So on Monday I was having contractions, but nothing terribly regular, so I didn't really pay too much attention. However, Monday afternoon, my friend Emily and I went walking with our boys. We took a pretty good walk, maybe about 45 minutes, and there were definitely some hills involved. I left her place around 5:45, and went home. I wasn't feeling great, so I told Greg that we should order dinner out, which we did. By 6:30, I knew the contractions were getting pretty regular. I started officially timing them at about 7, and they were ten minutes apart. I put all my childcare providers on notice. By 7:50pm, they were five minutes apart. We started packing, but still were remaining unconvinced that I was in labor. I wasn't in a lot of pain, (some, just not tons) and I thought there was no way I could be in labor, but they were still five minutes apart, which can't really be ignored. By 8:30, I decided that we would go into the hospital around nine, which was when Sara could come over and watch Charlie. I didn't want to call my mom down from Murrieta (about 45 minutes away) if I wasn't really in labor. Sara came to watch Charlie and we got to the hospital around 9:30. One of the wonderful girls from church was working as the head night nurse that night, and I explained that I was really embarrassed that I wasn't in a lot of pain, but that my mom lived far away and I didn't want to call her unless I was really in labor. She was so sweet and said no one would make fun of me if I wasn't really in labor, which was my concern. I thought "I have even done this before, you would think I would have an idea whether it is happening or not!" But I just wasn't sure. Anyway, she checked me out, and I was on my way. The contractions were going anywhere from 5 to 2 minutes apart, I was dilated to a 3 and about 80% effaced. They admitted me (and I called my mom to come relieve Sara).
I wanted to labor as long as possible without getting the epidural because I was afraid that everything would go so much slower post-medication like it did the first time. Plus, at that point I still wasn't in terrible pain, although it had definitely started to intensify. I made it to about 3am, so about nine hours (they called my labor as starting at 6:30) and then called for reinforcements. For some reason I was completely freaked out about getting the epidural this time around. Last time I remember it being a little frightening, but this time I was shaking all over (partially due to the cold IV they run through you first I think, and partially being freaked out) and I was jumping every time the guy would even come close to my back. At some point he said that if I moved around like that while he was putting it in, it would cause serious problems, which of course I knew, but he didn't have to rub it in. My nurse had both her hands on my shoulders and kept saying "BREATHE. BREATHE." (They don't let the husbands stand next to you during the process because they might see something and pass out, so Greg was seated and patting my knees, which was pretty much all he could do.) Anyway, I give these details because they are sort of funny and embarrassing. I was probably the worst epidural recipient this guy had ever seen, which is doubly weird considering I have actually HAD an epidural before. Anyway. It went in. The contractions didn't slow down at all, but they did get slightly less intense. But I was worried about labor stopping, and it didn't so that was good.
Between 4 or so and 7, I just tried to get some rest. Greg also slept some, which was good. I had only one very bad hour where I was quite sick, but I made it through, and the rest of the time I was mostly comfortable and able to relax a little (although I never actually fell asleep. Has anyone ever actually fallen asleep while in labor?)
At 7am, my doctor called and told them to put me on a very low dose of potocin. By this point I was dilated to what the nurse said was about a six, and still 80% effaced. Then, my doctor came into the hospital and said I was only dilated to a five, and then broke my water. Then she left again. Around 8:30am, I was really feeling a lot of pain/pressure, and I said so to my nurse. She said that she was sure I hadn't made much progress but that she would check. (At this time I became violently ill again, no explanation on why.) She checked me and said "oh, there's the baby, it is time to push!" So, they set up the room for me to deliver. I started freaking out again (seriously, last time I was just like "whatever" about everything, until it went on so long I was struggling, and this time I had full on break downs like three times during labor. What's with that?) I told my doctor that I was really scared to push the baby out because I am terrible at it, as evidenced by the 3.5 hours I spent trying to get my son out. She said "well, let's just do a practice push and see." I pushed for nine minutes this time and the baby was out! YAY for a much smoother labor this time around. =)
Felicity Grace came at 9:09am and was 7 pounds and 14 ounces and 19 inches long. Her hair is looking red so far (and her eyes are looking blue, but that isn't much indication of anything at this point I don't think) and she is perfectly beautiful. We are so in love!
She is already quite the little eater. The lactation consultant kept coming in and making sure everything was okay with us, and every time, the baby was nursing away.
Charlie is taking to her pretty well so far. In the hospital, he gave the baby kisses and if she was crying, he would say "why is the baby crying?" Every time she changed hands, he would look and see who was holding her and that she was okay. Since we got home, he has definitely been acting out a little bit, but not maliciously. He is just being really LOUD around the house, and little things cause him to be more upset than usual. I think that after a few weeks he will be back to his normal self.
So, that is the basic story of the labor! There are more gory details, but despite my fascination with people's labors, the more graphic the better, I recognize that people probably do NOT want to hear them, so I have tried to leave them out for the most part. =) Anyone who wants extra details, let me know!
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