So here is the rest of the story. And yes what I'm about to share was worse than giving natural child birth. Much much... much worse.
They were kind enough to take me up on a gurney to the recovery room because my legs were still not very stable. :) So I laid there, they put my sweet girl in my arms, and off we went. When we got to the room upstairs, they helped me get settled into a much more comfortable bed. I got to have some cuddle time with Emma and Mike. The nurse and her assistant came in and went over some paperwork and rules and stuff. Honestly it mostly went over my head - I was pretty exhausted by then.
We had been there about 30-45 minutes when they came in to take Emma to the nursery to have her blood sugar tested (because I had gestational diabetes) and a few other things. Mike went with her and my mom stayed with me. As they left, I told her and the nurse that I needed to go to the bathroom. So they both helped me to get up. I stood up from the bed - with one of them on each side - took one step.... and woke up on the floor. Later the nurse told me that I reached behind me grabbed the bed and sat down and then fainted. My mom said I practically sat on the nurse and she caught me as I fainted. I remember waking up with a tingly tongue (which totally reminded me of when we used to faint on purpose in Jr. High - yes we were dumb). I remember looking up and seeing the toilet right in front of me in the bathroom and thinking - why am I on the floor. I kind of felt like I was waking up from a nap. When they asked me if I was okay - I told them "I felt rested". Haha - considering I was only out for 10 seconds. Talk about a power nap!
Anyway, they helped me stand up and that is when things got really exciting. I think my nurse said something like "Uh-oh - we need to get you back in bed." I told her I still had to pee - and she told me firmly NO - get into bed now. That was when I looked down and saw the huge pile of blood on the floor. The reason I fainted - I was hemorrhaging. My first thought was "Mike"! I didn't want him to see that. (Little did I know what was coming) I asked them to keep him out. Luckily he was still down at the nursery. One of the nurses went down and told him what was happening so he would know, but they kept him out.
Within what seemed to me only 30 seconds, there were 5 or so nurses, a Dr, and my midwife all in the room doing things. With in minutes they had an IV in my arm and a catheter in. Honestly - I didn't mind the catheter - it was nice not to have to get up and go to the bathroom (it came out the next morning). But the IV was dumb, because they couldn't get it in the top of my hand. So they had to put it in the crook of my elbow - which meant I couldn't bend my arm without setting the machines beeping. Have you ever tried to hold or feed a baby without bending your arm? It doesn't work. Anyway. I digress...
Once they got the IV in they gave me some medicine to help me not feel what they were going to do next. But I felt it anyway. A lot. They began to push on my stomach to get the blood and clots to come out. There was tons of gushing and gushing. It was a lot. I started to cry. Everyone was so serious and hurrying and I was in pain, and still totally exhausted - it was so scary. And it hurt so so so so so bad. The pushing I mean. It felt like they were touching my belly button to my spine. I kept begging them to stop and weakly trying to push their arms away, but obviously they couldn't. And apparently that was not working fast enough, so my midwife (while profusely apologizing) used her hand to manually clean out my uterus of blood clots. Yes, you read that right. It was excruciating! By now I was pretty much screaming, hyperventilating, and begging them to stop over and over again.
My mom was so great. She stood by me and held my hand. I probably just about squeezed hers right off. Once I started crying she just calmly wiped my tears away and stood by me. It wasn't much but it was huge! I was so grateful that she was there. And that Mike wasn't. I know that he would have wanted to be with me in this. In fact, when he found out it was me that blocked him out, he was pretty mad. Probably still is a bit. But I just am so glad he doesn't have these images in his head. That the memory of Emma's birth can be about the beautiful experience we had had together earlier that morning. Not this - blood and screaming! Turns out he did hear some of it when he was in the hall toward the end of it. How I love this man! He wanted to help and protect me, but in that moment I wanted to protect him.
Anyway, they finally got it all out. And I finally settled down to a whimpering state. They continued to push on my stomach every 15 minutes for a couple of hours, but it was done. THANK GOODNESS!! Because they said if it hadn't been, they would have to put me out and do a D and C to get the clots out. But luckily they didn't have to do that. After that I finally got some food, and some sleep, and some snuggles and life was good again.
I truthfully think that this was possibly one of the reasons why the Lord prompted us to have her naturally. If I had an epidural - I wouldn't have stood up to go to the bathroom. Maybe they wouldn't have realized I was hemorrhaging until much later - and maybe it would have been more serious? I don't know. Of course that is just a guess. But either way, I'm so grateful that the birth went so smoothly, and that they were so quick on their feet with the aftermath. I really had the best nurses and Drs! I didn't have one complaint about any of them!
The next two days were filled with lots of snuggles with Emma, trying to get her to breastfeed (that's another post), visitors, and naps. At the end of it all - I am so happy that we chose a natural waterbirth. I would absolutely do it again!! In fact I'd like to do a home birth. Not sure if that will happen, because of the risk of hemorrhaging again, but we'll see. This was one of the best experiences of my life! When you have the support of those you love and who love you, and the Lord, you can do anything! I plan on teaching Emma that every day!