An hour went by… I was in every position — using the bar, on my side, in the tub, on the ball, squatting. Two hours went by… The midwife checked me and the baby was still at 0 station. My mom and my husband used a rebozo. Three hours went by… Still at 0 station. The midwife checked to make sure the baby’s head wasn’t transverse, in which case I asked her to try to turn it. She said the baby was positioned properly.
She mentioned that I should consider a cesarean. Me? No way. The baby’s heart rate was very strong and never went down through my labor, so I decided I was going to keep pushing. Four hours went by… Still at 0 station. The midwife’s shift was over and another midwife joined us. She said she’d check me again in hour. After five hours of pushing, the baby was still at 0 station. And then I wasn’t given any more options. They called for a cesarean.
The next hour is blurry. I remember the doctor coming in to introduce herself, meeting the anesthesiologist, signing papers and praying that each surge would bring this baby down and I could have the birth I had so diligently prepared for.
I wish I had been able to find peace in the situation but I was a terrified wreck as they wheeled me away from Doug and my tearful mom on the way to surgery. As they rolled me past the doctor and I sobbed uncontrollably, she called out, “Don’t cry! You’re going to a birthday party!” And while she was trying to lighten the mood and my cesarean was a routine birth in her eyes, her organs weren’t about to be sitting on a sterile table. Forgive me for not finding the joy in her statement.
After a first failed attempt at administering the spinal when I flinched and then was scolded for reacting to someone stabbing me with a sharp object, I was laid down and covered with a curtain. As the pain melted away, I held the midwife’s hands and asked, “Am I going to be ok?”
Everything was surreal at that point. When my husband was allowed in the room, we exchanged bewildered looks. This was it. I could feel the pulling and tugging, knowing that in any second I would hear my baby for the first time. We didn’t know the gender, so the doctor asked my husband to take a look. He sat down, looked at me and asked, “Do you want to know?” I’m sure I rolled my eyes. This was the moment I was waiting for! Well, not this exact moment. The way I imagined it had me lifting my baby out from under the water in a warm, dimly lit room and bringing him/her right up to my chest before I took a peek to check out who this new little person was. Instead, I hadn’t seen my baby yet. It’s a boy! And we proudly told his name to everyone in the room.