Wednesday, October 22, 2014


7 lbs 14 oz
length undetermined :)  the pediatrician got distracted. 

Okay, he finally has a name.

Mclean Ryu Miller
also known as 
"Mack the Dragon".

We'll call him Mack for short.  

Mclean is the last name of my great grandparents from Rockland, ID. Hortense and Melvin.    Two of the most wonderful, hard working, funny and optimistic people I've ever known.  Grandma said that if anybody named their child after her (Hortense) she'd never speak to them again!  I hope she doesn't mind us using Mclean.

Ryu is a boy's name that means 'dragon' in Japanese. we really like it. and the kanji for it is pretty awesome, too.

Holy Smokes.  What an outrageous three days.  The top picture is one of the only pictures I've taken of the kid- and if you know me- I tend to take a lot of pictures!  It's just that I've been slightly preoccupied. with pain and exhaustion and the inability to move.

Here's one from the hospital bed :)  

Sunday morning- just as I'd checked in to the hospital to have this little monkey- I thought to myself: "this is going to be a pretty boring birth story".  Boy- was I wrong.    I had the whole thing planned out.  The induction scheduled.  everything was to go perfectly.  

Kent dropped me off at the hospital and took the kids over to church where he stayed for an hour to play the organ.  He left the boys with friends- took Metta to another friend's house for the day- and then returned to the hospital to be with me.

I'd started pitocin around nine AM and when he arrived around 11 I was feeling some contractions- but nothing significant.   He read a book on endocrinology while I read some general conference talks to make up for missing church :)  the nurse asked about specifics for our birth plan and I responded that the only thing I cared about was getting an epidural,  She laughed and said I'd be fine.

I was getting induced because I'm very afraid of not getting an epidural.  Ike's labor was so fast I didn't get one until I was dilated to a 10.  and it was terrible. I was so scared. I had PTSD from it a little.  It really truly is a fear for me.  I was induced with metta and I got the epidural in good time so I planned for it again.  

Around 12:30- I had progressed to a 4.  I should have asked for an epidural then.  I KNOW I am a crazy fast laborer.  that's why I was getting induced!!  but the contractions still weren't even bothersome.

At about 1:30 I decided I was getting uncomfortable. I called for the anesthesiologist at 1:45.

It took him a few minutes to get there but he showed up just as I really needed him.  perfect timing.

And then it all began.  my nightmare scenario.  in real life.

He set up shop and talked  a few things over with me.  It was 2:30. he got started.  Only something was wrong.  It was taking time- longer than usual. and he kept asking me to arch my back a little more.  relax my shoulders again.  chin down further. 

and then he started mumbling something about "os, os, os".  bone, bone, bone.

the contractions were strong- but still manageable.

after about 15-20 minutes he stood up and did a little walk around the room.  "are you a dancer?" he asked.  "Are you a swimmer?"  I told him I ran a lot- and did spin- but I did not dance or swim.  He came back and tried again. and again. and again.

I have NO idea what was wrong.  He just kept hitting bone and could NOT get into my epidural space.  At first I was fine- not too worried. I'd done this easily three times before.  NO PROBLEM.  and then suddenly about 30 minutes into it- the contractions started to hit me hard.  I sat hunched over "like a cooked shrimp" (his words) for almost 80 minutes.  I was so focused on him getting the epidural in. I was SO TENSE!  the contractions were hurting badly and I was stuck in this awkward position literally PRAYING over and over that it would finally work. I held kent's hand and sqeezed it so tight through each contraction.  I had stopped talking.  

The OB came in and was watching the baby's stats.  They were starting to get worrisome- so I had to put on oxygen.  At this point I was a little frantic- but remained as still as I could hoping and still praying over and over that the epidural would GO IN.  Kent could tell I was really stressed and in immense pain. He was stressed for me. and now was starting to worry about the baby.

Near the 80 minute mark- I felt a ZAP down my leg/ And the anesthesiologist moaned. I was between contractions and asked what had happened.  He told me he'd accidentally punctured the dura of my spine.  gone past where the epidural should go. I had no idea what that meant. I asked if that was okay and if it would still work.  I was still dying and in so much pain.

The contractions at this point were torturous.  I was miserable and wanted out.  He told me he'd just given me a spinal- like for a c-section- but that the needle was way too big for that and now I had a big hole in my dura.  I only cared about the drugs!  could I get the spinal!? was it going to work!?  could he take the pain away!?  I was DYING.  no tears. no screaming. just true fear that I was going to have to do this alone.  

