We went to see the midwives in the afternoon. Misty had been taking showers at 3 a.m. the last two mornings anticipating labor to start at any moment. There were cramps, and a few other signs, but nothing was screaming LETS DO THIS! Jeannie (one of the four midwives who take care of Misty) told us that Misty was 1-2 cm dialated and it could happen at any time, and would probably happen in the next 24-48 hours. "Go home, eat, take a hot bath, have a glass of wine and get your sleep... you're going to need it." She was right.
Misty went home and got through the list (Sam went out and got me a bottle of sparkling shiraz, my favorite and we have some yummy Chinese delivery - ha. so New York), but when she started to get ready for sleep it was too late, labor had begun. We sent up the Bat Signal and Team Awesome jumped into action. Mikki got out of bed and headed our way. She arrived at 11 and by 11:30 one of our midwives, Suzanne, had summoned us to the Birth Center. We said our good-byes to Samaire and Mikki and headed that way.
Headed to St. Luke-Roosevelt Birth Center
(That's Sam's TtWS t-shirt I'm wearing here, the same one I wore when I labored with Maire)
Maire and Aunt Mikki keep the home fires burning... and rock Bear and the Big Blue House.
When we arrived at the hospital Suzanne was busy delivering a baby in Labor and Delivery so she had us roll up to L&D on the 12th floor, something we didn't do with Maire. Since she was busy she couldn't meet us and we had to go through the standard triage. 30 minutes later Suzanne came by and gave us some bad news. Misty was only 2-3 cm dilated and we weren't far enough along to be admitted into the Birth Center. (By ONE centimeter! UGH!!) We had headed out early because everyone told us that 2nd births happened faster (and Samaire had happened so fast we thought for sure we'd show up too late). We were disappointed, but headed home. It took a lot out of Misty to walk up to the 4th floor and that would come back to bite her later. We were home by 12:30 am and Misty was already toast.
We got Samaire to bed and by 2 a.m. contractions were getting serious and closer together. (Mikki was awesome and stayed up with me the whole time we were home. We just sat in the living room, her using her iPOD to time my contractions and we chatted in between. I felt really good about how I was handling the labor this time around, I was much less scared and much more able to just breathe through. That would, unfortunately, change.) We headed back to the Birthing Center and went straight to our room. Birthing Room 1 (we were in 2 with Samaire). Misty got checked out and she was at 5 cm, so a lot of progress for the 2 hours we were gone. Misty got in the tub and while things were definitely moving slower with Wylie than with Samaire they were still moving in the right direction. After a few serious contractions Misty was taken out of the tub and at 5 a.m. she was at 8 cm, we thought for sure it would happen any moment. Then, Ugh. Misty and Wylie hit the wall. Misty then got super sick and after throwing up and pulling a ligament in her side the contractions stopped and Misty ran out of gas.
(This was where I started to lose it. The midwife told me my contraction, or what I thought were contractions weren't enough or even possibly contractions - and at that point I sort of lost it. All my confidence quickly left and I just wanted to cry with despair. It felt like everything was starting to unravel. I was BEAT and feeling a bit lost and I have no doubt that's a reason the contractions took a nose dive. That moment was the first and only time I thought drugs might have been a good idea.)
Things continued to get worse as Misty was unable to catch her breath and started having muscle spasms in the side where she pulled the ligament. Suzanne had been on call for 24 hours, so she tagged out at 7 am and in walked Sandy Woods. (I freely admit that angels really did sing in my head at the sight of her. I trust her implicity.) She's brilliant. She didn't deliver Samaire, Cora did, but she saw us the first go round in the office and several times with Wylie. We knew her, we love her, we trusted her. She's great. She's an old Cajun from Louisiana and has been delivering babies since the Louisiana Purchace... ha. I keed. She got the contractions back using a few tricks, but they were still infrequent and didn't seem to be working.
(I remember her looking at me and asking me where all my fear was coming from. She could see I was terrified and knew it didn't match with what she knew of me previously. I burst into tears and told her I was afraid something was wrong. She looked me straight in the eye and told me she and I were going to handle whatever was coming. That she would make sure everything would turn out alright. I truly believe that what was to come didn't upset me like it could have because Sandy had made me that promise.)
Misty continued to slip in and out of sleep and didn't seem to have much left in the tank and things weren't progressing. The worst part was Wylie's heart beat started to dip to dangerous levels. Sandy said things weren't progressing and the options were to break Misty's water manually or take her upstairs. (Upstairs meant a c-section. NOT an option for me.) So, at 9 am. Sandy broke Misty's water. Contractions came back a bit but again, things didn't seem to be moving along. 10-15 minutes later Wylie's heart rate continued to drop and Sandy told Misty that she had to get Wylie out now or they were going to take us upstairs for a C-section.
