Saturday, December 23, 2006

I hate natural childbirth

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Ok, I realize it has been ages since I posted anything... but hey, I had a baby so I have an excuse. Olivia Joy was born on December 8 at 7:30 am weighing 8 lbs 14 ozs. She is beautiful and I can't believe I am so blessed as to finally have a daughter! Olivia has proven girls are different than boys, in every possible way. Her birth was completely different from her brothers and she has been altogether different ever since. I must tell you all that I REALLY hate natural childbirth. For those of you moms out there who chose to have your child without the aid of pain reducing drugs and you did this willingly and completely on purpose... I think you're insane. (no offense or anything) Seriously. I had epidurals with both my boys and then had natural childbirth forced on me with Olivia because she came too fast. It was awful. Really. Seriously more pain than any woman should ever have to endure. Now perhaps some of you are thinking I am a wimp. Yes. I am. But let me tell you the story before you judge me too harshly.

I went in to my doctor's appointment on Tuesday, December 5, 38 weeks pregnant and having been told I would be induced. I had been having "false labour" for over a month. My doctor checked me and told me I was dilated to 3 and labour was "imminent" so he would just "strip" my membranes. If ever a doctor tells you he is about to do this run. Fast. Away. It hurts. And in my particular case was completely ineffective. All it did was give me really painful and useless contractions for the next two days. The doctor told us we were not to leave Saskatoon (we live 2.5 hrs away) since I would be going into labour any minute. Unfortunately I did NOT go into labour that day, or the next, and finally I was admitted to the hospital on Thursday morning to get induced. They checked me again and informed me nothing had changed in two days of pain. They then gave me a drug to start labour. In theory this drug was supposed to ease me into contractions which would hurry things along. What it ended up doing was giving me intense contractions less than a couple minutes apart which I endured for the next 24 hours with little to no changes. Finally things got going Friday morning and I went from 6 cm dilated to Olivia being out in less than 20 minutes. It was while this was going on that I was informed I didn't have time for an epidural or any other medication to ease my suffering. I did NOT handle this news graciously. I yelled "I can't believe that I have been in labour here for over 24 hours and NOW we don't have time for an epidural?". And then I told them to gas me. Seriously. I also told them I didn't believe in natural childbirth. The nurse told me to quiet down. She said "all that moaning will just give you a sore throat and me a headache so just be quiet and have this baby". So I did. One push. That's it. And out she came. And then I almost passed out.

Once everything was done the nurses all told me how well I did blah blah blah. Personally I think that after a woman endures natural childbirth someone should come in with a cheque for large sums of money and gifts and prizes of some sort. But no. All you get is the sweet relief from the pain. Almost as good. And lest you think my tale is through ... some of you may not know that after you have a baby the nurses main goal is to get you up and into a shower. This is to prove you can still walk and function in some semi-coherent way and also to wash off all the ... yucky stuff of childbirth. So I was helped in this task by Bill the male nurse. For some reason this was strange to me. I don't really know why considering the man had just seen me give birth, heard me yelling for drugs, etc. but for some reason it felt strange to have a man helping me shower. It was just weird. However I must say that he was a great nurse. I bet he enjoyed telling all his buddies the story of the crazy lady he helped that morning (me). Anyway, after Bill the nurse helped me look presentable again we were finally moved to a room to process the ordeal which we had endured and enjoy our new daughter. In case I haven't mentioned it yet, Olivia is beautiful and perfect and lovely and I am so thrilled to have a daughter and yes, all the pain was worth it to get her.

However, I did get my tubes tied the very next morning. Honest. I am all done. No more babies for me. My anesthesiologist for my surgery was a lovely man with 9 (yes, 9) children. I informed him that I had actually hoped to meet him (and his drugs) the day before and he told me that his wife had an epidural for all 9 of her children. I should think so with the drug doctor for your hubby. So I am all frozen from about the neck down and the sheet is up so I can't see them cutting into my belly button (that really is where they cut to tie tubes) and my doctor leans over the sheet and says "by the way, there is a 4 in 1000 failure rate with this surgery but don't worry, it won't happen to you". The way I see it that would almost be typical of my life to get pregnant after having my tubes tied. Classic. If that happens you can find me at the nearest psych ward hooked up to heavy medication and rocking back and forth continuously. I really am done.

The transition to three children actually hasn't been as bad for me as the transition from one to two. That is likely because Olivia is such a peaceful baby. The only snag we've hit is that she seems to have her days and nights a bit mixed up and sleeps unbelievably well all day and then wants to eat pretty much continuously all night. I am tired. She would also like to be held 24 hours a day. She hates being put down for any reason. She also hates having baths. HATES it. Screams at the top of her lungs like I am trying to drown her or something. Poor kid. I am loving all the pink and purple girly clothes that I get to put on her. Girl clothes are way cuter than boy clothes.

Speaking of boys, my boys have adjusted relatively well to the massive intrusion into their world. They like Olivia, they mostly ignore her since she doesn't do much right now. Aiden wakes up to her crying at night and doesn't approve of that at all. He has commented often "that baby cries ALL night" with much disdain. He really is a tragically light sleeper so it has been tough on him. Owen has been extra clingy and extremely attached to his blankie and suckie. I am sure he is feeling ousted from his much loved spot as the baby of the family. I feel bad for him.

It actually has been quite heartbreaking for me to watch his transition from baby to middle child. He is a wonderfully snuggly little boy and every time I have to turn him away from a snuggle because I am feeding Olivia it about kills me. Aiden has never been as snuggly and he also makes his needs more obviously known by screaming them at the top of his lungs. He sure knows how to get attention in any case. All this to say that as long as I stay home I feel relatively ok with my three kids. Leaving the house however I still find completely overwhelming. Wrangling my two boys while breastfeeding my daughter and carrying a diaper bag just doesn't seem like an enjoyable outing to me. Perhaps I have a touch of agrophobia (fear of open spaces right?) or maybe there is a term for "fear of taking three children out and going completely insane".

For those of you who knew me post-partum with my boys I am thrilled to say I have not (yet) entered the trows of post-partum depression. This is a first for me. Perhaps God has been unbelievably gracious to me and spared me from it this time. I sure hope so. It was the thing I was most scared of when we found out we were going to have Olivia. Post-partum depression is an unbelievable nightmare that I never want to experience again. It could still happen, I know this. But so far so good and wow, now I understand why some moms actually enjoy newborns. It really helps when you don't want to throw yourself off the nearest bridge!

Ok, I'm going to post this before something happens and it never gets done!
 
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