Birth Story of Baby #1

Birth Story of Baby #1featured

Melissa during Labor & Delivery

Me during Labor & Delivery :)

It was Valentine’s Day 2013 and I had an OB appointment booked around 4 pm. How romantic! lol…

My husband didn’t use this as an excuse to get skimpy with V day plans. A special evening awaited me.

But there was that eerie feeling…  Our lives are about to drastically change.

Or as I described it: our life as we knew it was about to fall off the side of a cliff!

Don’t get me wrong I was ready to embrace this change and was joyful in anticipation, but it’s one of the bigger changes one can look forward to in life.

The OB appointment was pretty uneventful, which is always a good thing when you’re pregnant with type one diabetes. My OB, as usual, told me he had no clue how things would progress (I was 36 weeks and 1 day), but in a few weeks  he would need to induce me.

I’d heard of some nasty things about induction. Getting your water broken with some hooky object and who knows what else.

So on the recommendation of my midwife, I opted to try red raspberry leaf tea. Sounds crazy, but this concoction can cause uterine contractions to help get things moving. And let me tell you…

Raspberry tea works… so don’t do what I did!

Almost instantly after drinking the tea, I’d watch my belly contract.

Hubby & I on Labor Day :)

Hubby & I on Labor Day :)

After the OB appointment my husband confirmed our plans to head to a nice restaurant. But in the 30 seconds we spent in the elevator and with the raging hormones that cause the intense nesting instinct, I convinced myself we needed to go to Whole Foods…NOW…ASAP style!!!

My husband was floored and slightly offended for rejecting his specially made plans. But he was willing to do what I wanted if it would make his waddling wife happy. :)

To your possible surprise, we had a really great night. We split a huge salad from their salad bar: kale, chicken, lentils, feta cheese…so much more…won’t bore you or make you hungry…oh and yeah were total cheeps…but it was romantic sharing a meal. :)

We also got tons of stuff for free including hot chocolate and 2 different types of yogourt covered nuts (this is due to the “Scanning Code of Practice” here in Canada that protects consumers from being over-charged).

We went home and then fell asleep…not.

My husband fell asleep and I lay awake until 12 am, due to pregnancy insomnia.

5 am rolled around for my usual bathroom break so I rose from bed and…what was that?

Did my water broke or did I pee my pants?

No matter how many times us ladies may have heard this from family and friends… it’s the thought that enters your mind!

As my husband frantically gathered odds and ends I casually told him I’d be having a shower.

It was my birth-day and I was going to feel beautiful and clean.

When we arrived at the hospital I felt really joyful, I was excited after so many months to be meeting our bambino! It was like the nervousness around birth that I’d lamented over since childhood was a distant thought.

I’m sorry to tell you the nurse we had was awful!

Our little guy screaming his head off...

Our little guy screaming his head off…

Apparently, diabetes is the scapegoat for every bad thing that was happening to me. Why was I delivering early…”because you have diabetes”. Why was my baby’s head sideways? “Diabetes”. Why was the sky grey?… “DIA-FREAKIN-BETES”. You suck Ms. Diabetes!

And let me tell you she let me know that I was a HUGE BURDEN! How awful as a nurse to have a patient who needs 5 IVs (pitocin, insulin, antibiotic, glucose and epidural meds) and regular glucose testing…

How “awful” for this poor nurse who needed to do what a nurse is paid to do, care for people who are in need of nursing care! 

Okay, so you’re wondering… did I tell her I was a nurse – a diabetes nurse at that?

Umm, no!

I was so scared she’d delay getting me an epidural when I needed it that I said not one peep… that is, until my baby was born.

At around 5 pm, after 12 hours of labour, being 10 cm and all progressing well.

My OB and nurse came rushing in…

“The babies heart rate is dropping. We can’t find the heartbeat…”

I was told I had a decision: C-section now or try and push this baby out but forceps would need to be used. In fear of my baby’s life I cried… “C-section!”

Our joy :)

Our joy :)

And 13 very long minutes later in the OR, little mini-me was born!

Seriously, he looks a lot like me. I’m blonde and blue eyed and my husband is mediterranean and black haired. Not what we were expecting!

A few things I learned for next time:

  1. Look into your hospital before choosing an OB. Do they allow you to wear an insulin pump? Mine didn’t so I had to be connected via IV.
  2. Speak up for yourself. Don’t do what I did and be afraid to say you know more about diabetes than your nurse or doctor. You do know more than them because you live in your body everyday.
    • A little secret from the medical field: most nurses and doctors are afraid of losing their licenses so let them know you are informed and ready to bust some serious diabetes myths!
  3. Yes, that's a box of donuts, lol!

    Yes, that’s a box of donuts, lol!

    Always bring a copy of the medical order from your endocrinologist. (i.e. stating what your insulin doses and frequency of glucose monitoring will be during delivery.) My hospital lost the copy that I physically handed to them ahead of the delivery.

  4. Be prepared with lots of sugar free sodas, sugar free jello, etc. During delivery I drank clear sugar free fluids. After the c-section I was starving, but was told I’d have to wait until the next morning to eat, so I ate a lot of sugar free jello.
  5. Be informed. Does your hospital have an endocrinologist on call? Can they be called, if needed, when in delivery? My endo was away on vacation, with no one covering him. Not good when your nurse can’t read your endo’s sloppy writing.

As my nurse wrapped up her “busy and tiring day” with her burdensome patient, I was relieved from the whole experience with her. So I leaned over to my nurse with a smile on my face and said:

“By the way I’m a diabetes nurse educator…I didn’t tell you that did I?”

Silence filled the room and the nurse was left with a very red face! :)

Tell me your birth story!

I’d really love to hear your gems of wisdom and what you learned. Share your birth story in the comments below…

About the author

Melissa Shannon

Melissa Shannon is diabetes obsessed! She's a diabetes nurse, diabetes advocate, and person with type one diabetes. Melissa loves sharing stories about life with diabetes and is a passionate speaker and diabetes evangelist. Melissa's motto is: "Let's not let diabetes rule our lives, let's have diabetes to go!"