I will admit I was shocked this little guy came a week early from his due date. Past couple doctor's appointments I stayed at 1 cm dilated, so I figured he was pretty happy where he was at and would have to be forcefully evicted out of me. When I woke up that Monday morning at about 5:00 to go to the bathroom, I was surprised to find that my pants were slightly damp (sorry if that's TMI, but most of the labor/delivery process is not super glamorous). I was kind of expecting this big gush of water, so by this point I'm not convinced it was my water breaking. Then when I got back to bed, I started feeling these very unpleasant cramps (i.e. contractions). Casey of course is sleeping away next to me without the slightest idea of what is going on next to him, but I didn't know if this was false labor or would stop after a few minutes, so I figure he could sleep while I figured it out. After looking up on my phone and learning that your water breaking isn't always this big gush and these not-so-fun pains were not going away, Casey woke up to me in the fetal position asking what I was doing.
I explained I thought my water had broken and this might be the start of labor. The contractions weren't super close, so I knew we had some time. Thankfully, I was already scheduled to see my OB/GYN that morning at 9:30. My parents were going to chauffeur me to my appointment, but we figured this was "it", so Casey did not go into work and instead took me to the hospital. Since I already had an appointment, I figured we would just get there early and my doctor could confirm I was in labor sooner than us going to labor & delivery people at the hospital could. My family ended up beating us to the hospital, which I find humorous, but hey, timeliness has never been my forte (except to weddings and funerals, I'm always on time for those). Part of our delay was due to one last stop to Shipley's so I could get some breakfast. I knew it would be a long time before I would be able to eat, so I loaded up on some carbs (i.e. donut holes) on the way to the hospital.
When we arrived and got called back, I found out my doctor was not there yet because she was delivering another baby. So the nurse hooked me up to the monitors to measure/time the contractions. They were definitely much stronger and closer than the week before, at least in my opinion they were. When the nurse would come in to check on me, she would comment that they weren't too bad yet (I thought if they're not bad now, then I don't want to know what they feel like when you're in more active labor and 10 cm dilated, goodness!). Over this time, apparently I continued to leak amniotic fluid (again sorry for the TMI, but nothing like not being able to control leaking bodily fluids). Another doctor examined me and found me to be dilated to 1 cm (STILL! I seriously thought with these contractions, that would prompt some progress, but no such luck). However, my water definitely broke, which meant it was baby time!!!
They wheeled me down to labor and delivery at about 10:30ish, got me all hooked up, and changed into that oh so lovely hospital gown. The nurse asked me if I wanted an epidural, which I told he was a definite "yes"! She then asked me if I wanted it now,, which I did not realize I could get so early, but since I could I knew I would be a fool to turn it down!! Let me just say hats off to those that do it without the drugs, but since my pain tolerance is not high, they were the way for our family to go! Once I got that epidural, life and labor were wonderful! They started me on Petocin as well to help get the contractions going better, but it was a very low dose. By about 4:30 when my doctor came to check on me, I had only progressed to 3 cm. At this point, I think this process is going to take awhile and baby boy will probably come the next day. My doctor upped the Petocin a little bit and told me that once my body got into a good rhythm with the contractions, I would probably progress fast.
By 7:30, I was dilated to 7 cm, which was a nice surprise and shock! It seems like we just blinked our eyes after that and I was at 10 cm ready to push! About 20 minutes of pushing (which was also a surprise that too was not longer), and out came the most beautiful baby I'd ever seen! I've got to brag on my husband for being the best coach/support system a girl could possibly have!! He fed me countless ice chips, offered encouraging words, apologized for the pain I was in, said a very sweet prayer for our family, and kept friends/family updated on our progress. Not much is better than seeing your husband hold your child for the first time and see him being the incredible daddy you prayed to one day find.
We love being a family of 3 now and so thankful God brought our little boy into this world healthy and safely!! Sorry for the delay and lag in posts, but I'm sure so many of you readers can definitely relate!! Leave you with a few pictures until our next post...
"We love because he first loved us." 1 John 4:19