Friday, August 16, 2013

Emily Alexis Sommerfeldt, the long, gorry version

I didn't realize I had this typed when I wrote the shorter version, so here's the story fresh and detailed. See the other Emily post for the quick version.

Emily Alexis Sommerfeldt was born Thursday, August 15, 2013 at 11:23 PM at Memorial Herrman Hospital in Katy, TX.

Emily's dues date was August 8th, but as the 8th approached, it became obvious that she would not be born on her due date. I wanted to go into labor on my own, so I did not intially set an induction date, but eventually arranged to be induced on Friday, August 16th. Early on August 15th I woke up uncomfortable. I tried changing positions but had to move to the couch to finish the night. I thought I might be in labor, but had contractions for a few days that seemed that they might lead to labor, but which hadn't, so I wasn't certain. By 9am I was having regular contractions 5 min apart. I called the doctor office to let them know that I thought I was in a labor and likely wouldn't need to be induced the next day. They asked me to go to the office at 1pm in the afternoon. I went, they confirmed that I was in early stages of labor and dilated 4cm and said that whenever I was ready I could go to the hospital. We went home and continued our day until the contractions got stronger, about 4:30pm. We arrived at the hospital around 5pm. I wanted to try to deliver naturally, so I got measured, hooked to IV's and monitors. I tested positive for group B strep so I needed 2 doses of antibiotics before delivering, so we started the first dose immediately. I slept, watched movies and otherwise waited. I had regular contractions, but would find during later measurements, that they were not frequent or strong enough to effectively progress labor. After the second does of antibiotics, around 9:30pm I asked the doctor for options to speed-up labor. I walked the halls a bit, decided I didn't want to be in labor forever, and considered whether an 8/15 or an 8/16 birthday was better... and settled on pitocin to increase contraction strength and frequency, in hopes of an 8/15 birthday. The pitocin was effective and when I measured 8 cm at about 10:45, I decided to have the doctor break my water. I had to decide if I wanted an epidural and chose not to, which committed me to a natural birth, whereas there was no time for other pain medications. Doctor broke my water just before 11pm and Emily was born at 11:23pm. The birthing experience was intense and

I did it. I went into labor on my own and delivered a baby naturally, without any pain medication. It was a neat experience. I had hard contractions two day before I actually went into labor and it was disappointing to have nothing come of those contractions, particularly since I was beginning to feel very big, have less energy, and feel uncomfortable moving about, oh, and I was overdue. Going into labor was anticlimactic. I was still excited and a touch uncertain because the contractions were regular but not particularly painful. It was reassuring to go into the doctor office and have her confirm that I was dilating some and that I was in the early stages of labor. She said I could come late in the day to see how I was progressing or I could go to the hospital. Bruce and I talked some about what time I thought the baby would be born. I had no idea and made an estimation of 7 or 8 pm. At around 4pm I suggested that we go to the hospital in about an hour, then at about 4:15 I suggested that we go then because the contractions were becoming painful. We dropped Hailey and McKayla off and Kevin and Laurel's house and headed to the hospital. They started me on an IV and all was well... except the extra fluids and my immobility (from the monitors and IV) made the contractions significantly less frequent and less intense. It was a welcome break for a bit, I took a nap and watched TV, but when the didn't pick up after an hour or two I grew impatient. Because I tested positive for group B strep I needed to get 2 doses of antibiotics, given 4 hours apart, before delivering. We originally were in no hurry to deliver due to the antibiotics, but when I had made little progress and was partially through the second bag of antibiotics we started discussing options to speed things along. The doctor knew I wanted to try it naturally, so she suggested that we walk the halls. After a few laps I asked for additional options and settled on some pitocin with the option of breaking my water. The nurse started me on pitocin, contractions increased. When I felt like there was a change, I had the doctor measure me. I was 8cm so I asked the doctor to break my water. At that moment I had to decide if I was going to get an epidural (no other pain control options would be effective at that point in labor). I was nervous I would decline and then not be able to make it though, but decided that I'd be more liekly to regret an epidural than the pain, so I declined. After the doctor broke my water, contractions picked up. I squeezed Bruce's hand through the worst of them and heard Bruce and the doctor encouraging me. I could feel the baby dropping- kind of a cool sensation- and the doctor said inform them when I felt the need to push. I had a few strong contractions and then a space of time when I didn't feel any contractions but the doctor assured me that we were still progressing, and a few minutes later I moved to my hands and knees to work through a contraction. A few minutes after that  switched to standing. I could feel the baby descending, and then almost without warning I had the urge to push. It was intense and I suppose painful, but it didn't last long and there was a sense of relief when I felt the head emerge and then the rest of the body. It was cool. Not the spiritual or bonding experience some women describe, but sensational.
The top question I hear is, "Would you do it again?" My answer "Maybe." It was a good experience. It was hard to have labor slow while in the hospital- by the time I got to the hospital I wanted to be a few hours away from delivery, not hours and hours. But, given the need for antibiotics, I needed 4.5 hours in the hospital (plus the hour it takes to get checked in before you even lay down), it probably couldn't have moved much faster than it did. Without Strep B, I'll probably just stay at home until the baby crowns, next time. :) Just kidding.

Emily Alexis Sommerfeldt

Last night we welcomed Emily Alexis Sommerfeldt to our family.

She was born at 11:23 pm at Memorial Herrman Hospital in Katy. Labor went well. I began having contractions early in the morning and thought I might be in labor since I don't have (or don't feel) contractions usually. Since we thought I might be in labor, Bruce took the day off of work. I went to the doctor mid morning to see if I was in labor, or not. She said I probably was, but did not need to go to the hospital yet. I waited until early evening, about 4 pm and then decided I was ready to got o the hospital. We dropped the girls at Kevin and Laurel's house and headed to the hospital.

After they checked me in and started the IV of fluids and antibiotics (for the Strep B) the contractions stopped, so I went to sleep. :)

When I woke up there were a few contractions, but not as forceful as I thought they should be, so I walked around, talked to the nurse about options, and waited. At about 10pm I decided that I was ready to have a baby and that we should give her a Aug 15th birthday rather than an Aug 16th (we like that date more, easier to remember) :) and asked the nurse to start petocin. They did, and labor picked up. A bit later I had the doctor break my water. Shortly after, we had a healthy baby Emily. It was a great labor experience and expect to also do the next delivery without an epidural.

Recovery went well, beside passing out the first time I stood up and being freezing in the hospital (no wonder the hospital bill is so much, it takes a lot of money to keep the hospital at 60 degrees when the outdoor temperature is 100 degrees).

The next day Bruce and the girls came to visit, and we went home.