The Introduction to the World of Ms. Frankie Rose
This was me my last week at work. I was so excited, tired, nervous and whatever other emotion there is. See, this particular pregnancy was not planned. I repeat was not planned! I was on birth control, trying to space my kids out so I could have a small break. But GOD! It was almost like HE was sitting in heaven thinking to himself, "Gee, I'm tired of all of the death and destruction. Let's liven things up." So, after missing my cycle and still taking my pills, my husband suggested that I take a test. GOD, sitting up in heaven, calling over Jesus, Mary and Joseph. They're all laughing and pointing at me. Put the test down to wash my hands.......positive! Immediately I felt a wave of fear, anxiousness, and a strong desire not to have another c-section.
I called by ob and started my prenatal care. She was my doctor with my last baby and she worked with me to give me the birth I wanted. I still ended up having a section, but at least she gave me the option. Well, she wasn't so open this time around. At about 28 weeks I changed doctors. It was tedious and very much time consuming. She is in high demand and sometimes my appointments would be 3 hrs long. I had to get all of my medical records and surgery reports from the previous sections. I had to have my blood work done over. There was always the thought that I was doing all of this for nothing. All of the article reading, mommy forums, meeting with my doula Kelly, was all for nothing....... Until August 10, 2016.
I was watching the news that Monday, August 8th. The weather man said that a low pressure system was coming through our area Wednesday the 10th. I turned to my husband and said I was going to go into labor on Wednesday. That Tuesday was rough. The girls (Ava is 4 and Aubrey is 2) were acting super crazy. I couldn't take them outside because it was raining and Brondae (hubby) was working. He came home that evening, fixed dinner, put the girls in the tub and went back out to work. I was tired and my fuse was short, so I thought it best the girls and I went to bed. At about 4am Wednesday morning I woke to no hubby in the bed. I got up to go to the bathroom and I saw him sitting in the rocking chair watching t.v. I asked him why didn't he go to sleep in the bed. He said I looked too comfortable and he didn't want to bother me. So, we both got back in the bed and watched Steven Universe (awesome cartoon). We both fell asleep. I woke again about 4:30am, laughed about something funny about the cartoon........ my water broke!!!!!!!!!!!! In the bed!!!!!!! Ahhhhhh!!!!! Okay, let me wake hubby up so he doesn't wake up in some random liquid. "Bae....bae.....bae.....BAE!!!! My water broke." It took like 5 seconds for it to process in his brain. "Alright Sunshine. Your water broke?! Okay! Let's go to the hospital." That's my husband's first thought, the hospital. I told him just because my water broke doesn't mean I need to go to the hospital. As a matter of fact, I was trying to go back to sleep. So, we called a couple of family members for the girls to hang out. Hubby got the girls ready and out the door in .5 seconds. At 4:50am I texted Kelly to let her know my water had broken. When Brondae came back home, I decided I need a shower. So, I sat in the shower for about 30 min. As soon as I got out of the shower my contractions picked up. We stayed home and I did some dancing with hubby and birthing ball until 7 am. At this point I decided to go to the hospital. That ride was quite awful. New Orleans streets are not for the faint of heart on a good day, let alone when a human is trying to escape out of your body. Brondae and I got to the hospital about 7:30am. The nurse came to wheel me into a triage room. I immediately said my water had already broken. I mean it didn't make sense to have to clean two rooms. The nurse looks at me like I don't know what I'm talking about. "Are you sure your water has broken?" she asked. "Ma'am I have fluid from the 9th ward to right outside the hospital doors!" At that moment they wheeled me right to labor and delivery. Things were going pretty smoothly. My contractions were kinda consistent and somewhat mild. Then Kelly came around 11:30 am. Thank God for Kelly! The NO FOOD nurses were in full effect and Kelly brought some great snacks. After breathing through and rocking through some intense contractions, the nurses claim that my doctor said to give me pitocin at 1:00pm. Okay, for those who don't know pitocin is the work of the devil! It takes the natural waves of normal contractions and turns them into tsunamis. From 1pm the pitocin started at 2ml, then they would bump it up every 15 minutes until it was 12ml. Oh meee geeeee! When it got to 12ml there was a lot of "Sweet Jesus" being called. The pitocin was to regulate my contractions; and it did! One of the nurses was kind enough to start turning it down until it got to 8ml around 3pm since my contractions were really strong and consistent. After a while the contractions started