Bear with me as this will be disjointed and make no sense I’m sure.
Monday, Sept 28th, I woke up to pee (ah how I don’t miss that part of pregnancy), and when I wiped I saw a large volume of blood. It concerned me since everything I experienced with my oldest, everything I researched, indicated bloody show was more mucousy based rather than a straight-forward “period” like experience.
We then went over to Lutheran General as we had a very bad experience with the on-call OB at Northwest Community just days before. What an awful mistake. From the moment we arrived they tried to force me into a repeat c-section for no reason aside from the fact I had a c-section with my oldest. At this point I was dilated only 1cm if I recall properly. I had more than 4 nurses, 2 residents, and 2 on-call OB’s use scare tactics and threats on me. I demanded my AMA paperwork and signed myself out.
I proceeded to bleed all of Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. I was told this was normal. I also started having contractions Monday evening that were averaging 4-6minutes apart, lasting 20-30seconds. Those contractions got more painful as of Tuesday morning, so much that we debated if this was a sign that I was in full labor.
Apparently not as the contractions stopped from Tuesday afternoon through Wednesday.
Thursday they started again full force, so much so that I was vocalizing through them, tried taking a warm shower, etc. They were coming 2-4 min apart, lasting 45 sec-1min at this point. We then decided to go over to Northwest Community for a quick check on my dilation. By the time we got there after dropping my oldest son off at my sister’s apartment, I was in a lot of pain, was crying and vocalizing (semi-screaming) to get through them. Even now Keith has some issues listening to the Mariah Carey song Obsessed since I had that BLASTING in the car heh.
Anyway, so we (my twin sister also followed us in her vehicle), got to Northwest where they informed me I was 4cm and 75% effaced. At this point the bleeding I am told, is “normal”. We then found out the on-call OB is the one who berated and attacked me verbally the week previous. I went up the chain of command to have another OB and was informed he wasn’t willing to call in any of his other staff. I asked if there was protocol in place, for example what if I mentally/emotionally couldn’t have a male OB or staff member around me? I was told yes there was protocol for that which, apparently, didn’t apply to me.
I do recall “firing” the original nurse, although I can’t remember why. Keith says he only recalls she was very rude to all of us and had an attitude when we informed her of our birth plan.
I signed myself out AMA and we then headed over to Alexian Brother’s. That was the WORST mistake. At this point I could hardly talk between contractions as they seemed to be on top of each other. I’m sure Keith and my sister thought I would be farther along considering the amount of pain, the timing of the contractions, etc.
The nurses were very harsh verbally with me, right away put a saline lock in my right hand, and informed me I picked a perfect night as the on-call OB had NO issues with VBAC’s. So the on-call OB comes into the room, checks my cervix and I am still at 4cm. He then informs me that because I am overweight that I am not “allowed” to have a vaginal birth that my ONLY option is a repeat c-section.
They also told us it was “state law” to have the VitK shot. Which obviously is not true.
My bleeding is still considered normal at this point according to them. The pressure from them to let them cut me became intense. They also were not willing at that point to give me any pain relief in any form or let me move around.
I flipped out, I started cussing and screaming for AMA papers, that I was going back to Northwest. I ripped off the monitors they placed on me. I was PISSED OFF.
Oh and mind you, it was storming heavily through all of this, it was very bad driving conditions actually. About 2-3 hrs had passed during this portion, with driving times and such too.
So we go back to Northwest. I am SCREAMING through these contractions. We get back up to the labor/delivery floor, I am checked AGAIN, and I am still at a 4cm. However at this check a huge clot came out, I know this is gross but I kept comparing the size to a small loaf of bread. I then continued to bleed more heavily and with clots.
This time around the bleeding caused them to be concerned. I don’t honestly remember every detail. I was in agony. I was confined to the bed, the contractions were on top of each other, and I was still 4cm. A lot of the stuff leading up until I got the spinal for the c-section, I am going to have to rely on Keith’s memory for.
Per Keith’s recollection from when we got back to Northwest the 2nd time:
Arrived back at Northwest the 2nd time, went up to the L&D floor, they proceeded to get Sarah on the monitors and check dilation, that’s when the bleeding/red clot came out. They showed massive concern about bleeding, they continued to check the bleeding. Shortly after that, a big concern was the uterus wasn’t relaxing between contractions. That’s when the female representative from the on-call OB practice arrived. She then checked the dilation and clotting. She proceeded to make the comment “I know the situation, and because of that I’m not feeling sympathetic” in reference to Sarah leaving the hospital AMA and not accepting a repeat c-section previously, and to the massive amounts of pain she was in.
I remember the woman slightly, I do know my sister got PISSED at her, telling her to give me a chance to actually make a coherent decision rather than demand/be rude to me.
That’s when I left the room and was not able to speak to that rep, but I did speak to the staff that if that woman came back and showed that attitude again that I would be very angry, possibly contact a lawyer for malpractice, because judging the situation based on past decisions was not appropriate considering what was going on. By the time I came back into the room, Sarah and her twin sister came to the decision to approve the c-section. I then went over with Sarah on why the c-section was needed due to the massive blood loss.
The staff then gave me scrubs to put on to be in the OR during the c-section. The entire time, in the room and on the way to the OR they made a big deal about being clean/in scrubs. At the last minute I’m told I can’t be in the OR. I’m outside the OR when I spoke to the on-call OB about the situation.
