Category Archives: Parenting

Hospital Stay

I spent two nights in the hospital. We had nurses coming into the room at least once an hour to check baby and mom. They were checking my blood pressure, both of our temperatures, among other things I don’t even remember.

I was given my baby either by my boyfriend or the nurses to feed anytime he was hungry. I had to keep drinking fluids to stay hydrated and so I could fill my bladder and pee.

I struggled with getting Elliott to latch to my breast and had multiple nurses throughout my stay tell me and show me how to do it. Each one had different advice and it was hard to know what I should be doing. My nipples were getting so sore and cracked. I was given nipple cream which I was thankful for. I was given a nipple shield at one point because I was in so much pain. I was told to listen for swallows but I really couldn’t hear them so I didn’t even know if my baby was getting any food from me. Eventually we started to supplement with formula to make sure he was eating.

That first night my boyfriend slept for most of the time which was frustrating for me. It’s hard to wake him up sometimes. I was so sore from giving birth that I couldn’t even get myself out of bed without someone pulling me out.

I was still attached to the IV so in order to use the bathroom I had to unplug and bring the stand with me. I was not allowed to wipe after using the bathroom so they gave me a bottle which is used to spray yourself and then you pat yourself dry. I also was given mesh underwear which you put two pads onto. I was changing the pads every time I used the bathroom (about every 3 hours). A lot of women have issues having a bowel movement after birth but that wasn’t an issue for me.

Eventually I was detached from the IV which I was very happy about. I was able to relax a little more after that. I spent most of my time in bed though which was uncomfortable. After a while I also started to feel pain “down there” which I was given medicine for.

As the mother who just gave birth, the hospital stay wasn’t too bad. I would ask the nurse or my boyfriend to get me a drink whenever I was thirsty. I was served breakfast, lunch, and dinner; although it wasn’t the best tasting food. I was having trouble eating the food though because I usually had a baby in my arms and I was not yet good at multitasking with a baby. So I would have to get someone to come take the baby from me so I could eat.

As for the dad’s stay, it was less than comfortable. My boyfriend had to sleep on a bench and wasn’t given any food to eat. We had packed some pillows, a sleeping bag, and snacks so at least he had that. But he was very ready to leave when it was time to go.

On my second day, my pain was pretty bad. I kept asking the nurse for pain medication. She was a little concerned with the amount of pain I was in for only having a first degree tear. But she checked my lady bits and said everything looked fine. Before leaving the hospital I was given a prescription for some pain medicine which I picked up on my way home.

In the morning on my last day at the hospital there was a Breastfeeding Cafe down the hall. You went down with your baby, and a woman was there to help teach you how to feed your baby. She was a little intense, but I did learn how to better position my baby to latch. She was also going on the whole time about making sure you are drinking lots of water. She’s like “Water, water, water. Soup, soup, soup. You need to have water every hour. If you don’t like water, have soup. Add flavors to your water. Just make sure you are hydrated.” She also gave us information on different massages you can do to help your milk flow and supplements you can take to increase your production.

After lunch on Friday we were finally allowed to leave the hospital. One of the nurses went over a bunch of information to make sure we were confident in going home with our new baby. Honestly I was so tired that I was only half listening to her.

We got Elliott dressed in his going home outfit and tried to figure out how to get him properly seated in the car seat. We couldn’t figure out how to loosen the straps on the car seat. Probably took us 5-10 minutes to find the latch. And then I put the leg straps around his legs wrong. Thankfully the hospital staff checks to make sure everything looks good before you leave.

I made it home.

The day we left was a very cold -20C something. While Elliott wasn’t really a fan of the cold air, he didn’t complain too much going from the hospital to the car.

My Birth Story

On January 16th I went to another ultrasound to check on baby. He was still measuring small but the amount of fluid around him had also decreased.

After that appointment we stopped for lunch then went over to the hospital for a NST (Non-Stress Test). This is where they place some monitors on your stomach to see baby’s heart beat and I think my contractions? I also had a button that I was supposed to push everytime I felt the baby move. I was checked to see if I was dilated. I was only at 1 cm. To have a baby you need to be at 10 cm.

They were happy with the results of the NST but the doctor was concerned about the amount of fluid surrounding the baby which was measured at the ultrasound. She said it would probably be best if they induced me that day.

