March 26, 2014
I woke up in the morning just like I had every day before. I was feeling relieved that we finally knew when LBD would arrive. But I also felt this horrible sense that my body was betraying me.
Why wasn’t I going into labor?
What was wrong with my body?
Everyone else seemed to do this just fine.
I had so many mixed emotions.
I knew that I really did not want to use Pitocin, which is a drug that helps labor progress. It also causes extremely intense contractions. Since I am not generally a big fan of taking medication, I was feeling extra disappointed with the fact that I might actually need it.
I tried to make myself find the bright side about the situation.
I wouldn’t have to experience a stressful car ride to the hospital while in labor.
My water wasn’t going to break in some dramatic fashion as the most inopportune time.
I wasn’t going to be stranded somewhere and have to deliver my baby on my own.
And I wouldn’t forget anything on my list for my bag because I would be able to pack it all calmly before we left.
I worked the whole day. I had mostly wrapped up all of my projects and had passed them one neatly to the person who would cover for me while I was out. My maternity plan was perfectly organized and thoughtfully done. I just needed to get through the day. I started to feel those Braxton Hicks contractions again, but these were more crampy and lower and OUCH! That one was a little bit worse than the one before. For the sake of keeping some things private, I won’t go into great detail, but I did have other signs in the morning that things were happening!
I went home and cleaned the entire apartment. Doug kept asking me if I was ready to go. I just couldn’t stand the idea of coming home to a messy apartment. We watched the end of “Chrisley Knows Best” and at the end of the episode I started to cry. I couldn’t leave Stella. And the idea of all the change and excitement and anticipation culminating was just too much. I pulled it together and we went to Panera, for my last supper. I had Broccoli cheese soup of course!
We arrived a the hospital and we checked in. We got all settled in our room. They had me put on the hospital gown and they hooked me up to the machines. They took blood samples and asked me a million questions. They set up my IV, which was the most painful part of the whole ordeal! When they got the heartbeat and the contraction monitors set they discovered that I was in the early stages of labor and those cramps I was feeling were in fact contractions! Yes! My body was not a total failure! Dr. Crosland came in and gave me the Cervadil, to help induce my labor.
And we waited.
Doug and I watched basketball and played Phase 10. And of course, I won! Around 10:30pm the nurse came in an offered me a sleeping pill. She said that it would help with sleeping in a new place and it would help me get a good nights rest since tomorrow would be the big day.
Or so I thought…
March 27, 2014
At about 3:30am I woke up to strong contractions. I tried to breathe deeply and focus. I had my mantras repeating in my mind and I was certain that I could get through these. After a little while, Doug suggested that we talk to the nurse to see what kind of pain medication they could offer, just to know our options. I assumed that this was just the beginning. They checked my cervix and I had already dilated 5 cms. My nurse said that I had dilated really quickly I could get the epidural if I wanted it. Dr. Crosland even said that things were progressing so quickly that she was sure that I was going to make her deliver the baby before her shift ended at 6am. That Cervadil had done the trick! After a few more intense contractions, I was ready for the good drugs.
The epidural did not hurt nearly as bad as I thought it would. I did not look at the needle or any of the equipment that came with it. That was pretty much how I survived this whole ordeal: just don’t look and it will be ok. Once I had the epidural going, the pain went away. I could still feel the pressure for each contraction, but it wasn’t bad. They checked me again and this time they started to get the room ready for delivery. I had no idea that they would turn this cozy little room into a full blown surgery center with blue cloth and metal instruments everywhere. It started to make me anxious. So I just closed my eyes and imagined that it wasn’t there.
When Dr. Crosland came back she said that this baby was ready to arrive. I was totally in shock that it was happening so fast.
Wasn’t I supposed to be in labor longer?
This was supposed to be an all day event!
She broke my water and all I felt was warmth. The nurse asked me if I was ready to push and I didn’t know that I had an option. So I started pushing. Doug was great and was by my side the whole time. I can’t say that I was focused on him too much, but I do remember looking over and thinking that he looked anxious and a little pale.
I pushed more. I didn’t feel any pain, just the pressure. Dr. Crosland said that everything was going well and she could see the head with lots of hair. Only one more push. I pushed as hard as I could. And that was it.
At 6:06 am LBD was born. LBD was a he. LBD was officially Donovan Edward DeGroot.
Everything happened so quickly. It is all a bit blurry. He was so slimy and he did have a ton of hair. I remember holding him on my chest as they cleaned him off. He looks like Leah! Doug cut the umbilical chord and we held our son. They cleaned him off and weighed and measured him. 7 pounds 12 ounces. 21 inches long. And those feet! The ones that kicked me and kept me up all night long, they were huge!
We snuggled skin to skin and I tried to nurse him for the first time. It was so strange and wonderful to hold him. I wasn’t emotional, I was just so happy. Doug, on the other hand, cried enough for the both of us. Ok, I’m just kidding. But he was brimming with tears of happiness.
And just like that everything else was done.
I was like, really?
The placentra is out?
I want to see it. They showed me. It looks like liver. But it was cool to see this special organ that helped my baby grow for 9 months.
And just as quickly as they set up the mobile surgery center, they were out and the room was quiet. I remember looking up and wondering where everyone went. Those quiet moments with Doug and Donovan were the best and most cherished I’ll ever have.
This is what it was all about.
This moment is what I had been waiting for.
I could hardly believe that I held in my arms my little boy.
I never thought that I could be so content watching a little baby sleep, yawn, blink, or stare. But all we wanted to do was hold him and watch his every move. We called our immediate family while we snuggled. Again, my mom’s reaction was the best. There was some screaming and I believe that she said that there was no way that it happened so fast. Only 11 hours of labor!
We basked in the glow of our newborn son. I knew LBD was a boy. It was so much fun waiting to find out. It was all so surreal.
From Me to You