A Vacation From Labor, Part Two

So we get up the next morning, me again glad I did not start labor in the night. [Incidentally, we scheduled an induction for Micah and Micaiah and I started labor the night before it. That time I was glad to have that happen.] I wasn’t going to eat, but Luke said I should, so I made my customary fried eggs and sat down to eat them. I had butterflies, big ones, in my stomach, making it difficult to swallow my breakfast. When had I last been this nervous, this afraid? Oh, yeah- it was when I had (yet again) let my drivers’ license expire and this time it was so long I had to take my drivers’ test over again, including maneuverability. That morning was horrible- I could not wait for the test to be over. So much was riding on me passing; I already had a plane trip booked to North Carolina! (That was how we discovered the expired license.) (When Luke called to rent me a car.) I did end up passing, even at 6 months pregnant and in a minivan.
Here I am, as scared as I ever remember being, and it is my 11th child!!! Incidentally, I just saw a dvd at the library called Pregnancy For Dummies: yep, they have one for that, too! Maybe I should have checked it out. I don’t know why I was so unstable, I just knew I was. Once at the hospital I got settled into my gown and onto the bed and ready for intravenous fluids. I have to say, the IV is one of the worst parts of the whole thing. But, there isn’t really an alternative. They started pitocin at 7:30, and things progressed at a reasonable pace. By lunchtime I was dilated at about halfway, and called for an epidural. No, I wasn’t really in all that bad of pain, but like I have said, I was not stable, and I felt like if the pain got worse and my mind was not in a good place, that was going to be tough. So I ordered the meds.
Once the epidural was taking effect, it was like going to sleep in a really warm, tight blanket. Heaven! I commented to the nurse how relaxed I felt, and she said it feels even more so because the person didn’t realize how stressed they actually were before. I was enjoying this immensely- like taking a vacation from labor. My other two epidurals did not deliver this level of objectivity; it was as if I was apart from my body and nothing it was doing could hurt me. I barely felt any pressure, though, something that would matter in a few hours.
I made it the rest of the way to being ready for delivery with no pain. TheĀ  nurse came in and began to prepare the towels, the baby table, and the instruments. It was only like 3 or so in the afternoon. She then encourages me to try pushing, and I do, but because I can’t feel anything this is a little hard to do. I attempt this for a few contractions, then Luke wisely instructs me to stop. He feared that I would exhaust myself too much, and I likely would have. So, my little vacation was one taken too far away from reality, and I asked for the epidural to be turned down, and, eventually, the pitocin to be turned back up, as contractions were getting weak. Finally, at 4:30, I am able to feel something, and can push. Elijah Liberty was born very quickly, with only a couple of pushes. We were worried about him being big, like Sam, but he was only 9 lb. 1 oz. after being 2 weeks late! Many things were different about this labor and delivery, but I think the biggest factor was that he was so high up, not putting much pressure on so my body would be moved to send him on his way. In the end, I think it was a good choice to induce. I’m still wondering about the epidural though- he may have been born hours sooner if I hadn’t had that. But the biggest concern I have is with my mind- why could I not achieve a peace, or even any courage, when it came time to have him? What was I so scared of? I don’t think I thought I would die. I still ponder this with no answers.
Eleven is here, and growing like a weed. People are already saying that we can’t stop short of a dozen. If I can’t (mentally) handle delivering the 11th, what about the 12th? Ahh, but I will not borrow tomorrow’s trouble. I cannot handle that, but I can go feed my sweet, soft boy and make today count.