So there I was, on a Thursday night (3 days till D-day).. anxiously awaiting the start of labor. Early on in my pregnancy when I was being monitored frequently, Taj always measured a week early. That said, I decided for my own sanity, I would think nothing of it. THAT said, it was really hard not to when the last couple of weeks rolled around. This was partly a problem because I HONESTLY FELT DONE. He was done cooking, I just knew it. And I WAS RIGHT. Let me explain...
So there I was again, that Thursday night... going to bed with things packed, Taj kicking and twisting in ways he shouldn't at that point, and tired as always. I had felt irregular contractions for about a week, coming and going for no longer than half an hour. So I knew the difference when I woke up the middle of that night in pain. REAL contractions. Coming and going. Thanks to my handy contraction app I knew they were 5 minutes apart, and about 45 seconds long. Such an interesting thing to me, that when they stop, the pain just goes away! I imagined some residual lingering pain or discomfort after a contraction, but that's not the case. So crazy. Anyway, this went on for an hour. Hospital said to call at this point, so I did. They said "ok, once they get to 3 minutes apart, call us back." They knew this wouldn't be a problem for me since I live literally less than 5 minutes away. So there I went... contraction after contraction, waiting for them to get closer together. Another hour goes by, so I call mother. In a nut shell I tell her this is it... she hops in her car and takes off at about 2/3am. At this point several hours pass me by... still regularly contracting, but only every 5 minutes, for a minute long. I WAS EXHAUSTED! I was so tired, and sick of the pain... that I literally just passed out and fell asleep for AN HOUR. And lucky me, I woke up and my contractions had completely backed off! Magically they were now every 10 minutes. SO FUN! I was pissed. Anyway, we woke up, I told Andrew to go to work, and that I'd see him at my doctor appointment that was in a few hours. (at least I had THAT going for me.. I knew I would get "checked" and I would find out what the heck was going on!) My mom was almost up here, so she'd be able to take me to the hospital and/or my appointment, whatever came first....
The appointment came first. Mom took me, Andrew met us, and my sweet sweet OB checked me out, and told me all that labor only got me dilated to a 1. ALL THAT LABOR. Mom essentially says, forget this, we're getting those 10 minutes back down to where they need to be. COMMENCE WALKING THE MALL. And guess what!? Gross stuff started happening, aka leaving my body... which is a sign that serious stuff was afoot! I had never been so excited to see a "mucous plug" in my life! At least I had THAT going for me...
Well a whole day of wanting to die, continual grossness leaving my body included, they didn't come any closer than 7 minutes together... and that was at best. They were beginning to be very irregular. Awesome. The night came, and I was so so exhausted at this point that I slept like a rock.. contractions and all. I wake up, and it continues. It's Saturday at this point. Andrew had film plans, which I said was fine by me, I had mom... and heaven only knew when this labor was going to really move along. Mom and I take off for a morning walk. Gotta love those 9 monthers out there on the street trying to move things along, haha. It picked up my contractions, but again, they were simply not close enough. This was the pits. I told mom NO MORE WALKING. I didn't care anymore, I was just going to deal with this. Redbox it was. And I must remind you, these were REAL intense contractions coming and going all day everyday at this point. So painful AND exhausting...
Later they started to show up again more frequently, it felt like they were only closing in closer and closer. I decided to shower, and sure enough they kept a comin'. Night fell, and we again tried to sleep knowing we had NO IDEA what would happen by morning. And thank goodness, I was awoken by the strongest contractions yet, every 3 minutes, a minute a piece, for an hour... I called, acted super put out... and whalah! THEY SAID TO COME IN!
Andrew and I left around 2. This was my second full day of contractions, and my second intense night of them... I was ready for this. They hooked me up, checked me out.... and what do you know I'm only at a 1 and a half! SHOOT ME NOW. My saving grace was truly ironic... I was both thankful and terrified... Taj's heart-rate kept dropping really low, so my nurse wanted me admitted regardless. WOOHOO, I WAS IN THE FOR THE LONG HAUL, stressed out baby and all!
6ish-am, they check me again... 3cm! Things were moving along. And really well at that point considering the heafty jump from 1.5 to 3 within a couple hours. So I said to them... awesome, since I'm finally checked in, and I've been hanging out with these awesome contractions for over 2 days, CAN I GET AN EPIDURAL? I was open to trying this delivery sans-medicine, but not anymore. Not after contracting for nearly 3 days. You'd be asking for drugs, too. An hour later, I was feeling like a million bucks. I could wait this out no problem.
They check me a couple hours later, and wooo...4! Still moving. Heart-rate still dipping, oxygen mask still off and on for the poor boy inside. I really just wanted to get this over with so he could be out and safe.
They check me a couple hours later. 4. Alrighty.... no big deal. They decided to break my water at this point to keep things moving. A couple hours later, 4. Not looking good. The good news was, I was going to have my baby within the day, and my OB happened to be the one on the floor working that night! I LOVE HER. ((yes, we have Kaiser, and they actually keep their delivery floor full of midwives and alternate their OB's shifts... so you may or may not get to see yours when you have your baby)) But lucky me, she was in... and was aware of what was going on.
She comes in to check me a couple hours later... still at a 4. And this was surprising because my contractions were showing on the monitor as being off the charts, strong... so she decides to do a more thorough check internally. What does she find? Oh... just Taj's head, stuck in my pelvis. Unable to press on my cervix THUS causing DAYS of contractions and NO progression.
But at this point, I was ready, so ready to have him out, so ready to be off of oxygen and paranoid about his poor little heart-rate, so ready to be done with pregnancy, so ready to stop contracting, and so ready to meet and hold my baby! A c-section was no longer scary, and the only option.
We get prepped, and wheeled into the room. I still remember the look on my OB's face as she makes her best attempt to 'dislodge' the boy before she could cut me open. She was pushing on his little head with all of her might, trying to move him back up to make his exit another way. The curtain goes up, Andrew comes in (stoked on his getup- and camera in hand).
And without warning, everything was hooked up, ready, and moving along, when after a few josling motions and shoves to my belly, out he came. Faint little sounds coming from the baby that was being carried to the corner to be cleaned and tended to. My body went warm, my eyes welled up. That was him. He was here. I looked over and could see his little arms and legs moving. Andrew went over to meet him and told me how beautiful he was. It was heaven. That operating room was heaven. They bring him to me, I kiss this little person that was now mine, and he was taken to the delivery room to be cared for until I was finished. So unreal. They stitch me up, scoot me to my new bed, and wheel me in, where I find my family all simultaneously FaceTiming the sweet new baby I had yet to meet. His bath was done, and it was time for me to hold him. What a tender moment.
Those 3 days in the hospital were the best days of our lives. We drive by that place with fondness.
I can't believe it really happened. Even now I look at that little baby, now so grown up 2 months later cooing and smiling on the floor, and can't believe how blessed I am. He is really a dream come true.
I love you, Taj. Your dadda loves you, too.
You're the best thing that's ever happened to us.