The days leading up to Josie’s birth were a bit of an emotional roller coaster. I gave some brief updates previously about various false starts for this labor, but this post fills in the details.
Saturday, October 3rd
Despite having experienced labor three times before, this time around things didn’t seem very clear cut.
I knew none of the “false alarms” were It. Really, I did! But, I was walking around dilated to a 4 on my due date and I was quite uncomfortable. So when I had several hours of contractions 3-4 minutes apart lasting 2 minutes each we headed to the hospital hoping they might just break my water and get the show on the road. After walking the halls for an hour I hadn’t dilated further. They wanted me to keep at it for an hour “just in case” because I have fast labors… but it was past 3 am and we decided to go home and sleep.
My patient dad captured a photo of the action (or rather, the lack thereof):
I’m glad he got that shot because there didn’t turn out to be any walking of the halls when I was actually in labor!
Sunday, October 4th
After we caught a few hours of sleep, my doctor called about mid-morning and offered to bring me in at 4 pm to break my water. She said Monday was looking jammed at the hospital but today was light and she knew I was close. I agreed and got all psyched up. By 3:30 pm the house was clean, the kids were packed up with sleepover stars in their eyes and we were walking out the door to drop them off at my friend’s house. Then I got a call from the hospital. It was a no-go on the induction that afternoon. We would plan on Tuesday at 7 am instead.
Monday, October 5th
I had an appointment with my doctor in the afternoon and Scott had taken the afternoon off to come with me (he’d never met my doctor before). Despite the fact that it had been a very quiet day contraction-wise my doctor told me that I was now dilated to a 5. Also, she had just spoken with the hospital and they said that they weren’t as busy as they had expected and so I could get induced today if I wanted to. But it would have to RIGHT NOW. We could go straight there from her office. It took me a few minutes to mentally prepare for having a baby THAT DAY and work out the logistics of childcare for our older three kids, but with Scott’s encouragement we decided to go for it.
My doctor left the room to call the charge nurse. Just to confirm. You know where this is going right? Somehow I didn’t. So when the doctor came back in the room and said all bets were off because they had been inundated again I was dismayed. Back to 7 am the next morning.
(When I texted the update to my mom, she asked me if I was sure I liked my doctor and hospital. Ha! A little late in the game to change, Mom! 🙂 )
I’m not going to say I wasn’t feeling a bit put out by this time, especially because my doctor said the induction scheduled for the next morning was “tentative” based on the hospital’s availability. I didn’t love the uncertainty. My kids had stopped getting as excited when I would say, “Today might be Baby Day!” and I had a friend planning on coming to my house at 6:30 am the next morning. She had already been called to my house past midnight on another night, and prepped for a sleepover with all my kids on a different night. She’d been an amazingly good sport about all the other false alarms but I didn’t want to impose on her again.
Later That Day…
With Scott at home afterward I was able to take a blissful hour and a half of relaxation time on my glider reading Anne of Green Gables… for the first time in my life. How is it possible that I’m Anne with an “e” and I’d never read that book?
That evening was stunning and I headed out with my dad and kids to go walk by the river. The light was gorgeous, the leaves were beginning to change and I felt comfortable walking, which was a nice change. It did occur to me when we were nearly a mile from the parking lot that the walk back might get tricky if I went into labor. But all was quiet on that front.
After I put the kids to bed, I decided to relax on the couch until Scott returned from his Willamette Master Chorus rehearsal.
Ow. What was THAT contraction?! Out of nowhere, I had a whopper of a contraction that grabbed me and forced me to pay attention. It was about 9 pm at that point but another one didn’t happen for about 15 minutes. Yeow! These meant business, but they were far apart and stayed far apart after Scott came home. So, I just puttered around a bit getting ready for our early exit the next morning.
Everyone else headed to bed after 11 pm, but every 15-20 minutes or so I was hit with another Yeow making sleep impossible. I laid and dozed and went to the bathroom every other contraction.
To be continued…