Benjamin Phillip Cathey started to make his arrival mid-morning on Friday December 5th. I went to work as usual, attended a couple of routine meetings, and begin treating patients aided (ok entirely completed) by my student. I was sitting on a stool outside a patient's room around 10:30 a.m. when I felt a tremendous amount of pressure in my nether regions and decided to stand up for relief only to find I was 'peeing' my pants. "Yikes" I thought, I didn't even sneeze...how embarrassing! As I began to walk the length of the hall towards the bathroom I realized that I was still 'going' so I took off my lab coat and tied it around my waist. By the time I got to the break room I was wet to the knee and seriously doubting this was urine! I continued to gush so I called Brad and then my OB's office and was instructed to come in to the office for an exam (the office is in front of the hospital where I delivered). When I got to the OB, I had an exam to confirm that my membranes had ruptured and was found to be 1 cm dilated and 50% effaced w/ baby boy at station -3...meaning he had 'floated' out of his -1 station. I was then instructed to head over to labor and delivery.
Once at L & D, I labored peacefully for many hours, fully intending to go unmedicated for as long as possible. I got to have dinner around 5 because I was unmedicated. Around 7:30 p.m. my contractions were picking up and I had a nice hot shower for some pain relief. I was examined and found to be at station -1, 100% effaced and 3 cm dilated. My wonderful nurse then gave me the thumbs up for the jacuzzi tub and I spent 1 glorious hour in the lovely water humming and breathing away my labor pains w/ Brad faithfully at my side massaging my neck and offering me ice chips and my mom and BFF Jenn as his side kicks helping as needed. My older brother Chad and my two blondie nieces joined us in in jacuzzi room (w/ me sporting a gown for coverage) and I managed to labor w/o scaring the kiddos for the full hour (although I'm pretty sure Paige will be fully detered from being coming pregnant until she is at an appropriate age and state of marriage! LOL). Once that hour was up, I dreaded exiting the tub because my contractions were really picking up. After examined, I was then found to be at station 0, 6 cm dilated, and 100% effaced. Soon after that I was feeling pretty ready for medication and asked for an epidural. I was less than pleasant for the time between asking and receiving the epi (go a head Jenn interject the understatement that was, LOL). By the time I got my epidural, I was 8 cm dilated, 100% effaced and @ station +1. The sweet relief couldn't have come soon enough! LOL! And I had what nursing staff called the perfect epi. I was still able to move my legs to independently change positions in the bed. I even let my in-laws come in to see me! I hung out at 8 cm for a long time and was informed that baby boy was sunny side up, explaining the tremendous pain I had been having in my back and sacrum! Ouch! I was set-up to "labor down" for more than an hour but baby boy was unable to descend because of his face up position. I had progressed to 10 cm dilated but baby boy was still at station +1.
Things got scary from this point on. His heart rate began to steeply decelerate w/ my contractions and w/ the late arrival of the doc the last stage of labor was a rushed, panicky blur. I got oxygen and the doc got forceps and a neonatal team arrived! Ugh! When everyone in the room begins to whisper, it's time to worry! After a quick and radical episiotomy, it was forceps in, unrelenting pushing (I was all about pushing at this stage bc the doc was welding forceps and leveraging on baby boys head as if he were trying to remove it!) and I think the whole room held it's breath for a full 5 minutes in anticipation. BUT out he came! I was scared to death that the deep forceps marks would indicate some irreversible neurological damage or worse his mucousy breathing would cease but he proved to be a strong little guy.
After some suctioning and a good rub down he was given a hat and blanket and returned to my lap for adoration. And what a beautiful baby! Never have I seen such a perfect little being! I've heard many people say it and now I believe it...Love at first sight! We are now on day 5 of his brief life and my love for him as increased 10 fold. Last night was heavenly, he stirred to wake 5 minutes before my alarm was set each time, didn't cry w/ his diaper changes, and settled peacefully back to sleep each time. I am a lucky girl! More pics to come I promise!
“A good memory is one that can remember the day's blessings
and forget the day's troubles”
and forget the day's troubles”