**Note: I started writing this on Wednesday, February 27th and am just finishing two days later. Long amounts of time spent on the computer are few and far between these days. Thank goodness for mobile devices!!**
At exactly 11:29am two weeks ago I became a mom. The greatest most rewarding feeling you can ever have as a woman. There’s nothing like seeing that little face for the first time and knowing that he’s forever yours.
My road to motherhood started off as a long eighteen month journey with lots of tears, pregnancy tests, hugs and ovulation kits. In the end it was five little pills that changed my world. It was at week three day five when we found out that there was a little bundle of joy growing inside of me. As I documented my journey over the last 36 weeks, I can’t believe all the fuss that amounted to getting to where we are today. Never in a million years would I wish an eighteen month journey to pregnancy on anyone, but I will tell you now that I am a better person because of it. I have more respect for pregnancy and motherhood in general. I get why people cry and it’s not just for no reason. I cherish the little things even more. Lucky for us, our journey was easily fixed. Now, as I sit here watching my two week old little boy sleep in his chair, I’m thankful that the fuss ended in him and a better me.
Now, how did we get here? Well, we know the obvious answer to that question, but what the heck happened two weeks ago? I promise to leave out all the “details,” leaving this post strictly PG, but I’ll fill you in as to how little Henry arrived thirteen days early.
Tuesday, February 12, I was exactly 38 weeks pregnant. I never got to my week 37 post, but that’s irrelevant at this point. On this day in particular I had to meet with the pediatrician, take Bernie to the vet for some shots and off to my parents to finally bring them into the 21st Century with wireless. The rest of my week consisted of dinners and dates with friends whom I know I wouldn’t get to spend as much time with once Baby H arrived (he clearly had other plans). After a busy morning, it was finally time to get home to the couch. Ben got home that evening, we had dinner and started discussing my new endeavor of selling Star Wars stuff on eBay. For those of you who don’t know, Ben was a huge Star Wars collector as a child/adult and now wants to part with everything. I am not complaining as the nine boxes that are taking up storage space won’t be missed. Around 9pm it was off to bed.
By 11:45pm I woke with the urge to poop. The past few days I had been fighting a stomach bug and at this point was utterly sick that it still hadn’t worked it’s way out of my system. Well, to my luck it was just a false stomach ache. Though I couldn’t fall back asleep so I grabbed my iPad, rolled over and started reading. While reading I thought to myself this can’t be contractions, she said I’d know exactly what contractions felt like. By 12:30am, the first contraction his, mid sentence of my novel, and I thought to myself “yep this is it.” Continuing to read, I got my contraction timer app out and started timing them. At this point they were seven minutes apart and lasting for a minute. This went on until 2am, when I decided I should probably let Ben know what’s going on. After telling him that I was contracting and extremely hungry I headed downstairs to grab a late night snack. He rolled over and went back to bed, which was about all he should’ve done. At that point, what was he going to do?
For the next hour and a half I contracted every six minutes, ate some snacks, watched TV and wrote thank you cards in between each contraction. I had yet to finish my shower thank yous (such a slacker) and the last thing I wanted was to be the person sending their thank yous out after the baby it born (well it happened, at least I sent them!!) In between contractions I would have the urge to pee. My body was literally in the mode of contract, pee, contract, pee every six minutes!! How annoying. Around 3:30 I decided to call the hospital as I had started to spot a little. My doctor called back and said this could be false labor so don’t call until they’re five minutes apart. Seriously? Back to my book and contraction timer I went for the next hour. Finally I couldn’t take it anymore and decided that a good shower would do the trick. At this point the contractions weren’t awful, they were just annoying. Once I get out of the shower my contractions were down to four minutes a part. YES!! I could call her back and hopefully go in. After waking Ben, crying to say goodbye to my dog, and packing the car it was finally time to head to the hospital. (We have no idea when my water broke, but it was probably when I couldn’t stop peeing between contractions).