He stated that not only was he annoyed about us going through this when last Thursday he wanted us to have the repeat section, but that Sarah could have caused harm to herself or the baby by waiting to go into labor naturally.
When he said that I became quite upset, stating that, not only was he “getting” what HE wanted done when it came to the situation, that to date he hadn’t indicated that there were any issues aside from the bleeding. He gave generalized statements that it “could” be this or that, but didn’t proceed with even the basic of tests.
I then informed him that yes, possibly we could have considered a repeat c-section, but because of the way he representative himself, not respecting our wishes, it left a sour taste in our mouths and gave us a lack of trust in his ability as a doctor. That if he had taken the time to address our concerns a week previously without scare tactics that perhaps things would have been different when it came to the situation at hand.
He stated that 2 of the reasons we were in the OR, was because Sarah is overweight that the other tables couldn’t “hold” her and that she would for sure need other surgeries which he listed as a uterine repair or hysterectomy.
At that point in time, he ordered I leave the OR area, I told him that before I left the area I needed to see Sarah and make sure she was ok.
I slightly remember this. I recall getting the spinal (my back still hurts), and finding out a couple of the medical staff were also twins. I remember Keith coming into the OR and I almost started bawling right then and there as I was terrified especially when I found out I was doing this without his physical support during the birth of our son.
I remember that I kept asking for someone, ANYONE to hold my hand. I needed that one-on-one personal contact as Keith wasn’t allowed to be there for me. Surprisingly the surgery itself was the only “smooth” part of the whole fiasco. At all times someone held my strapped down hand, they kept me informed of what was going on with the surgery itself and the baby.
A HUGE difference compared to the c-section I had with my oldest.
After I saw and spoke to Sarah in the OR, the on-call OB again told me to leave the OR area, and head toward the waiting room. After being pushed to leave, I then ran into the nurses and the OR pediatrician. They asked me why I was not in the OR, I informed them that the OB instructed me to leave, the pediatrician sounded shocked as she expected me to be there. I asked her if she was aware of our birth plan and she said no, even though over 6 copies had been given out to the staff.
She was the highlight of the medical staff. We sat down and talked for close to ten minutes going over the birth plan, specifically when it came to the baby. She did inform me that I would have to sign a waiver to decline the VitK shot. She even offered to take my point and shoot camera into the OR to get some photos of Sarah and Tristan.
I also loved this woman, she comforted me many times that she spoke in depth with Keith on what was/wasn’t permitted with Tristan, she took a ton of photos (where I look utterly out of it) of me with the baby. I remember comparing it to Daniel’s c-section where I don’t even recall seeing him for the first time until day 2. I remember feeling THRILLED that I was mentally alert, I still clearly recall seeing Tristan for the first time. It means a lot to me.
After that I ran into one of our L&D nurses who was also told to leave the OR, so she walked with me and reassured me that everything was going to be ok. She showed some concern for my well being, took me to the hospital room we would live in until that following Sunday. She offered food/drink, got me the security code needed for the floor, and assisted me to the OR waiting room.
Once I got to the waiting room, Ali (Sarah’s twin sister), who saw me in scrubs with no baby, no Sarah, started freaking out and was very upset, because she was very worried about Sarah and Tristan. We proceeded to talk, every little sound coming from the hallway caused us to stop and wonder if the baby had been born.
After a bit the friendly ped came down the hallway with Tristan in that hospital crib/cubicle thing. She said congratulations, that Tristan was completely healthy, that Sarah was ok with no complications. She proceeded to ask if I wanted to take some photos of the baby (she took a lot in the OR), asked me to cut the cord, weighed him, etc. Had me sign the waivers for the VitK and eye ointment to decline them both.
They then gave Tristan his bath, the ped was so concerned about our wishes that she even asked if it was ok to put neosporin on the baby’s umbilical cord stump.
If I recall correctly from what I am told, Keith had to sign all the waivers so Ali stayed with Tristan for the bath, of which I have a ton of photos from.
After that we were told Sarah was now in the OR recovery room, Ali went to Sarah and I stayed with Tristan until they permitted us to go to the recovery room.
I remember the on-call OB telling me my uterus was actually perfect, that the baby’s umbilical cord had a single tight knot in it, a “true knot” he called it, and that he wasn’t sure where the massive bleeding was coming from but that he sent the placenta off to be tested (still haven’t gotten those results).
I was then placed in the OR recovery room, I remember the nurse having to palpate my uterus and that hurt like a bitch. Seriously. It hurt. I then explained that I needed pain meds that would not make me out of it as I was bound and determined to nurse my newest son ASAP.
Ali came into the room and she told me about her wait in the waiting room, all about the baby, etc. Keith then brought Tristan in and I right away proceeded to latch him on. He’s still a good nurser for the most part, although he’s a sleepy one so we are working on that.
After a bit, with my sister starting to doze off, they finally moved us to our main hospital room and got us set up in there.
The hospital stay itself will probably need its own entry heh.
I would love for you to share your birth stories in the comments, thoughts on your birth, I know I have a lot of emotional baggage when it comes to the failed VBAC, I keep thinking, what if the bleeding was NORMAL for me, what if I just held out a little longer… it’s really hard for me to process even now, 3weeks later.