At 10:21 PM Monday night, I updated Facebook with the following status:
“Dagnabbit! Only dilated to three! But here comes the pitocin. Stuffs about to get real! Lol”
This, of course, led to many many women in my life commenting and advising me to GET AN EPIDURAL as soon as humanly possible. But in my naivety, I assured myself (and them) that “I am hardcore and don’t need no epidural!!”
Famous last words.
When I was induced with Dexter, I had made it to 7 cm before an epidural was needed. And it worked so very very well that I had to be reminded often to click the little button to administer more medicine. Suffice it to say that pain management was excellent, and I expected it to be exactly the same this time.
Once the pitocin was introduced to my system, everything fell apart. The contractions, which had felt pretty strong already, were suddenly vicious! My worst pains with Dexter seemed like pleasant tummy flutterings compared to the immensity of the tightenings I was feeling now. Coming one right after another, they were overwhelming, and I knew I needed help.
Earlier in the evening, the nurses had changed shifts, and my girl, Lisa, had been introduced to me as the one who would see me through the night. But a few minutes previously, Nurse Candace had come in to say that Lisa was indisposed and SHE would be my temporary help for a bit. So I used my little phone and gave her a call to ask about my options for pain relief. She said I could have my epidural right then, or she could inject some meds into my IV to help dull the aches a bit. Not wanting to give in, I chose the narcotics.
Once she’d injected me, I DID feel slightly better, mostly because I became woozy and tired. The pain was still pretty bad, but the rough edges had been dulled, and I felt I could handle it.
My Facebook update at 11:42PM:
“Random update – just had some IV pain meds so pain went from an 8 to around 6 or 7. Quite loopy but feeling a tad better.”
Eventually, it was after midnight, and Dexter was exhausted, so Mark laid down on the couch with him and everyone tried to rest.
It was only 12:07 AM, a mere 25 minutes later when I updated my status once more:
“Just requested an epidural. Can’t cope with these contractions anymore !!”
An unnatural feeling had come over me by then, and I found myself shaking uncontrollably. Though I didn’t feel cold, my teeth were chattering, and my body was convulsing in agony.
I found myself moaning and crying gently into my pillow. I tried so many positions in an effort to find a measure of comfort, however nothing worked. The pain was intense, and because Mark and Dexter were sleeping soundly, I was feeling VERY lonely. I wanted someone to hold my hand and stroke my hair, but no help was forthcoming. Sure I could have woken him up, but I wanted everyone to be well rested. I’d been up for about 19 hours by this point, and I didn’t want anyone else to be as tired as I was.
So I laid back, trying to keep quiet and waited for the anesthesiologist.