3am. Woke up to the exact same contractions from the day I got sent home from the hospital. I took it easy and did not wake Ben up. I took a long bath, re-packed bags, and had a big breakfast. When Ben woke up I told him "here goes round 2 of whatever" laughing!
11am. I was still having contractions every 4-5 minutes, each 1 minute long. I was pausing to experience them, but still able to eat and talk in between. I knew they were mild because of what I learned with my false labor - I was told I can have contractions forever but I'm not in labor if it's not changing my cervix and I will KNOW when my cervix is changing (pain lol). I didn't know this because the first time with Goldie, I was induced and I hadn't experienced going into labor by myself.
Noon. Lucky me, my dad is an OB/GYN so I called him to approve of my plan. I wanted to come to his house (much closer to the hospital than Waxahachie) and see if anything progresses. He cautioned me to head to the hospital first since it was my second pregnancy. I didn't want to get admitted and sent home again so I ran up to the office to have one of his partners check me first.
1pm Dr Nokleberg informed me I was a whopping 2cm (what I had been for a month). I did however progress from 40% to 80% effaced! She told me I would most likely have a baby today!
2pm I got in the bathtub at my dad's house. I had a crew of women (family) bringing me coconut water and timing my contractions. It was really exciting and I loved the attention (middle child)!!
4pm As you learn in hypnobirthing, water can be nature's epidural, so I had no idea if I was progressing or not. I got out to pee and started to FREAK OUT! I started shaking and cried "GET BEN." Ben got to me and I could not move as I was frozen from the crazy muscle shock of what was going on! I told him to help me to the car and put the back seats down because there is NO WAY I was sitting in a seat. At this point my contractions were every 2 minutes so I had a short break to book it to the car and get in place before the next one started!
4:30pm We hit some bumps and a school zone. I hit my head on the front seat and could hear Ben calling out about how sorry he was and that we were going to get there! I had Caitlin next to me in the back of the car applying counter-pressure to my hips. I cannot imagine what I would've done without her for that!
4:45pm We get to the front desk. I am in between contractions but breathing rather furiously. They ask which baby "second" and how far along "40 weeks tomorrow" and their eyes got BIG. At that moment, I lean over onto the desk, and grunt and moan through a good contraction. I've never gotten faster service :)
4:50 They sent me back to check my cervix in triage. I was 4/5cm. I thought "I'll take that!" At least I wasn't a stinking 2cm any longer! Oh and I refused to put on the standard issue gown. I got quite a look when she realized I would rather have nothing on than that rag! (fashion first)
4:55 I am now heading back to my delivery room when I see CHERYL!!!!!!! Cheryl is the doula of all doulas. I wish every woman could experience having her by their side for their birth. She embraced me in the hall when another contraction started. At this point I've been acting like any normal human being - scared of the pain and hoping it would stop! Grimacing and wincing and close to yelling. She saw how much I was not focusing and said "you are holding on Sarah. you have got to let go." That was exactly what I needed and in that moment, right in front of the nurses station with about 12 people standing there watching me, I dropped into a squat and moaned through the contraction. When it finished I said "Where is my room!!!" I knew I had only seconds to get there before I wouldn't be able to walk again!
She asked me "what is the game plan" and I told her I wanted all of my focus to be on Rock. I wanted to embrace every effort my body was making and use it. I wanted to think only about comforting and consoling him through this.
5pm In my room. Lights down. Hypnobirthing meditation playing on my iPad. They set up all the crazy hippie stuff (that everyone should have!). I had my stabilization bar, the balance ball with the back support (key detail), the bed pulled to the right position and I was good to go. Here is where the most magical moments of my life started happening! For the one time ever in my life, I got quiet. Crazy quiet.
Cheryl helped me welcome each contraction. After all, they are bringing me my baby! My body and mind understood with complete clarity that if I use each contraction and help them I can make this a whole lot shorter of a process and get my baby! I was so in the zone now! I would give a signal when a contraction was starting. Cheryl coached Ben on where exactly to apply pressure with her. I was black and blue the next day (and I'm sure their arms were spaghetti afterward) but man I was feeling NOTHING! We had a rhythm and I was actually enjoying myself.
6pm Cheryl commented I must be getting a little break and I smiled with my eyes closed "No, I just had three." I was in a trance and as crazy as it sounds, the whole thing was even sensual. Cheryl motivated me to make more progress and suggested we move to sit on the toilet. Our bodies are trained to let go of everything there and it can be a huge place of progress for birthing!
I move to the toilet and have a moment of losing my breath and getting overwhelmed with everything I'm feeling. Cheryl looks at me and tells me to get control of my breath and I do just that. You think you know all of this after practicing and studying but it really takes someone seeing where you are going and getting you back on track!
6:15pm I get checked and I am 6cm now. I can hear people asking how much longer for me and Cheryl saying everyone get ready because if my water breaks this baby is coming. But that it could also be a while until that happens. People are also asking me questions. I hear them, and I see them, but I can no longer communicate with words or even motions. I just stare. I am also informed the doctor has offered to break my water for me. I just stare again.
6:20pm after the intensity of the "toilet labor" Cheryl suggested I lay on my side on the bed. I LOVED this. They were applying counter pressure so perfectly and I was doing my belly breathing and once again feeling NO PAIN! And I was completely composed and quiet.
6:25pm Cheryl now wants me to move onto all fours for a bit. Part of me didn't want to move as I was enjoying myself there, but after all I am there to get my baby so I was game for whatever she said! In between contractions, I got onto all fours, or rather like a bedside praying position (they shifted the front part of the bed down). I was going into a version of child's pose for each contraction and decided I was going to break my water! I have to tell this part 1) if you're easily grossed out why are you reading a birth story 2) it's funny 3) people about to experience birth sooner or later on like to know this kind of stuff. Two contractions later, I felt a gush of liquid. Was it my water?????? Oh wait then my water broke like a snap pop and gush. So yeah, I first just peed all over the place! Well, now I now the difference...
6:30pm I had to be told this part because I wasn't aware of all that was going on! All of the hospital staff left after I was checked at a 6 just 15 minutes ago. Cheryl has killer instincts and when she saw my water break she had my mom press the RED call button. My mom said it was thrilling! The RED button means ALL staff come rushing into your room FAST!!! Cheryl, Ben, and my mom were all telling me DON'T PUSH. I'm sorry but that doesn't go far for a woman without an epidural and baby's head starting to emerge. Seconds later I hear the doctor "Ok now push Sarah"
6:36pm Here it was again. What they call the "ring of fire". I remember it with Goldie. I got stuck there for 45 minutes and ended up needing an episiotomy. I knew this time was different. I bore my head down, hearing the excitement fill the room, and in two pushes had him out! Immediately I got a burst of the most incredible emotion and energy, I flipped around onto my back, lifting around the cord, right as he was handed to me. I can feel it now, 3 months later, just writing about it. The sense of accomplishment, the physical relief, the emotional high! Touching his skin and seeing his crazy full head of dark hair. Magical.