Useless Epidural Advice: Think of the Letter C
By Single Mom Movement on April 22, 2013
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All of a sudden I feel this sharp pain in my lower left back. The pain makes me tense, so when she puts the epidural in, she says, "Arch your back."
The lovely nurse says, "Think of the letter C."
I'm thinking of the letter C. Okay.
The anesthesiologist nurse says, "I didn't get it. We will have to try again."
I glance at my sister through my tears, and she just stares at me. I ask her, "Will you get me a Kleenex?" She walks to the right, and then realizes it's sterilized and turns around and the anesthesiologist snaps, "It's sterilized, you can't go through here."
I think, "Really? Is that why she just turned around the other way? Thanks." But don't say anything, because I'm unfortunately concentrating on my pain.
I wipe my face and nose just to go through the exact same thing again. She says once more, "I didn't get it."
My face is soaked from my crying, and now my legs are shaking uncontrollably. When she says we have to try it again, I think, You've got to be kidding me. I'm in so much pain from the first two tries.
The lovely nurse says, "You're doing great." As she pulls my shoulders forward, she says, "Now think of the letter C."
Her condescending voice is really grinding on my last nerve. She sounds so patronizing it makes the last bit of contents in my stomach want to come up. As I get stuck a third time with the numbing shot, I think, "Okay, what starts with the letter C. Crap, cramps, contractions, crap, f***, f***, f***."
I hear once again, "I can't get it. Hold still."
She attempts to stick me with the epidural for the third time, I think, "Wait, f*** doesn't start with C. Crap...crap... crap....CRAP....CCCCRRRAAPPP...CCCCRRRRAAAAAAAPPPP, CCRRRRAAAAAAAAPPPPP."
It gets louder in my head the more it hurts.
The pain stops... until the anesthesiologist says once again, "I didn't get it."
My sister says, "Think of a cat. Arch your back like a cat."
Why the heck did that stupid, lovely nurse not say that the first time? That makes a heck of a lot more sense to me.
Speaking of the devil, she says, "Now roll your shoulders in and put your head down."
At this point, I want to either slap her or say, "Shut the F*** UP!" or both.
I'm seriously contemplating the latter, when I realize that's probably not the nicest thing to say to someone... but I still want to say it anyway.
I say, "I'm trying."
"Well, she can't get it."
"Well, I don't know what to tell you. I'm in A LOT of pain. It hurts badly."
"If you do it right, we won't have to do it again."
Does she think I'm intentionally not doing it "right," whatever that means? I can barely see through all my tears. I'm sitting cross-legged, holding my eyes, trying to control their shaking, but it doesn't seem to be helping.
As I get numbed a fourth time, I think, "If they don't get it this time, I don't think I can do it again. This is more painful than the contractions. Cat, cat... think cat. Gosh I hate cats. I loathe cats... but arch (as I picture a cat arching his back). Now hold it. Hold it... hold it, just a little longer. CRAP that hurts. Just a little longer. HOOOOOOOOLLLLLLDDDDDDD it. HOOOOOOOOOLLLLLLLLLDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDD IT! Please be almost done. Please be almost done. OHHH MYYYY GOOOOOOOOSSSSHHHHH. Please, please, please be done!"
"Okay I got it."
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