I had a scheduled appointment with my OB for May 4th – which was my actual due date. At the appointment, I was at maybe 3 cm. Dr Bemus stripped my membranes (which was a bit painful, both after and during) but it wasn’t so bad that I felt like I was going to die. He let me know that he figured I’d likely go into labor either that night or the next day. Not too long after that I started having slight contractions, nothing that hurt too much. We went home and within a couple of hours they contractions were starting to hurt and were coming regularly – Aaron and I walked to the gas station to get some Ice Cream to help move things along (the walk was to move things along, the icecream was just there to make me happy!) Not long after we got home, they were under 5 minutes apart for 2 hours and we packed up to go to the hospital. I didn’t figure they’d keep me, as I could still talk through them. They hurt, but they didn’t hurt as much as I imagined they needed to. I text messaged mom, who of course headed in as well. In the end, I was sent home around 10:30 PM with an Ambien to help me sleep and instructions to come back when the contractions were stronger to the point that I couldn’t talk through them.
We headed home and I crashed out on the couch after Aaron made me a can of lasagna. (healthy, I know – but I wanted quick). At this point I was still in pain, and it was increasing, but I didn’t want to look like an idiot and go back in too soon. I took the Ambien and tried to sleep. Aaron got ready for “bed” and slept in the chair – he took a shower and got dressed in normal clothes – even put his shoes on – so that as soon as I said “lets go” he was ready to go. I didn’t get much sleep overnight, I ended up with maybe an hour – the rest of the night was spent feeling miserable. By 7ish in the morning I knew that we would have to pack up and go soon or I was going to have a breakdown. We ended up back at the hospital hooked up to the monitors again. By this time I knew the drill. Unfortunately, when they checked me, I was still at 3 cm – no changes at all. At 10:30 AM the nurse let me know that they were going to admit me anyway – she apparently told the Dr on call that if they didn’t admit me I’d likely have to crawl out to leave judging by how much pain I was seemingly in. Aaron quick got a hold of my mom (who wasn’t impressed that we didn’t call her BEFORE heading to the hospital) and let his family know as well.
They sent me to room 1165 and got all of the IV’s hooked up. At 12:30 PM Dr Driscoll came into the room and talked to me for a bit and then broke my water. Shortly after that the anesthesiologist came to put the epidural in. I felt 100000000 times better! Aaron’s mom and Pauky showed up, but for the most part I was just hanging out crashed on the bed, not feeling any of the contractions. The first nurse (Deb) guessed my delivery time after 10 PM. Everyone else picked later hours close to her pick – Aaron opted to go against the grain and try to make me feel better by choosing 6:45 PM.
Around 4:30 PM my nurse Nicole wanted to check my cervix, so everyone dispersed to go get food for dinner. She checked it, said the number and I just stared at her like she was full of it – I was already at 8 cm. I hadn’t been feeling the contractions, but they’d obviously been working! Everyone was still at dinner and I started to feel more and more pressure over the next 30 minutes or so. Aaron came in and got the news. Nicole (new nurse) guessed my delivery time around 7:20 PM. By 5:00 people still weren’t back, but I was really feeling pressure – Nicole checked me again and I was 9.5 cm. She let me know that at any point in time I wanted to start pushing I could, as apparently some people think it’s more comfortable to push through that last cm rather than deal with the pain of the pressure. I held off until 5:20ish, but by then I felt like I needed to start pushing. Those who were back were sitting outside the door, the nurse popped out and told Aaron we were going to start pushing – thinking that caught him off guard! He came in and at around 5:30 the pushing started. And don’t let anyone tell you it’s not hard work!
Oddly enough, throughout the pushing there were many times where I felt like I could have pushed for a bit longer, but I was straining so hard that it felt like my eye was going to pop out. Aaron kept getting me cool washcloths, I tried to refrain from too much swearing – apparently I didn’t do too bad – although according to my mom at one point I did say something along the lines of “J** C** that f**-ing hurts!” and she followed it up with an Amen from outside the door. Oops! I kept pushing with just Nicole and Aaron in the room until I could really tell things were getting close, it hurt like hell and I was ready to be done. The nurse was paging everyone she could trying to get the Dr in the room. Eventually she had to tell me to stop pushing. HA! I sort of stopped, but really all I stopped was sitting up and making it obvious. After a few minutes there was this mad rush of nurses into the room and Dr Driscoll was there, ready to deliver her. At 7:07 she was born. She barely made a peep, her cries were sporadic, I wasn’t sure what to think, I was just listening hoping that everything was okay, Aaron said “She’s beautiful” so I did at least know she was still a girl. They put her on my stomach, he clipped the umbilical cord, she was wiped down and put on my chest while Dr Driscoll worked to help get the placenta out and stitch me up. I barely noticed. She turned out to be a healthy, happy and adorable little girl!
The days in the hospital were a bit of a blur – she had a full head of hair and really captivated a lot of people because she was just so alert. Aaron said that as she was coming out, he was at first seeing nothing but hair and a cone head until it got to her nose or so, and then she was looking around. I’m sure that has to be a strange sight! We had tons of visitors – and I know I was out of it for most of the stay, sometimes I was to the point of being grumpy even, but I apologized and I’m pretty sure everyone understood! She really was a pretty baby in my eyes, and she was so well behaved right away! She took to nursing pretty easily – I had a few questions and struggles but in the end she did awesome and we’re getting along fantastically.
Speaking of fanstastic things – Aaron’s done an awesome job with volunteering to help out as much as he can with the middle of the night stuff – despite the fact that he can’t feed her – he can soothe her when she’s just fussy or upset, so he’s been staying up till 4 AM or so to make sure I can get some rest. And it’s time for me to wake him up now, so I’ll wrap this up there and get him up. She’s starting to mill about in her crib a bit, too so I better get a move on!
Averie Rose Gale
Born May 5th, 2009 at 7:07 PM
7 Lbs, 9 Oz – 20.5 Inches