Wow there is so much that has happened in the last three days. Our lives are 180 degrees from where they were on Thursday, and neither of us would wish it back to how it was. Hayden is the most amazing thing that has ever happened to us. We are at the end of day three, and already it seems time is going too quickly.
I think John has already filled in the pieces about what went on on Friday, but I will give the rundown from my perspective. We were hoping Hayden would turn with the ‘version’ procedure, but it was not successful. The doctor and her assistant were trying with all their might for at least 1/2 hour, pushing and pushing on my belly to try to get him to turn around. Thank God I had an epidural, because it was quite uncomfortable to say the least even with that. At one point I actually started crying. I was sobbing really, and I am not sure exactly what the cause was. I know some (maybe all – I’ve had limited exposure I guess) anesthesia makes me cry, so it might have been that. It could have been the physical pain from the procedure or the emotion of knowing we were on the verge of meeting our baby. Regardless, it seemed silly but I’m sure no one cared.
Unfortunately, they just could not move him out of my pelvis. His head was able to move around, but without the ability to get his hips lifted out of my pelvis there was no way to get him into the right position. So they got the next available c-section slot for me which was an hour or two from then.
Even with all of the excitement, I was absolutely exhausted. Again, this might have had something to do with some medication or another, or it could have been the physical toll of the version in addition to having to awaken at 4 am to get to the hospital and a couple of poor nights’ sleeps in anticipation of the big day. Somehow, while waiting for the c-section time to come around I managed to dose for a little while.
The cesarian took an unbelievably short amount of time. They wheeled me into the OR and the first thing I saw were these huge overhead surgical lights with Stryker written on them. One of our best friends in England, Gemma, works for Stryker so it gave me a big smile to see those lights. Anyway, John joined me in the OR with his scrubs on, the doctors and nurses did some prep work, they draped a big blue paper sheet right in front of my face to keep me from seeing anything, and in a very short amount of time Hayden was born. I felt some pulling and tugging as they worked him out. He came out butt first apparently — I heard some talk about needing to work his butt out of my pelvis where he’d so stubbornly taken up shop. Then the next thing I heard was that he had so much hair and the longest eyelashes. I was like, ‘He’s out already?!’ John got to see him being born and also filmed it so I can’t wait to see that soon.
After a few seconds I heard him cry, and that got me crying. His crying only lasted a few seconds, and that was the only time he made any noise in the OR. I kept commenting how quiet he was (and how this indicated his intelligence in some way or another, he he). I wanted to see him so badly. They had to take him away to do Apgar testing and so forth, and John got to be there for that. The first thing John told me was he has my ears. This was a surprise for both of us as we’d just assumed that John’s ears would carry on to the next generation. 😉 I don’t know how long it was before I finally got to see him, but it did seem like an eternity. I knew it would take a while and even with that expectation it still took far longer than I would have guessed. Eventually John brought him to me and placed his face right next to mine. Because of all the equipment everywhere his face was very close to mine — it was actually too near because I couldn’t see him properly. But it was wonderful anyway, and I could see that he was really beautiful.
From there we went into recovery and I got to hold him and start to get to know him. We had skin-to-skin contact right away from that point. I also breastfed for the first time pretty quickly upon entering the recovery area, and he took right to it! It was amazing — he knew just what to do! The nurse was very impressed (told you he is smart). John also had skin-to-skin contact after the feeding was over. Then the nurse took Hayden to a little station near us and did some tests and injections while John started making calls to the families to tell them the good news. Madeline was the first to be called and the first to know his name. My mom was at the hospital so once he got off the phone with Nanny Mad we called Mom in to meet him. Then after a short while we were wheeled up to our post partum room where we will stay until we leave tomorrow.
John and Hayden came up to the post partum area a short time before I could be wheeled up there, and they gave Hayden a sponge bath. I am told that he hated the bath, especially getting his feet cleaned, but he loved having his hair washed. All I know is my son was three hours old and after his bath he was wheeled into our room with his hair spiked up. His daddy had already made use of all that hair by making sure he was very fashionable from the start! 😉
The epidural had a terribly annoying side effect of making me very itchy. As I recovered they gave me some drug to counter the itching, and this put me in a thick fog where I knew where I was but had to concentrate really hard for things to make sense. I think it also greatly enhanced the extreme fatigue that I was already feeling all day. I really didn’t like that, so they gave me Benedryl the next time which was supposed to be better, and while that somewhat lifted the fog it caused me to feel like I could not keep my eyes open and that I was going to fall asleep in the middle of conversations. I kept apologizing to everyone because I was convinced I was not making any sense or was looking like I was half asleep, which I’m afraid I was. The lactation consultant came in during this time and I talked to her and even managed to get Hayden latched on, but I finally had to tell her I couldn’t really take in what she was saying and was just dreamily going through the motions and could she come back later. She was very nice about it but I felt like a complete idiot.
We had a few visitors on the first day. My mom and Jim, Dad and Gretchen, my stepbrother Andy and his girlfriend Lindsay, my brother Dusty and his wife Tami and their two boys. He slept pretty well that first night, too, even despite the constant traffic caused by the nurses checking on the two of us throughout the night. He nursed a few times throughout the night as expected and was really good (and asleep!) the rest of the time.
That first day went by in a blur, because of all the medications and their funny side effects but mostly because of how extremely exciting it was to have met and start getting to know our Hayden.