10:00am I went in for a doctor's appointment. I had hit the 39 week mark. After 5 pluss weeks of having serious contractions I made the desicion to have my membranes stripped. I figured . . .hey what the heck, Dr. O's already up in lady-town checking out how things are, he may as well get things going. The good doctor had reported that I was dilated to 3 cm and 80% effaced when I gave him the directions to strip the membranes. He paused, looked at me and said "Don't kick me in the face while I do this, it's going to hurt." Oh my, it DID. With El Bambina I hadn't even noticed it had happened. This time there was no question about it.
I left with the info I was closer to 4 cm dialated and to call if the contractions got any stronger and closer. Now folks, alot of you are going to say "What the %&*$$9!!" at this next admission.
I left and drove home. 35 miles away. From the Doctor. 35 miles away. From the closest hospital. 35 miles people!
Crazy town is where I was at.
Noon I picked up El Bambina from a friends house. We picked up some lunch. Then headed to the park to meet with some other moms and kids for Park Day (this is a sacred day of the week for the toddler). I sat and chatted with the moms while the kids ran around like wild things. I hoped that E.B. would get all her energy out and be ready for a nap. I knew that I needed one ASAP.
After about an half an hour I realized I was having contractions. REAL contractions. I rounded up my wild thing, told the moms I would probably not be seeing them the next week and drove myself home. Driving myself around while in labor seems to be a re-occuring theme for me.
1:00pm Thankfully E.B. was maxxed out and went down easily for a nap. I rested on the couch for a while and timed the contractions. They were 7 minutes apart. I figured it was time to get El Senor home, since he was more than an hour away.
2:30pm El Senor arrived home. We talked about our plan of action. I was still only having contractions every 7 minutes or so. I checked with the hospital and the nurse felt I was good to stay at home for another while.
I closed my eyes for a few minutes and tried to rest. Then I called my friend Tricia who was gonig to take care of E.B. and put her on alert. I then suggested to El Senor that he take a nap.
E.B. was now awake and wanted to go outside. (Outside is her great mecca, all day every day that is all she wants to do...go outside!) I decided to comply with her request. I figured this was our last Party of 2 Play Date.
I was getting emotional as I realized that my first born was going to be getting a very big suprise when she realized she was not the only kid on the block. Did you feel that? As if you were suddenly ruining everything for your first child by having a second? The irrational fear that you were somehow damaging their perfect world? I have to say, being in labor does not a sane woman make. Every crazy thought I had ever had was now swirling through my head and being magnified.
3:30pm E.B. and I headed out doors. Glorious. What a beautiful day it was! She wore a pair of darling jeans and I striped shirt. I was in my favorite pair of cut off sweats. We both wore our crocs I decided to walk around the block to see if the contractions would get closer together.
I never want to forget how sweet that little walk around our neighborhood was.
E.B. pushed one of her baby dolls along in her small purple stroller, her bright blond hair looked like a halo fluffing out around her head. She was rumpled and flushed from her nap. And a little grubby from being at the park. I remember stopping with her to pick up a rock. As I admired it I inhaled her sent. . . she smelled like sweet little girl and dirty puppy all rolled together. We waved to our neighbors. We stopped and chatted with my aunt and uncle. E.B. was slipped a roll of smarties. We slowlly continued on our way. Slowly, slowly as she explored and my contractions grew closer together.
We returned home and E.B. jumped on the trampoline, went down the slide and climbed up and down the stairs. I sat and called encouragement and tried to memorize the moment. The air was warm and golden. I tried to relax and call up all my womanly powers for the hours ahead. The contractions were now coming 4 to 5 minutes apart. Finally I told E.B. we needed to go find Daddy.
4:30pm We were all loaded into the car (El Senor was driving this time) and heading to drop of E.B. to our friend's house for the night. E.B. was confused as to why she was at Tricia's house so late, but was ready to run around with her friends. I gave her one last fierce squeeze and gave her to Tricia. El Senor and I loaded ourselves back into the Suby and headed for the hospital.
As we hit I-15 I was staring to feel the pain. I had put it on hold while taking care of E.B. There was now no denying that I was hurting. I had been telling El Senor that I wanted to do this without an epidural for almost 10 months. Now as I lay there sweating and swept up in pain I told him to toss that plan. I felt that after 5 weeks of being uncomforatble and often in pain was enough. I had paid my dues and wanted an epidural STAT.
5:00pm We arrived at the hospital. As we started to get out of the car I asked El Senor to give me a blessing. I knew as he spoke the words over me that everything was going to be OK. Although I was still physically in pain, I could feel my emotional worries melting away. We slowly made our way into the hospital. The contractions were now 2-3 minutes apart and intense.
Imagine our suprise as we entered the lobby to be greeted by a blue-hair convention. I'm still not sure what they were there celebrating, but there was wine involved. As we crossed the lobby one of the little old ladies asked us if we were there to attend a lamaze class. When we told her no, we were there to have a baby a loud cheer went up from the group. It's amazing the noise that more than fifty grannies can make.
5:30pm We were checked in and I was being monitored. The baby's heart beat was strong and the contractions were regular. After being on the monitor for 30 minutes the nurse unhooked me so I could move around. I still hadn't gotten the epidural. During our drive El Senor had talked me down and kept telling me I could do it! I didn't need the epidural.
6:30pm Wow. WOW!! The contractions were less than 2 minutes apart. At this point I was demanding the anesthesioligiost be paged. I had decided pain was over rated and I didn't want any part of it. El Senor kept up his part of the deal and kept talking me down from the crazy place telling me over and over "You can do this!" Dr. O had been in and checked me. I was 6 cm dialated and fully effaced. He said that he could break the waters and things would progress faster. I decided not to go that route. I wanted things to go as naturally as possible.
7:30pm No more! No more I said. I looked into El Senor's eyes between contractions. I clearly stated the following "I know I can do this without the epidural. I'm telling you I don't want to. Please, please get the anesthesiologist here."
8:15pm Ahhhhhhh relief. I had been in labor for 8 hours and finally, the pain was gone. The people with needles are miracle workers. I am sure there is a special place in heaven for them. I felt better, in fact, I felt great. Dr. O came in a checked me again, I was still at 6 cm so he went ahead and broke the waters. No longer in pain I was able to take a nap. Blessed sleep.
10:00pm The nurse came in to check on our progress. I had been sleeping on my left side. I rolled to my back, she said that I was now dialated to 8 cm. As she helped me roll to my right side, suddenly the monitors started beeping (in that scary, your in a bad episode of Grey's kind of way). The nurse's face became very still as she read the monitors. She quickly had me roll back to my left side and stated "We're having this baby now". She called Dr. O and started prepping everything.
El Senor had stepped out of the room for just a minute while all of this happened. He returned to a flurry of activity as people were rushing in and out getting things ready. After everything was calming down I told the nurse "I'm only dialated to an 8...I can't push out a baby!" Yes, she said, you can and you will.
The doctor arrived, my legs were up in stirrups and he told me I was fully dialated to a 10 and that the baby's head was crowning. I told him there was no way I could push, I had absolutely no sensation from the epidural. It hadn't had time to wear off at all. He assured me that I could still push. Looking at the monitor they told me when I was having a contraction.
10:30pm Push! Push! Push! She was here! That quickly. One contraction and 3 pushes and our beautiful little girl arrived.
Born October 20th 2011 at 10:31pm
Weighing 8lbs 4oz and measuring 21 inches