Since I was only 37 weeks along I was not expecting to go into labor so soon. I hadn't preregistered at the hospital and I hadn't packed my hospital bag or Sawyer's overnight suitcase - I was planning to do that the next day. I hadn't even made it all the way through my Hypnobirthing course. I had never been checked by my OB so I had no idea if I was dilated or effaced or anything. I never got really uncomfortable this time the way I did when I was pregnant with Sawyer, in fact I had just mentioned to my sister the day before that I felt so good that I wouldn't mind being pregnant for several more weeks. So of course I went into labor.
Around 4:45 a.m. I got up to use the bathroom (my third visit that night - thank you third trimester!) and after I had emptied my bladder something kept coming out of me. I knew right away that my water had broken because the exact same thing had happened with Sawyer, only at 3 a.m. instead. I woke Eric up and told him it was time to go, then called my OB who told me to head on over to labor and delivery. I wasn't having any contractions yet (again, the same as when I had Sawyer) so we didn't rush. I took a shower and packed my bags - not the easiest feat when your water's broken and it's early in the morning - while Eric got Sawyer ready to go. He was a bit disoriented about being woken up so early but excited when we told him baby brother Henry would be born today! Around 5:50 we were finally on our way to Leesburg to drop Sawyer off with my sister. She met us in the hospital parking lot. Eric was getting hungry at this point, and knowing that they wouldn't let me eat anything once I was admitted to the hospital, we made a quick stop at Chick-Fil-A to get some breakfast. I wasn't hungry but ate a bit anyway because I knew I would need the energy soon.
By the time we got to labor and delivery it was almost 7:00. They got me registered (they actually already had me in the system from a hospital visit in 2000! Funny, I have no memory of what that was for) and a nurse checked if my water had broken - it had - and checked if I was having contractions - I wasn't. Well, I sort of was, but they were several minutes apart and very mild. I was 1 cm dilated and 50% effaced. At 7:45 they officially admitted me and took me to a labor room, where my nurse Vanessa started me on pitocin and penicillin since I was group B strep positive. She also took some blood to see how well I was clotting. I had taken my last heparin shot at 10 p.m. so they needed to make sure all was good in case I wanted an epidural (I already knew the answer to that question. Ha!)
A few minutes after starting on pitocin the contractions were coming fast and furious, 2 minutes apart and intense. I listened to my Hypnobabies tracks and they really helped me focus and relax. Eric was wonderful, rubbing my back and letting me squeeze his hands. Because I was on pitocin I needed to have continuous fetal monitoring, which I was fine with, but it actually made it much harder to concentrate. They gave me a wireless monitor so I could walk around freely and be in any position - great in theory but in practice it was horrible, because the monitor kept moving around and losing the baby's heartbeat, which would send Vanessa rushing into the room in a near panic to adjust it. I just about lost it when she came in while I was on the toilet (the body tends to, um, clean itself out in early labor). As it turned out it wasn't too long that I had to deal with the ever shifting monitor, because at 10:00 she told me the anesthesiologist would be available soon. Since it was 12 hours since my heparin shot I was in the clear to get one, so I told her I was ready for it. The pain was very intense at this point and Hypnobabies wasn't helping anymore. I felt like I could have gone for longer but didn't want to risk waiting too long. At 10:15 my epidural was placed, and I had several contractions during the procedure - they were coming a minute and a half apart and lasting more than a full minute each. Some choice words may have come out of my mouth. Thankfully I had complete relief about 15 minutes later and soon I was smiling again and texting friends. It. Was. AWESOME.
|Loving my epidural|
|Not feeling great|
Then the nurses weighed him and cleaned him off while I delivered the placenta (although I don't really remember that happening, I know it came out because Eric took a picture of it. Don't worry, I won't share that here.)
A few hours later Megan came to the hospital and Sawyer got to meet his new little brother. When he came into the room I tried to hug him and ask him how his day was and he had no time for that - he just wanted to see Henry.
Megan brought us Cafe Rio for dinner, which is quickly becoming the traditional postpartum meal in our family. I was still feeling a little nauseous but I enjoyed it much more than the hospital food I would have had otherwise! And Eric definitely appreciated it. We were sad that the hospital wouldn't allow children to come in and Caroline, Mary Grace and Emery had to wait in the lobby, but happy that Henry at least got to meet his Aunt Megan. A little bit later Spencer and Samm, and Erin and Josh came by to meet Henry and hold him for the first time. We are so blessed to have such wonderful family members nearby to celebrate these times with us!
Soon it was time for Eric to take Sawyer home to bed and for me to try to get some sleep. Not so easy in the hospital, since they were still checking my vitals fairly often and I had to ask for help to go to the bathroom. Also because of my blood clotting risk I had to wear pressure boots on my legs, which noisily inflated at regular intervals. Not so restful. But I managed to catch little bits of rest in between feeding Henry. The nurses in recovery were amazing, so helpful and kind. And Vanessa came over to check on me, which was so nice. All in all I could not have asked for a better birth experience. I feel so lucky to have Henry in my life and can't wait to find out what kind of person he will become.
|Tired but happy to be the parents of two!|