He is here! Killian James arrived on January 12th 2012.
I went into to work with no inkling that it was his birthing day. I had a few random contractions throughout the day, as usual but nothing I would consider labor. few of them happened right after I went to the bathroom, leading some friends to think that I might have a UTI, but I was sure it wasn't that. I figured it was just another pregnancy thing, but I did seriously consider drinking about 5 gallons of tea if peeing made me have that type of contraction. I didn't do that, but I sort of wanted to.
I left work about an hour early and felt a little crampy on the way out the door, but nothing serious. Once I got home I started having more regular contractions, and decided I should try timing them around 4:30 or so. They were about 8-10 minutes apart and still not really painful, so I figured it was more prodromal labor. They continued even after I laid on the couch, but they spread out a little more. Dave was on the other couch and the kids were singing the song "Red Solo Cup", so he played it on his phone. After about an hour they had become 6-7 minutes apart and uncomfortable enough to have me getting annoyed with the family when they talked to me. Around this time I decided I needed to have a bowel movement and right in the middle I had a contraction that made me need to stand up. This is when I started to realize it might be the real deal. All during this time I was updating my friends on facebook and chatting with my husband about the possibility it was birthing time. It was of course a cold day, and snowing to boot, so we decided to head in because if it was time it might take a while to get there. I packed a towel and a blanket, just in case since I have a history of pretty quick labors. We left the house at about 6 p.m.
There was of course the obligatory stop at McDonald's, it was about 6:23 when we were in the drive-thru (thanks facebook updates...hehe). By this time I knew it was the real deal. Dave asked when I was not having a contraction if we could stop, it was early and we hadn't had dinner yet and who knew when we would get to eat again. While we were sitting at the window I had a fairly painful contraction and noticed on the timer that they were now closer to 5-6 minutes apart. In the midst of the contraction I said, "What the hell are we doing at the drive-thur?!" My husband responded, 'well, you didn't want to have this aby in the restaurant did you?" This of course made me laugh. Laughing in the middle of a contraction, not a good idea! It hurts. Imagine sore muscles from doing the hardest abdominal workout ever, then multiply that by 500. Yeah, not a good idea! "Red Solo Cup" came on the radio and I asked hubby to turn it up. We continued our drive and thought the gate guard was going to tell us we had to have our vehicle inspected because he told us he had bad news, luckily he was just telling us how cold the weather was forecaste to go. Yes, down to -40F....brrrrr!
When we got checked into triage the nurse seemed to act like maybe it wasn't REALLY labor because I was still pretty calm and quiet. They decided since it was shift change to let the incoming nurse check me instead of the nurse that was leaving. They set up the monitors and it seemed like my contractions were still 8-9 minutes apart. I was thinking it must have been a false alarm. After asking me the preliminary questions she checked me and afterwards said, "Well my dear...." Which made me think I was about a 2 maybe, but she finished with, "You're a SIX!" Um, at that point I knew I was staying and then she said, "You're SOOO calm!" Well, yeah it only hurts when I am contracting, why freak out in between? This was around 6:30 or so.
We went into the room and it was mostly just the normal checking in stuff. Dave being his normal goofy self and us all just chatting like it was nothing. When a contraction would hit I would stop and just relax through them and remind myself that when it is over I would feel so much better and sing the words to "Red Solo Cup", yeah that became my labor song. Thinking about the relief of the end of the contraction kept me going. Eventually the doctor came in and had me sign the VBAC consent form, which was the best one I had ever read. It listed the benefits before the risks and also listed the risks of a repeat c-section. The stats were even accurate! Very cool! We talked a little bit about my wishes, and he was good with everything and said he would leave us alone and be back later. No pushing of anything, we did discuss rupturing membranes and he was perfectly fine with waiting for me to decide if I wanted it.
At some point they put in the I.V,, blew the first vein, but got it easily on the second. I ended up staying in bed most of the time because it was easier for me to just relax and focus through the contractions. After a while I had to make a little humming sound through them, partly to help me focus and partly to remind the others to stop talking to me since they didn't know I was contracting. They started to come closer, but I don't know how close they were. I told them I thought we were getting closer and the nurse agreed that I was starting to get into a 'better labor pattern'. At this point I used my phone and posted "baby soon?" That was at 8:40 p.m. The nurse said to let them know if I felt pressure in my bottom and left the room for a bit. A few minutes later I felt pretty good pressure during a contraction an hit the call bell. The tech who took the message told them I was ready to push, so they all came running. I just wanted to be checked! But, the doc got there quickly. So the nurse checked me, but had a contraction right in the middle so she stopped. All she said was, "You're not complete."
I decided I needed to pee because it was making the contractions more uncomfortable, so they helped into the bathroom and left me there. Sitting on the toilet was pretty uncomfortable. I had one contraction while I was in there and then went back out. I got to the end of the bed and another contraction hit, and the baby was coming!
The nurse said, "It's your bulging bag of waters!" But, I knew. She wanted me to get back on the bed because she was afraid the baby would be born on the floor, but I couldn't really move. I wanted to get in a different position, but it wasn't happening. So Dave and the nurse 'man handled' me onto the bed. I was barely at the end. The nurse asked my husband to go get some help, so he poked his head out the door and calmly said, "Could we get a little more help in here?" (The entire staff loved that and said he was so calm and he could have a job if he wanted one) Then the action started. They of course didn't get to break down the bed (I had warned them that this happened in my two previous labors.)
By now I was pushing, it felt like it was taking a long time, but I know it wasn't. They didn't make me pull my legs back, which I liked. I also didn't get coached to push. I heard a few mentions of, 'you're doing great.' But nothing else. At one point the nurse said, "You're my hero" and the doctor echoed her sentiment. At some point my membranes ruptured/were ruptured, turns out it was about 2 minutes before he was born. Dave says he thought he saw the doctor rip it with his hand, it would have been cool if he had just left it and Killian were born with it intact. I really felt the ring of fire this time, and thought for sure I had torn. I did say, "Man, this kid has a big ass head!" It seriously felt like my butt hole was turned inside out, but that was more of an uncomfortable feeling. Shortly after that he was out! And for the first time I got to hold him almost immediately. The doctor in the excitement forgot to let Dave cut the cord, forgot to let it pulse for a minute or two, but I forgive him! After a minute he said, "Oh, I should have let dad cut the cord."
I was beginning to wonder why he was still messing with me, AND why my butt hole STILL felt like it was inside out. That was when I realized the placenta still needed to be delivered, so I pushed and out it came. Then I felt total relief. The doctor announced there was no repair needed. None, and now less than a week later I feel fine! No pain :) After the delivery the doctor came up to me and wanted to shake my hand, it was pretty cool!
I so totally would still love to birth at home, but the experience I had here totally helped me heal. This was as close to being home as you could be in a hospital. The staff was amazingly supportive and not pushy at all. I was treated with respect and my wishes were followed. Simply perfect for us.
Look how quickly! Of course I started timing contractions around 4:30 and we decided to go in at 5:30-6. We were at the hospital and checked in around 7:20 or so.
And of course a picture of my little big man! Killian James, 8 lb 4 oz and 20.5 inches long. He had a 14.4 inch noggin. Not as large as his big brother's but it felt HUGE!
Getting ready to go home in -40F!