Continuing from my journal:
(June 13, 1993)
Shannon and Rodney dropped in for a visit. Kathy's husband Dan came with her brother Steve and the three men administered a blessing that all would go smoothly and quickly. Then they left and we waited.
I was worried that the epidural had caused my contractions to ease up and that might be slowing my progress. As we visited, talking about the stages of labor, I told Kathy I felt right then I could relate to the urge to push.
Kathy called the nurse back in. The nurse checked me and announced that I was "completed." Completely effaced? Yes, and dilated to 10 centimeters. We were on our way to the delivery room.
Guess we got there about 5:00. Put my legs up in the stirrups, pulled off the bottom of the bed, and hooked me back up to the monitors. They brought the mirror around, so I could see. The baby's head was crowned.
The nurse started to have me push. She called Dr. Isaacson up, and also the anesthesiologist to inject more into the catheter in my back to be sure the epidural would still serve its purpose.
Some say the epidural keeps you from feeling contractions or the urge to push. I still felt the contraction and I felt the pressure where I pushed. I'm grateful I had the epidural, though, because I didn't have to tell the rest of my body to relax while I tried to concentrate on that one area. All my mental efforts were focused right there where I was pushing.
The epidural catheter had apparently slipped, because as the anesthesiologist inserted more medication, I became dizzy and heard a lot of buzzing. He tried to remedy this--it meant the catheter was going into a blood vessel--but after he injected more, I was really tripping out.
The handles I was holding onto felt like they were sideways even though I knew they were upright.
They also felt like they were changing sizes in my hands, though I knew they weren't.
I felt really goofy, but I was able to still concentrate on pushing when the next contraction came. They put an oxygen mask on my face and I gulped it in. That really helped and then Dr. Isaacson came.
After a few more times of pushing (was it even six contractions total?) Dr. Isaacson told me to open my eyes and look. There came her head--and a hand, silly little girl. He brought her out and they put her on my tummy and cut the cord. Then they bathed her and let me hold her.
Wow! It all happened so fast. I already told you, but I'll say it again. She was born at 5:36 p.m., weighed 7 lbs., 4 ozs, and measured 21 1/4 inches.
The most precious, beautiful little girl. Kim, who was able to watch the whole process from behind the doctor, while Kathy coached me through pushing, got to take the baby down to the nursery.
The doctor delivered the afterbirth and stitched me up....
There is more to come. I'm "typing" this on my phone, so if there happen to be random words in this post that don't make any sense, it is Autocorrect's fault. :)