I read the typical "What to Expect" book, took the hospital birthing class and tour, and obediently just went along with everything I was told. Because of that I ended up with what has become a "typical" hospital birth.
Monday, September 27, 2004-
I went into labor on my own a day before my due date, around midnight. I was so excited. I couldn't sleep so I stayed up typing updates to messageboard friends, cleaning and doing laundry, and stopping every 7 or so minutes for contractions. Early labor was easy and I handled it by myself during the night pretty well.
When my husband woke up in the morning I told him he'd probably be calling in to work that day, but sent him off to school as it was midterms week. We called our families and my mom said she was on her way. My sister-in-law came over to keep me company while we waited for DH to get home and my mom to get there. We chatted while I folded laundry and kept busy, needing to stop and breathe through contractions. I felt the contractions all in my back, but was able to still handle them alone.
Around noon when my mom and DH were there we decided to head in to the hospital, about 5 minutes away. I finished getting everything into my hospital bag and making sure everything was ready for baby. We got to the hospital around 1pm and settled into a room. At 2pm I was checked and told I was 5cm. They asked if I wanted to go ahead and get my epidural and I said sure. I got the epidural around 3pm. I remember how good it felt to not be in pain anymore. At 4pm I was 8cm. At one point my epidural stopped working because the machine had stopped dispensing it, but they quickly got it fixed.
I remember looking to my mom (who has had a c-section) and she nodded and told me I should and it would be okay. Things quickly changed as the anesthesiologist came in to up my epidural and a nurse shaved my lower belly. DH was given scrubs to put on and I laughed at how he looked. My family (Mom, MIL, SIL and sister) were sent out to the waiting room with rest of the family.
Finally they let DH in and began cutting. I was surprised that DH watched the whole thing, because he'd joked for months about fainting while I was in labor. I was actually jealous that he got to watch. I didn't even think to ask them to lower the screen so I could see them pull him out and things had changed so quickly that we'd left the camera in the labor room.
After some tugging and pulling I finally heard someone say, "Wow, big head!" and "Lots of hair!". Suddenly I heard my little boy screaming and nothing else mattered. Tears poured down my face as I heard them whisk him to the warmer to clean him up. DH went over to watch while I cried happily and waited to see my son. The only other thing on my mind was how annoyed I was getting that my tears were getting in my ears and I couldn't wipe them because my arms were strapped down.
After what seemed like forever, but was probably only 5 minutes, Hubby brought Jason over for me to see. My first thought was Oh good, he's cute! It was shallow but I'd worried about having an ugly baby. He was adorable all wrapped up with his little round face poking out. DH pulled off the baby hat and I was amazed at the thick black hair my little boy had. He was still crying so I started saying, "Shhh, it's ok. It's ok." To my amazement he stopped crying at the sound of my voice. The oxygen mask was (finally!) taken off so I could give him a kiss and an arm was unstrapped so I could reach up and touch his face.
DH went with them as the took my little boy to the nursery to bathe and weigh. I hated having them away from me as I lay in that cold bright room getting stitched up. I was wheeled to a recovery room where I was left alone. Occasionally a nurse would come check on my vitals and make sure I had warm blankets. At one point another surgery patient was brought in to recover and wake up from general and at least I wasn't alone anymore. Finally around 11pm my OB came in to see me. She said everything went great and my baby was nice and healthy. She called over to the nursery to get his stats for me- 8lb 15oz and 20" long. What a healthy big boy!
I was then wheeled back to a little postpartum room (seriously they were tiny) and waited anxiously to see my baby. My mom came in and waited with me, telling me how they had all seen my little boy as he was taken to the nursery and how proud DH was. I was so impatient, wondering what was taking them so long to bring my baby to me.
Finally, finally, around 12:15am DH came in with Jason. He was handed to me and I just stared at his perfect little face and talked to him. I was in love right away.
To come- the recovery, physical and emotional.