Cue, longest car ride of my life. Elmbrook is a solid 45 minutes from our house, no big deal. WRONG…it’s a big deal when your body thinks it needs to pee after each contraction. At one point Ben asked if I wanted to stop at McDonald’s to pee (cue thought about shamrock shake) and I promptly told him my son was not going to be born in a McDonald’s bathroom. So while squeezing his hand to get through the 10 or so contractions I’d have during the car ride, I prayed that I wouldn’t wet my pants. Once we arrived I bolted through the door at the admitting department and went to the bathroom. Pretty sure the girl wasn’t supposed to let me do that, but quite frankly I wasn’t going to wait.
A nice nurse met us in admitting and I proudly walked myself to the labor and delivery room. No wheelchair for this girl!! We got to admitting, I got changed, they checked me, yada yada. Since we got there at shift change we didn’t get one specific nurse at first. After learning I was only 2cm, which pissed me off because I had been a loose 1cm for almost three weeks, I asked the nurse how long she thought I’d be there. She said, first time mom, oh I’d say you got about 18 hours to go. HELL NO!! I said, how about we have a baby before lunch, to which they all laughed. At 6:30am, we got the OK to say and I was officially considered in labor. I had NO idea that you had to get the OK to stay. This girl wasn’t going anywhere either way.
I got hooked up to the portable doppler and was given the okay to walk around to progress labor. The walk lasted all of three whole minutes before my urge to contract, pee turned into contract, poop, pee. The body is an amazing thing. Back to the room we went and in between bathroom breaks I started using Ben’s body to brace myself during contractions. At this point they were about 3 minutes long and last a minute and a half. Basically I wasn’t getting any sort of break.
The nurse that we were assigned, Julie, was asking the approrpriate questions and had said were you going to get an epidural. I said I want to wait as long as possible. Well, my long as possible didn’t last very long as the contractions were awful. Once I got the epi I felt fantastic. Shortly after I started to feel pressure again so back to getting checked. In another hour I had progressed from a 4 to an 8! Way to go body!! While all of this was happening I had an allergic reaction to the meds I was given for strep B. Nothing worse that having the desire to itch your entire body while you’re stuck in bed and there is that nasty tape making it worse. When the doctor called to say it was okay to give me some Benadryl they told her that I was up to 8cm which resulted in a “holy shit” from her. I was super happy to know that my body was progressing quickly, but also that the Benadryl would make me sleepy and I could get a nap in. NOT SO FAST…body had a different idea. Doctor came over to check on me and after seeing that I had was “ready to go” she headed to the locker room to change, while I was shorted out of a nap.
To keep the long of it short, Henry was born after 40 minutes of pushing and shock by all that I had my first baby posterior and in 4 hours and 59 minutes. Yep, that’s right, I had a baby before lunch time!! Most of the birth process is kind of a blur. I remember pushing Ben out of the way at one point and focusing on the TV, not surprised, between contractions. I remember after he came out I just looked at Ben in utter shock. I for sure thought I’d cry, after all I cry over everything, but nope I was shocked. We were finally parents. CRAP…what were we supposed to do now?!?
The rest of the afternoon was spent getting to know my sweet little boy. We didn’t have any visitors until dinner time so it was nice to just enjoy the time together. Everyone kept urging me to nap, but I couldn’t. I was on such a high from the whole thing that I just wanted to stare at him.
Lucky for me, I seem to have a body that was meant to have babies. Not only did I have an extremely fast first labor, but I didn’t feel like I had just had a baby after it was all done. Sure there were the expected aches and pains, but I was up and walking around right away, begging for a shower. The doctor was impressed with all my levels and how fast I was “bouncing” back. Needless to say I am so thankful for great genes!! It’s about time I get some good ones 🙂
Now to the irony of having Henry 13 days early. The previous Thursday at my appointment the doctor told me that there was no way I was going to make it to my due date. On the Friday before Ben and I were talking about the perfect day to have a baby. Funny enough we both had said we’re free on the 13th. Even more ironic, on Tuesday before going to bed Ben had asked me what I was doing on Wednesday. I jokingly said having a baby. Little did we know….