The day before Thanksgiving I told Waldo that he could sleep in Thanksgiving morning because I needed to make the rolls that we were going to take to dinner with us. However my body had other ideas. At 4 on Thanksgiving morning I woke up for one of my normal 4 or so nightly pregnancy potty trips. I woke slowly and took stock of my body to see if I really needed to get up or if I could fall asleep for a little longer. The only think I noticed was that Yes I did need to pee. As I scooted out of bed (I had to scoot or crawl to the foot of the bed because the bed is sort of next to the wall) I noticed a pain in my lower back and a…squishy squirt. Hmmm I thought, that’s not normal, I really hope I didn’t just pee. I got into the bathroom and checked the pad I thankfully had on and no in fact I hadn’t peed, either my water broke or I lost my mucus plug. Either way, NOOOOOOOOOOO I’m only 37 weeks, I don’t want to have a baby today. I want to go to term, I want to make rolls for Thanksgiving, I want more time to prepare, I want to feel my little man kicking me more, I want, I want, I want. But who cares what I want in this situation. I decided that I wasn’t sure what was happening so I was going to go back to bed and see what happened when I woke up in the morning. I was pretty sure it wasn’t my water, but thought it might be the mucus plug and I knew you could loose that and still go for weeks before the baby was born. I wasn’t having contractions so I figured maybe, just maybe I wasn’t in labor.
I laid back down and almost immediately I had lower back pain much like period pain. Great!
Mark was still asleep so I decided sine I wasn’t certain what was going on there was no reason to bother him so I tried to go back to sleep. Of course those occasional very much like period cramps that were now showing up in the front weren’t helping. A bit later Mark got up to go to the bathroom and I gave up on sleeping. Too much was going through my head so I grabbed my phone and googled mucus plugs. When Mark came out and saw the light from my phone he inquired what I was doing so I told him. His response was even more of a strong NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO than mine. He told me to go back to sleep. He did go back to sleep, but no matter how hard I tried I couldn’t. Too many thoughts running around my brain; what I needed to get done, what I wanted to get done, what I wished I hadn’t procrastinated on, making rolls for Thanksgiving sounded so fun, ouch damn these cramps aren’t going away and don’t feel good. So I eventually gave up and downloaded a contraction timer and the real fun started. I swear to you I really did think I was kidding myself with the timer. I mean the cramps weren’t that bad and they weren’t that regular and I’m 3 1/2 weeks early, no way both of my kids would be born early. I laid there from 5:21 until 6:30ish timing these not-contractions. 9 minutes apart, 16 minutes, 14, 17, 10, 12 and then I got up because really sleep isn’t happening and Lily came in so might as well let Mark sleep. And darn it I have rolls to make. I didn’t say anything to Lil as I continued to time these fun couldn’t-be-contractions. 11, 1 oh no, 11 oh good, 21, 10, 27, 1 crap, 2, crap, 4, ohhh, 2, 1 this is getting serious, 11 ok, I can eat breakfast now, 12, 9. So I decided to wait on the rolls not at all because I had at this point started needing to hold on to the counter and sway my hips during the couldn’t be contractions, no I waited on the rolls because my Kitchen aid might wake Mark up. Making scrambled eggs and toast for the two of us wasn’t easy and I wasn’t really hungry, but I did it. 8, 13, 28, 15 see these aren’t real, 5, 6. Mark woke up and after talking and telling him about my couldn’t be contractions we decided I should call the hospital to see what they say. They fricking said to call my doctor’s office. I had just been to a what to expect during labor class at said hospital and they said to call the hospital. I was annoyed. I called the office, since it was Thanksgiving they had to put a call into the on-call. I waited for the call holding on to whatever I could find and swaying my hips. The doctor called back and after my explanation she said I needed to go to the hospital in the next few hours to get checked because it sounded like my water broke, but since I wasn’t sure I was having real contractions or not I didn’t have to rush. I said that was good because I didn’t have a bag packed for Lil and it would take a couple of hours to get there.
And so this started the worlds slowest rush to pack. 5, 4, 2, 4, 2 oh this is getting real, 3, 5, 3. I had hopped to labor at home as much as possible, but because I was a VBAC they wanted me there fairly early. These could-likely-really-be-contractions were starting to get really painful, but I have a high pain tolerance so I was still doing mostly ok. I packed, instructed, dressed, texted all the while timing ok-I-give-they-are-contractions and swaying my hips. 2, 2, 2, and now they were starting to last longer than the 20-45 seconds of the good ole days, now it was more like 45 to over a minute. At one point I told Mark that it was like my body remembered the pitocine from Lily and recreated those hard on-top of each other contractions. 2, 2, 1, 2, 3, 3 I think you get the idea. At one point I also told him that it felt like my uterus was being ripped open by the hands of hell. Yeah, it was fun. Finally we were packed, but no way were we leaving without some pictures. I might be in hard labor, but I’m still me.
Once I was done torturing myself and everyone else we headed out. Originally we were going to take Lil with us to the hospital and then if I was in true labor Mark was going to take Lil to our friends house. However he figured it would be better to take her first so he wouldn’t have to leave me and it turned out to be a very good idea.
