HOW IT ALL BEGAN: Well let me tell you how labor was for me... I went to the Dr. at 4:15pm on Monday Jan. 5th for a 40+ week check-up (my due date was the 4th) and for the first time in my entire pregnancy had high blood pressure and LOADS of protein in my urine, so after checking my cervix to find that I was NOT dilated in any way, shape or form - they told me to head in to the hospital just to be monitored, but I would probably go home that same night. The doctor I saw that day told me not to be concerned, it was only for monitoring purposes... yet, as I left the office and climbed into the Jeep I was a bit freaked out and called Hubs crying... "they're sending me to the hospital! I don't want to go all by myself!" as he was just leaving FOR work (darn night shifters!!) and my sister was still AT work, and my mom was already half-way home FROM work, and I was just a bit scared... I'm not sure what I was expecting... I kept imagining that I would either:
A) go into labor one evening while lying in bed as hubs watched TV downstairs on his night off, and we'd just head over when my contractions were 5 minutes apart, or
B) go into labor one evening while lying in bed as hubs was working, and then would call L&C to take me to the hospital when my contractions were five minutes apart, being joined shortly after by hubs, my sister - K, and my mom. This was NOT part of the scenario, not at all.
So hubs says to me (being the clueless male that he is!!) "well... what do you want me to do? I'm just leaving for work - are you going to be having the baby tonight?" well obviously I have no idea when I'm going to be having this baby... but I know that he's still in his probationary period and can't just call in sick to work, so I tell him to go, and I'll let him know if he needs to come to the hospital. THEN I call my mom. She tells me that she will be home in 15 minutes, will change, grab a few things and then head back in to take me to the hospital... I calm down and hang up the phone... Until I start thinking again. So I call my sister K, she's working, but I take a chance... no answer. Next up, my friend and new-mom L... no answer. She (also a night-shift cop) is working too... her husband C is next on the list... and he manages to get me calmed down some, until L beeps in :) L tells me not to worry and reminds me of all the things that she went through just a few short months ago (early water retention, pre-eclampsia, etc. etc.) and finally I was calm, and also - home. I changed my clothes, grabbed a banana and waited for my mom to arrive... in the meantime, K returns my call "are you in labor??" so I explain the situation to her, and as she will be out of work shortly - she decides to meet us at the hospital, just for moral support...
I was admitted around 6:15 or so, they monitored me for a couple of hours, and decided that they were going to induce me on Tuesday morning - probably around 8 or 9am. They inserted a Cervadil (some medication to help soften/ripen the cervix) - let me tell you, that was not comfortable at all (like when they check to see if you're dilated at all - which I wasn't, the reason for the Cervadil) around 8pm, and around 9:30pm my mom headed home... hubs was still at work, my sister K was going to stay with me and then head to work in the morning from there when my mom showed back up around 6:30 or so, and she would keep mom & hubs posted if there were any changes... at 11:20pm my water broke and with it came the Cervadil - it was the weirdest sensation I'd ever experienced... all of this gushing... it was so noisy that K asked me "is that YOU or pipes in the wall??" wow. no wonder I was so huge, it just kept coming! (K called mom & hubs, told them what was going on, but that the docs still said it would be 8 or 9 in the morning, so to stay where they were.) Around 12:30 I started getting uncomfortable (the contractions weren't painful, just uncomfortable, so they gave me a shot of something to help me sleep) and I was dilated to TWO. K made the calls, but reassured mom & hubs that it was still way too early, no need to head over. About 1:40am I woke up disoriented from sleep and this feeling of my body "pushing" and couldn't stop myself from pushing, so I hit the nurse call button... my nurse came in, took a peek and went straight back out of the room, returning shortly followed by my OB, two other doctors (residents I think?) as well as another nurse. They said I'd made liars out of them, as I was now dilated to EIGHT and told K to "call the husband now!" so she did - only to get his voicemail, then called mom, telling her "get here now!!" Hubs called back a few minutes later, and after K informed him that he needed to come ASAP, he made it from work in record time, with about 30 minutes to spare arriving at 2:25am. Mom & aunt made it with 10 minutes to spare... after less than 2 hours of active labor, and 1 hour of hard pushing, BabyGirl arrived at 2:57am weighing in at 6 pounds, 1.2 ounces and was 19 inches long!!
I didn't have time for any drugs or anything, and really, it wasn't painful - just uncomfortable as hell... it REALLY does feel like you have to poop! (thankfully I didn't poop during though, I asked K just to be sure in case I didn't remember!!) ;) The only part that I would say was painful at all was when she crowned - which they call "the ring of fire" and that was really just a burning/stinging sensation and didn't last all that long... if I had the same circumstances, I would go drug free again... as it was I was so exhausted from pushing (and it was only about an hour of hard pushing) that I was out of it right after... if I'd been drugged I think I'd have been even more out of it... but heck - I didn't PLAN to go drug-free, BabyGirl just didn't want to wait! :) So, that's my labor/delivery story... oh, and I've totally dropped almost all modesty/shyness (being a nursing mom does that to you I think!!)
***In honor of Mother's Day, please visit MothersDayEveryDay.org to learn about their Campaign for Healthy Moms and Newborns!***