03-26-08: We went to sleep in complete peace that the Lord would perfectly align Adon to be delivered. We went to sleep earlier than usual so we could go to a prayer meeting early Wednesday morning. I woke up around 12:30 to go to the bathroom and my waters broke. I told Jer and his response was, "Are you sure?" :o) When I confirmed that I wasn't peeing on myself, he jumped out of bed and hurriedly packed the last minute things we'd need for the hospital. In the meantime, I was trying to figure out how I was going to get to the hospital without creating a big wet spot in J's car. I decided to sit on a towel and reassured myself that I wouldn't be the first mom to show up at the hospital in the middle of the night with wet pants. :o) Jer got everything packed into the car and very gently helped me get situated. Both of us were so much more calm than the last time we went to the hospital. (We didn't miss the exit this time.) We called Mom and my good friend Hannah, who had gone natural with both of her children. The contractions started on our way to the hospital, but were mild. J took care of the of the admission paperwork and questions for me while I concentrated on the contractions which were getting more intense.
I was admitted to the hospital without going through triage. The nurses got me settled in the hospital bed with the IV and the monitors for my contractions and Adon's heart rate. They were so patient while I worked hard to relax through the increasingly intense contractions. J held my hand and got the laptop set up to play the music I had picked to help me concentrate and relax through each contraction. The contractions would start slow and gradually increase and stay there before easing off. The intensity got stronger and stronger and more painful. My mom was reading her Bible and J was holding my hand. They would take turns rubbing my back and helping move around to be as comfortable as possible. They were so great at helping me relax completely. Hannah got to the hospital around 5:30 am, and she coached my breathing and helped me to focus. J and Hannah reminded me of the source of my strength while Mom prayed and continued to read. She prophesied Psalm 71:5-8 over Adon.
For you have been my hope, O Sovereign Lord,
my confidence since my youth.
From birth I have relied on you;
you brought me forth from my mother's womb.
I will ever praise you.
I have become like a wonder to many,
but you have been my strong refuge.
My mouth is filled with your praise,
declaring your splendor all day long.
I knew that regardless of what happened through Adon's birth that the Lord would be Adon's strong refuge and would deliver him. I knew that his life would be a wonder, displaying the works of the Lord and that Adon would praise him from his first breath.
I was so tired from being up all night and from working through the contractions. The contractions were getting almost unmanageable and I was falling asleep in between them. I had asked J a number of times if I could have some medicine to help with the pain, but he was so strong and reminded me that I could do it without the medicine and it was best for Adon. Our nurse, Lily, checked my progress and monitored my contractions. She told me the contractions were still only mild to moderate and that they weren't even strong yet. Around 8:30 a.m she said that I was only 4 cm. I felt like a deflated balloon. All that work and such little progress. Because my waters had broken, the nurses were concerned about Adon getting an infection without the protective barrier of the amniotic fluid. She said that I would need Pitocin to help the contractions do their job of opening the cervix, because they weren't progressing fast enough on their own. We agreed to the Pitocin knowing that it wasn't for the convenience of the doctor, but it was best for Adon. We knew that the Pitocin would make the contractions stronger and more painful. I pleaded with J for an epidural, because I was barely managing the contractions and knew that it would still be a long labor. We asked Lily to explain all of our options for pain management and the risks associated with each. Though it's not what WE wanted, I felt a complete peace about the epidural.
Lily called the anesthesiologist and the epidural was in by 9:00. I felt an immediate relief from the pain, though I could still feel the pressure of the contractions. Since the epidural wouldn't allow me to get out of bed, I had to have a catheter. Lily started me on the Pitocin at 2 mcg and continued to monitor the contractions. Dr. Radley stopped by to check on me and set up the internal monitor to be able to more accurately monitor my contractions. Lily felt for Adon's position and thought he was still facing half-way between my belly button and my left hip...as he'd been for several weeks. She had me get on my hands and knees (with very numb legs!) to try to turn him. Because I couldn't support my weight this way, she had me lay on my side the rest of the afternoon in hopes that he'd turn. We continued to pray that he would be properly aligned and were confident the Lord would deliver him. Lily came back to monitor the contractions every once in a while and increased the Pitocin to 4 mcg then 6 mcg. My contractions were getting stronger, but they were piggy-backing. So all of the work the two contractions would do regressed in the long break before the next two started. Lily again increased the Pitocin this time to 8 mcg and then again to 10 mcg before the contractions weren't piggy-backing anymore.
