Being sent, alone, to the hospital to be monitored for signs of labor is intimidating to say the least. But that is what I did. I walked into registration, signed the appropriate forms and was wheeled up to labor & delivery.
It was such a surreal journey, riding in a wheelchair to the room where I would meet my baby. I couldn’t believe it was happening.
Once I was in the room, in a hospital gown & hooked up to the contraction monitor, it was quickly obvious that I was having regular contractions. In fact, they were coming 5 minutes apart and over the next couple of hours the contractions only increased in frequency and strength. My parents arrived to wait with me until HandyMan could arrive from work. It was wonderful to have the company and be able to talk to someone while I waited to see what was going to happen.
Just before HandyMan arrived that evening, I got up to go to the bathroom. As soon as I stood up my water broke. It was exactly like what they show in the movies. There was a huge gush of fluid and a puddle on the floor. At first I was embarrassed, sure my bladder had succumbed to the pressure from the contractions & Blue, but the nurse acted quickly and determined that it was amniotic fluid. Initially I was relieved, glad I was still in control of my bladder, but then the next contraction hit. Let me tell you, the intensity of the contractions before my water broke was nothing compared to what they felt like immediately after. The first one took my breath away and brought tears to my eyes.
HandyMan arrived a few minutes later and was shocked to learn that I was really in labor and that he had just missed my water breaking. For the next couple of hours, I walked the halls, checked my email and did anything I could to take my mind off the pain of the contractions.
Then I gave in and asked for some pain medicine. I tried IV pain medicine first and when it wore off I asked for the anesthesiologist to come and try an epidural. I say “try” because I had scoliosis surgery as a teenager and my spine is fused from almost the top to almost the bottom. I had assumed since high school that I would be unable to have an epidural, but the anesthesiologist had promised to try and thankfully, was successful!
The next few hours of labor were much more calm. We were even able to get a little bit of sleep.
And then I threw up. Everywhere. All over me, the bed & the IV stand. It was gross and to make matters worse, because of the epidural I couldn’t move around to help get myself and the bedding changed. Once everything was cleaned up, my nurse decided to check me to see how far I had progressed and discovered I was fully dilated and it was time to start pushing.
And push and push and push. I pushed for the next 4 hours. It didn’t seem like 4 hours, time actually went pretty fast. My nurse was beginning to get a little nervous that I would have to have a C-section, but then it was time for shift change. My night nurse stayed and the day nurse, who had just arrived, suggested changing positions to help Blue move down the birth canal. That was exactly what we needed and just a few pushes later Blue arrived into the world.
Our beautiful little boy arrived in the world with a head full of dark brown hair, he weighed 6lbs 13 oz, was 20.5″ long and was pronounced 100% healthy.
It was an amazing experience!