This will probably be long - I just want to try to remember as much as possible. It probably also will fall under "too much information." You can't say I didn't warn you!
Wednesday, February 17th started out like a normal day. I was having some crampy feelings that morning but they weren't anything unusual. Just before 4pm, my water broke. I was at work and had gone to the bathroom and then it seemed like I just kept going and going. By the time I got over to the hospital (just a few minutes away and one of my coworkers drove me) my pants were pretty soaked. Jason got there a few minutes after me and then Dr. Box came in and checked me - I was still just at 1cm dilated (where I was the day before at my 39 week appt.) I wasn't having any contractions but because my water broke they admitted me. And a side note on water breaking - I thought it would be a one time thing - um, no. Once it broke, it kept coming and coming .... pretty much all through the night!
My mom, sister, and aunt showed up shortly
after we were admitted and kept us company. By 8pm or so, contractions were about every 5-6 minutes or so and while painful, weren't excruciating - at that point felt like really intense menstrual cramps. They brought me the ball to sit on - it was more comfortable and I guess can help things open up.
Sometime shortly after that we started to walk the halls to see if that would help things move along. The first time we went out wasn't too bad. We went back a while later and it was awful. We had to stop several times so I could clutch the wall and Jason would rub my back during a contraction.
During the next several hours the contractions picked up, and I started progressing, although slowly. By 9:20pm (my next check) I was 2 cm dilated. It wasn't much, but I was so happy that things were changing.
Jason's parents got there (from Bloomington) and then later his brother got there from Chicago. My brother and his girlfriend were in town for the Pacers game and came after that was over. (A funny side note - he had actually texted me that morning telling me that it would be a good day to have a baby, since he'd be in town. Turns out he was right!)
I mentioned that my Aunt Sandy was there also -and she gives amazing foot rubs! I highly recommend this as a way to help get through the contractions. :)
Around midnight the contracts were more frequent and pretty dang painful. I was still only 3cm dilated so they were planning to start the pitocen to help. At this point I opted for the epidural. I was so so happy that I did that.
I was incredibly nervous about the process, but it wasn't bad at all. I sat on the edge of the bed, sort of hugging my nurse, while a small needle was inserted in my back. That inserted a numbing drug, and then he used a larger needle to go deeper and do the same thing. At that point I was having another contraction and he asked if I wanted him to continue or wait. I don't really remember answering, but I must have said to go ahead - I was so focused on breathing through the contraction that I didn't even really know when/what they were doing back behind me. Next thing I knew he said he was done! By the second contraction after I got it, I couldn't feel anything at all. Heaven. Especially because I've heard that pitocen contractions are so much worse.
Those seemed to actually help things move. By 1:15am I was 4cm dilated and 90% effaced. They kept trying to tell me to try and sleep but I just couldn't do it.
Dr. Box came in at 2:45 and at that point I was only 4.5cm - only .5 cm?!? Really? I was pretty disappointed.
At 3:30am I was up to 5cm. They increased the pitocin and started having me lay different ways to try and open things up. 20 minutes on one side, 20 minutes sitting up, 20 minutes on the other side, etc. (As I already had the epidural I couldn't get out of bed anymore.) I was also put on oxygen - at one point Luke wasn't too happy with it all. (It's ok and wasn't a big deal at all, the oxygen just helps.)
At 5am, I was 6.5cm dilated, 0 station, and the nurse felt hair! Contractions were about a minute and a half apart. Jason and I were finally able to get some sleep (Jason more than me - even with the epidural I just couldn't get comfortable!)
By 8am I was somewhere between 7-8cm dilated, 0+ station, and contractions were a minute apart. I still couldn't feel the contractions, but was having awful awful pressure. Later while I was pushing they asked me if I was having pain or pressure. If it was pain we could up the epidural. If it was pressure I had to deal with it. Let me just say that while you're in the thick of it, it's near impossible to decide if you're feeling pain or pressure.
9:15am - 9.75cm dilated. .75 - really??? I just wanted to start pushing! Finally around 10:10 we were given the go ahead to start.
At that point it was just Jason and my nurse Jean in the room. I was still on the oxygen and was doing 3 10-count pushes per contraction. Jason was my rock during it all. He did the counting (although at one point I told him he was counting too fast - slower counting equaled more time pushing which I figured meant the baby would come out sooner) and also made sure I had my ice chips between each time.
This sounds bizzare - but does anyone remember the popples? I kept picturing pushing Luke out, much like you do the popples. Strange, but it's honestly what I thought of during the pushing.
I just kept thinking with each push that that would be the one - he would be coming out. We even added a 4th 10 count push during the contractions - anything to make it go faster. At one point they were trying to make me feel better and said that most first time labors can take 2-3 hours. That didn't help - that seemed SO long!
There was one point that I'm pretty sure I told Jason and Jean that I was done - I was giving up. They talked me out of that. :) In my defense, at that point I had a fever which made me feel even worse. They had to then give me an antibiotic and a Tylenol suppository to bring the temp down.
There was also a point in there when they couldn't tell if Luke was facing up or down. Jean had another nurse come in to check, and then Dr. Box came in. Final decision was that he was face down - yay!
Luke was a champ during all of the pushing. I remember that on the monitor his heart would go up to about 200 which freaked me out, but as I breathed the oxygen in between and tried to slowly breath it would go down.
After about an hour of pushing Dr. Box came back in. After being in there through several contractions they said that his head just wasn't getting past the bone. She gave us the option of using the forceps to help guide his head out. We trust Dr. B and decided to go for it. She got everything ready and on the second push of the next contraction (at 11:42 if we want to be specific!) his head popped out! I never had to push again, as the rest of his body just sort of followed. Everyone in the room kind of went "woah! No wonder you were having problems!" He was a big boy. :)
Jason cut the umbilical cord and then they placed Luke skin to skin on me. At some point while he was skin to skin with me, I delivered the placenta (which I didn't really feel at all - I was busy gazing at the most beautiful little boy!) and then the repair work started. Due to his size, and the use of the forceps, I ended up with 4th degree tearing- ouch! It took quite a while for the repair (it was basically surgery) and at point they wanted to actually take me back so they could knock me out to make it easier. I wasn't having any of that - I didn't want to leave my boys!
A few minutes later they took him off (after he pooped all over me though!) to weigh and measure him. 9 lbs, 3 oz and 22 1/4" long. Wow! Jason put his first diaper on him - it was one of the sweetest things I'd ever seen!
So finally, almost 3 years after we started down this road, our little miracle arrived and our family was complete!
You can see more pictures from that day by clicking on the link below, or you can see all the pictures we've taken so far by clicking on the Luke's Pictures link on the right side of the screen.