After walking for an hour, and waiting for the news as to whether we would be admitted to the hospital or not, we finally got the good news that we would be staying in the hospital and likely having a new addition to our family that day. So we packed up our things and head down the fall to the labor and delivery area. Lynsey took it easy of course, but I was loaded down with an overflowing beach bag full of a lot of stuff that we thought we needed, but really didn’t. Moving to L/D is a little anti-climactic. It is very exciting to know that you are making progress, but it is also important to understand that this is a long process and we were just getting started with it. Regardless, the night shift staff was very courteous and made us feel comfortable, despite it being 4:00 AM and having been up since 1:00. I recommend bringing along some reading material or something to keep you entertained. Especially at this hour there was no one there to call and share our exciting news. I settled into my book (The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbach, I highly recommend it) and Lynsey with her iPhone.
The nursing staff came in to get some of the same information from Lynsey (was this her first pregnancy, was always one of the questions), and to find out her birth plan. Every mother is different and wants to experience the birth of their child in a different way. Lynsey’s only request was that she get an epidural and open it up full throttle. With that someone from anesthesia came by to visit us. After some introductions, and that same question again, the doctor found out that Lynsey’s mother worked in Anesthesia also. At that point it was hard to judge the doctor’s reaction partly because the room was dimly lit and partly because it was 4:30 and he had been up all night. Regardless he was a little surprised when he found out that his supervisor’s daughter was lying in the bed. Talk about pressure.
However, before getting ready for the epidural, we had to do some more walking. Again nothing exciting to say about this, except we saw the doctor that delivered Mason in the hall. Wouldn’t it be neat if the same doctor delivered both of our kids. Lynsey spoke to him, and it took him a minute to recognize her. I realize they see hundreds patients and it is impossible to remember all of them. Jokingly, I told her that he would have been more likely to remember you had she raised her gown. That earned me a firm elbow in the ribs and an evil eye stare.
Other than me studying the monitors and over analyzing the lay out of the room, not much went on until the epidural was placed. Although a little painful at first it was sweet relief once the numbing medicine started kicking in. Once placed, our new nurse, Elizabeth, came in to check Lynsey’s dilation. Still hovering around 3 centimeters, they decided to give her a round of pitocyn to spur along her labor. It was about 11:30 at this point, and we were settling in for the remainder of the afternoon and evening at this rate of progression. Pitocyn is known to be quite potent with extremely painful side effects so it was very important for Lynsey to have her epidural first.
We were getting closer, and Lynsey wanted to share her news with everyone. One of the lessons we learned from Mason’s delivery is that I am no good at sending text messages, and there was no way I could use her phone to get anything comprehensible sent. I tried one and it ended up saying ”on lavoe and jist staryed the epidural”. Needless to say, Lynsey handled the communication from that point forward.
Once the medicine started, I could tell that things were starting to pick up, contractions were becoming more frequent, and for a longer duration. After about another hour, unfortunately, Lynsey was not comfortable, she was feeling the contractions more than she should, and as the effects of the medicine and contractions were increasing, the impact and effectiveness of her epidural were decreasing. She was in real pain with no relief in sight. After multiple pleadings, I convinced her to call the nurses’ station and let them know. A few minutes later a flurry of nurses and doctors entered the room. They checked all her IV lines and asked a few questions. Lynsey spoke up and said, “My lips are numb and my ears are ringing. Is that normal?” A look or surprise went around the room, I begin eyeing the monitors and Lynsey more closely now. Was everything going to be okay? Were Lynsey and the baby going to be alright? What could I do to help? Lots of questions running through my mind. Of which you can find out the answers in part 3 tomorrow.