We knew being induced was a possibility so we already had our bags packed and car seat in the car.

Around 3pm we moved to a birthing room and I was given a gown to put on. They wanted to make sure the baby wouldn’t get stressed out during labor so they started some practice contractions and see how he handled it.

My left hand was hooked up to an IV which apparently made me bleed a lot. I didn’t see the blood but the nurse had to do a lot of cleaning of my arm and the floor haha. Through the IV they also started a Pitocin drip which makes your body start contracting to make you dialate more.

On my right side I had wires running from their computer to my stomach. They had the monitors on my stomach again showing the baby’s heartbeat and my contractions. Everything looked good and the baby was handling the contractions well.

From here on out I was pretty much confined to my bed. I would get up every hour or so to use the bathroom but they would have to unhook me from the computer and unplug my IV from the wall. I needed my boyfriend to help me get out of bed and walk to the bathroom as I was a little unsteady and I was afraid of pulling the IV out of my arm when trying to get up. I also would start shivering everytime I got up.

Every so often the nurses would increase the amount of pitocin to increase the contractions. Nurses were constantly coming in and out of the room to check the progress and see if I needed anything. They would check my blood pressure and my temperature. Periodically I would show that I had a fever but it kept going away.

There were also a lot of students shadowing the nurses. At one point I was given a mango popsicle which was delicious. Some of the students were more annoying than others so I hope I didn’t give them the stink eye haha.

There was one nurse in particular that I liked the most. She was the most helpful and she was funny.

When I was about 4 cm dialated I asked if it was too soon to get an epidural. I had hoped I would last longer than that but I figured if I planned to get one eventually, why suffer now if I didn’t need to. It was probably close to 8 pm at this point.

They had the anesthesiologist come in to explain how the epidural works and get my verbal consent. Beforehand I was pretty scared of getting the epidural but it didn’t hurt at all.

So now at this point I have tubes coming from my left hand, wires coming from the right side to my belly, a tube coming out of my back, and eventually a catheter coming from my bladder (which I was looking forward to because I was tired of getting up to pee and having to drag my IV with me). I kind of felt like a robot or something.

My contractions went from a pain level of a 5 or 6 back to a zero pretty much, thanks to epidural. My legs were numb which was a weird feeling. I laid my arm down on my leg and wasn’t sure what I was feeling because I couldn’t feel it on my leg.

My favorite nurse’s shift was ending at 11:30 and at this point it was around 9:30 or 10 pm. To try and speed things up the doctor decided to break my water. There really wasn’t that much liquid that came out.

Shortly after my water was broken I started feeling my contractions again and they were getting painful. I tried to wait for the nurse to come back to the room so I could ask her if it was normal but she was taking too long so I pressed the call button.

I told her I could feel the contractions and also that it felt like I was pooping (this is a sign that you’ll need to start pushing soon). I even asked her to check just to make sure I hadn’t pooped haha. She asked me if I was trying to make sure I had this baby on her shift and I told her yes.

She checked to see how dialated I was, and within half an hour I had gone from a 4 to a 9.5cm. It was almost time to start pushing.

Every time they checked me I would start bleeding. There was a lot more blood throughout the labor process than I expected. I thought it all came once baby came out.

Pushing took longer than we thought it would. I had to get someone on each side of me to hold up my legs as I could not feel them. The lady who was helping me push kept telling me I was doing a good job but it really felt like nothing was happening.

My favorite nurse stayed past the end of her shift in hopes to see baby but ultimately had to leave before he was born.

The doctor wasn’t brought into the room until baby was just about ready to come out. They couched me the rest of the way. I remember at one point two people yelling “Don’t push, don’t push!” They made sure baby was in the best position to come out and told me to push one more time. Finally at 12:32am Elliott came into the world.

I was given my baby to hold and his dad got to cut the cord. While Elliott was lying on me he had his first poop on my chest.

The next 30 to 60 minutes was spent with them delivering my placenta and stitching me up. I only had a 1 degree tear (out of four) so I was very happy to hear that. But instead of tearing straight, I tore in multiple directions. It felt like it took them forever to stitch me up. Thankfully I couldn’t feel anything due to being numb. I felt bad

Once they were finally done we were moved to the room we would be staying in for the rest of our stay.