My birth story with Duke started differently than with Otis. Otis went into labor on his own, while Duke was induced a week before his due date. Both were equally great experiences. These moments feel forever embedded in my memory. What an amazing time to be pregnant and have a baby during the Covid-19 pandemic. felt. Keep reading below for the story of Duke’s birthday.
Flow until childbirth
Let’s get back to my 37-week schedule. At this appointment I had my first cervical exam, 2cm dilated, 70% cleared, -2 stations. My doctor also told me he wanted to get me pregnant a week early at 39 weeks based on my two risk factors of age and IVF. I agreed that an introduction would be a great option because my body was already naturally preparing for birth as well. ! I didn’t think I was going to have an introduction, but I was relieved to know that my body had already progressed. 2 stations, but with a very keen head. My doctor gently stretched my cervix (not a full membrane sweep). I was starting to feel excited and nervous at the same time, wondering if the baby would show up before my introduction. The idea that induction was different from going into labor naturally was a new idea to me, so I think I was a little nervous up until then. Having the luxury of standing up and getting ready for his birth and us being away was also very nice.The night I got home from my 38 week appointment and cervical stretch my mucus plug was gone. I was waiting, so luckily I was on time to join the company!
July 7, 2021 / 12:30 am – Induction
Our deployment was scheduled for July 7, 2021 at 12:30 am, so basically midnight. I had to call 2 hours in advance to make sure they had a bed available and that we could get in. A friend of ours came over to replace Otis duty and we grabbed our hospital bags and off! We were vaccinated so we didn’t have to do a covid test at the hospital which was great.
Since the last time, I have been going to the hospital for active delivery No In active labor was different. I was also strep positive. I needed to get an IV immediately to start antibiotics to protect the baby before delivery. By 1:17 am the IV was finished and blood was taken for the cord blood kit (he did CBR again to get the cord blood and tissue and did the same with Otis) . anything else. At this point, I dilated her by 3.5 cm and shrunk by 80%. Luckily, we were both vaccinated, so we didn’t have to wear masks in the delivery or postpartum room…just when we were in the hospital hallway. The rules were changing all the time, so I didn’t know what would happen, but it was a pleasant surprise.
July 7, 2021 / 2:37 am – Pitocin
I started Pitocin at 2:37am. This was a drug that burst into labor to keep dilation or start labor. Just waiting…to see when things turn around. At 3:27 am they increased my pitocine. I started feeling contractions, but nothing major, mostly discomfort. I was contracting every 3-4 minutes and feeling it more and at this point I could not rest at all from the discomfort. Informed me that I was due for a caesarean section. I was ready. My blood pressure was a little on the low side, so I was planning on rehydrating before the epidural. At 8:07am, I had my last big drink of fluids before undergoing an epidural.
Jul 7, 2021 / 8:34 am – epidural
I had no birth plan except to have a healthy baby and have a healthy mama…and hopefully have an epidural! So, I was in a lot of pain and discomfort, so it was time to call the anesthesia. This time everything was going well, but I was doing the actual epidural and I almost passed out while he put everything in place. . He nearly fell to the floor. This was the exact opposite of my first epidural experience with Otis, but it wasn’t enjoyable. I had ice on my forehead and started feeling better. I was happy to find out that an epidural was included.
July 7, 2021 / 9:20 am – Break My Water
An on-call worker came and was able to crack my water at this point. This helps me speed up and strengthen my contractions and extend them faster. Everything went great and was easy with my epidural.
07/07/2021 / 10:05 AM – Cervical Check and Bloody Show
Around this time, I had a cervical examination and it was already 5 cm. So this was great news that I am making progress. I also had what they called my “bloody show” and the nurse said this was all a good sign of labor. I told the nurse about it… I didn’t think much of it. They pushed the button on my epidural and flushed more medicine. In hindsight, I should have called the anesthesiologist back. Basically, my epidural wasn’t working…so maybe it was working a little bit..but essentially I was still feeling everything.
Jul 7, 2021 / 10:43 am – OMG I am in so much pain
Wow. Things moved very quickly. From 10:05am to 10:43am I went to 8cm and 90% disappearance and 0 station. I was under a lot of pressure, so the nurse checked on me again. When I tell you, I was in a lot of pain… I was laying on my side, clutching the bed, telling the nurse that I didn’t think the epidural was working. The pain was intense and I was moaning…not what I expected from an epidural. Ha!
July 7, 2021 / 10:55 AM – GO TIME!!!
I was miserable and in so much pain and there was so much pressure on my female part. I had to tell the nurses I literally felt like a baby was coming. Checked on me again and she said “you are ready!!!” Oh my god, I’m 10cm in 10 minutes and I’m ready to push. At this point, I was in constant heavy pelvic compression. They called my doctor to come right away. She was at the office a five minute drive away. The nurses busily moved around the room, putting everything together. No one imagined that it would grow to 10cm so quickly, so everyone was preparing in a hurry. I kept losing my baby’s heart rate on the monitor as it was so low trying to get out. It was insane. I basically had my legs crossed for fear that the baby would literally come out. My epidural felt like it didn’t exist and couldn’t keep up.
My doctor arrived quickly and I could barely concentrate at this point from the pain. I pressed (three presses each time) and baby was out within 5 minutes!! HOLY CRAP!!!!! was trying to guide me He came so fast and suddenly…he was here!!!!!!!!!
July 7, 2021 / 11:20 am – Birthday of Duke Ray Lapides
Duke Ray Lapides was born at 11:20 am weighing 7 pounds 4 ounces and 19 inches long. When he came out, his cord was wrapped around his neck, but my doctor worked fast and suddenly my baby was on my chest. what happens to me ever. The impact of the baby finally coming out, breathing and moving on his chest…it’s him one of the most powerful moments in my life. I had a very small tear, so after I gave birth to the placenta, it was sutured to complete it.
We had to snuggle up to a special man uninterruptedly before the nurses came back to take measurements, tests, etc. The second time, I felt calm and confident when approaching breastfeeding, it went so smoothly and I am so grateful. I always kept track of my painkillers (rotating Motrin and Tylenol) and never missed a dose. We stayed in the hospital for just over 24 hours to make sure I was done and I was medically cleared.
After I got home, I continued to take painkillers, but the pain and cramps were worse than I remembered from Otis for the first two weeks. But it was all a sign that my uterus was shrinking back to its original size. Parts, thankfully to me at least, tend to blur quickly.I had to include this photo of Otis and Duke side by side at the hospital. I love seeing how their sweet faces look like in that newborn moment!
So you have it. Happy Birthday. After years of battling infertility, I feel this overwhelming relief and am leaving that chapter behind to move on with my life. I was able to stop by with gifts. It was filled with some of the darkest moments of my life, but also some of my brightest moments. I am eternally grateful to modern medicine for helping me on my journey. I know it’s a tough road no matter how hard you try, but I want you to know that you’re not alone. We have described our process in considerable detail. We hope we can provide support if needed.
I wrote several articles on infertility and in vitro fertilization And you can find them below:
in vitro fertilization 1
Preparation for FET (Frozen Embryo Transfer)
Preparing for IVF egg retrieval
How to support a friend during IVF
IVF book resources
Embryo transfer canceled due to Covid-19
Failure of IVF frozen embryo transfer
Failed Frozen Embryo Transfer #3 – Failed IVF
IVF FET Round 4 (Triple Attraction) IM Pregnant!