The epidural was a little stronger on one side, but other than that it worked great. He warned me that it takes away pain but not pressure, and again, I preferred that. I wanted to be able to feel progression and know when to push. My nurse checked me often because of my history, but I wasn't progressing very quickly at all. After two hours, it was clear that this was going to go differently than the girls' labors so she told me to call her if I felt like pushing and gave us some time to rest.
I noticed that I felt that urge to push soon after that. It wasn't very strong but it was definitely there. When she checked me, I was only at 6 cm. Why was I feeling that urge to push? She decided to check me through a contraction and realized that he was sliding down really low but then going back up after it was done. Knowing this, I really doubted if I would know when it was time to truly push. Thankfully, after another hour and a half, I was at 9 cm. She said that basically I was there except for the last part of the lip of the cervix. She went to call the midwife since she could manually help with that part, but within seconds of her shutting the door it was very clear that everything was ready to go.
I have never felt an urge to push like that. I imagine that the epidural was not doing much because it was excruciating. The nurse came running in, begging me to wait for the midwife. She was on her way but it seemed to take an hour. I am sure it was less than five minutes, but I was losing it. She came in, got the gloves on, exclaimed about his thick head of hair (yes, he was already crowning, there was no slowing him down) and basically caught him on the next contraction. I remember her telling me to slow down, and I remember screaming that that was impossible. I guess she was turning him a little bit so his shoulders would come out smoother and cause less tearing, but it was intensely painful, the worst ring of fire of all four kids.
Once he was out, he was on my chest immediately and he stayed there while everything else continued on. I did bleed more than normal but thankfully it was nothing compared to Amelia's postpartum hemorrhage. I had so much more energy because labor had only been 8 1/2 hours with only 3 of them without an epidural.
Bennett was born at 4:30 PM weighing 8 lbs 9 oz. He was 20 1/2 inches long with beautiful pink coloring and a solid cry. The girls were very eager to come and meet him so my parents brought them over past their bedtime. It was completely worth it. They came all dressed in pretty dresses with cards for us parents and a present for him. Mike's mom was able to come too (the rest of his family had colds so they didn't come to the hospital). It was perfect.
The next morning, I got the good news that we could be discharged after his 24 hour tests. He didn't have any problems so we left the hospital at around 5:30 with a baby just barely 25 hours old. I still felt great, tired, but not as physically fatigued. I had been able to walk around and bathe the night he was born and the rest of the recovery was much less intense since I hadn't lost as much blood. It was refreshing and a huge relief since we were coming home to a house full with four kids. Four kids! It'll take a while to get used to that.
|His official hospital photo, tongue out and all|