|4 days before birth day|
remember that one day i slathered plaster all over my naked torso?
well, i’m no expert but i think said action is a sure-fire way to kick labor into gear because mid-slathering, contractions started happening. at first, i thought, woah, i just felt a short period cramp. it was your standard period cramp, warm, twisty and achy. nbd. and then maybe 10 minutes later i felt another one and wondered if i was making it up in my head. did i want to get baby out so bad that i started imagining labor pains? are these even labor pains? you mean, i will actually go into labor at some point??
i sent a text to my co-pregnant pal asking at what point do i start timing these things. she said to just start and so i did.
this was wednesday at 7pm.
at this point, contractions/surges were all over the place. some were a minute long, some 2 minutes, some 30 seconds. they were 10 minutes apart, 7 minutes apart, 30 minutes apart. what does it feel like at this point?
excitement. it feels like totally bearable excitement.
i loved the feeling. warm, tingly crampage knocking at my cervical door, saying let me out, let me out. i sat on the couch, chatted with my mom about how it was feeling while hank was at his weekly hockey game. i was getting increasingly excited for what would come. my mom went home and told me to call her when we were going to leave the house. hank came home and sent his boss an email saying he wouldn’t be in for work the next day. it was getting real, folks.
when midnight came around that night, we decided to go to bed and just wait for the contractions to get stronger. i slept through the night almost completely. two or three times, i woke up from the pain, went to the bathroom and then fell back asleep. it was a calm scene.
the next morning, my contractions started to become more consistent and from thursday morning on, they were never less than 10 minutes apart. and as the day went on, they grew in intensity and i thought, we should pack the hospital bag. ha! procrastinate much?
so we packed the bag, i bounced around on an exercise ball, we watched ridiculousness and laughed through the pain. but i had a goal, whether it was time or not, to drive south to my sister’s house to be closer to the hospital and to miss rush hour traffic. (we live about 40 miles from the hospital since moving) so when 2:30pm rolled around, we left. by this time, it’s pretty intense and i expect to be a mommy by that evening. i sat in the passenger seat with a car seat in the back, hank’s hand on mine, and my requested john mayer playing loud from the stereo. i breathed through each “cramp” and sang songs during the in-between minutes.
one thing to know about labor, contractions are almost delightful in the early stages because you know it will end soon. you know that in a minute or so you’ll feel completely normal again. you’ll breathe normally and carry on a conversation, close your eyes and rest. knowing that there is light after each contraction is heaven. sleepy, happy heaven.
we park at my sister’s house and i slowwwwwly waddle through the pain to her front door. it’s getting worse. walking is difficult. laying down is NOT happening. sitting, sitting up is all i can do; it’s my preferred position. i totally thought i’d be able to lie down and rest or sprawl over the exercise ball but no, no, no. the pain is practically unbearable in those comfy positions. it’s upright or nothin’. so i keep changing my seat up. i’m on the couch, a chair, the ball, a different chair. i’m hot, i’m cold. it’s too loud, it’s not loud enough. i want my back rubbed, i don’t want to be touched. it was a lot of back and forth, searching for the thing that would help me through it.
it’s thursday at 10pm.
i decided things were brutal enough. contractions were consistently 4 minutes apart and i wasn’t waiting for 3 minute mark. i had to be close to ready because back labor had begun and silent tears were rolling down my face. we packed up and made our way over.
we checked into the birthing center and found out that my midwife is on duty. hooray! they move me into one of the biggest rooms there, a second hooray!, and i change into the infamous hospital gown. my midwife comes in and hugs me. i’m so ready. i’ve been doing this for more than 24 hours at this point and can’t believe the moment is so close.
she checks me and says:
ok, so you’re only about 4 centimeters dilated. it’s still pretty early but we’ll let you stay. get comfy, it could be a while.
to be continued...