On Friday, September 14, after weeks of false labor, I felt like crap. It shouldn't be isolated to Friday, because I had several days within a 3 week period that I was a miserable person to be around. I had a solid two weeks of regular uncomfortable contractions that were deemed false labor because I never actually progressed into the real deal. People told me that I would know when it was real. I was getting very frustrated because they felt real, but out of nowhere, the contractions would just stop.
But back to that Friday. I was crabby. I was tired. I was so, so moody. Around noon I started having some mild contractions about 6 minutes apart. They felt like everything else I was experiencing, and knowing that they weren't real, I just ignored them.
Marcus, Charlotte and I went to Panera for dinner and saw a couple of friends and I was trying to hide my misery, but I was pretty transparent. I apologized for my attitude, and hoped they didn't think I was being rude. We came home and watched the movie Bernie. It was interesting.
It was probably 11:30 that we went to bed. I felt fine. I didn't really think anything was happening. Marcus had plans to go to our cottage the next morning with his dad and brothers to take the boats and docks out of the water for the season. I didn't really want him to go just in case I went into labor, but at the same time, the cottage is only like an hour away.
(I forgot to mention that my goal was to have the baby on Saturday. I was determined to get it done. If it didn't happen that Saturday, it would have to wait until the following. Marcus travels to Traverse City for work every Thursday and coordinating childcare for Charlotte would just be easiest on the weekend. I'm not sure why I thought I needed to have the baby nearly 2 weeks early, but I just knew if it was going to happen soon, it would be Saturday.)
Around 1:40am, I woke up. I didn't know why. I felt a contraction, but it was just like every other one. Maybe a little bit more in my back. I got up to go to the bathroom, and I had another one. I tried to go back to sleep, but realized they were pretty close together. I've had this before though. They weren't real. Or were they? I waited a little while. They were 3 minutes apart. I woke up Marcus to tell him and waited a few more minutes. Even though they were very similar to what I had been experiencing, I called the on call OB anyway. She told me to head to the hospital, so I called my mom around 2:30 so she could come stay with Charlotte. Right after that, my water broke and I was thrilled to know this was the real thing!!
I was not thrilled about how holy crap crazy the contractions immediately got.
This is where it gets awesome.
I'm having the worst pain I've ever experienced in my life in waves coming every 2-3 minutes at home and in the car. I was not convinced I would deliver my baby in the hospital. It was so National Geographic it was embarrassing. We got to the hospital and I felt like I waited a lifetime to get to triage, and another lifetime to get to L&D. I seriously sounded like a wildebeest or some other Savannah dwelling creature. I kept on apologizing because I'm pretty sure the women who were walking the halls just waiting for their babies to be ready decided to hang on a little longer.
Anyway. It wasn't nearly the peaceful laboring experience I had with Charlotte. Even though that was really painful, I managed to hold off on an epidural for about 3 hours. I could barely last 30 minutes this time and there were so many people in and out of the room and I felt like I was making a scene. At one point I'm fairly certain I told the chief of anesthesiology to "just shut up for a minute". Yeah, I was real dignified.
My epidural was not great and he told me that 99% of them work better than mine and he couldn't redo it. So unfortunately my left side felt most of the action.
By 6 am, it was time to get ready to deliver the baby, and after the opposite of rainbows, unicorns and fairies occurred, my sweet chubby baby was born at 6:52.
It was a completely different experience from Charlotte's birth, in some good ways, and in some not as good ways. But I'm so pleased I was able to have a vbac, and the recovery has been much more manageable too.
Lena has been such a blessing. She's a great eater and sleeper, and an even better pooper. so.much.poop.
Life as we knew it has changed forever, but it's been changed for the better.