Annalie Cora Izzolo was born at 9:02am on Monday, January 18, 2010. This is my birth story. It is very detailed and long, but I wanted to remember every detail of the day my darling daughter was born.
At 39 weeks and 1 day, Annalie had decided she was ready to come out. Vince and I had gone to bed around 10pm, but I just couldn’t sleep. I tossed and turned and just felt “off”. Around 11:30pm I heard a strange pop inside my belly and started feeling painful contractions. After I had 3 of them, I realized that these were definitely more intense than the Braxton-Hicks I’d been having throughout the pregnancy. At about 12:15am I woke up Vince and let him know what was going on and then got up to use the restroom. When I got out of the restroom, I was standing in my room and my water broke. It wasn’t a gush, like I thought it would be, just a steady stream that would not STOP!!
We decided to go into Labor & Delivery right away, so I put on an extra thick pad, since I was still leaking, and we drove over to the hospital. By the time we got there, my pad, underwear, and sweats were completely soaked and I was still leaking…it sure is a LOT of fluid! I was having painful contractions about every 2 minutes.
The hospital put us in a delivery room right away and checked me for amniotic fluid. I was still leaking, now all over the bed, so it was pretty obvious that my water broke. At 2:15am they checked my cervix and I was dilated to 2 cm and 70% effaced. They decided to wait 2 hours and check me again to see if I was progressing.
The next few hours were the hardest part. I was in so much pain from the contractions and they wouldn’t give me an epidural until I was dilated to 4 cm. Vince was amazing, he held my hand and helped me breathe through each one. They were SO intense, I have never been in so much pain in my life.
They checked me again at 4:15am and I was still only dilated to 2 cm. So around 5:15am they started me on Pitocen to get things moving. Once the Pitocen kicked in, I was in complete agony. The contractions were right on top of one another, each one would start before the previous one had completely ended, giving me absolutely no recovery time in between. I was in tears and so exhausted from no sleep.
Finally at 6:15am, they checked me and I was dilated to 4cm. I ordered the Epidural right away. They told me the anesthesiologist would be there in 10 minutes. He came thirty minutes later and I was screaming for him…I absolutely could not bear it any longer. He was a godsend. He had the Epidural in place in less than 5 minutes and it was almost painless. The IV that the nurses gave me hurt so much more!
Once the Epidural kicked in, I was so much better. I could feel absolutely nothing. I was talking and laughing, instead of being curled up in the fetal position screaming in pain. If I had to do it all over again, I think I would have demanded the Epidural much sooner. Everyone says that you forget the pain of childbirth soon after, but honestly, I don’t think I will ever forget that pain!
At this point, things started progressing very quickly. By 7:30am I was at 6 cm and 90% effaced and by 8:15am I was fully dilated and ready to push. My doctor had arrived and had me do a couple of practice pushes to get me in position.
They had my feet in the stirrups, and put up some bars for me to hold on to. Each time I had a contraction, Vince would push up on my back to help me sit up and I would push as hard as I could for 10 seconds, three times in a row. We did this over and over for about 30 minutes.
By this time, my body was done. I was so exhausted from no sleep and struggling through 6 hours of contractions with no pain meds. My doctor brought over a mirror to give me some motivation because she could tell I was struggling. I could see my daughter’s head and each time I pushed it got a little closer. This was really what I needed. I was so tired that in between the contractions, I kept falling asleep and they would wake me up to start pushing again. Her head got really close and my doctor decided to use the vacuum to assist in getting her out. A couple more rounds of pushes and her head was out. Then, at 9:02am after a total of 45 minutes of pushing, it was just a few little pushes more and she was born!
They laid her on my stomach and cleaned her off. She came out crying with a full head of hair and a nice pair of lungs. I could not believe that this was my daughter…it was so surreal. She weighed 6 lb. 15 oz. and was 18 ¾ inches long.
While the nurses bathed her and did the Apgar tests, my doctor went to work getting the placenta out and sewing me up (she had given me an episiotomy). When this was done, I nursed her right away and she had no problems latching on and I was able to feed her successfully.
We were released the next day and are now home trying to get the hang of parenthood. I am pretty sore, not only where I had the episiotomy, but my entire body hurts from pushing. I’m very sore from breastfeeding, but I am determined to get through it. And although it hurts, I have to say I love breastfeeding her. I feel this close bond with her each time I feed her. I am also VERY emotional. Several times I have just burst into tears for no reason. I can’t figure out if I’m crying because I’m happy or sad, but there are definitely a lot of emotions going on right now.
Vince and I are so smitten by our daughter. She is the most precious little girl, each time she cries it just breaks my heart and I want nothing more in the world than to soothe her. I never knew this kind of love existed, but it does. I would do anything for her. We are so happy to have this addition to our lives.