to get the best of me. I was tired and thought it would be better to go home. I guess it was that fight or flight thing going on. I then swayed standing up for two hours straight! I wouldn't do anything else! When I say everything else hurt, everything! Brondae and Kelly were stern and gentle at the same time. Kelly had me get on the birth ball where I would fall asleep and wake to some serious contractions. Dr. Lap came in to "check" me and said I was doing good at 5cm. I put check in quotations because I assumed she meant to check my cervix, but I think she was aiming for my tonsils. At some point after this Brondae had to leave to tend to the two older girls. I don't know if it was the fear of him not being there, but the pain seemed to intensify. As Kelly held my head I told her I wanted an epidural. She reassured me that I really didn't want to do that. But I did! I actually thought at that moment that it would be easier to get another c-section! After about an hour Brondae came back. Kelly ratted me out! They both reminded me how hard I had worked for a vbac and how the epidural would probably lead to another c-section. But I was tired. Not only was I tired, I was hungry! And anyone who knows me well, knows I'm a really sucky person when I'm hungry. I'm like the Hulk. Instead of getting me angry, it's hunger that grinds my gears. At about 8:15 pm my dad stopped by. Poor guy! He came right before Dr. Lap came in to check me. It felt like she was trying to dig the baby out! She placed some kind of monitor thingy in my vajayjay to track the intensity of the contractions. I wish there was another word for hurt. My poor daddy came in after wards and said "see ya later!" Daddy couldn't see his baby in pain! Lol! Shortly after he left, Kelly had to leave. After about an hour and a half of more hard, pitocin labor, Dr. Lap came in and said I needed an epidural. There was a wave of relief that came over me. I was tired as hell! I was in so much pain. 10:15, the nurse comes in and starts the paper work for the epidural. I sign it. Almost a whole hour later the anesthesiologist finally comes in. He of course kicks Brondae out. The last two times I got an epidural it hurt and burned. This guy was really good. He was quick and didn't poke around in my spine like the other ones did. Yay! I had the epidural so now I can rest...... so you would assume. I was still in a LOT of pain and I felt sick. I had been feeling like I needed to throw up since Brondae left to get the girls. Looking back, Kelly says I was getting close to transition. After the epidural the nurses hooked me up in this weird position with one of my legs in a stirrup on my side so the baby could turn. The nurse came in and gave me oxygen. I fell asleep. 12:15 am the nurse comes in and looks extremely concerned. She picks up her phone and with great urgency calls for medical back up. Within a blink of an eye there were about ten nurses, doctors and midwives around my bed. I was terrified. I looked over at Brondae to read him. His face was stiff and stern. He was terrified. I began to pray. Brondae prayed. Then all of a sudden one of the doctors yells out, "it's about to get weird!". She jumped on my bed and had me turn on all fours. While I was butt up, one of the nurses checked me. "She's only 5cm still." she whispered to another nurse. I felt defeated, tired, worn out, sad, and angry. "Mrs. Branch were going to have to section you. The baby's heart was doing some crazy stuff and we think that a section is in your best interest." NO! NO! After all I've been through. The long labor, the pitocin, the missed veins. All the visits with Kelly and the arduously long waits at Dr. Lap's office, the articles, for nothing! Shortly after the crazy happened Dr, Lap came in. She checked me, then looked around the room of doctors. "Who said she was 5cm?!" I was still concerned. How dilated was I? "You're complete and you need to start pushing." Oh my God! Thank you Lord! After pushing for 30 minutes and throwing up, Ms. Frankie Rose made her entrance into this world.
The girls are really excited about their sister, especially Ava. She tried to breastfeed her last week! I think Aubrey thinks she's some kind of toy to be poked and prodded. My husband was set on having a boy, but is overjoyed. As for me, words cannot express the happiness, healing and accomplishment I feel knowing my body really is capable! Now that I know, the baby factory is forever closed! I would like to thank God for being in the midst of everything, my husband for his unwavering support, Dr. Lap, Kelly and her family, Grace, and the Touro staff. We did it! I did it! And to the ladies out there that have been told they don't have a proven pelvis, the baby is too big or once a section always a section; my story proves you can do it too! To all the moms and moms to be; birth however feels best to you. As moms we should have each other's backs. So, until I can do things without Frankie attached to my boob; be kind and kindness will find you!