Written 4/27/2006, sixteen days after the birth
This one has taken me the longest to get all formatted, but I'm at least posting the 'gist' of how it went............ It has been the most spiritually significant one.
Contractions woke me up. 2 minutes apart. Timed the contractions and told Jeoff. Jeoff started getting ready for work and getting the kids ready for school.
At about 6:30 I called the birth center to see which midwife was on call. I found out it was Lisa so I paged her and she called me back. I described the contractions and she said to take a bath and call back in about 30 minutes.
She said Jeoff should probably should not go to work Jeoff started packing the car with baby stuff just in case.
I called Lisa back at about 7:15. Told her the contractions were a little stronger. She said I should go ahead and come in and she would meet me there. I told her we needed to get a few more things together and we'd be there about 9 or 9:30.
We packed up the kids and the rest of the birth essentials. We called the grandparents and my mom was getting ready to head out the door to take my dad to a doctor appointment. I told her that we weren't sure if it was the real thing but to be on standby and be ready to come to the birth center after the appointment.
We arrived at the birth center Lisa checked me and I was only at 2 cm. She said it was possible that I wasn't in true labor so I needed to go have a meal, do some walking and come back in a couple of hours. I was a bit surprised at that and said, "So you're saying I could be having contractions consistently 2 minutes apart for all this time (since 3:30am) and not be in labor?" She affirmed.
This really got to me because I had either not heard of that or had forgotten that could happen. My expectation for this labor was that it would be as quick or quicker than the last one. I was hoping for something like one hour all together! God had a different plan.
We still had the kids with us and we discussed whether we should take them to school or keep them with us. When we were almost at the school, we decided to go ahead and keep them with us because we didn't want to take a chance on them missing the birth. There were quite a few things that we still hadn't gotten from the store for "labor day" since the due date was not until the 19th, so we went to Target and Jeoff picked them up.
I don't remember much of what the kids did or said as we waited in the car because I was trying to focus on relaxing during the contractions while sitting in the van. Occasionally, I got up and leaned out the door or stood just outside.
When Jeoff got back we went and picked up quick breakfast and he went for coffee at Starbucks since he had been up half the night studying for his Hermeneutics exam. As we drove to Starbucks the contractions got a little stronger and I had to ask him to stop the car so I can stand up during a couple of the contractions, so after getting his Tall Hazelnut Latte we headed back to the birth center. I hadn't done any walking but I hoped that I would have just progressed with time.
When we got to the birth center, Lisa had left and not returned yet but Cherie was there. Cherie asked me if I had walked, of course. I told her no. She checked me and told me I was still only at about two and she 'commanded me' to go and POWER WALK!
I called my mama again and asked her if she and mother Thompson could go ahead and come. Jeoff got the rest of our things from the car and set up the video camera. I started my walk at about 12:30 and Jeoff stayed with the kids at the park next door.
I did as I was instructed and POWER WALKED. Continuing to walk during the contractions. While I was walking I made a few calls. I called Nicki (cousin), Ericka (sister), Lesia (sister), and Cherita (sister) to make sure they knew today was the day. Ericka got all nervous when I talked to her. She fussed at me for being out there walking by myself. I assured her that all would be well and I would have plenty of warning before baby made the arrival.
Jeoff called and asked what my location was. He told me the grandmothers were there and he couldn't see me anywhere. I had gone a couple of blocks over from the birth center because there was a park there with a track. I told him it was better there because I had a set path to follow instead of walking on the sidewalk.
I headed back to where they were and Jeoff & I walked a couple of laps together around the small park. The contractions were increasing in intensity again so I told him I was ready to go inside and have them check me again.
Lisa was back and she checked me. She told me I was only at 4cm!!!! And guess what, I broke.....I cried! In my mind at that time, I felt that if I was only at 4cm after almost 10 hours, I was going to be there forever! It wasn't so much that it was intense, I was just tired. And I believe that was because I had set myself up for a much shorter experience.
So what I had to do was get out of my head (trying to figure it all out) and get back in the Spirit. Lisa told me not to look at the number of centimeters I had dilated because it is not necessarily an indication of how much longer I had left. She told me one of the mothers last week, had her baby 30 minutes after she had only been at 4cm. In the natural, I was thinking "so what, that was her...this is me.....that doesn't mean that will happen with me". But of course I had to get back focused. I had to walk or stand with each and every contraction. Sitting down was out of the question.
I start getting focused and trying to relax and here comes Lisa :-) telling me that I need to get a heparin lock in my arm just in case, since my iron had been low a couple of weeks earlier. I didn't take that very well because I absolutely hate needles and I wanted to just focus on the labor --- no interferences! I asked if she could do it between the contractions instead of during. She agreed but there was not much between the end of one and the beginning of another at this point. Once I thought it would be a good time but shortly after I sat down a contraction came and
I had to experience it sitting down. I thought - absolutely no way will I ever do that again. It was just unnecessary to feel that, when I could have been standing or walking and feel so much better.
I got up again and Lisa was following me with the heparin lock ready to stick it in my arm and with the next contraction I began to moan. She asked me if I felt like it was time to push. I told her I wasn't sure but there was a lot of pressure down there. With the next contraction I moaned much louder and from what Jeoff recalls I looked down like baby was about to fall out!
(LOL) I heard Lisa say, "Okay dad, we're going to have to carry her to the bed." When we got me to the bed they had to quickly pull of my bottoms and make way for baby because she was on her way out.
After about two pushes and mommy's emotionally loud moans, our sweet sweet baby girl number two was introduced to the world!
Update: About a year later, my daughter told me that if we ever have another baby she doesn't want to hear me yell like that! So if we do, I'll have to remember that! We're expecting baby #4 right now.
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