As the shock of being pregnant began to wear off I realized that I was entering my 2nd trimester. At a checkup my OBGYN asked if I had given any thought to a birth plan, a pediatrician and some other things that I was oblivious towards. I left the appointment feeling so unprepared. I knew that Darryl and I needed to take classes and figure out the plan that would work best for us. I had been trying to find a doctor and hospital closer to our home fearful that I would give birth in NYC traffic. I have a traditional nature about me so my nostalgic ass decided to go with Jacobi Medical Center, the same hospital that my husband Darryl was born at….32 years ago. I instantly fell in love with my Midwife Dr. Cohen. She actually assisted me with my birth plan.
Here it goes:
Check into the hospital on the due date or week of when contractions are less than 10 minutes apart.
Have a vaginal Delivery with an epidural.
Soft Music playing during contractions and delivery for comfort.
Hand massages and foot massages provided by nurses and midwife.
Skin to skin contact once baby comes followed by nursing.
This is what happened.
Four days past my due date and I had just felt Braxton Hicks. I was monitoring her movement non stop and worried out of mind. My midwife decided to induce me that night instead of waiting another 2 days. God bless her because it took nearly 2 days for Oakley to make her debut. There was no soft music or massages. I let a tiny pill dissolve under my tongue and held my breath as they inserted what felt like giant water balloons up my vagina.
My midwife only worked day shift and would not be delivering Oakley so it was time to get acquainted with the “night staff.” Now, I don’t know much about hospitals and shift changes but I can tell you that the nursing staff that admitted me was Dr. Jekkyl and the night staff was Mr. Hyde. After being in active labor for 10 hours I figured it was a good time to get the epidural. Luckily the day shift had came on so I was in good hands. I had barely dilated and remember those balloons, I couldn’t walk around because they were not to be disturbed. I could only lay on my left side because Oakley’s heart rate dropped if I turned to the right side. The epidural couldn’t disperse to the right side so I was only numb on one side of my body but felt like a meteor was entering the world through my butt on my right side. The day had come and gone and it was time for the dreaded night shift to come in to work. My new nurse apparently missed the class about bedside manor in nursing school. Her personality was equivalent to a wet noodle. In the most uncaring voice she informed us that Oakley would have to be rushed to the NICU because she had made her first bowel Movement inside of me and that because my water was broken to wary I was now at risk of an infection. So of course my blood pressure goes up. Of course I began to cry hysterically with an oxygen masks on. Darryl tried his best to comfort me as did my mom and mother in law.
After 26 AND A HALF hours of labor, wiggling away from the suction, being literally pulled out by the doctor (who was actually the best part of the night shift) and untangled out of her umbilical cord, Oakley Raye Davis entered the world with eyes wide opened and frowning. They quickly suctioned her, let me hold for a few minutes and whisked her away to the NICU. No skin to skin contact or nursing. During all the labor craziness I had developed preeclampsia and had to stay in the bed with my IV for 24 hrs. As happy as I was that she had made it into the atmosphere safe and healthy I was distraught that things didn’t go according to plan.
On the top of your birthing plan write the words “BEST CASE SCENARIO.” I was in no way prepared for the unexpected. I mean, Darryl and I were star students in the parenting classes! We were ready, until we weren’t.
Prepare yourself for the scary "what ifs" of birth. Being prepared for an unconventional situation will not make the birthing experience any less beautiful.
DO NOT GO TO JACOBI MEDICAL CENTER!!!
Unless your baby is crowning in your car and it’s before 6pm. Please believe me, the day shift is unmatched but the night shift is hell in handbasket. I also had trouble with a nurse in the NICU over feeding Oakley until she spit up (3 days old). After filing a complaint about how rude the nurse had been after I addressed the situation, I was marked as DECEASED in their system which opened another keg of problems.
Plan or no plan, giving birth is no joke! Pat yourself on the back no matter what way you brought your little one into the world. ♥️
BE THE FUN YOU WISH TO HAVE!