I need to get this down before I start forgetting details! I can't believe two weeks have passed already!
Saturday, March 28th was the day that we had chosen for my baby shower given by my mom, sisters, and church friends. I received lots of nice gifts and got to visit with quite a few family and church family members, and of course, got to eat some good food! Afterward, we loaded everything up and Chris started putting it all away--bless him! The boys and I got some lunch and then Adam and I laid down to take naps and Isaac was sent to be quiet so we could nap, and Chris went to the hospital to visit his Mamaw, who had been admitted the day before with pneumonia. Later on, Chris took the boys to church for the last practice for the boys' musical that was to presented the next day, and I continued to lay and snooze on the couch (Don't judge me--I was on bed rest, remember?! LOL)
My sister called sometime in the afternoon and wanted me to come up and grab a bag full of baby clothes for $5. I begged off, saying I wasn't feeling the best, and asked her to bag up some clothes for me, and told her I would pay her back for it later. I didn't feel SICK, but I remember just feeling yucky, so that was an additional reason that I just continued to lay around. I remember waking up around 6 and chastising myself for wasting the entire day and not getting anything done other than the baby shower. Chris and the boys got back from practice, and Chris made some tuna casserole for dinner.
I started having pains that were strong enough to start timing at around 6:30. I didn't eat any dinner, though Chris and the boys went ahead and ate. Around 7 or so, I decided that this might be it, so I thought I needed to make sure that my legs were shaved. (Yes, I know, the strange things that run through our heads when laboring!) When I told Chris that what I was going to do, he said,"Can't that wait til tomorrow?!" and I answered that I wasn't sure it could! So I got enough water in the tub to shave and climbed in. I also thought that sitting in the water might make me feel better. At this point, contractions were 6 to 8 minutes apart, and were getting to be more intense. I kept thinking about how the nurse had said that the rule of thumb was contractions 5 minutes apart for at least an hour. Part of me kept thinking that I needed to wait and try to just deal with the pain since it wasn't exactly 5 minutes apart for an hour, and then finally just had the thought of FORGET IT! If they send me home, they send me home, I'm in pain!
I had to holler at Chris to help me out of the tub and told him that I thought that this was it, to go ahead and call my parents to get the boys. The initial plan was for Chris' mom to take care of the boys, but she had spent the night before at the hospital with her mom, so we knew that she needed to get some rest. Isaac and Adam had been planning on watching the Kids' Choice awards, so they initially were not too happy when we told them to start getting things together to go to Mommommy's and Daddaddy's house, that is until I told them that I thought baby Robbie might be getting ready to come!
Thankfully I had gotten most of my 'stuff' to take to the hospital together and had it set on the dresser. Standing up straight and moving quickly were definitely not easy at this point. Chris got the boys' stuff together and my parents came and picked up the boys. We were ready to walk out the door when we realized that we didn't have anything packed for Chris! So he threw some stuff in a bag, we gathered my stuff and the cord blood collection kit (we left it at home when we had Adam, and had to have Chris' brother bring it to us!) and headed--slowly--to the car. Chris called his mom and brother, and I asked mom to call my sisters, and I even sent a text to some friends as we left the driveway so they'd know what was going on!
We pulled up to the hospital entrance and Chris went to get a wheelchair cause I knew walking was not the quickest option at this point. We told the lady at the reception desk that I was possibly in labor, and she told Chris just to leave the car out front until he got me upstairs. Seems that maybe Saturday night isn't the most popular time for visiting a hospital! We got upstairs, and I immediately saw that the L&D nurse that I knew, Brandi, was sitting there. I spoke to her and told her I thought we were having a baby! So I started filling out paperwork while Chris went to move the car.
We got settled in a room and hooked up to monitors. Brandi said that they'd monitor me for a while and see if I actually was progressing, and that she'd call the doctor on call. I'm thinking that she said I was dilated to 4 at this point, but that's not a definite--things are kind of fuzzy! When it was evident that I was in actual labor, she said she was going to call the doctor. She predicted that he would tell them to just keep watching me, and that he wouldn't rush over, and probably wouldn't be in a rush to let me have an epidural. Wouldn't you know--he did the exact opposite of what she thought! So he was THERE before long, and Brandi had to scramble to get ready what he thought she would have already had done (which she would have, if he had said he was coming!)
