So my wait is finally over, and sweet Baby J joined our family on Labor Day 2013. He weighed in at 7lb 2oz and was 20.5 inches long, making him my biggest baby by 3oz and 1 inch.
On Sunday evening, I jokingly posted on my personal Facebook page that I hoped Labor Day would be “labor day.” I had been feeling pelvic pressure with BH contractions that day but I honestly didn’t think I would get my wish!
As it turned out, I woke up at 4am with what I thought were just strong Braxton Hicks contractions. But they kept coming at pretty regular intervals and just weren’t going away regardless of my activity or position.
On the advice of our doula, I took a shower to see if the contractions petered out and rather than going away, they got stronger and closer together. By then they were about 5 1/2 to 6 minutes apart, and I was pretty convinced we needed to head to the hospital (I was NOT going to deliver this baby in the car!). I called the doctor who confirmed that she thought I should head in.
Luckily, my parents were in town staying with us for the holiday weekend. They had brought extra clothes just in case baby was born this weekend but since nothing was happening, they had been planning to go home that day. By about 5:45am though we were headed in to the hospital and Mimi and Papa took control of Little Man and Lil Sis for us.
We arrived at the hospital at 6:15am and were ushered in to triage to make sure I was actually in labor. When the triage nurse checked me, I was 6cm dilated, 100% effaced and my water broke spontaneously during the exam. Yeah, definitely labor!
They wasted no time in getting us back to a labor and delivery room at that point! With this being a third baby, and the rate I was progressing, it was pretty obvious this baby was coming quickly.
I have no strong philosophical opinion about medication during labor and my approach with this labor, as with the other two, was that we’d just see what happened.
As it turned out, it’s a good thing that I was not dead-set on getting an epidural because even if I had been, there wouldn’t have been time to get one!
I could tell that I was a bit dehydrated when we got to the hospital. I was really thirsty and my mouth was dry, but was in too much pain to want to drink much. My veins are hard to hit even on a good day and are even harder when I’m dehydrated. It took 4 people and 6 tries to get my IV in once we were back in labor and delivery. Eventually they called in Lenny, the awesome anesthesia guy (and I know he’s awesome because he did my epidurals on both my previous deliveries and was the one called in to put in my IV when Little Man was born — yes, I had the same issue then). Even Lenny needed 2 tried to get the IV in!
By then (about an hour later) I was almost 9cm dilated, 100% effaced and the baby was really low. We had a tub room and had planned to labor for a while in the tub. The nurse started to fill the tub but advised that she didn’t think getting in was a very good idea because there probably wasn’t enough time before this baby was coming!
At the very end, the nurse had me change position to my side to help baby flip in to the correct position for delivery. I was probably on my side for less than 30 seconds before baby flipped and I immediately felt the urge to push.
They called in the doctor, and we started the process of delivering this baby! I ended up pushing for a total of 12 minutes before Baby J made his appearance.
After 12 minutes of feeling everything (a very, very strange feeling and one that I’d rather not repeat, frankly), out he came, and we finally learned that we had a baby boy!
He went straight on to me for skin-to-skin time and nursing while the doctor delivered the placenta and stitched me up (I have a small second-degree tear). Baby J latched right on and proceeded to nurse for over an hour! We had a very nice, quiet and calm couple of hours hanging out in labor and delivery after his birth before we were moved to our postpartum room.
Since his birth, Baby J has been super easy going. He eats well, poops and pees often (which the nurses love of course), and is generally a pleasant baby. Here’s hoping that all continues after we’re home!
Among my 3 pregnancies, I’ve pretty much run the gamut of obstetrical care. I’ve experienced (1) an induction resulting in an emergency C-section with Little Man, (2) a long labor and delivery with an epidural but a successful VBAC with Lil Sis, (3) antenatal surgery when my dermoid cyst was removed, and (4) a quick, all-natural VBAC delivery with Baby J.
I’ve found out the sex in the ultrasound room, under the Christmas tree, and in the delivery room.
So with all that, I feel fairly qualified to give an opinion about my personal childbirth preferences. Please keep in mind, these are my personal opinions only and are no commentary or judgment whatsoever on how other people choose to have babies.
So in my opinion, C-sections suck. I would avoid having one whenever possible. Epidurals rock, and natural childbirth is way overrated. Having a natural delivery this time just confirmed how very, very glad I am that I had an epidural with Lil Sis, particularly given how long it took to get her out (19 hours of labor and 2 of pushing). At least Baby’s J’s birth was quick!
And finding out the sex in the delivery room is pretty stinkin’ cool. If you have the patience and willpower to keep yourself and everyone else in the dark for 9 months (and have no practical reason that you need to know), I’d highly recommend giving it a try!
So there you have it, my third (and likely final) birth story. We are very thankful that another sweet boy has joined our family.
One final note — a shout-out to our good friends Susan and Jeremy whose second baby girl is due the day after Baby J was originally due. Come on and make your appearance little girl — Baby J is waiting for his girlfriend!!