My last doctor's appointment was Wednesday, May 29th. Nathan was able to go with me and we got in there and the doctor told me I was 90% effaced and dilated to 1. Now remember to the week prior, he said I was 100% effaced and dilated to 2. AND he was for sure I would have the baby no later than Memorial Day. How in the world do you go backwards in this progression?
I was so upset and just ready to be done being pregnant. I cried in the doctor's office and throughout the evening. The doctor mentioned some people go on their own and quickly even, but they went ahead and scheduled my induction for Tuesday, June 4th @ 5:30 PM. We tried to have an enjoyable evening with family that was in town. After a few days off work, certain we were going to have our baby, Nathan was all set to return to work the next day.
I woke up on Thursday, May 30 (our due date!) at 2:00 AM with contractions. That was the first time my whole pregnancy that I was able to recognize them and certainly with any consistency. It scared me...all of a sudden this was real. I was certain that they would fade, after all, I was just at the doctor and wasn't progressing. I was uncomfortable enough that I got up and went to the guest bed so I could toss and turn there. I didn't want to wake up Nathan, knowing he had to work that day and all.
I decided to download a contraction app on my phone and by the time I started tracking them, they were 3 1/2 - 5 minutes apart and lasting about 45 seconds with each one. My biggest fear was going to the hospital and then getting sent home so I decided to just make myself relax and count through them. By 3:00 AM I was in the shower hoping the hot water would relax the strong contractions in my back. During the 19 minutes I was in the shower, I had 6 contractions and started to finally realize this just might be the real thing!
I called my Mom around 3:30 to see what she thought. It was my due date after all, and she encouraged me to call the doctor. Knowing that I lived 35 minutes from the hospital, the doctor told us to get our stuff together and go ahead and get to the hospital.
At this point, it was almost 4:00 AM and I woke up Nathan so we could go to the hospital. I was crying...feeling anxious and afraid the intense feelings were just part of the end stages of pregnancy rather than actual labor. I was thinking I had a long few days ahead of me. Nathan kept asking me how far apart my contractions were and because I had just woke him, he wasn't retaining what I said. I thought he was questioning me, like I was making this up! :)
We got to the hospital around 5:00 AM. The doctor said our baby would be born that day and when they checked me I was already dilated to 3.
My contractions were every 2-3 minutes, feeling the strong ones still every 3-5 minutes. I wanted to remain mobile as long as I could, walking and using the exercise ball to work through the contractions was comforting to me. As the intensity grew, the nurse alerted me that the anesthesiologist would be in surgery over the next hour and unavailable so if I wanted the epidural, I should get it now. I was still handling the pain, but was afraid it would get more intense than I preferred during that time frame.
He came in and gave me the epidural around 9:00 AM. That process was more intense than I anticipated...just a lot more to it and a tiny bit more painful than I was thinking. So thankful for access to it though - I was able to rest and progress smoothly over the next few hours. They did give me just a little bit of pitocin to keep my contractions regular and by noon I was dilated to 9.
There were 5 of us ready to deliver at the same time so the nurse told me it was a race to see who would get my doctor :) At 3:00 PM the nurse had me go ahead and start pushing to get the baby in place. My Mom was able to assist the nurse and Nathan was able to be my support over the next 30 minutes while I pushed. Chase was born at 3:35 PM -- the process was quick for me and the doctor was impressed with it being my first delivery.
The next few hours were a complete blur...weighing and measuring the baby, bathing the baby, cleaning up Momma, trying to nurse, moving to our post partum room, introducing the waiting room full of visitors to our new baby...whew! We were ready for a good night's sleep!
Then the fun started. Nathan changing dirty diapers, me trying again to nurse, hoping my epidural will just wear off and feeling the wave of emotion of all we had just gone through that day. Overwhelmed with goodness was an understatement!
Shout out to Nathan who was the ultimate support for me during all of this! He changed all of the diapers in the hospital and waited on my every need. It's so sweet for me to see Chase respond to his touch and voice. I look forward to watching their relationship develop over the years...this baby has his Daddy wrapped around his finger already! :)
Between the flow of visitors and constant interruption of doctors and nurses, we were so ready to come home Saturday afternoon! Chase wasn't nursing well, but we finally had one successful feeding which allowed us to go home on time! Chase was awake for most of the car ride home...just taking it all in and not crying a single bit. It felt like we had been in the hospital for a month!
My parents stayed at our house the first 3 nights we were home and that was so helpful...just to have their support! On Monday we had to take Chase to the doctor and they confirmed he was a healthy baby! He was 50% in his height and 30% in his weight. He had only gained 1 ounce since we left the hospital, so we are going back in today for a weight check. The way he has been eating since then, we don't have anything to worry about. I'm guessing he is going to chunk up real soon!
Chase & I are still trying to find a night routine. He either wants to nurse for hours on end or simply just sleep on my chest until around 5:00 AM. My neck is so sore from laying in awkward positions for the past week. For the most part, he only really cries out when he's hungry, but he'll sure use those lungs then! However, we are just so thankful for our sweet baby and that everything went so quick and smooth for his delivery!