This put the fire back in Misty. She started pushing as a surgical nurse from L&D (Danielle who was a midwife in Australia) came down to check on Misty. After a few pushes Sandy told her we had to get the baby out now as she wasn't sure Misty would make it upstairs. Misty was working harder than anyone I'd ever seen, but Wylie wasn't moving. It turns out he was in the posterior (face up) position and that was causing a lot of the issues and was making it hard to get him out. Sandy worked her magic and Misty pushed like hell (she did amazing, with little left in the tank she save our little one's life by getting him out in time). All of this takes place over an hour and change.
( I didn't realize how serious it all was at the time, and I'm glad. All I knew is that Sandy told me I had to get it done, and there was fierceness in Sam's voice when he told me I had to get this done for Wylie. The whole room seemed to be cheering me on - Sandy, the nurse, Danielle, the ER pediatrician (though I didn't know who she was) and Sam. It felt like I was never going to be able to stop pushing. They just kept saying "Again!" And so I would. There were brief moments of time where Sam woudl hold up an oxygen mask for me to catch my breath and then it woudl just keep going. Push, push, push. Deep breath of oxygen. Push again. The whole room was exploding in support, but I could only hear Sam saying over and over "do this is for Wylie" and I just held onto that every time I thought there was no way I could keep going.)
Finally out pops the little guy's head and then more bad news, the cord is wrapped around his neck. Sandy called out to stop (and the room instantly got silent and I froze) and again used all her skill and experience to get the head out of the noose and finish getting him out.
Then came the longest and scariest 5-10 seconds (seemingly years) of my life. He came out and looked limp. No movement, no breath. (Oh. My. God. I swear my heart stopped. I have never been so terrified in my life. I kept asking if he was okay and nobody would answer me. I just kept getting louder and kept hearing nothing. It was absolutely horrifying. My heart really did break later when I asked Sam why he didn't answer me and he said "I didn't want to lie to you. I didn't know.")
Sandy held him up by his ankles and gave him some hard wraps on the back. She sucked out his nose and mouth and he finally let out a cry. She told me to come quickly and cut the cord, which I did and then she passed him off to Shelley (greatest nurse ever) who took him to a bassinet right next to the bed and a pediatric specialist sucked out his lungs and got him some oxygen. 5-10 minutes later he was gurgling less and I was playing with him while Misty got fixed up.
(I so wanted to hold him, but they had to get him warm and breathing and watching that was frightening and reassuring all at once. I so hated having to wait.)
When the placenta came out Sandy called over Danielle and showed it to her. Turns out the cord, which is usually attached in the middle, was attached at the edge and it wasn't a solid attachment; had the water broken in a different spot or labor had continued poorly it could have detached and Wylie would have suffocated on his way out. Sandy dubbed him the miracle baby and I have to agree.
Little man was finally handed to Misty (Samaire went right to her chest when she was born) and he latched right on. 7 lbs 2 oz. 20.5 inches. and a lot of short light brown hair.
So proud of them both.
Sandy, one of the two best midwives ever. She helped save our little guy.
(I will forever credit her with everything turning out okay. And forever be grateful.)
He's turned out to be much mellower than Samaire and he slept and ate on mama. Of course he just went through the fight of his life, so he earned his rest. Back home Mikki stayed with Samaire all night and passed the torch to May that morning. May brought our girl over and when she met Wylie it was love at first site. She's been an AMAZING big sister. Protective, gentle, silly and always loving.
Maire LOVES her Aunt May... another hero from Team Awesome.
And then there were four.
The four of us crashed in the room that night because our pediatrition couldn't come give him his exam until Saturday morning. (It was actually pretty lovely, all of us curled up together in the full-size bed. A wonderful first night.) So we ended up staying 24 hours in the hospital. Got to eat our Island Burger meal again, just like with Samaire. And we got to see Cora, the midwife who delivered Samaire. Wylie passed all of his tests and proved to be quite strong; he's a fighter, just like his mama. We finally broke out and headed to home Saturday thanks to Doug, the best wheel man ever, who drove us home and was Wylie's first baby sitter for the 5 minutes it took for me to get the girls up the stairs before I could go back down and get him.
Maire and her midwife Cora, 2 1/2 years later.
Sweet Dougy V watching Wild Bill after driving us home.
Big Sis welcomes little brother home.
Now we're all home and well. Happy it all worked out and so thankful for our little miracle baby. Big thanks to Sandy, Suzanne, Cora and Jeannie (Best Midwives EVER!), our loving and amazing NY family and everyone who sent good vibes and love our way. Enjoy the pics. Much love to all.
First nap at home.
He's pretty cute.
Love from the Stiers Clan.
We'll post more pics soon.