A Birth Story {How Jacob Douglas came into the world}

Monday, March 31, 2014

It's taken me a while to write Jacob's birth story, and I think it's because I have so many different emotions regarding it.

I  typed up a draft that I really liked last week, and then my internet freaked out and deleted everything. Needless to say, it took me a while to regain my motivation after that.

I want to be honest about my experience.
My son is one of the greatest things that has ever happened to me.
Yes, birth is a miracle. No, it wasn't a fun experience.

As I neared the end of my pregnancy, I'd say I had a fairly good attitude regarding the birth process.
I didn't have any expectations and I kept a pretty open mind.
As fair as pain medication went, I thought it would be great to go without but I wasn't against it.
There were only two things that I hoped for: that I wouldn't have to undergo surgery and that I wouldn't have to take Pitocin to induce labor.

Both of those things happened.

On the morning of Friday, February 7th I went to doctor for my routine 39 week check-up.
I was huge and uncomfortable at this point, and ready for this baby to be born.
I decided to have my membranes stripped, in hopes of going into labor over the weekend.
My doctor told me that in doing the procedure there was a small chance of her breaking my water, but that in her long career it had only happened to her twice.
Afterwards she left the room for me to get dressed, and the second I stood up a gush of liquid pooled at my feet.
I was in shock.
It took me a second to process what had just happened, but when I did I immediately called for a nurse.
She took one look at me and said "Girl, you are going to have a baby today."
I was sent upstairs to labor and delivery, praying that I wouldn't leave a trail of puddles behind me.

I was formally checked into the hospital and hooked up to different machines by the time I finally accepted the fact that I was going to have my baby that day.
My doctor arrived and explained that since my water hadn't broken naturally, we were going to have to use Pitocin to induce labor.
I cringed. She assured me that I would be administered a small amount, and that we would see if my body kicked itself into gear on it's own after that.
My doctor then asked when the last time I had eaten was.
I'd only had a small breakfast before my 9am appointment, and now at 11am I was starving.
She said we could postpone the Pitocin until 1pm, and that she would have lunch sent up to me.
This was the best news I'd heard all day.

Once I knew the game plan, I called my husband to let him know that we were going to have our baby.
He had been working since 1am and was finally on his way home to sleep.
I told him to go ahead and get some rest at home since nothing would be happening for a while.
He arrived at the hospital a couple hours later.

I started out at about 1.25cm dilated. Once the Pitocin kicked in I quickly jumped to 3cm.
This hurt. A lot.
The idea of a natural birth quickly went out the window.
I wanted anything and everything they could give me to manage the pain.
Since I wasn't able to get an epidural yet, they gave me a pain killer through my IV.
This gave me a little relief, but that didn't last long.
They next time they checked, I was 6cm dilated.
At this point I was in a lot of pain. I was a mess, yelling and crying.
The anesthesiologist arrived to give me the epidural. My contractions were intense and coming non-stop. I was afraid I wouldn't be able to sit still long enough for the epidural to be administered.
The anesthesiologist was amazing and I started to feel a little relief. I thought that I might be able to get some rest for the first time since labor started.
I was very wrong.

Almost as quickly as the pain disappeared it returned again.
I was now already fully dilated, and it was time to push.
Pushing was painful, exhausting and felt like it would never end.
At one point I turned to my husband and told him I wanted to quit.
I snapped at the nurse after her telling me one to many times that I was "almost there."
I wanted to kill someone.
FINALLY after 30 minutes of pushing, at 8:39pm, Jacob Douglas was born.
He was immediately placed on my chest, and there were lots of tears from both me and his Dad.
I was so happy and relieved to finally have him here.

Now you might think that once the baby arrives everything is over, but it's not.
That's when things went very wrong.
I used my last bit of energy to push out the placenta, and in doing so it literally turned inside out.
This is called placenta inversion, and it's an extremely rare but serious complication.
My doctor quickly attempted to turn it manually, but it didn't work.
I was losing a lot of blood very quickly, and the only way to fix it was to cut me open.
I told my doctor to hurry up and do it. I was in extreme pain and couldn't mentally or physically take it anymore. At this point I could tell people all around me were starting to freak out. I heard a nurse ask my doctor if she wanted her to notify the on-call doctor. My doctor responded by telling her to call in everyone.
There are 4 doctors who work in the OBGYN here, and they were all called in immediately.
Placenta inversion is so rare that my doctor hadn't preformed this procedure before and it was an "all hands on deck" type of situation.
At this point I remember having trouble breathing. I was being wheeled into surgery and started freaking out, yelling "I can't breath." It was one of the scariest moments of my life.
Shortly after I was put under.

According to my husband I was rushed out of the delivery room, and he was left by himself with our brand new baby.
He said that it was just the two of them, and an Italian cleaning lady who was mopping my blood.

I was in surgery for about two hours.
They had to put a balloon in my uterus in order to shape it and stop the hemorrhaging.
I was lucky, because if the balloon hadn't worked they would of had to remove my uterus completely.
I also shouldn't have any problems conceiving future children.

Everything went fine after surgery, and there weren't anymore complications.
All I wanted was to hold my new baby.
We stayed in the hospital for three nights, and the entire time I was known as "the girl who almost died." Nurses and technicians were coming in my room telling me that I
"gave everyone quite a scare." In a small military hospital, things like that don't happen very often. The labor and delivery wing is the only part of the hospital that is even open 24 hours, there is no emergency room.
By the time we left I was starting to feel somewhat normal again.

I am so thankful that there weren't any complications during the actual delivery.
I have a healthy baby boy and that's all that really matters to me.

The birth process wasn't what I had expected, but I would do it again in a heartbeat.
Jacob is absolutely perfect, and I couldn't imagine life without him. 


  1. OMG girl you're amazing. So glad you're both okay and he is beautiful :) enjoy it!

  2. I love the last picture. It looks like he's holding onto you with everything he has and it is just so precious!

  3. What an experience! You write it all so calmly, but it must have been beyond scary! Glad to know everyone was ok in the end :-)

  4. I always lope a birth story! :)

  5. My youngest is now 13 and even now I can't write the full birth story, she was ten week's premmie. I think I should at least attempt to for all three of my girls while I still can remember but I wonder if it something they would want to read.

  6. OMG - what a scary experience for you all. I am so pleased it all ended well but that would have been a very hard thing to gone through. Thanks so much for linking up - I'm looking forward to checking out more of your blog Nicole x

  7. Oh how scary that must have been! I feel for your husband too, being left with his precious newborn but seeing his wife whisked away in a life-threatening situation :( So glad you came out of it well! You have a beautiful blog and I love the photos of your little family of three :)

  8. What an experience :) I am so thankful that all turned out well. Your son is adorable! Congratulations <3


  9. WOW!! Scary for sure. I can only imagine how your poor husband must have felt being all alone with his new perfect baby, but so scared for his wife. What a mix of emotions. Praise God that you are all fine.

    Oh, and not to start a big debate or anything, but some midwifes will actually break water to induce labor... so there is no "requirement" to have Pitocin just because it wasn't a natural break. They certainly could have taken the "let's see what happens" approach for at least 12 hours.

  10. Wow how scary. I thought my birth story was traumatic, but this is much worse. Glad everything worked out in the end. How scary is must've been for your husband too.