Just a funny aside, the doctor's name is Sean White, so we asked him when he came in if he was a big snowboarder! I told Chris before he came in that I'd be amazed if he came in and had bright orange hair! He didn't, but he was a nice man anyway! He offered to break my water and then let me have an epi whenever I wanted it. Of course, I agreed to that! The pain had continued to get worse, but wasn't absolutely unbearable. However, after not asking for an epi until I was past the point of being able to have it with Adam, I had learned my lesson! I wasn't gonna wait til it was too late! Brandi commented that I must have a pretty high pain tolerance since I was still smiling as we were waiting for the nurse anethesist.
She arrived and was very nice. I remember her asking me some questions and me not having the presence of mind to answer her right away, so I was having some concentration issues at this point! Oh, and at some point we had to call my sister to try to go get into the house to get the church' video camera, so someone could video the service the next day (this is usually Chris' job). We told her where the key to the house SHOULD have been hidden, but apparently Adam had been messing with it and hadn't put it back where it belonged. Finally Chris told them to come over to the hospital and he'd give them his extra key. So while I was in labor, though I couldn't tell you the time, we had 6 visitors: my sister Brenda and her husband Dale, Chris' brother Jeff, his wife Sheila, and their son Ian, and our pastor, Ken. Ian wasn't happy when his parents told him that he couldn't see baby Robbie yet!
So back to the epidural. I remember praying as she administered it and willing myself to keep still. And then when they laid me back down, I started feeling sick and light headed. Apparently my blood pressure dropped quite a bit, and they had to work on that for a few. That was a scary feeling! After that, though, I felt GREAT! At one point I did have one hot spot where I could still feel some pain, but it was definitely bearable. Chris and I got some rest while we could. It didn't seem like long at all when I felt more pressure and asked to be checked again.
Soon after, the real work began....pushing! Chris said afterward that I pushed for right at an hour, so it must have been around 2:30 when I started pushing. I remember really trying to concentrate and push in the way they instructed so that it could be over faster! I remember praying, and at one point trying to visualize a water slide or what we used to call 'the waterslide' (a rock formation in a creek) at Buffalo Mountain Camp when I was a little girl. I was trying to get that 'out and down' sensation going! At another point, I remember trying to think about other wimpy women who had made it through labor, and remind myself that if they could do it, so could I! the problem with this was that I couldn't actually come up with anyone! LOL
At one point, I remember Brandi suggesting that I wait til a little bit after I felt the contraction coming to push so that I 'hit' it at its peak. I remember them talking about the possibility that Robbie had the cord around his neck, and that scared me. Toward the end, Dr. White said that Robbie's heart rate was dropping when I contracted, so that he would use the vacuum to help out with getting him here. Though part of me was thankful for the assistance, I remembered how Isaac screamed for quite a while and had a raised spot on his head from the vacuum, so I was determined to push even harder if this were to be used again. At one point, Brandi said that I was almost done, but then said,"You don't believe me, do you?!" and I told her that I didn't...but it was good to hear! Not long before delivering him, I got sick from the anesthesia. Dr. White stuck close by, and later told us that the same muscles that are put into use when sick to the stomach are also put to use in delivery, so he had made sure that I didn't actually deliver him while I was getting sick! And before I knew it, I looked down as my beautiful baby son entered the world!! It brings tears to my eyes to remember....I was so glad that he was HERE! I remember crying then and just praising the Lord that He had helped me bring him to life! I don't know of any feeling that could compare to knowing that you have brought forth another life!!
His little face was very bruised and didn't look so good at first. Dr. White said that he had gotten hung on my pelvis, and that was what had bruised him so. The rest of him was pinking up nicely, though! His APGAR scores were 8 and 9. He cried very little as they cleaned him up. I kept looking at Chris and over at Robbie, and just feeling amazed at what we had done! Chris called his mom, brother, and my parents to let them know that we had delivered our beautiful 7 pound, 8 ounce son! Oh, and I had heard my phone signal that a text had gone through while I was pushing--I knew when I heard that sound that my sister Brenda was still up waiting! I had been right! I sent her a text to let her know what time he had arrived!
We spent some time with our beautiful little boy and started trying to nurse, though he didn't want much to do with it. Not long after, Chris' brother arrived with his mom. They visited for a bit and then Jeff convinced her to go on back home so that we could get some rest. We did sleep for a bit, but seems like each time we'd get settled down, someone would come to visit. So we didn't get GOOD rest until late Sunday night. There are even some lovely pictures of me on Facebook to commemorate how beautiful I looked! LOL Though they aren't the most becoming pictures ever, they definitely are badges of honor, to show how I'd gladly look again and again in order to bring my son into the world.
So though this wasn't anticipated and it wasn't the easiest thing I've ever done, I am so glad that God knew better than me...and saw fit to give me the opportunity to become a Mommy again! I am so blessed, and so thankful for my son!