my blood is clotting. She moves it around more aggressively and calls another young student nurse who is in the room for what to do and how to do it….and I am starting to break out into a sweat. Like drenched in sweat. I start to see spots and things start to get muffled and I am trying to focus on Adam’s face, but I cant quite make it out, it was blurry. The nurses kinda freak out and start having me smell some alcohol swabs to keep me from passing out and fanning me with their clipboard. Finally one of them decides to get blood from my other arm while the first nurse finishes placing my IV. Whew. That is the closest I have ever gotten to passing out. I felt like such a wimp that an IV placement gave me that kind of reaction…but gosh the wrist hurt so bad! It continued to ache and throb for hours afterward. (I ended up with a huge swollen bruise even after they took it out, and even right now I am still black and blue and tender).
After the IV was placed and I chilled in the room for a while, and around 5:45am the contractions really started picking up. However, I was nervous to get the epidural after almost passing out from the IV, but Adam was more afraid of me being in pain too much later and gently reminded me that I would want it. Once they decided they were going to give me pitocin to get contractions really started at about 7:20am I agreed and called for an epidural. They had a resident give it to me while the anesthesiologist watched over him…so I was really nervous! But the anesthesiologist doctor was an older woman who seemed to have a chip on her shoulder…so after meeting her I didnt mind as much having the younger resident administer it. And he did a really great job. It didnt hurt hardly at all. It was a very different sensation of almost metal going down my spine, but it wasnt a painful type feeling. I think they gave me a really strong dose of it right off the bat though because I started feeling reaaaaallly light headed and sooo tired and heavy all over. So they put some fluids in my IV and it helped perked me up. They checked my cervix again around 7:40am and I was only about a 3/4, so I decided to Facetime my mom and Adam was working on some school work. I was going to take a nap at like 8:15am when a nurse came in because she noticed my contractions on the screens were starting to look different. I was checked again and I was dilated to a 10 and ready to start pushing! Adam and I looked at eachother like what?! I was definitely feeling pressure of the contractions, and they were strong, but I didnt think I would have dilated that fast! There was a hustle and bustle as they got the equipment ready. The doctor came in and said she will have me do a couple pushes with the nurse and then she will be in to see how things go. Well it only took 2 pushes for them to tell me to stop because her head was right there! It was so hard not pushing with all the pressure! I had to wait with her right there for the doctor to come in with some medical students for the delivery. A push and a half later and Claire was born at 9:48am! 7 pounds 4 ounces and 20.5 inches long. Adam and I were both crying while they cleaned her up and then put her directly on my chest, it was magical. I was able to hold Claire and cuddle with her while the doctor was teaching the students how to deliver the placenta and place stitches etc. It’s a good thing I had a beautiful fresh baby on my chest so I didnt have to focus on the peanut gallery in the room! haha. Eventually the doctor took over to finish because she was getting frustrated with the girl doing my stitches…hopefully nothing happened down there! haha.
Once everything was cleaned up and Adam and I were there with Claire while waiting for my epidural to wear off, Stacey brought Bailey to meet Claire! It was the sweetest thing! Bailey was so curious and so enamored with her and calling her “so cute” 🙂 It made my heart so happy 🙂 We gave her a little doll when she came to the hospital so that she could have her own little baby, and she loved it. She kept showing Claire her baby and trying to hold her baby like we were holding Claire. It was adorable 🙂
Adam went home with Bailey and Stacey for a bit and Claire and I went to the recovery room upstairs. I was able to breastfeed Claire successfully and healing has been speedy. Since I had tested positive for strep b, they had us stay for 1 extra day, so we did a total of 2 nights in the hospital. Luckily my hospital has an amazing labor and delivery section, my recovery bed was a queen size bed! Adam was able to sleep in bed with me and Claire was in her little hospital bed next to us. It was so comforting. Much better than the couch Adam was squished on in Utah haha.
I had such a fast delivery, have been having a fast recovery, and Claire is healthy and doing great. I am so blessed. I couldnt be happier with my experience and I have less anxiety because I know a bit more this time around how to take care of a newborn 😉 We are now home and adjusting to a family of four 🙂 We are grateful for Stacey being here to help out and spend time with us and make this transition even easier. Bailey loves her little sister and they are so sweet and I could not be happier with my adorable growing little family 🙂
These are our Bits O’ Bertoch.