Missed part 1? Catch up *here*!
I stood there for a minute. I wasn’t sure if the pop I felt was gas, the baby moving, or my water breaking, until I felt and saw the water start to pour out of me. I took a deep breath and said, “Okay, this is really happening.” I grabbed a towel from our hallway closet, put it between my legs and started walking around the house getting stuff ready to go. LC called into work and then called my mom. I called our doctor’s office which directed me the 24 hour line. In about a half hour, we were out the door and on our way to the hospital.
While we were in the car, my doctor called us back and asked what was going on. I told her that my water had broken about 9 p.m. and that we were now on our way to the hospital. She asked if I was having contractions yet at this point and I said no. She told me that once I got to the hospital and they started antibiotics (because I tested pos. for Strep B at a previous appointment), she wanted me to get some rest because I had a “long night ahead of me.”
After I hung up with her I had my first contraction. Nothing unbearable, it felt like strong period cramps. I got on my phone and started timing them with an app. This one had lasted about 30 seconds…and four minutes later I had another one lasting about 30 seconds. It took us about a half hour total to get to the hospital in which I was able to time 6 contractions.
I told hubs to just drop me off at the door and meet me in the room. I got out of the car and a huge gush of water came pour out. My mom and my sister were already at the hospital waiting for us. As I came through the door with now a soak towel between my legs, water dripping down me, I see my mom start to raise her phone to take a picture. I said to her, “Don’t even think about it.”
I met the nurse at the desk, told her who I was and gave her my updated insurance information. We had pre-registered at the hospital a few months back but my insurance info had changed slightly since then. I highly recommend pre-registering at the hospital because the last thing you want to do when you’re in labor is fill out paperwork. They got me into a room and had me change out of my clothes and into a hospital gown. I told the nurse that I had tested positive for Strep B and that they needed to start antibiotics right away. She told me that they first had to run some tests to make sure that the liquid coming out of me was actually amniotic fluid…
Once all THREE tests came back positive that it was indeed amniotic fluid (what else could it possibly be?) they hooked me up to the monitors to start looking at my contractions and the baby’s heart rate. The baby handled every contraction beautifully. Around 11:30 pm they finally started the IV for antibiotics. At this point my contractions were coming about every 2-3 minutes. The nurse checked me and I was only 2 cm dilated and about 70% effaced.
The IV took a while to get in and I never anticipated how much that part would actually hurt. It was really hard for me to sit still through the contractions. The nurse tried to start one in each of my hands and failed. She then called then nurse aesthetician to come help and she finally got the IV started in the underpart of my forearm. At this point the contractions were getting really strong and were not letting up as far as timing went. There was no time for me to rest in between contractions like the doctor and I had anticipated. As I was having contractions, all I wanted to do was move around. To sit in that bed and let the antibiotics come through was the worst part of my active labor phase. There was a point where my mom and hubs were laughing about something that was on TV and I barked to them through my contraction, “Can we please keep the talking and joking to a minimum? I’d like it quiet in here.” It took a lot of concentration to try to just breath and relax through each one. At about midnight, I had had enough. I was tired, I was throwing up, I was feeling defeated and all I wanted was to sleep. I felt that if I had to continue on like this for hours, that I wouldn’t have the strength at the end to push the baby out. The nurse came in and I said, either get me into the shower, the birthing tub or get me an epidural because I can’t deal with these contractions anymore. Once one contraction would subside, another one would start back up again. It was like a wave crashing into my body in which I just tried to relax and breath. I visualized that with each one, it was just bringing me closer to meeting our baby and one less contraction I’ll ever have again.
She called our doctor and told her how I was feeling. Once the doctor heard that I was asking for pain medication, she told the nurse to start filling the labor tub and she was on her way. Doctor Koch arrived at around midnight and by 12:45 am, once the antibiotics were through, I was in the tub. The contractions felt so much better. I could still feel them but they became tolerable again. The only position that felt good for me was either sitting up or being bent over on my knees with my arms draped over the side of the tub. At that point the doctor checked me and I was at 4cm about 80% effaced. Hubs was absolutely amazing through the whole thing. Through each contraction he told me to relax, squeezed my hips and rubbed my back. The hip squeeze was such a relief. I had even managed to fall asleep for a few minutes while I was in there. As time went on, the contractions got stronger and closer together back to the point where they were unbearable again.
I remember saying, “I can’t do this anymore, I just want to go to sleep.” The doctor reminded me that I am doing it and to just relax. I just wanted it to be over. At this point I told hubs that I needed positive reinforcement because I was “ready to quit”. They told me that I was doing an awesome job. A few minutes later had my first urge to push. The doctor told me to listen to my body and to go with it. After a few pushes I was begging her for it to just be over. She checked me again at 3 am and said, “Um, we need to get out right now because you’re at 10cm and it’s time to push.” The best thing I had heard that night. With that news, I got my second wave of energy and the adrenaline was flowing, it was time to meet our baby. Before I got out, she had me reach up and touch the baby’s head. “You feel that hard thing right there, that’s your baby’s head!” This was actually happening and I was more than ready to push this baby out.
They got me into a wheel chair and wheeled me back into my room. Outside in the hallway sat my sister. She looked at me and told me, “Good luck! I know you’ll do great!” I remember thinking she looked so comfortable there wrapped up in her blanket with her pajama pants :-) Just one of those moments you don’t forget.
Once I got back into my room, Dr. Koch told me to get how I was in the tub. The traditional “on your back or side” labor position was not comfortable for me so she didn’t want me to push in that position. I got on the bed and was on my hands and knees. I then draped my arms over the top of the bed and LC stood in front of me, holding my hand. I looked at him and waited for the next contraction and with that I pushed my little heart out.
To push felt like a relief. I screamed but it really didn’t hurt, I was just using all the energy I had left in my body. After a few pushes, Dr. Koch told me to stop screaming and to use that energy in my pushing. She kept putting warm compresses on me so that it wouldn’t burn so much and she instructed me to push, take a little breath and push again. At that point I remember thinking, I am so happy that I kept doing planks and working out throughout my pregnancy because I was using so much of my core muscles to get this little munchkin out. Once I figured out how to push effectively, things moved along a little bit faster. A half hour later, Dr. Koch motioned LC to come see the baby come out and to announce the sex of the baby. I knew it had to be close so with that last contraction I pushed with all my might and felt a HUGE relief! I heard my mom start to cry and then heard LC whispering to the doctor asking if it was a girl or boy. Because of the way I delivered the baby came out butt up so he couldn’t see anything. He came back over to me and said, “It’s a girl”. And with that I let out a little sound of joy as I heard her first cry. The doctor put her skin to skin with me on my back because I was still on my hands and knees at this point. A few minutes later I was able to turn over and there she was. Wide eyed and absolutely perfect. At 3:29 am, I gave birth to the most perfect baby: 7 lbs 13 oz, 19 1/2 inches long.
From the time my water broke, I was in labor for a total of 6 1/2 hours. It was extremely fast for a first time mom and very intense. I obviously don’t know which way I would’ve preferred since this was my first birthing experience. Part of me wished I would’ve had more time in between contractions to rest and get some sleep but another part of me was happy that it was so short despite how intense it was.
Either way, I was lucky enough to have the labor and delivery that I wanted. It was completely natural & 10 minutes later, she had latched on. Everything worked out the way I would’ve liked except for the fact that my water broke at home and because my labor went so fast, they weren’t able to give me the second round of antibiotics for the group strep B. But our baby girl is healthy and happy and at the end of the day this that’s all that mattered to me.
Welcome to the world baby Madelyn, we are blessed beyond words to have you in our lives.