Disclaimer again: I generally don't use words like "cervix" or "vaginal" here on my blog. However, this is a birth story. If you don't care to know, just don't keep reading!
So we left off with K and I headed to the hospital. I decided on the way there that I would keep a timeline in a note on my phone with details throughout the induction. That way I would remember more when I looked back later. Seriously, that was one of the best ideas ever. There's no way I would remember 90% of this otherwise. So if this story seems a tad of an over-share that's why!
We got to the hospital at 6:30pm and registered at the desk. We were taken back to our room, asked a million questions by our first nurse and slowly got settled in. At 8:00pm our first midwife on call (let's name her Captain) comes by to check my cervix and talk with me about the induction options. We discussed cervadil (a chemical induction) and the cervical balloon (a more manual dilation method). K and I chose the balloon because it was the only way to try and avoid pitocin and the constant fetal monitoring. My parents arrived during this time and hung out for a bit before heading over to our place to stay the night. Captain came back at 9:15 to insert the balloon and have our nurse put in the saline lock in my arm. Fortunately for me, after 2 blown veins I convinced the nurse to hold off on the saline lock until the morning. One less night with needles in my arm! at 10:00pm K brought me food to eat and at 10:30 we started walking the halls. I wanted to do whatever I could to help that balloon get to work! At 11:30 we stopped walking and the nurse brought me 2 Ambien to help me sleep. She was amazing and agreed to only come by to do the fetal monitoring when I woke up to go the restroom instead of coming by every hour like they're supposed to. I was up 3 times (trippy! That Ambien made my head spin!) and every time LDB and I were looking good.
The next morning I woke up, took a shower, and spent some time with K, Mom and Dad. My amazing sister arrived that morning as well. At 9:45 the new midwife on call (nickname Sunshine) came by. She checked me and I wasn't quite at 2cm yet. Unfortunately, the balloon hadn't started working as quickly as we would have liked. The purpose of the cervical balloon is to stimulate prostaglandins and manually dilate the cervix but it can take a while to work. Sunshine suggested starting Pitocin and gave me some time to think about it. At 10:30 she came back and I asked if I could try pumping and walking to induce contractions before trying the pit. She decided to let me give it a try, which I was very thankful for....even though it didn't work. I alternated pumping for 10-15 minutes with walking for 30-45 minutes until 11:45. Then I started doing birthing ball exercises with pumping and quiet guitar playing time. Through all of this my mom, sister and K were hanging out in the room with me. Their presence was awesome and encouraging. I'm so glad that they could be there! At 2:45 Sunshine came by again and I had yet to feel a contraction. She checked me again and said that the balloon was doing it's job but pitocin was inevitable now. Even though pumping and walking didn't work for me I was so, so thankful that she let me try. I felt better starting the pit knowing that I had tried everything else first. At 3:15 we started pitocin in an IV. This was the part I was dreading the most. Being stuck to an IV pole is not my idea of fun. Once the chemicals were in my system, we had to start the constant fetal monitoring and contraction monitor. Also not my idea of fun. I understand why they have to be there but I have explained here before that my son is a wiggler. The nurses had to come by constantly to adjust the monitor and chase him around my belly. He did NOT want to stay on the monitor!
Every 30 minutes or so they would up the pit but other than that, this time was pretty stagnant. I was still able to get out of bed and move around but it was annoying to take the IV pole with me to the bathroom and to try to be on the birthing ball with tubes coming out of my arms. I wasn't allowed to eat during all of this but the popsicle I got at 4:20 was exciting enough to make the timeline! K's Mom, Dad and 2 of his brothers arrived late this afternoon and hung out in the room with us for a bit. By 6:00pm I was finally feeling the contractions but not intensely and they weren't very regular. Sunshine checked in around 6:45 and then again at 10:30. I spent a lot of this time alternating between the birthing ball and the bed trying to work with the contractions to be more intense and efficient. At 10:40 Sunshine checked me and I was only at a 3. She suggested stopping the pit for the night to give my uterus a break and start the pit again in the morning. Basically, my body wasn't responding to and working with the pitocin the way we needed it to so resting and trying again seemed like the best option. LDB was still looking great and my water wasn't broken so there was no harm in taking a break for a while to try to give the balloon a chance to help me dilate further. This was a sad moment for our families who came a very long way just to spend the night here knowing that very little was happening. My sister had to head back home but our parents stayed around. At midnight, K brought me food which I was SO thankful for! At 12:15 I took the Ambien again and was conked out for the night. I was very thankful later for this night of rest because it was the last good rest I had for quite some time!