Wherever I read that the car ride to the hospital was the worst thing ever was so right. You feel every single little bump and having contraction while confined to the car seat and seatbelt nearly had me coming undone.
Luckily we live in a pretty small town so it wasn’t tooooo far from our house to our friends and then to the hospital, but let me tell you something. When you are having contraction every 2 minutes we might as well have been driving to New York or something. It was killing me.
Finally we get to the hospital and the last contraction I timed was at 12:29 pm. I had pre-registered which was brilliant. We got to the nurse station inside the labor & delivery department and told them that I needed to be checked because I was probably in labor. Cue more hip swinging and deep breathing.
The lovely young nurse waits patiently for me to finish swaying and be able walk again and takes us to a labor room. She helps me get changed and then tells me to get in bed so they can monitor me. This is where I shouldn’t have been such a good girl. That bed was so much worse than the car ride. Ugg laboring on your back should be classified as some kind of crazy torture and I knew this, but I’m a good girl. So I got in bed and they hooked me up. She was in and our for about a half hour and then they determined that my water did indeed break. She tells me she’s going to check me and I look over at Poor Mark who has no idea how to help and he hates it and I tell him “If I’m only 2 cm I’m going to scream” She tells me I’m 7 and +2. Thank goodness, no one has to die.
She had to call my OB to come down since I was a VBAC and told me I could get up soooooon. I don’t remember why I needed to continue to be tortured, but I’m sure she had a reason. I felt like a caged animal when the contractions hit and they were right on top of each other. Fast forward a little while and my doctor strolls in talking about turkeys and crap I couldn’t care to think about. She wanted to check me and low and behold I was at 9 with just a tiny lip left. She said something about probably not wanting drugs since I was so close and I could have punched her, of course I didn’t want drugs, I just wanted to get up. I informed them of that without mentioning the punching and I wanted to get in the tub. The nurse started the water and someone helped me up. I got to the side of my bed and had a killer contraction and I needed to push like crazy. The doctor watched my contraction and asked me if I needed to push, I hadn’t realized that I did, but as soon as she said it I was like YES. She made me get back in bed, I nearly cried. She said rather than laying down I could get on all 4s on the bed. They raised my bed to sitting, I had stripped my gown off before getting back in bed. I put my arms on the back of the bed and swung my hips as good as I could on my knees in the bed. The doctor reached into my business when I had my next contraction and moved the last bit of…me that was in Jake’s way and told me to turn over.
I got situated and the doctor or nurse told me what to do and off we went. After the first contraction and pushing session the doctor corrected my form and I pushed away. While I was pushing I would plead with Jake to come out and visit over and over in my head. I would take a break and do the whole thing over again. Apparently this worked because out he shot. He was born at 2:29 pm, which was 19 minutes from the time the doctor said I was at 10. I looked later and found that I had my last timed contraction in the hospital parking lot at 12:29. Exactly 2 hours after waddling into the hospital my beautiful boy was born.
I had instructed the doctor over and over again that I wanted to wait for the cord to be cut and I wanted Jake put right onto me. Neither of these things happened because he came out so quickly he was purple and had to be put on oxygen. I have been working on this post for 7 months at this point and this part is still so hard to talk/write about. While they had Jake on little bed Mark was sure to ask over and over for Jake to be given to me as soon as he could. I was proud of him for that and so thankful too. After a few minutes they brought him over and I snuggled and Mark took pictures. Jake needed to go back under the heat lamp. I didn’t think I could walk over there so they moved my whole bed over, it was really nice. After a while they gave him back and I tried to nurse, and he did a little, but they kept wanting to put him back in the bed, have people come and check him out, messing with his little monitors. The whole thing wasn’t at all how I had pictured it going. At some point the NICU doctor came to check Jake out because they couldn’t get ahold of our doctor because Thanksgiving. The NICU DR said that he was fine, but needed a little more oxygen. At some point a different ped came in and said that Jake needed more oxygen then they could do in a regular room so he needed to go to the NICU for a while. I had gotten to snuggle a little, but no where the amount of time I would have wanted (you know like forever).
Now it’s been 15 months since Jake was born and I still haven’t finished this little story because it’s so hard to write and well life gets in the way. So after they decided that Jake had to go to the NICU they bundled him up and handed him to Mark. I gave Jake a kiss and took the first picture* of Mark holding Jake and then they left. All I wanted to do at that point was run after them, but I had to get cleaned up. The nurse helped me to the restroom and asked if I wanted to take a bath or shower. I didn’t. I just wanted to get dressed and go. And that’s exactly what I did. She helped me get dressed and then we gathered up all of my stuff and she pointed me in the direction of the NICU and she took my stuff to my recovery room. I was so surprised that I could walk and it wasn’t that bad at all. I suppose it could have been that my mind was only on getting to Mark and Jake and who cares how I feel right then, but who knows. A few days later Mark told me that he was just as surprised that I walked in on my own so soon after then got there. It was so different from Lil’s birth.
This is the beginning of our 13 day stay in the NICU. That’s a whole different story.
*Somehow I can not find this picture and I’m so pissed about it it’s not funny.