Thursday, August 8, 2013

The Birth of Ella Minor

First of all, this story is gruesome, uses questionable language, and may give you 
visual images that you can't erase.
Reader discretion is advised.
Also, it's long. 

It all starts with a double line on a test.
A long deep breath.
And a text message.

Not exactly the cutesy, creative way all the women on Pinterest deliver the news, but whatever.

I was on a work trip and had the answer to why my brand new work pants did not fit.
My 'really bad PMS' was now going to last FOREVER.

I delivered my first three children in the hospital and had epidurals that slowed/stopped my labor, then had Pitocin, then the epidural magically stopped working, then I got a complimentary back wax as they re-did the epidural during transition.


This time I thought, NO - I want to deliver drug free, IV free, 
little belly-strap-thing-that-tracks-your-every-move free.
I will sit in a spa tub and the midwives will sing to me while I deliver this beautiful baby, with only a slightly pained smile on my face.

Just like on TV.

The pregnancy lasted FOREVER and one day.
I have never gone a full 40 weeks.
In my mind, I was due at 37 weeks, which is when my last one was born at a solid 8 lbs, 6 oz.

With a varicose vein the size of the Mississippi running through my lady parts, ankles that disappeared months ago, one pair of shoes that fit, and a series of three giant house coats disguised as maxi dresses, that I wore every day for at least the six weeks, combined with obscene waddling, strangely huge moles cropping up, and my brain function diminished to kindergarten level, I was  DONE BEING PREGNANT.

To make matters worse, I kept going into labor.
I know, I know - it isn't labor until blah blah blah.
Screw anyone who says that.

But Little Miss had her head turned sunny side up (just google it).
And six hours of painful contractions, on multiple occasions, were not turning it.

The midwives advised me to stand on my head and wiggle around.
Just kidding. Sort of.
I actually had to get on my couch, with my knees on the edge and my hands on the floor.

Supposedly, this position would encourage her to 'back out' of my pelvis and go back in the 'right way'.
What they didn't know is that I was going to deliver a baby the size of anaconda, so I could stand on my head all I wanted, but there was no backing out of anywhere.

On my due date, I gave up.
My dream of the singing midwives would be crushed.
I was going to be induced and end up with a c-section.

That night, I asked the mister to bring me a cheeseburger - a double one.
I should take this time to say, he is the most PATIENT man in the universe. 
And he took excellent care of me.
I, on the other hand, would have shot and buried me somewhere by now.

The contractions started AGAIN around 10:30 that night.
I decide going to bed is the best way to handle the contractions since they clearly will not result in a baby.

At 3:00 am I hobble and groan my way to bathroom to pee.
The mister said if I was a horse making those sounds, he would have to put me down.
I'm still having contractions, but whatever.

The midwives have all said I need to always lay on my left side during contractions to get the baby to turn.
Well, laying on my left side hurts.
Well, at 3:15 am, I decide f*** this, it hurts and I want to lay on my right side.
She's never coming out anyway, so I might as well be comfortable.

Two contractions later, I feel the infamous POP and the resulting hot liquid.
I shot my behind off the side of the bed, praying the gush would hit the floor, and not the mattress.

Now, standing in a massive puddle I freak out a little.
I'm crying to the mister to check and see if the fluid is clear - he confirms.
I decide the toilet is the best place to sit down while I figure out what to do.

I shuffle on a bridge of towels from the bed to the bathroom.
I'm sitting on the toilet, mister is talking to my mom, and the most horrendous pain of my life strikes.
I fall off the toilet.


The worst diarrhea since a red curry Thai dish back in 2004.
It took 8 years for me to eat Thai food again.

I'm thinking, okay at least I don't have to worry about 'pooping on the table' during delivery.
Everyone woman's nightmare.
No one wants to poop in front of everyone lined up, staring at your hooha.

So, pipes cleaned, I get dressed and ready to leave for the birth center, which is over an hour away.
Kids dropped off, family notified, we head out.

Everything is going fine - the contractions are pretty much same story, different day.
And then we hit the halfway point and the sounds change.

The mister makes all kinds of inappropriate jokes about the moaning.
I would have laughed if I didn't want to punch him in the face.

We make it there without resorting to a roadside delivery.
I am relieved to find I am dilated to 6 cm.

