Why epidural, why?

A few weeks ago, someone asked me why I wouldn’t want to do a natural child birth because I’m so crunchy.

Don’t think I haven’t considered it.

But now? I can say with 100% certainty, epidurals are where it’s at, for me.


Because my epidural failed me in the final hour of labor and delivery. Well, except for my right leg. All the meds went to my right leg. So when I’d push the PCA button to give me relief, my right leg went more and more numb, but I felt everything everywhere else.

What did it feel like?

Well, I wanted to take my bottom lip and pull it up over my head and swallow.

It literally brought me to tears right before it came time to push.

I remember it completely, the nurse looking at me saying, “Why the tears?”

I answered softly, “It hurts.”

It was a mixture of feelings, to be honest. It hurt, a lot, yes, but it was also the emotion that comes right before you push. Especially to your last kid that you never, in a million years, ever thought you’d get to see.

I think I may have squeezed Matt’s hand off at one point and when I felt bad for his hands, I went after the bedrails. And of course, everyone is telling me to breathe, but the last thing I want to do is breathe. I want to hold my breath and pass out. Pass out and wake up with a baby in my arms.

BUT, I did find out how much of a pain tolerance I have. It’s pretty decent, honestly. I didn’t punch Matt.

Weeks before Audrey was born I still couldn’t believe it that I was going to have a baby. It was still that unreal. It’s amazing what the mind can do. I never fully believed that something wouldn’t happen to keep me from meeting her.

So, as I was laying there in the hospital bed, with a (mostly) failed epidural, and having the most anxious feeling that something was going to go wrong, I cried.

Now’s where I can begin to go on about how the next 15 minutes of prepping for and then subsequently pushing Audrey out into the world was the most painful experience I have ever felt in my entire life, however, I’m just going to let your imagination go on to tell the story.

When I was pushing, however, I thought I was yelling and screaming, but it turns out, that was all in my head. Literally. I apologized to the nurse later for being so loud, but she said, “Um, hun. All you said was, ‘Ow, ow, ow, ow…’ very softly.”

So I guess I saved all the nice swears for my brain.

It seriously *%$&ing hurt.

But it’s a distant memory, now. Audrey is here, I’m pain free, and the only thing I have left over is a stupid epidural headache. Because, you know, nothing can be simple. So, I get an epidural, it fails me, and now I’m left with a lingering headache that I get every day, and sometimes if I’m lucky, at 3 AM.

My neighbor, who is a nurse anethstatist has given me sound advice of how to combat the headaches, so it’s just a matter now of them going away. So, go away headaches!

It’s worth it, though. Because Audrey is perfect and she’s here, and she’s real. And I got to finally see her perfectly beautiful face and I don’t have to worry about never getting to meet her now.

I can’t even explain how much I love her.

541572_10151373455223791_2029504889_nI swear I’ll stop gushing about her eventually, but you know what I went through to get her here. And she’s freaking adorable. ADORABLE. And the kids love her. LOVE.

(Matt’s not really sleeping. It’s just Mae’s game of making everyone go to sleep. She enjoys making all her stuffed animals go to sleep by taking blankets and pillows and virtually suffocating them. She’s not allowed to be alone with Audrey for the record.)

About Cassie

Two sisters from two misters. What could be more fun?

Posted on March 7, 2013, in Cassie. Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.

  1. So, first of all…can’t believe how clearly Mae speaks!! SO CUTE! Second of all, I too had an epidural that did not work…Senna was brought into this world with a very loud F&*^*(^@$! I too apologized to the nurses, but I actually had something to apologize for. 🙂 Even with all that pain I’m still unsure if I want one this time. The whole experience left such a bad taste in my mouth….but, the idea of a pain free delivery is soooo appealing! What to do, what to do?

    • I super hope that if you do choose to get an epidural that it works. Because I had 3 relatively pain free labors because of them and I was really super hoping that I’d get a fourth. Alas, no. Ha!

      I think there’s something to, if it was a planned natural delivery, I would have been able to move, walk around, be mentally prepared. But when it failed, I was frustrated and not prepared to feel all the feelings and not be able to move my leg. So not fun.

  2. Umm, excuse me, but when exactly did Mae get so big?!? I don’t know if it’s just because of the contrast to Audrey, but I was kind of shocked to see her and hear her talk like that!

    And don’t stop gushing about Audrey – after all you’ve been through, you have every right to go on and on, plus I love reading about her and seeing pictures of her (well, of all your kids, actually).
    Hope your headaches go away soon!

  3. I did not have an epidural for two reasons. First, I am super afraid of needles, particularly ones that go in my back. This is why I have never had a flu shot and also why my last tetanus shot was in 1988, which means I am about 25 years overdue. During labor, I told the nurse that I might change my mind and want the epidural, and she better let me know when I was getting past the point of it being too late. When I finally could no longer take the pain, it ended up being too late! My hubby had nail marks on his arm, by the way. I was so not in the moment(s) from pain that I cannot understand woman who talk about how great natural childbirth is. Because it hurts like freaking hell! Drugs sound so much better. Sorry you had to go through that pain, and I hope your headaches get better soon.

    Gush away. 🙂

  4. There was a study a few years back, (I blogged on it) that found that swearing can help increase your pain tolerance. I just wonder how they got participants for the study. Might have been a tough draw. Big print: Come and swear as often and loudly as you want… Microscopic print: …while we poke you with cattle prods.

  5. Flora: induced, no epidural. If I had had an epidural with her, she would have been a c-section (she was, er, stuck).
    Kate: induced, and eventurally, an epidural. whew.
    M: same as Kate pretty much. Although toward the end, they declined to bolus the epidural because I had to feel to push. I didn’t hate them too much for that. surprisingly.

    What I remember of NOT having an epidural was that after a certain point, although it hurt, I wasn’t aware of how much it hurt, if that makes sense. When I was informed I had been pushing for three hours, I was really surprised. (It took another 1/2 hour, and a doctor “threatening” me with a c-section.)

    I think if I hadn’t been starved all day with M, I would’ve tried harder for no epidural. But I had been in induced labor for over 12 hours, and I was weak from hunger, and exhausted. the days leading up to his birth were very stressful. The epidural helped me sleep for the last stage!

    I don’t judge other women on whether or not they have natural birth or an epidural or for that matter a scheduled c-section. There’s no birthing olympics, and the important thing is healthy baby, healthy mom. Everyone’s gotta do what you do.

    Sorry for the essay.

  6. Also, dude, don’t stop gushing about the babies! They are seriously all adorable. It’s your job to gush!

  7. I also can’t believe what a great talker Mae is! So clear. And that video gave me an “oh my gosh this is going to be us in September” moment and I teared up. Mae is so sweet to Audrey.

    Sorry about your epidural, but just like everything else, you owned it and pushed through it. So proud of you.

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