I was so thankful for the epidural, which allowed me to sleep for a while. Hannah went back home since I was doing so well and J watched some movies we brought. He was too exited to sleep. Mom continued to pray and read (and drink coffee). Sleeping helped pass the time through the remainder of the morning and into the early afternoon. Lily checked my progress shortly after lunchtime and I had progressed some more, but nothing major. In the early afternoon, I developed a fever. This really concerned Lily, because it meant that Adon may have an infection. While I didn't want to take any medicine to hurt Adon, Lily assured me that not controlling the fever would be worse for him. I took some Tylenol (as little as possible) to bring the fever down. The afternoon seemed to leisurely pass. We got a number of opportunities to share our faith and our confidence in the Lord with Lily. We requested of Lily that we hold Adon as soon as he was born (before he was all cleaned up and everything) and that I wanted to nurse him right away. She said that would be fine as long as everything was alright, but with me having a fever, it would be likely that they'd have to do some tests before I could hold him.
Lily checked me again just before 4:00 and I was about 8 cm dilated. She called the doctor to come soon. Mom called Dad and all of the girls to let them know it wouldn't be too much longer. Lily brought in a nursing student who would be observing. Around 5, Lily called the doctor to see if she was on her way. Dr. Radley was stuck in rush hour traffic, it was raining, and there were a number of accidents between her and us. About 5:15, Lily had me start pushing with the help of the nursing student and Jer. Dr. Radley showed up around 5:30 and we got right to work. She was a drill sergeant (though very kind) about this pushing business. We had a lot of work to do and not much time. I don't think I've ever worked so hard in all of my life! Dr. Radley would watch for the contractions and count for me to push during each one. J held my very numb right leg and the nursing student held my left leg while Lily assisted Dr. Radley. Mom had the camera ready to go as soon as Adon was born. Dr. Radley started talking about doing an episiotomy. She didn't want to waste anytime time, because my waters had been broken for so long and because of Adon's possible infection. On top of these things, Adon pooped (meconium) before he was born...which would be fatal if he ingested some of it. I pleaded with her to wait as long as possible before she did one, and she told me to work even harder, because this baby had to be out. She said she'd give me 2 or 3 more pushes before she'd cut. Lily had called a handful of nurses to get to our room immediately, because Adon would have to be checked for so many things because of the infection and the meconium.
During this time, I heard Dr. Radley tell Lily what Adon's position was...occiput anterior...the exact position he needed to be born in. The Lord's mighty hand had turned Adon!! Boy did I work hard after hearing this! In 2 pushes, he was born. It was so fast that Dr. Radley almost didn't catch him. He screamed, and it was the most wonderful sound I've ever heard! He was praising the Lord for delivering him from my womb!
All of the nurses hovered over Adon doing tests as he lay in the tiny heated bed. They sucked his stomach for meconium and found none! His Apgar (test for alertness) score was 99.5 (only because they can't give a 100). He was perfect. They drew some blood to test for an infection. They weighed him at 7 pounds, 13 ounces and 21 inches long. While they were doing all of this, J looked at me with huge tears in his eyes and said a barely audible, "We did it!" I sobbed! Our son was born!
Mom was busy taking pictures and J was watching over the nurses shoulders to see him. J got to cut Adon's cord. I know it must have been a proud moment for him! By the time Dr. Radley and Lily had finished cleaning up the afterbirth, Adon was wrapped and in my arms. All I could do was look at him and cry. He was perfect! I've never seen a more beautiful baby! My heart was overwhelmed with joy. Psalm 71 was right on...the Lord was Adon's hope and confidence as Adon relied on God's hand to bring him safely forth from my womb. He'd been perfectly aligned for delivery and had been saved from an infection and the poisonous meconium. From his birth, Adon's life has been filled with God's miraculous wonders declaring His splendor...beginning with the doctor and nurses. I know that God will be Adon's strong refuge all of his days.
Happy Birthday, Adon! You are loved more than you will ever know!