On Monday afternoon (March 15) I had my 41 week appointment. At that appointment we set my induction date for March 17. I figured I would have a day to get things done and wrapped up and then the baby would come.
That night I wasn’t feeling well. I woke up around 2 with the cramps and decided that these must be actual contractions. I waited until 3 to wake up Reid and we timed contractions. By 6:00 am we were on our way to the hospital. I was worried that I would be sent home, but when they checked me, I was dilated to 4 cm. Hurray – I was on my way.
I was doing pretty well laboring with no medications. At 11 am they checked me and I was at a 6. I was pleased that things were progressing so well. The midwife broke my water a couple of hours later and when I was checked next, I was at an 8. I thought things weren’t too bad at that point, but that changed as the day went on.
I sort of stalled out and the baby wasn’t moving down. The contractions were really painful at this point. I ended up receiving Fentanyl through an IV which would take the edge off of the contractions, but also allow me to rest in between the contractions. The hope was that I would be able to relax, so the baby would move down more. I was able to relax in between the contractions, but I could still feel them and they were pretty powerful. When the midwife came back to check on me about an hour and a half after the drug had been administered, I was at a 9 ½. She thought that if I started pushing, it would help move the baby down. I was scared and nervous to push, but did so for about an hour, with little to no progress. I was in a lot of pain and asked about options. She said that I could get an epidural if I wanted to, so I accepted.
There were some issues getting the fluid in me before the epidural, so that took a while and my blood pressure and heart rate were going crazy after the epidural was administered (and there were complications with that!). But the baby remained fine and stable, which was great.
After resting for a while with the epidural, I started pushing again. While I was making great progress, it was very slow. Finally just before 2 am on Wednesday, I was getting extremely tired, so I asked again about options. The midwife said they could page the
OB and use a vacuum to help push the baby out. I agreed and at 2:20 am on March 17, on the first contraction using the vaccum, Edward David finally popped out screaming! Uncas announced that it was a boy and I remember not being surprised at all. The other thing that I vividly remember was how beautiful Edward looked from the first moment. I was really expecting after all that pushing (about 5 hours total) and being overdue by 11 days that he would look a little strange - but no - he was perfect (and still is!)
I can honestly say that going through labor was the hardest thing physically and mentally I have ever done. In fact, I am fully convinced that running a marathon would be easier! Uncas was absolutely amazing the whole time and I didn't even yell or swear at him once the whole time! The staff at our hospital was wonderful and I loved our midwife. Fortunately for me, there was no one else in labor using a midwife while I was, so I had her all to myself.
In some ways I can't even believe what I went through and that I am still here to talk about it. It just goes to show that your body is really meant to do this. I am also amazed because I thought for sure I would never recover or be able to walk the same again. However, by the end of the second week, I was amazed at how well I felt.
So there it is - finally! If you want more details, you can ask me in person. The timeline is a little fuzzy for some of it and I have decided that it's best not to remember every little detail. The important thing is that both Edward and I made it through labor!