This birth story series is sponsored by HCA Midwest Health.
It was Wednesday, July 17, 2019. I was 36 and a half weeks pregnant with my first child, a baby girl. My husband was heading into his last day of working his summer job when I started to feel….weird. Every time I would stand up, I leaked! This did not seem normal, but also my bladder seemed to get smaller by the minute, so pee-pants were a common occurrence.
I called my mom to see if this leakage was normal or if I should head to the hospital. She wisely advised that I should goin and get it checked out. I was nervous to go to the hospital. I then called my husband to let him know what was going on and explain to him my fears of being “that first-time mom” who is jumping to conclusions. They would probably laugh and say, “No sweetie, you aren’t even close to having this baby”, and send me home.
I arrived at the hospital at around noon. They were extremely kind and understanding of my situation. They had me change into a gown and they tested to see if what was “leaking” was amniotic fluid or not. To my surprise, it was!
My baby was coming three and a half weeks early and my head went into a tailspin.
The doctor in the exam room told me I was not even dilated or effaced. This baby is not ready; I am not ready. I called my husband and told him that the baby would be coming. We were not sure on timing as I had not even had any contractions yet, and that he did not need to rush.
Of course, being a first time dad, he got there within the hour after stopping home to grab our overnight bags that I had forgotten (I really didn’t believe I was going to be giving birth). The nurses monitored me very closely. Luckily, my baby’s head was facing down, so I was going to be able to give birth vaginally. They did inform me that because I was not dilated, that I would probably have to be induced due to risk of infection. They started with two rounds of Pitocin over the next 6 hours to see if my body would naturally go into labor. Sadly, it did not work.
I still was not having contractions or dilated. The nurses warned me that because of this, the baby might not be born for 24 – 48 more hours. The thought of going through all of this for that long terrified me. I had heard stories of long labors, but never thought it would be me.
Around 7 p.m., the doctors and nurses decided to induce my labor. It was amazing how fast the contractions came after that. They seemed to escalate so quickly and within the next couple of hours I was ready for an epidural, which finally helped me relax a little bit. The nurses told me I should get some rest. I was not dilated much, so they would come check on me and see how I was progressing.
At 1 a.m. the next morning, the nurse woke me up. She said she was going to check my cervix and see if I had made any progress. When she went to look, she had noticed some bleeding, and when she checked, I was almost fully dilated. My mom and sister had stopped by to check on me and were back in the delivery room hanging out with my husband and keeping us company.
The nurse asked me to do a couple of practice pushes to see if we could get the baby to drop as she still seemed very high. I pushed a few times, and the nurse yelled, “STOP! STOP! The baby is coming!” She ran to grab the doctor and medical equipment. It happened so quickly my mom and sister ended up being in the room along with my husband. The birth of my daughter went very smoothly. She was born at 3:15 a.m. and was the most beautiful thing I had ever laid eyes on.
I could tell something was wrong with me though. The nurse quickly took the baby away from me and the doctor started to explain to me that as I was trying to deliver my placenta, my uterus started to invert. This is an extremely dangerous situation, and I am blessed that the doctor caught it very quickly. The doctor had to hold my uterus in place while the nurses medically induced contractions. In many cases, this can result in a hysterectomy, and again, I am so thankful to my doctor for catching this and acting quickly.
Although Finley was born three and a half weeks early and the birth did not go as planned, I am grateful for the amazing doctors, nurses, and staff who were patient, caring and supportive through the birth process.
For labor and delivery expertise, more moms in Kansas City choose an HCA Midwest Health hospital. Our OB/GYN teams at our delivering hospitals – Centerpoint Medical Center, Menorah Medical Center, Overland Park Regional Medical Center and Research Medical Center – ensure every woman has access to top-quality maternity care, including specialized services for women with high-risk pregnancies. By delivering more babies than anyone else in the region, our maternity hospitals deliver experience and safety. Learn more at hcamidwest.com/delivers.