My alarm went off at 3:45am. Not that I really needed to set an alarm. I was up every 2 seconds throughout the night having to pee, savoring each drink of water I could take, or just thinking about how I would be holding this baby (who was abnormally active throughout the night) in my arms soon.
I got up around 4 to start prepping my food for the day. You can’t eat/drink for 8 hours before surgery so I had to take in all the food/drink I wanted before 5am. On the menu? A big ol’ breakfast burrito stuffed with eggs, hashbrowns and a ton of cheese. Erin told me later it smelled amazing in the kitchen when I was cooking my breakfast, and he almost wanted to come out to get some. I credit adding a bunch of mexican spices to my scrambled eggs. They were delicious. I also drank as much water as I could within an hour.
After breakfast, I tried to lay down and sleep again. Thankfully I got a little more rest before I had to get back up and start getting ready to leave. I tried to take advantage of the small amount of time with Palmer while she was still my only “little girl”. Unfortunately Palmer wasn’t having it. She decided today was going to be a hyper day so no snuggles for mom.
We needed to leave the house by 10:45am in order to make it to our check-in time on time and it seemed like the morning flew by. Erin’s parents arrived at 10 and we quickly went over all the last minute things we could think of. Honestly, towards the end I was just rambling because I was anxious and nervous. It’s all I could do to keep everything off my mind. The clock hit 10:40 and I wasn’t prepared. I was forcing myself on Palmer (PLEASE LOVE ME!!) but she was too excited to hang out with Grandma and Papa, and super distracted.
After a few more forced kisses and hugs, we walked out. I took one last look at my little girl before I turned the corner and burst into tears. It’s a difficult emotion to explain but I have a feeling most moms experience it before they welcome a new addition to the family. I was happy and sad and excited and nervous and all I wanted to do was hold Palmer in my arms one last time and never let go.
Side note: I was totally regretting putting on makeup prior to this because it was literally destroyed as we got into the car.
A quick drive and we arrived at the hospital. It felt like we were checking into a hotel. We approached the desk and the lady said, “Oh you must be Audrey. Let me call back and let them know you’re here.” Within just a few minutes, we were taken to registration and then escorted over to our room. A nurse came in a minute later and started getting everything ready. She was super sweet. They started me on an IV and pumped me full of fluids. I probably peed like 500 times in the 2 hours I was there. The last ten minutes before the surgery was intense. It was a revolving door of people introducing themselves and asking lots of questions. And then before I knew it, a crowd of people came in to roll me into the OR.
As we cruised down the halls, I tried to remain as calm as possible. Holy s… this is happening. We got into the room, I sat on the table, and within just a couple of minutes, the spinal had been administered. I have to admit, it’s a much different experience when you aren’t trying to get it done between contractions. My body quickly warmed and started to numb up. As I got into position, I could feel myself entering a crazy relaxing zone.
During Palmer’s birth, the anesthesiologist took a video of the three of us meeting for the first time. In the background, “Say Something” was playing. I always remember it being it very special memory from her delivery and wanted to make sure to note the songs played during Emma’s delivery. I may not have remembered what was playing at the exact moment Emma was born but while we were in the OR and while they were working on stuff, “Yeah” was playing. Yes, the popular club hit from the early 2000s by Usher, Ludacris and Lil John. I’m pretty sure after that was some John Legend song but “Yeah” is definitely more memorable.
Anyways, I felt a bit more tugging through this surgery than I had in my last. Not anything crazy. I had a difficult time breathing at points and the anesthesiologist said it’s just a feeling of pressure and everything would be fine once the baby was out. I kept feeling like I needed to cough but didn’t have the strength to do it. Plus I was soooo itchy. I wasn’t itchy last time at all. I had Erin itching all over my face because I was so uncomfortable!
Then the anesthesiologist told me that the baby was about to come out and I was going to feel a bunch of pressure. It felt like a suction cup. Within seconds of the pressure, it was a flood of relief and an instant cry. My eyes started to tear up hearing her little voice. I watched as they brought her over to the table to take care of everything. Erin seemed nervous to leave me but I told him to go over and be with the baby. He kept checking on me every 2 seconds to make sure I was doing fine. She was covered in vernix (Palmer didn’t have much when born) and was so red! And the hair… seriously. I couldn’t believe all the hair.
I watched as Erin proudly cut the cord. They were actually able to capture it this time so that was exciting!
I listened closely as they read out her weight and height. Erin was so happy. His face was just overjoyed as he looked at his daughter. I wish I had a photo of that moment because it was precious. Once they finished with the baby, Erin brought her over to me. I felt overcome with warm fuzzies (or maybe it was just the spinal lol) as he held her to my face. It didn’t seem to take long to get all stitched up and we were whisked back to the recovery room. All I wanted was some ice chips and boy did they taste great.
We got settled and I got to hold my new little baby. One of the baby nurses worked with me to start feeding and, as a complete shock to me, she latched without an issue! I told her about my issues last time around and we basically agreed to leave it in the past and focus on a positive experience this time around (possibly the best BF advice ever).
Overall, it was pretty uneventful, and I liked it that way! I found out that I was ultimately 1cm dialated at delivery so who knows what that would have meant for a VBAC attempt. Could I have had a uncomplicated and successful VBAC? Would I have gone past my due date? Would the pregnancy result in a c-section anyway? Who knows what would have happened! Although there are always major risks with choosing a c-section, I feel happy with my decision to move forward with it. Everything was worth it in the end.