Saturday evening, I began having mild contractions. Sunday, August 29, I called the doctor because I thought I might be leaking amniotic fluid. The doctor called back and said the only way to be sure it is or isn't fluid, would be for me to come into the hospital and have him check. So John and I packed up the car in hopes that we would get to stay at the hospital! We were hoping we'd get to meet baby Taylor today! John and I got to the hospital with all our 'stuff.' The nurse came in and did the triage work. The doctor came in, ran his test, and determined that it was not fluid and I should go home. John and I were so disappointed. Today wasn't the day.
On Monday, I woke up with contractions and decided to stay home from work. I thought for sure the contractions would get stronger and I wanted to be able to time them and be ready to leave for the hospital at a moments notice. So I stayed home and...the contractions went away! I was so anxious, but again, this wasn't the day.
On Tuesday, August 31, I woke up with stronger, more regular contractions. I debated about work. I decided to get up and get ready. I knew if I took the day off, it'd end up the same way as Monday, a wasted day off with no progress. So I went to work. I called the doctor on the way because yet again, I was having signs of leaking fluid and also having more regular contractions. When I got to school the nurse called me back. She told me I shouldn't go to work because more than likely I'd be admitted to the hospital later. Too late! I was already beginning my day with the kids. The doctor called back around 8am. They told me to come in at 8:45. I had a lady cover my class. I was sure I'd be coming back to school so I didn't want to get a sub. At the doctor's office, John met me and our midwife Jan ran the tests. She walked out of the room to look under the microscope. A few minutes later she came in and said you have to come see this. She took us into her office and said look into the microscope. What we saw was a beautiful snowflake picture. A clear sign of amniotic fluid! She called the hospital and made arrangements for us to be admitted today. I got emotional, Jan got emotional, John was shocked!
We drove home to load the car with our items for the hospital. We called family and friends and gave them the good news. "It's baby time!" On the way to the hospital we stopped to get lunch. I knew it'd be a while before I ate again. We arrived at the hospital at 11am and a nurse showed us to our room. We were only in that room for a short time. There was a lot of construction noise (they're adding onto the hospital). They agreed to move us to a patio room! This was the room I was hoping for.
My nurse went through all the questions. She also asked if we knew when my fluid ruptured. She decided to go with 6pm Monday night. The important thing when fluid leaks is that the baby needs to be delivered within 24 hours.
Around 1pm the midwife, Nancy, came in. She checked me and determined I was 2 centimeters. She mentioned starting pitocin and breaking my water. In my birth plan I asked that we not do either of these procedures (unless necessary). She avoided the pitocin and decided to break my water. What a crazy experience that was! Immediately after my water broke, my contractions intensified drastically! Family left the room because I couldn't handle having anyone around. I had to lay in bed for 30 minutes while they got one round of penicillin in me (to protect baby from infection since we didn't know when my water started leaking). The pain was incredible! I wanted to wait on the epidural. I told the nurse I wanted to try walking around to see if it lessened the pain. I got up and walked a short distance. I immediately felt like I might pass out. I went to lay down and told the nurse I was ready for my epidural. By this time I was in hard labor. Didn't know it at the time, but this was SO intense. I could hardly get through the pain. I was on my side praying that the pain would go away. I was trying to breathe through them, trying to create a vision. OH it was so uncomfortable. During this time the nurse saw that there was meconium in my amniotic fluid. It wasn't a bad thing, but they needed to be aware of it when the baby came out. In the mean time, the nurse was trying to quickly get a bag of fluids into me so she could order the epidural. Around 3pm the epidural was ready. I was so anxious and in such intense pain, I did get sick. Poor nurse having to hold the container. But once he put that epidural in my back, I was GOOD TO GO! It was instant relief. It was the best feeling of my life! All discomfort, all the contraction pain was gone. It was absolutely incredible. Family came back into the room. I was like a different person. At 5pm the midwife came in and checked me again. She said, "She's 10!" I was 10 centimeters, time to push! She said to wait until I felt the pressure of the babies head. I felt a lot of pressure, but most of the time it would subside.
The nurse had been keeping Taylor's heartbeat the entire time. At this time, she started having trouble keeping the monitor on the heartbeat. She also noticed that the heartbeat was becoming slower at times. All of a sudden she asked all family to leave the room. I was really concerned because I knew it had to do with the heartbeat. She rolled me on my back to get me ready for delivery. The heartbeat got even lower when I was on my back. She said I might have to deliver on my side. She called the midwife. There was a lot of pressure, but no pain. The midwife had me get on my back to push. I was so worried because I knew Taylor's heartbeat was slowing each time I laid on my back. When they told me to push, I pushed with all my strength! I knew we had to get Taylor out. (During pushing they let me feel her head. Then I remembered that we had a hand mirror so I could watch the delivery. John frantically went and got it from the suitcase.) I pushed four times and Taylor's head was out. They told me to look down. I saw the most precious site in all of the world. I saw our baby girl! They laid her on my abdomen to clean her. John cut the cord. They were suctioning her. They put her on my chest for a short time. Then they had to take her to the stand next to me. They were a little concerned because her cry wasn't loud. She was whimpering, but they were looking for a much louder noise. They pumped her stomach to make sure there was no meconium (there wasn't). They suctioned until they got a good cry. They weighed and measured her. She weighed 7 pounds 15 ounces and was 19 inches long. She was born at 5:51 pm!
As they were examining her, I was getting more and more anxious. I wanted to hold my baby girl! They finally brought her to me. She laid with me skin-to-skin for about 30 minutes. I nursed her and then John held her. We were finally a family of 3! What an incredible experience this was! We love our little Taylor with all our hearts!