Our handsome little beast has arrived. We are so happy he is here and well and such a GOOD BOY! The long version is below (even though I am sure I am the only who cares for that much detail) but here is how it all went down short version:
4:30: I notice my first contraction. I'm in denial because 1) it is 10 days before my due date; 2) my family history is that we go late; 3) I have plans for the weekend!
5:00: We decide to get in the car and start driving to my grandma's reception in Provo. We needed to eat dinner on the way, and decided that we would reassess at the restaurant if the contractions were something to be worried about.
5:30: At a McDonalds down State Street we order dinner and let Charlie start playing in the play area. I have to start walking through my contractions and we decide to go home. We didn't want to get stuck in Provo in bad traffic if we needed to get to the hospital.
6:00: On the way home I decide I will take a bath. When I took a bath with Charlie it pretty much stopped my contraction for a few hours. This time the first two contractions felt better, but they were coming on strong after that. Charlie was trying to wash my hair and get me to play with her bath toys. Seth was running around packing my hospital bag and talking work on the phone to his brother Boyd. (I was kinda annoyed.)
6:30: I finally decide that it is serious enough to call my midwife. At this point my contractions were about 4-5 minutes apart and only 30 seconds long. Based on that my midwife would have suggested that I stay home a little longer, but when I told her I dilated from a 3 to a 10 in 40 minutes with Charlie she told me I should go get checked at the hospital. While getting dressed I realize that my contractions are now more like a minute apart.
7:00: We drop Charlie off at Boyd's house and rush to the hospital. They can tell I'm in a lot of pain and triage me immediately and tell me I'm dilated to a 7. They rush me to my room where they prepare me to get a spinal instead of an epidural because it "works faster." My spinal doesn't take any of the pain away from the contractions for at least 10 minutes and I was pretty upset. We debate about putting in an epidural, but once they check me and find out I'm a 9 we decide to just go with it because I realize I can't feel her checking me--which means I won't feel him come out and I won't feel stitches. I feel good enough about that to just keep the spinal.
7:45: While repositioning my legs my water breaks and on the next three contractions I push.
8:07: Bam! He is here and healthy. I'm a mother of two.
We had been getting ready for an induction date of Monday, April 2. So we knew that the weekend of conference was our LAST CHANCE to get things done before baby arrived and changed our lives forever. On Friday I was feeling pretty lazy but I did manage to clean out the pantry and fridge so that when we went grocery shopping the next day there was room for all the food we were going to buy. We were also going to clean our bathroom and master bedroom. Alas, we came home on Sunday to bare cupboards and bathroom and bedroom that won't be cleaned for at least a year. Oh well!!
When Charlie woke up from her nap around 2:30 on Friday she wanted to "do something" and I agreed to go on a walk with her to a little park in the townhomes next to us. While we were over there I saw my friend and her daughter coloring with side walk chalk and she told me about a great deal on diapers at Walgreens. She offered to keep Charlie while I made a quick trip to pick some up. (I had no newborn diapers on hand, so this was a small miracle.) On my way back to pick Charlie up I noticed I was feeling a little crampy and mentioned to my friend that they may be my first contractions. It was about 4:30.
From there Charlie and I went home and Seth was waiting for us. We were planning on going to my Grandma's reception (she just got married last month) in Provo and knew traffic was going to be horrible. My contractions weren't horrible at this point so we decided to get on the road and that we would stop at a McDonald's so I could reassess at that point if we should still go to the reception. I'm pretty sure I was in denial that they were real contractions because 1) my family history is to go late, not early; 2) it was 10 days before my due date not just a couple; 3) from the first time I felt crampy with Charlie to when she was born was something like 30 hours, so I felt like I should have plenty of time; 4) the contractions were four to six minutes apart and only about 25 seconds long--pretty close together but really short; 5) I had plans! At McDonalds we quickly ordered and we were only there for about 20 minutes and I had to start walking through my contractions. At that point I decided I needed to not be in Provo or stuck in traffic if these contractions were the real thing.
So to Charlie's disappointment we were on our way home. I decided to take a bath to help stop the contractions. With Charlie I took a bath and my contractions pretty much stopped for a couple of hours. In this bath my first two contractions felt much better. After that they were full force again. At that point I decided to call my midwife. I told her that the contracts were short and still about four or five minutes apart, but that with Charlie I went from 3 cm to 10 cm in about 40 minutes. She told me that with most people she wouldn't have me go to the hospital yet, but with my history I should go and get checked--just in case. Seth was packing my hospital bag for me at this point. Charlie was in the bathroom with me kind of confused as to why she couldn't was my hair; whenever she is in the bath I get to wash her hair! She also made sure I had lots of toys with me. (She is going to be a good little second mommy, right?!?)
By the time I got dressed and got the last few things for my hospital bag I was mad at myself for telling the midwife that my contractions were four to five minutes apart. Now they were more like one minute apart--or so they felt. I wasn't really timing them; it was all I could do to breathe through them. We packed Charlie in the car and set off to Seth's brother's house to drop Charlie off. He lives 1.2 miles from our house, and the hospital is a midway point between our houses. She was soooo excited to be able to play with Carson and Joel! Who cares that a little brother was on his way! She got to play with her cousins! I was soooo excited they lived as close as they did.
