So some of you may have heard the story from us, but I figure I can get it down for good so I can stop, as Ann puts it, "sounding like a crazy person" whenever I tell the story.
Because this story was pretty scary, and I deserve to sound like a crazy person over it.
You'll recall my post on the day Dash was born where I had noted that it was "Ann's story to tell." I took that position because I was 95% spectator through the whole affair and figured she might not want to talk too much about it. Since then, we've been a little more open, a little more angry, and so on. I'll explain.
When I came back from Ann getting her epidural, it was like a whole new woman in front of me. When I left she was on a yoga ball in a severe amount of pain from her contractions, and when I came back she was actually really happy. She even ended up taking a short nap, which was nice given how long we'd been there at that point. About an hour or so after the epidural, they came to check Ann again, and decided we were ready for the next step. Considering how quickly things had been moving, I ran out to the lobby where Ann's mom and stepdad were and let them know where we were at. How exciting, after all - it was about 2:30 and we're going to have a baby soon!
So we get back, and we're getting going to push. The nurse, contrary to pretty much everything I had thought up to this stage, has me help Ann position her legs to make things easier (my eyes were locked on that back wall, let me tell you), and we got going.
And then 30 minutes pass. Basically no progress. Ann also said later that she felt pretty much done after 15 minutes. So the nurse comes over, pumps up the pitocin (which helps with contractions), and Ann keeps going.
And then an hour passes. Still limited progress. Ann is already exhausted at this point, the midwife has a look on her face, and the nurse comes over, pumps up the pitocin yet again. It's worth noting at this stage that the midwife can't really figure out when Ann's contractions are, which means Ann is missing prime pushing time. But hey, pitocin will help, right?
90 minutes pass. We're supposedly getting somewhere, but Ann literally cannot move anymore. They slap oxygen on her (full mask, none of that tube nonsense for my girl), and try to get her to push again, and she's...basically nonresponsive. Not so much that she's been knocked out, or lost consciousness, or anything like that. It's that she was literally worn out and couldn't do anything. Single scariest moment of my time with Ann, because this was pretty much every nightmare scenario I had envisioned in my head. But we rouse Ann after a short break, pump up the pitocin again, and go with it.
It took about 2 hours give or take, but we finally get Dash. At one point, Ann was given something similar to a pull-up bar to lean on to try and get gravity to help out a bit. It did more good than anything we had done to that point, and once Ann was able to get the baby out, things were better. Ann was shaking from the epidural and the basic shock of everything for a good 45 minutes afterward, so she didn't even get a chance to hold Dash.
At the point where the baby was born, though, I look down, and my shoe is soaked. There's a clear puddle at my feet, and I say something to the midwife and nurse. They say "oh, it's just the afterbirth," which made no sense because I was above Ann's waist the entire time. That's when I follow the line a bit and realize that one of Ann's IVs was out.
Yup, the pitocin leaked out of the detached IV and onto my foot. Who knows how long it had been loose, but it's probable that the pitocin increases Ann got over the course of the labor ended up on my right foot. My suspicions are further confirmed by the fact that Ann had a tremendously difficult time passing the placenta, which somehow easily worked itself out once the pitocin was hooked back up.
So, with all that said, I should say that everyone was genuinely healthy and no ill effects came of that situation other than me being scarred for life and being pretty sure I don't ever want to see this again. We made a joke with the midwife saying we weren't going to call a lawyer, and she didn't really find it funny, so it was probably ultimately more serious for them than it ended up being for us, but in terms of traumatic experiences, that one was up there. On what is supposed to be a joyous day introducing a new life into the world, you end up seeing your wife limp in a hospital bed with an oxygen mask on? Really?
So yeah. That's the story of Dash's birth.