Having tested positive for group B strep, the midwife and an intern immediately try to start an IV for the recommended antibiotics.
It doesn't go well.
Twenty minutes later, the midwife says to check me again. 

I was at 8 cm.
I beg for them to let me get in the tub.

I was convinced the tub would be just the calm I needed.
And it was.
For two contractions.

By the third, I looked at the mister, pointed and said I HATE YOU.
He announced I was officially in transition.
He was right.

And then...
Transition pain?
Oh no. God, please no.

Diarrhea. In. The. Tub.

On go the armpit-length plastic gloves.
Out come the little green fishnets.

Those little nets were like using a flyswatter on a hornet nest.

I officially lose my mind.

Another round of shitting on the toilet.
The midwife's face is between my legs as she's convinced I will have the baby in the toilet.

Now, it's me, the mister, the midwife, and the intern - all in a very tiny bathroom.
The midwife, in a very urgent voice, tells the mister they need to get me OUT  of the bathroom NOW.

I wail.

The mister insists it doesn't matter. 
I insist on wiping myself. 
With very thin toilet paper. 

Okay, let's go!! The mister is getting serious. 
Mind you, I am naked, dripping wet, and a baby is going to fall out of my body any second. 

A contraction hits just after I turn off the water. 
I hit the floor, screaming. 
And now, the mister, the midwife, and the intern are attempting to carry/drag me to the bed. 

I assure you if this wasn't in the wee hours of a Saturday morning, the entire waiting room of sweet pregnant ladies would have run screaming, begging to be un-pregnant. 

Now on the bed, the crew is yelling for me to push - if I feel like pushing. 
I don't feel like anything but please God someone get this thing out of my body so this can be over and dear God WHY HAVE I BEEN IN TRANSITION FOR SIX YEARS???

I push like I pushed with the first three babies. 

Ohhhhh, remember how Little Miss was turned face up?
Yeah, that's like trying to push a tractor trailer out of the mud. 

Now begins the I am going to die phase of this birth. 

I announce I simply can't push laying on my back. 
The crew flips me on my side. 
That nearly gets the intern a black eye during the next contraction. 

I flip over onto my hands and knees. 
I hold onto the pillows for dear life. 
But somehow, I feel a little control again. 

The crew is still yelling to push. 
All I can think about is accidentally shit-spraying the entire posse of people standing at eye level with my butt hole. 
It doesn't help that every so often, the intern wipes poop off me with a wet cloth. 

Finally, I give in, throw away any sense of dignity I might have - as if I have any left at this point, and yell 
And, just like that, the wonderful midwife obliges. 

It is worth mentioning that the poor midwife forgot her "work" shoes at home and was doing all of this in her socks. 
I imagine she threw them away.

Now I can focus on getting this baby out. 
Not before I yell PLEASE JUST CUUUUT ME!
I hear the baby nurse say "Nope, you've got this". 

A few pushes later, Little Miss FINALLY turns and there is light at the end of this tunnel of shit. 
I can't leave out the ring of fire at the end, but all things considered, this was just a minor inconvenience. 
I pushed, they pulled. 
Out came the anaconda, I mean the baby. But seriously, her body went on forever.

They put her on the bed under me. 
I tried not to fall on her. 
The mister grabbed her and helped me lay down so I could see her sweet face. 

If you know anything about how babies are supposed to enter the world, you will know that Ella turned at the last minute, but because I was on my hands and knees, she still came out facing the heavens - exactly the way she planned all along. 

Welcome to the world Ella.
 9 pounds 5 ounces and 21.5 inches of chubby sweetness. 
After that, the baby coma set in and I have been madly in love ever since. 


  1. Oh my. I didn't know whether to laugh or cry, so I laughed til I cried.

  2. Well, we have laughed until we cried SO MANY TIMES retelling this story. It's all kinds of horrible and hilarious at the same time!

  3. God I'm a horrendous friend! I didn't know any of this happened nor have I met your sweet girl yet! I will come over soon, I promise! I laughed through the whole store and fell in love with the last line :)

    - S. Pletcher

    1. No!! I would have much rather been touring Europe than having explosive diarrhea at a birth center! We'll do some early fall pumpkin beverage and catch up - you knew where to find us ;)