On the way to the hospital Jared called me because he had just heard that I wasn't going to make it to Grandma's reception. In the middle of telling him I was on my way to the hospital I had a contraction and couldn't keep up the conversation. I answered that call at 7:05 p.m. At this point I just couldn't wait for my epidural, but I was concerned they were going to send me away because it had been such a short time since I had felt my first contraction.
Side note: Why do they not have "Woman in Labor" parking at the hospital? The walk in from the parking lot took way too long, even though I was speed walking like mad. (Seth did ask if I wanted him to drop me off, but I said no. I wanted him with me at all times.) I suffered through one contraction on the way in and one in the elevator. When we got to the labor floor I must have looked like I was in a lot of pain because the front counter attendant only asked for my name and birth date and showed me to the triage room, even though I was told multiple times that I would need to bring a photo ID and my insurance card.
While changing into my robe in the triage room I decided to use the restroom, and right when I was washing my hands I heard the nurse come in and say she would come back in a few minutes when I was out of the bathroom. I YELLED at her to WAIT! I AM ALMOST DONE! I didn't want to wait any more minutes let alone a nurse's "few" minutes. So she waited and then checked me and, low and behold, I was dilated to a 7. It wasn't until that moment that I realized I was for sure having a baby that day. She asked me if I wanted an epidural and I said YES! I think next time I have a baby I am going to wear a shirt that says "CALL THE ANESTHESIOLOGIST NOW. I WANT AN EPIDURAL."
At that point they pretty much ran me into my birthing room with two or three nurses following to get things ready. They assured me that they had called the anesthesiologist but a few things had to happen before he could give me drugs. I pretty much told them that I didn't care what had to happen: poke me, prod me, just make sure I am ready when he got there! They got my IV in quickly, took my vitals, and not soon enough the anesthesiologist was there. Another question: why do they not have someone explain about the risks of an epidural and have you sign for treatment BEFORE delivery day? He came up to me with pages and pages of things to read and sign. SERIOUSLY? I had no idea what I was signing; I'm pretty sure that signature wouldn't hold up in a court. Women in that state could be declared temporarily insane and not in control of their actions. I was pretty curt with him and he quickly got the point and went around to give me the epidural, but really he and my midwife decided to give me a spinal instead.
Why a spinal? Supposedly it is because it works quicker than an epidural. However, I remember with my epidural that I only had one more horrible contraction after getting it. With the spinal I had one after another after another (they were coming on very fast). I started getting upset and told the anesthesiologist that I wanted an epidural. The spinal WASN'T WORKING! He told me the place I was feeling the contractions would be the last place for the spinal to work. I just told him that my expectations weren’t being met. So we decided to check if I had made any progress and if I hadn’t then I would get an epidural. Low and behold I had progressed to a 9 and my midwife was sure that when my water broke I would be complete and ready to push. I realized that even though I could feel the contractions I couldn’t feel her checking me. Maybe I could actually push this baby out without feeling it and the stitches afterward! I also realized that the contractions were finally starting to stop hurting. So I excused the anesthesiologist and when he was leaving he gave me a great compliment. He said something like, “Call me if you decide you do want an epidural. I can do it really fast because you have great anatomy for an epidural.” I asked him what he meant—do I have a lot of space between my vertebrae or something? He said, “No. I mean you are skinny.” Awwwwwww. All bad feelings about him giving me a spinal instead of an epidural were gone. Even a 9 month pregnant woman in labor loves to hear that they are skinny.
While my midwife was preparing to break my water the nurse had me reposition myself on the bed and that is all it took to pop it. They checked me again and I was ready to push. Three pushes on each contraction and after only two contractions she told me to only do small pushes on the next one. Unfortunately she didn’t say small, wimpy pushes. I still pushed really hard for a short period of time and that was enough to make me need about four stitches. Next time I know they want wimpy pushes at the end.
And suddenly I was a mother of two. He was here and crying and slimy and swollen and cute. And I was so happy, and excited, and overwhelmed, and emotional. A whole new being had come into the world! And I was his mother. Wow.
He weighed 7 1b 9 oz and was 19.5 inches long and officially born at 8:07 p.m.—just three and a half hours after my contractions started. It was all such a whirlwind that we almost forgot to take pictures. I think a nurse reminded us.
We got to do skin to skin right when they were done rubbing him down. When he tried eating he was already a pro. I can’t even tell you the difference between him and Charlie in the eating department. I’m pretty sure that if Charlie had come second I would have thought she was defective. But with this little guy I have just been feeling spoiled with such a great eater.
We had Uncle Boyd bring Charlie over to the hospital so she could finally meat Baby Beast. She was a little excited to see him, but really excited to play in the really cool hospital room! She settled down enough to hold him and she looked him in the eyes and said, “He is SOOOOOO cute.” And was then promptly done holding him and ready to play some more. That first night Graham had a lot of visitors: Uncle Boyd, Cousin Carson, Grandma Karen and Papa, Uncle Danny, Uncle Jared and Aunt Kim and Cousins Addison and Paige, and Grandma Marcia.