Sunday, February 07, 2010

lucy is here!

Our newest little spud joined our family on February 2nd and here is her story:

I based a lot of my expectations for this birth on the births of my first three babies. With each one, I had had a lot of early labor and contractions, but nothing ever moved forward until my water was broken. I had always been at the hospital by 3-4 centimeters dilated and wanted an epidural by 5-6 centimeters.

On February 1st, I decided to try drinking Caster Oil to jump start the early labor I was already in. The kids were out of school for an ‘inclement weather’ day. My friend, Cori, invited us to her house where her kids played with mine and Cori and I finished decorating her daughter’s bedroom that we had been working on for the past week. I drank the Caster Oil at 11am (Cori had done this with all 4 of her babies and couldn’t be in the room when I drank mine because the memory of the taste alone was enough to make her nauseated!) I managed to gulp it without tasting much.

The contractions started at about 4:00pm, but were just like the ones that I have had for the last several weeks. Cori and I timed them and they were between 2-5 minutes apart. After invading Cori’s house (and bathrooms) for most of the day, I finally gathered up the kids and headed home about 5:30pm. The contractions continued while I made dinner and while we got the kids to bed. I took a shower and watched TV until we were ready to go to bed about 10:30. It has been typical for me to have contractions 3-5 minutes apart all evening that go away when I go to bed, so part of me really thought this would happen again. I dozed off and on, but was woken by contractions every once in awhile. At about 1am, they were definitely getting stronger and I got out of bed. I sat down at the computer to time them and couldn’t stay sitting when I’d have one. I was too uncomfortable and had to get up and move around and breathe through it. I really didn’t want to wake up Steve and call Cori to come over if this wasn’t really ‘it’, but I decided around 1:30 that something was going on and to go for it. Cori came over and Steve and I left for the hospital at 2:00am. During the drive to the hospital, the contractions came about every 3 minutes and I had to tell Steve to not talk to me during them because it was too distracting. We checked in and were taken to a Labor and Delivery room. The nurse checked me at about 2:40am and said I was 8 centimeters! I asked if she was kidding me. She assured me that she was not. I was surprisingly calm when I asked if there would be time for an epidural and she said ‘probably not.’ I looked at Steve and he was not so calm. The look on his face was like a deer in headlights. I had mentally prepared myself a little bit for the possibility that I may not have time for an epidural this time, but had neglected to prepare him! I was scared, though. I had not done any natural birthing classes or really prepared myself for this at all. I called Cori, who I knew had done this four times and who I also knew would be awake, and asked her how in the world to get through this!

The next 45 minutes or so were spent with a nurse trying to get an IV in me that hurt worse than the contractions. I was progressing, but slowly, so the doctor broke my water at 3:30am. At 3:45am, I was 9 centimeters and the baby was still pretty high up. Pretty quickly I started to feel a lot more pressure and more pain during contractions and the nurse tried to check me and I closed my legs and told her to stay away from me! The baby moved down quickly and I could actually feel it when it happened and the urge to push came fast and furious and I couldn’t help but cry out and I believe I begged for someone to help me. The doctor and nurse tried to break apart the bed, but I knew that wasn’t going to happen and I started pushing involuntarily. I think I was more afraid of the pain than the actual pain itself and all I could think was ‘ring of fire, don’t want to feel the ring of fire!’ Almost immediately my body started pushing again and the baby’s head was out along with a sense of relief immediately followed by another need to push and I delivered the shoulders and body. What a sense of complete relief!

Lucy Patricia was born at 3:57am, weighed 7 pounds (6lbs 15.5oz, technically), and measured 18.5 inches long. She didn’t cry, just grunted and made cute little sounds. I cried and cried when I got to hold her. She is so unbelievably beautiful and perfect. We love our Lucy!