Baby girl made her arrival last night (4/27) at 7:44pm. 6 pounds, 7 ounces and 19 3/4" of perfection, with crazy long fingers and a sweet little face.
Labor started at 7:45ish am on 4/27. Arrived at hospital at 4:45pm, upstairs at L & D at 5. At 7:34 my water broke, and at 7:44 after 3 pushes, Dee was born! I did not have any pain medication or an epidural, and I would not have done it any other way. It made for the most intense half hour of my life, but it was SO worth it.
If you don't want to read the long and graphic version, stop now.
No, really, stop now, unless you want to read about my cervix and mucus and stuff.
Ok, here goes!
I had been just generally uncomfortable on Tuesday 4/26, all day, and my low back had been aching all night. My first contractions that were clearly labor contractions started at about 7:45am on 4/27. We just did our normal thing for a Wednesday, since I was on maternity leave already, so basically C and J went to teach a music class for a local daycare (well, C went to teach, J went to have fun). They came home just about 11, and we went to the library. At that point my contractions were about 7 minutes apart, and while painful/intense didn't really require a whole lot of concentration to get through. While getting dressed right before going to the library I noticed some bloody show, but didn't really think much of it. After the library, we had lunch and watched a movie, and my contractions were closer to 5-6 minutes apart and getting stronger. I took a shower and managed to more or less shave my legs (really, really impressive at pretty much 40 weeks pregnant and in labor...) Each time I went to the bathroom there was an insane amount of mucus, so I knew that my contractions were making me dilate and really lose my plug, as opposed to the past few days where I'd had some mucus but not a lot.
I called my midwives at 3, then called my mom to come get J. We got to the hospital to check in at about 4:30, but didn't actually get checked in until 4:45 because nobody was at the desk We got up to our Labor and Delivery room at 5:00. The nurse we had (for about 5 minutes, due to shift change) was awesome and had observed me through couple of contractions during the checkin, and said I was doing beautifully. At that point, I was really just making an effort to breathe and relax through the pressure waves, though some were harder to get through than others.
Once up in L&D I had to be on the monitor for 20 minutes. My midwife checked me and I was 4cm, 70%, and -2 station. The waves were still something I could just breathe and relax through, though once I was off the monitor I wanted to be in the bathtub. The nurse told me she'd come back and check on me (as would my midwife) in about an hour and a half, then monitor me some more. This was at about 5:30. By 6:00, in the bath, I was having to vocalize through the waves, and found open sounds like "aaaaaaah" to help the most. About this time I asked C to get me a snack, so I had a granola bar. It was nice, and I was sipping water the whole time as well. Yet another perk to not having an epidural this time...
By about 6:40 I wanted to get out of the tub, and onto the birthing ball. That was heaven. I had noticed some more bloody show when I used the toilet and when I was in the bath, and things were really intensifying. I was starting to shake and having a harder time relaxing, but still able to relax between contractions (this was in the bathtub, still). I noticed my waves were much closer together, but I don't know how close as I wasn't looking at a clock. After a few minutes on the ball, I threw up. I made it through a few more waves and started feeling pushy, and decided that it was time to be checked. I paged the nurse, and everyone came in. I was telling C at this point that I didn't want to do this anymore, and that I couldn't do it.
My midwife checked me, and I was 6cm, 100% effaced, bulging waters, and L was at 0 and definitely in transition. This was at about 7:00/7:15. They put me on the monitor, and gave me oxygen because they noticed that Dee was having some late decels with contractions.They tried to get my IV locks started (2, in case I needed blood quickly, given my history of postpartum hemorrhage) and ended up having to have Anesthesia come do it, because the nurse couldn't get a stick and blew out veins in both hands (very weird, I usually have awesome veins). The anesthesia person came and got my left one done quickly. Contractions were very intense, and very hard to breathe through, and I really think my vocalizations were probably pretty loud at that point. I was desperately trying to breathe with my midwife (also awesome) through the urge to push but it was difficult to say the least. I remember saying again that I didn't want to do it anymore, that I couldn't, etc. At 7:34 my water broke, and there was some meconium present. I could no longer control my body's urge to push, and the anesthesiologist had just gotten my IV finished on my right hand when I started pushing. I was laying on my left side. Within a few minutes, I was complete and pushing with my urges. I felt like I was about to have a bowel movement (I didn't) and then I felt the "ring of fire," which really wasn't that bad compared the the contractions at that point. My midwife looked down and said "hey, we're having a baby" and everyone sort of paused, not expecting that to be so soon. One more push and Dee's head was out, and another after that and the rest of her came slithering out. She was born at 7:44pm, after 12 total hours of labor and the most intense 30 minutes of my life,. No tears, no stitches, nothing! I feel amazing and am very proud of myself.
Oh, and the reason for Dee's decels was that she was all wrapped up in the cord. I did get her on my chest immediately, and she pooped again. Her APGAR scores were 8 and 9.