Last Tuesday night, I had the first of the real labor contractions. As exciting as it was, I was nervous because the last time (with Sam, my first) I went into labor on my own, it lasted 4 days!! It was miserable. But now, I have had 3 previous ones, I was hoping my body would know exactly what to do this time around. I had contractions all that night, about 10-20 min apart, and when Ben showed up for PT on Wednesday morning and told some of the guys I was home and in the beginning stages of labor, they sent him home to be with me. Which was nice, but it made me worry because I knew it could be several days before the baby actually came and I didn't want him to get in trouble if they saw him with me several days later and I was still pregnant!
Then not long after he got home, the contractions stopped all together. I was super frustrated. Here I was thinking that baby was on his way, when it just stopped!
So I decided to embrace the suck and just work hard to get the house cleaned, dress the boys up for school (who were having a Dress as your Favorite Storybook Character Day), and the boys' Halloween costumes all put together for the big Truck-or-Treat party at our church that night. I constantly reminded myself that I had a healthy pregnancy and baby will come when he is ready.
We came up with some Harry Potter costumes for school:
On our way to the Trunk or Treat, the contractions started up again. Yay!
But we still had fun! Love my Doctor Who Fans!!
I had random contractions all that night, but around 4 am, they just stopped. And nothing....
Again, frustrating! But I was determined to have a positive attitude about it!
Thursday morning, 30th of October, I went into the OB/GYN after the day and a half of strong contractions only to find out that I was only dilated to a 2 and 25% effaced. What a bummer! All that work for so little!
Good news was that the doctor didn't think I would need a c-section after all... but that she was SURE the baby wouldn't be coming until at least the 5th of November.
We left a little downhearted. I told Ben that he might want to call his commander and go back to work for a few days -- I didn't need him totally if he was needed back to work. And I was seriously doubting myself anyway, what if they weren't the real labor pains after all?? I was just having wishful thinking.
I went home and took a nap. Woke up around the time the boys came home from school. They did their homework and chores and we all decided to go to the park.
There is this GORGEOUS park on post that has a walking path around the play area.
So I did. And it was crazy weird but exhilarating! The contractions seemed to hurt less when I was running through them. I ran 2 1/2 miles while the boys played with Ben on the playground.
When we got home, we put the kids to bed and I crashed on the recliner. The hubby and I spent the evening watching movies and he rubbed my feet. I had a few strong contractions, but nothing that indicated a baby would come soon.
Then at 1:15 am -- Halloween morning, as I was lying in bed trying to go to sleep, I had this excruciatingly painful contraction. I felt this bubble of pressure right in front of my pelvic bone -- I thought it was the baby's head... until the pressure area popped!! Better not be my baby's head!! I thought, what the heck!?? Then I felt wetness.....
I ran to the bathroom.
Sure enough, for the first time EVER, my water broke on it's own! So after running around packing my hospital bag, calling our sitter, and making last minute arrangements, we were off to the hospital!!
Having "ruptured membranes" is the golden ticket into being admitted to the hospital. It was nice not having to worry about being sent home to wait anything out.
At this point I was dilated to a 4. They got me in my room and settled down. I slept through the first 4 hours. At 7 am, they checked me again and I was still a 4. So they gave me a little pictocin to get me going. I wanted an epidural, but I wanted to wait because I knew it would slow down the labor for me and I just wanted to have this little guy asap.
I got my epidural at 9 am. The midwife came in at 9:30, just minutes after I sent Ben to go get himself some breakfast, to see how far along I was.
While she was checking she said, "Ummm... where is your husband?"
"He went to get breakfast," I told her.
"You need to call him and tell him to come back right now because this baby is coming!" Are you kidding me?! I wasn't expecting him to come until late afternoon!! That was fast!!
I called him. He was in the Burger King drive-thru. And then I called my mom, we had planned to Skype with her for the birth. She wasn't home... but answered her cell and said she would haul butt home.
It all worked out. Ben got back and we got Mom on Skype and Joseph Benjamin was born just after 10 am on Halloween. A healthy 8 lbs and 21 inches. And cute as a button!
I got to spend some quality bonding time with him in the hospital... which was great! I knew once we were home with all the boys, bonding quiet time was going to be hard to get.
The big brothers were SO EXCITED to meet him later on that evening. They got to spend some quality time with him in the hospital with him the next few nights.