It's hard to believe my sweet boy is already one month old! Time is flying just as everyone promised it would. I am trying my best though to enjoy each and every moment I have with him and not worry about what the future holds (going back to work, sending him to daycare, growing too fast, ect.) I figure I better write his birth story before any of the details fade. It's a couple of days that I will never forget and the beginning of what has become the best time of my life...so, here it goes.
On Sunday, July 28th I felt antsy. Not just my everyday antsy, but overly antsy. Antsy to the point that I just HAD to get the last few things we needed from the grocery into the house and put away. I had cleaned our house to the point of no return just the day before so there was really nothing left to do there. Laundry was finished. Bags were completely packed. So, I headed out after lunch to go to Kroger. Just felt like I needed to get out and about for some reason. I called my Mom and told her my plans, she laughed and said maybe he's coming soon! She invited me to have a dessert with her at Applebee's. We met there and enjoyed a Blondie (which if you've never had one please go get one right now!! Thank me later!) After polishing off that delicious dessert, I went on to Kroger, got some last minute groceries and headed home. That evening I laced up my tennis shoes and decided I was going to try to "walk" this baby out! Ha ha, little did I know he had other plans :) So, off Chris and I went, leashes in hand. It was our last evening out, as our little family of four...counting our furbabies of course :) Looking back I'm so glad we did that. It was nice to enjoy a little stroll around town just the two of us and we had no idea what was in store for us over the next few days.
The next morning, Monday, July 29th I woke up after a weird dream. If details of labor and delivery gross you out, you should just stop here! Ha ha, it's only going to get worse! Anyway, I dreamed that I got up that morning and I lost my mucus plug. That still hadn't happened and I had anxiously been waiting. I remember laying there in bed, thinking, gosh that would be so exciting if it were true! After a moment of laying there, I stumbled into the bathroom and much to my surprise, there was a lot of blood! Yay! I had never been so excited...I knew this didn't mean anything specific other than baby was coming soon! I called Chris first and then my Mom to let them know to be on stand by. Maybe we would be having a baby soon! I headed on into work hoping it would be my last day. That morning, in my 8am meeting I started cramping. I squirmed around in my chair and had to excuse myself several times to run to the restroom. Not knowing what to expect I couldn't determine if I was having contractions or not. After the meeting was over and I had talked to a few co-workers, I decided I should run to my doctor and get checked. Lucky for me, that was right next door to my work! After a short while of being hooked up to monitors, they let me know that yes I was in fact having contractions! How exciting! I was then checked and he said baby was very low and I was dilated 2-3, with lots of bloody show. He announced that today is baby day! I immediately started crying in the doctor's office. I was so excited, scared, and in disbelief that I could meet my baby today! I called Chris to let him know to head home. He works an hour and a half away so it was my worst fear that he would be at work when I went into labor. As always though, he was calm and collected and hit the road. A little after that I met with my midwife. She explained how the day would go, that I should head out, finish up what I needed to at work, get a bite to eat, and then head to the hospital. She said that if she could break my water she would, and if not we would start pitocin. Red flags went up for me! Pitocin? I didn't understand why we would do that if I had begun labor on its own. She explained that essentially we would be doing an induction today if I wanted. Not being clear on that before, I explained that I did not want that if it wasn't necessary, and I preferred for labor to progress naturally if at all possible. She was understanding and in agreement with this. She recommended that I leave, get something light to eat, and then come on to the hospital after Chris got back into town to be monitored. So...that's exactly what I did. I went back to work, finished what I had to and waited for him to get there. When he arrived, on to the hospital we went. I was still feeling contractions, they weren't unbearable at all but becoming more uncomfortable. Long story short, the remainder of the afternoon was spent on the labor and delivery floor. I was monitored intermittently and spent time bouncing on the birthing ball. My Mom came to keep Chris and I company. Sadly, the afternoon ended when they checked me and after several hours and I hadn't progressed at all from that morning. Disappointed and frustrated we left and went to eat dinner...which is no easy task while having contractions! They had explained that I was in "early labor" and that there was no way of knowing how long it would go on.
That night was dreadful. My contractions had gotten so much stronger than they were that morning. I definitely knew I was in labor at that point. I tried to sleep but from about 2am on was up and walking the floors, curling up on the floor, bending over the chair...trying about anything to get relief. I remember calling my Mom at about 4 that morning complaining, in tears, and not knowing what to do. She suggested I call the hospital to see if they thought I should come in. I did, and they said to stay put. That it still sounded like I was in early labor. Wow that made for a long night!! That morning Chris and I headed back to my OB to get checked. I saw a midwife that morning who was so nice but told me I had not progressed at all. She said that because I was up all night with contractions and didn't get any rest, it was likely that my uterus was so tired it wasn't going to do the work it needed to do to dilate my cervix. She recommended eating and trying to sleep. She sent me with sleeping pills, told me to take 4 and lay down. I was so frustrated at this point and wishing I had let them induce me the day before. We went back home, I tried to rest which was next to impossible. Even with sleeping pills I could only doze off for a minute or two before waking up to a contraction. They day dwindled on and eventually my Mom came down to check on us. She was wonderful through this. Chris's Mom was at our house too and it was so nice to have all that support. I needed it more than I ever thought I would. At about 4 that afternoon, my contractions were intense!! Back we went to the OB before they closed for the day. And again, no progress. That was about more than I could take at this point. I must have been the perfect cliche for a woman having her first baby. I felt so stupid for not knowing when it was "time." They kept telling me that when I couldn't walk or talk through a contraction than that meant it was "real" labor. Well...news flash people. That had been going on for over 12 hours.
We packed up and went home. Chris ran to Dairy Queen and brought back dinner for everyone. After eating, I decided I wanted to walk. So Chris and I walked. And walked. And walked. Up and down the sidewalk we went for a couple of hours. I'm sure it was quite a show for our neighborhood. Every few steps we would have to pause, I would hang on to him through a contraction and then we would be back at it again. At the point that my contractions were over a minute long and coming every 3-4 minutes Mom said she thought we had to go to the hospital. I was so scared of going and being sent home again. I already felt like a failure for being to the hospital once and the doctor twice and still no baby! Mom and Chris both promised they wouldn't let them send me home. Our ride to the hospital is hard to describe. It was nothing like I pictured it would be. I thought I would have just had a shower, hair and makeup done, excited, emotional, calling people to let them know it was time. Instead, I hadn't showered that day, no makeup, scared, frustrated, fearful that it wasn't the "real" thing, exhausted already and I felt like it hadn't even begun!
We got to the hospital, and I couldn't even make it in the doors without having a contraction. We had to stop twice from the car to the doors. Mom was with us thank goodness. We went in, got registered and headed upstairs.
The nurses were wonderful and I was so happy to see a friendly face. It was about 7:30ish pm when we got there. A girl I had some classes with at the community college with several years ago was my first nurse. I got changed into my hospital gown and situated in bed. She hooked me up to everything and checked me. Thank goodness our walking had paid off and I had dilated a little more than from earlier in the day! I was in so much pain at this point and really hoping for some progress, so that was very welcomed news. Chris and Mom continued to be very supportive and promised they wouldn't let them send me home. My nurse called my midwife to let her know that I was back and had progressed, she suggested I be as active as possible to help speed the process along. So, back up I went. I alternated between being on the birthing ball and walking the halls. She didn't check me again until about 11, by then there was no change from earlier. I was so disappointed and scared that we would be leaving soon. She called my midwife, and talked with her and they decided to admit me! HOORAY!!!!! Best news ever :) To know that this was really happening and that I wouldn't be leaving without my baby was awesome. To be continued...