Saturday, May 2, 2015

Big Pharma strikes again!

Grab the coffee, friends. This will be a long one.
Might need a few more stamps.

So, though I appreciate the "mend and make do" world of my forebears, I am always appreciative of the wonderful advancements modern science, and especially modern medicine have to offer. Diseases and diagnoses that were death sentences back in the day have become treatable if not curable with modern drugs, technology, and techniques. Knowing several people (and one pet) who would have had their lives shortened considerably without it makes me wonder what the hell those against it are hoping for.

Well, I have an idea.

With that being said, yes, I am trying to go ahead with a pseudo - hippie birth as I did with my son. I may not have wanted interventions, but they were there if I needed them, and goodness knows I am happy about that!

Well with the GDM diagnosis (which was wrong, the doc admitted later), I received the sad news that the hippie birth center no longer worked within a hospital, so I packed up my marbles and picked out the best hospital our insurance would pay for, which is actually a really nice hospital!

The alternative was unthinkable.

Well, after transferring, I realized immediately how good it was I switched to the hospital, for as soon as they did the ultrasound, they knew my little proto-stinker was breech. She had been that way for months, and the same abs that kept me from having the adorable baby belly I have now were holding her in position. It was too late at this point for any sort of baby yoga to work, she was too big for that (right on her weight target though), so we turned to medical science, and the external cephallic version or ECV to give her some help.

I make it a point to read up on medical procedures that I am to undergo, and the related statistics just to know my options and to be a properly informed patient. This is not research, as I don't compile or publish it in any professional capacity, it is just reading. I make this distinction, because I am honestly sick of hearing people bandy about the word "research" as though it gives them legitimacy, while also telling me to "Google it!"

I know too many scientists not to know better.

Well, I knew mostly about the procedure, though I found out more specifics early this week as I asked my medical team about it. I knew I was a good candidate for it, and the doc gave me the go-ahead to attempt and then wait as I reached 38 weeks. Well, he said I had two options, try and wait or turn and induce, so I chose the route that would keep my granola cred as much intact as possible.

Without becoming this.

So yesterday at 6:30 am, we found ourselves checking in to the hospital, statistics and a general knowledge of what was happening in mind. I met Nurse Jennifer, and student nurse Dianne, and they started the dreaded IV! I warned her as I always do that my veins are like teflon paper fire hoses. Hubby was there to back me up, and it resulted in only one stick and a bit of gold digging. They wonder why I hate needles! We did all the vitals, I got a ride back to my doc's offices for another ultrasound, and we returned to meet Dr. McCool, who would perform the proceedure. For those who know, I give my docs nicknames, and since I have trouble with a male OB, most of them are in the Creepy Family. Dr. Creepystein, for instance, has become my main doc, while Dr. Creepy Whitebeard is also there. This guy, however, was go with my desire to maintain hippie cred, so he gets to be Dr. C. McCool.

Maybe not this cool.

Well, Doc informs me that they can first try to turn her using just a smooth muscle relaxer, which used to be an asthma medications, and felt like it should have recreational uses. A shot in the arm, a few minutes, and two attempts later, while not phasing the baby, it was too painful. Years of martial arts and core strengthening made that decision for us. I had not known it was an option to try without an epidural, though I had read that the stats did not favor it. Well, the statistics were trustworthy, and it didn't work. I knew what came next, the needle in the spine. This has been my biggest fear, like being trapped in a maze with a bear made of snakes that hasn't eaten in two days hunting me.

Or this.

Against my fears, and with the knowledge that the epidural would improve our chances for success, I took Student Nurse Diane's hand, sobbed like I was slowly being peeled, and let the very amazingly patient anesthesiologist do his job. Which he did very well, letting us know exactly what was going on, while Bob translated my sobs in responses to questions. They don't tell you what it is like, and I could go into excruciating detail at a later date, but suffice it to say I soon had some powerful narcotics and numbing agents blocking everything from my diaphragm down. They did have to pump me full of epinephrine so my heart rate would remain stable.

Also, it gave me a year's worth of cardio.

Another shot of the muscle relaxer, and I was cool with the world. Though apparently according to my husband, they realized that when I started to babble, my blood pressure was falling, so they had to bump it up. Why is it that every time I take a drug that makes me loopy or woozy, I get more talkative? Well, anyway, I was still scared and upset but like a junkie on four or five Xanax, I no longer had the will to really do anything about it.

So much Xanax!

Also, I was unable to tat. But I tried to keep a good humor when I wasn't sobbing because these nurses go through a lot. Just ask the poor lady who offered me ice chips during my last labor.

No. Ice. Chips.

So the whole crew returned as soon as the ceiling became the most interesting thing in the room, and I held a conversation while Dr. McCool pushed as hard as he could, grunting and straining while regularly checking his progress with an ultrasound. My head was tilted down, and Nurse Jennifer was right there holding my hand so, I was totally unaware of anything south of the chest zeppelins. I did realize at some point that I was naked in front of the room, and I had a pang of modesty, but it was more like an errant thought that got bored and wandered off.

Modesty is for chumps.

Suddenly, everyone was happy. I had to ask to confirm because though I had guessed and am rather sensitive to the moods of others normally, I was not my usual sensitive self.

With about as much muscle control.

The baby is headed south! Success! And baby played honey badger the whole time.

Baby don't care. Baby don't give a crap.

Recovery went well, though for a couple of hours, my left toe had a rhythm in it that could not be denied. Soon, Nurse Emily de-borged me and we came home, six new holes in my body, baby still moving well, though with a new set of sensations to get used to. Hubby and I relaxed and enjoyed a quiet evening (the Boy got an extra night of spoiling thanks to a fantastic Granny), and we trundled off to bed.

Blissfully unaware...

At 2am, the last of the muscle relaxer must have left my system and I remembered why she had not turned on her own. Remember when I mentioned my awesome abs? Yeah, I remembered, too. I also remembered that having a "resting" heart rate in the 130 range for a couple of hours should have given me a headache. It did, DOMS style.


Headache, back ache, ache from every wound that had something shoved in it, and the lateral abs that had been holding her back. Well, no pain, no gain, right? At least we have the machine that goes "ping!"