McKayla was born on Monday, December 5 at 12:39 PM in Timponogas Regional Hospital in Orem, UT. The drama proceeding her arrival is as follows:
Thursday, December 1 I had a routine doctor visit. I was dilated to a 3 and all appeared to be well. I asked the doctor about his policy regarding induction so I would know what to expect. He said he can do an induction as early as 39 weeks and that he would already be at the hospital on Sunday (my 39 week mark) performing an induction. He would be leaving town on Monday, so if I wasn’t induced on Sunday I would likely deliver with a doctor I had never met. I had asked about his induction policy as a point of interest and had assumed I would go into labor naturally with this baby, so I was surprised by the offer. I expressed some uncertainty and asked what effect an early delivery would have on the baby. He said that assuming the estimated delivery date was accurate, baby would be fine and possibly do to better at 39 weeks because it is less likely to pass a stool in-utero.
It was exciting to have the option of delivering a week early, but caught me off-guard, so he suggested I think about it and call back with my decision. I texted Bruce, then called Bruce to get his opinion. Then I called Sarah and then my mom. Everyone seemed to think it was a good idea, it seemed to be good timing for Bruce’s school schedule, and Hailey’s induction went well.
It seemed a little unnerving to choose when to deliver, particularly if anything were to go wrong, but I decided to be induced. I called his office to tell them of my decision. They told me the hospital would call me with details. I expected a call that day, but didn’t hear from the hospital. I called the doctor’s office Friday afternoon, but they could not give me any details. They referred me to the hospital.
I called the hospital and a slightly irritated nurse told me that I would have to wait until Saturday after 6 PM to know what time I would be induced. She explained that elective inductions depended on doctor and room availability. From that conversation, I understood that the doctor schedules the induction time with the hospital and assuming the hospital has room, the induction occurs. So I waited for details and as I waited I became nervous. I read about induction, but all information was about inductions after 40 weeks. I could justify the decision- it was convenient; if the doctor thought there was a risk he wouldn’t have presented the option; lots of babies are born naturally at 39 weeks or less….- but I still felt uneasy.
By Saturday night I wasn’t sure that I wanted to call the hospital for details. I felt committed but also felt nervous. Finally, the nerves subsided and I called the hospital. They told me I had been scheduled for Monday morning. I told them that was fine and we made arrangements.
Monday morning Bruce and I arrived at the hospital at 6AM. We completed the necessary paperwork and met our nurse, Erin. Erin started me on a bag of IV fluids and measured me at 4 1/2cm. Around 7AM Erin asked if we knew that our doctor was out of town. I was surprised. I had considered this situation could happen, but I also thought that the doctor scheduled inductions, so I assumed that he would not schedule an induction while he was gone. However the misunderstanding came about, we were at the hospital halfway through a bag of fluids and needed to decide if we were going to stay and have another doctor deliver me, or if I was going to pay for an NST (I don’t know what it stands for, but it means you were admitted to the hospital and didn’t go into labor). I was torn. I didn’t mind having another doctor deliver, but I wouldn’t have considered an induction originally if I knew my doctor wouldn’t be there. I wanted to experience going into labor naturally, but Hailey was already at the babysitter’s, Bruce had made arrangements with school, and everyone, including me thought that I was having a baby. We stayed.
Erin started the pitocin to induce labor. A half hour later I was in tears. I wanted to go home. It was too late, they had started the induction and I was committed. A half hour after the meltdown I was excited, glad to be having a baby. And an hour after that I was in tears again. Bruce was supportive, but undoubtedly confused. I went to sleep. When I woke up we played Phase 10, watched some TV, and Bruce called the phone company to activate his new iPhone. Around 10AM my contractions began to intensify and by 10:30AM I had to shift positions during each contraction. I was going to go without an epidural as long as I could.
Around noon, I called for a nurse. Erin came in to measure me as the anesthesiologist prepared. She didn’t tell me what I measured, but I was in enough pain that I didn’t care how much or how little progress I had made. I was shaking and so cold. Erin told me I was in transition, which had I known what she was talking about and had I been in less pain, I may have pressed on without an epidural, but alas, I did not and was not. The anesthesiologist came in a few minutes later, administered the epidural and left. As the epidural started to work I asked how dilated I was before the epidural- 7cm.
Erin measured me again as soon as the anesthesiologist left and I was 9 1/2 cm, but she felt something on top of the head. She phone for a doctor to come investigate. Luckily the doctor who would deliver was already at the hospital and came in. He confirmed that it was a hand on the crown of the head and told me that if he couldn’t get the hand to drop I would have to have a C-section. (When he felt for the hand he inadvertently broke my water). I was dilated to 10 cm. The doctor instructed me to push while he attempted to sweep baby’s hand off her head. He was successful and we narrowly escaped a C-section.
The doctor then asked the nurse to set up for delivery and as three nurses rushed to get the equipment, he attempted to get on gloves and a gown before baby slid out. McKayla was born moments later- fewer than 15 min following the administration of the epidural. Thank goodness epidurals act quickly- I would hate to pay for an epidural that didn’t work before I delivered.
I held her before the nurses weighed, measured, and bathed her. Over the next 24 hours McKayla’s body temperature was low so she had to be bundled and wear a hat. She was a healthy 7 pounds and though I worried some that her low body temperature and hairy ears were product of an early induction, she was healthy and well.
Hailey, Grandma, and Grandpa came to visit us. Hailey was excited, but a bit confused and certainly did not know all the ways her life was about to change. Ryan and Jen also visited that evening. Bruce took Hailey home for the night and the following day came back for us. We left the hospital 26 hours after delivery.
A few days later, my Mom came to help. We enjoyed her company and especially appreciated her watching McKayla while Bruce and I attended the wedding ceremony of Ryan and Jen Sommerfeldt.