He told me he would leave in the catheter- but didn't have the right meds. He'd be right back and bring  fentanyl.  It was 100 times more powerful than morphine.  I told him I'd take it!  and then my water exploded just as a contraction started. and the OB saw my face and saw the baby's vitals and made me roll over to push. My water was tainted with meconium and the baby's stats were still rocky.  Kent had a slight;y nervous look on his face and the OB looked stressed.  I asked my doc if he was nervous.  He said: "a little".  
Side note: I really loved my OB.  he was honest and great and from poland :)

  I was totally ready to go. The baby was engaging.  AHHHHHH.  those next contractions were indescribable.   Unless you've been there- you will never ever know.  and I never ever wanted to know.  The anesthesiologist pumped a small dose of the fentanyl into the cath as I started pushing.  Oh. My. Goodness.  Pushing out a baby is INSANE. and so terrible.  The OB and especially Kent were so impressed with my pushes.  I just wanted to be FINISHED!!  It hurt so bad. and then there was a baby head,  Kent asked of there was a nuchal cord (around the neck).  At first they said no- but then they realized there was and it was so tight they couldn't get it off  Dr. M told me to stop pushing.  HA! stop?!  my body felt like it was heaving everything out of itself.  He cut the cord off the neck before it was fully delivered because he couldn't get it off with his hands.  and then out came the rest of the baby with a final giant heave from me.  3:51. I was SO RELIEVED. it was OVER. 

Kent's face was mortified.  and the other pediatrician wasn't there yet because it had all happened so fast,  The baby wasn't really reacting.  low tone. terrible color. no crying.  the anesthesiologist grabbed the baby and told kent he needed his help.  Poor kent.  I don't think he'd planned on resuscitation of his own kiddo.  we were really lucky to have the anesthesiologist there  He intubated baby Mack and tried clearing his airway.  It took a few minutes and then I heard what sounded like a baby kitten.  some soft itty bitty cries.  and then just another minute later- some better sounding cries.  he was just fine.  and honestly- I was never worried.  There were several very compentent medical professionals working on the baby.  Kent says he thought for sure he'd be taking the baby and an ambulance to a a japanese NICU!!

baby Mack was bruised and ugly and purple faced.  and things were so stressful that we didn't even get the camera out until later!  I ended up getting some local anesthetic so they could finish everything with me.  Kent stayed with the baby to make sure he was fine.

It was long and terrible and hard.  and I never want to do it again. The anesthesiologist congratulated me on a drugfree child birth,  I think the fentanyl took the edge off there at the end- but it was the most painful thing I've ever experienced. and terrible.  did I mention terrible??

I've got lots more story to tell.and it only gets worse (and better)!  it will have to wait. I am exhausted.



Sherrie Fennell said...


Jill Pierce said...

What an ordeal!!! (((HUGS)))

Pat and Brent said...

So sorry for your ordeal. Glad you have sweet little Mack to help you forget the pain. I can't believe you had to be in that position through the hardest part of labor! Holy are very strong.

Jason & Shannon said...

Yikes! Glad you are recovering. Can't believe you had to get poked so many times without getting what you wanted.

yaya said...

Contracts on the birth of that new little Miller! He's adorable!

HowellAZ said...

Um - wow. That is quite the birth story and I want to hear the rest (when you're not exhausted). I kept thinking it was fortuitous that Kent was there with his doc skills - or was that planned for him to be relied on if necessary? Because, man, that is not a normal birth experience for the dad either! I'm so so glad all went well with baby Mack and I hope you feel better soon. Were you in an AF hospital? Were you concerned about it all going in to it?

Michelle said...

Holy. Moly. That Mack has definitely got 'fighter' in his genes! You have an incredible amount of strength and stamina, Leisy!

MyMy said...

Congratulations on your new baby boy! Katya from Tver, Russia

Rachael said...

Oh, I'm so sorry! Carver was natural and the pain is unreal. But it made everything that would've been uncomfortable afterwards almost painless in comparison... nursing, those contractions while nursing - everything was a 1 after I knew a real live 10. But I never did THAT again. epidurals all the way. :) Mack's beautiful, despite the rough start, and what a great name! congrats!