First of all, sorry this took so long to put up!
Without further ado, please prepare yourself for a very long birth story.
Nine years ago on 10/20, I started dating a silly boy with a faux hawk that I now am proud to call my husband, love of my life and BFFL. We were married last May (2013) and I remember telling Erin that we would still celebrate our dating anniversary because it was such a special day to us. God must have known this date should always hold a special place in hearts because He, along with our little diva baby, decided to make it our most memorable 10/20 yet.
Monday, October 20th was the start to my FINAL workweek and FINAL work event before maternity leave. The event was 50 miles from our house so I planned to take our work car to the event, load up and meet Erin at my office later that night.
I was feeling great. The event was going well. I was “taking it easy” but up on my feet taking photos and filming. Around noon I started to feel minor cramping. I went to the bathroom and noticed something “weird”. I called the office to check on recent test results and also to discuss my discovery. Apparently it was just the beginning stages of losing my mucus plug. The medical assistant reassured me everything was normal and usually it doesn’t mean anything. She told me to let her know if I started contracting or my water broke. I told her I was experiencing some cramping but hadn’t been timing it as I brushed it off as minor. She told me to REALLY take it easy and stay off my feet.
I went back to the event and sat down to do some admin items on my list. Everything was going well until I had this sudden feeling that I needed to get up and go to the bathroom. As I approached the bathroom, I felt like I couldn’t hold on anymore. *And that is when my water broke…. all over the floor of a car dealership bathroom* It wasn’t like the movies but it definitely was enough for me to take notice, and ruin my pants. I thought, well… maybe this is another part of the mucus plug thing. I calmly (well as calmly as I could) walked out of the bathroom and returned to the desk I was working at to retrieve my cell phone. I immediately called my doctor’s office again and let them know that I *think* my water just broke. They advised me to come in ASAP to check and see if I was in fact having contractions and if my water actually broke. With tears in my eyes, I panicked… this was my worst case scenario. Stuck in the middle of nowhere at an all day event without a vehicle and no back up plan for how to clean up the event. As I walked up to my boss, I felt so stressed. Obviously I knew things would work out but I felt a huge amount of pressure leaving. I knew I needed to call Erin next so I went outside and simply told him I lost my mucus plug, partially because I was in denial about my water breaking and also because I didn’t want him to speed to come and pick me up.
I waited patiently for Erin to arrive, making several trips to the bathroom as amniotic fluid continued to come out of me, a disgusting feeling that continued throughout the entire day and into the night. I felt like I had no control of my body and was just peeing my pants.
As Erin arrived, I tried to gather all my items and get into the car. I started to feel more cramping but tried to play it cool as to not panic Erin. We drove away and got on the freeway. I tried to drop the news lightly… my water broke. Erin’s eyes glistened with mistiness as he looked at me and said… we’re going to have a baby.
Somehow, we safely made it to the doctor’s office, even though I’m sure Erin was going 100 MPH the entire way. I think secretly he wanted to get pulled over so he could dramatically explain to the police officer that his wife was in labor and then the officer would be our escort all the way to the hospital with lights ablazin’.
We finally got up to my doctor’s office. I was immediately hooked up to the little tracking machine. Less than 5 minutes later, I felt my first real contraction. It was terrible. Time seemed to be going by so slow. The doctor was squeezing me in after her last appointment. She came in to check my cervix and test for amniotic fluid. At first check, the little paper did not turn blue. Confused, she tested again. Immeidately, the paper turned bright blue to confirm my water broke. She checked my cervix… not dialted. We popped into the ultrasound room to confirm the baby’s position… of course, still breech. She asked me when I last ate/drank anything and I realized I had a small piece of cookie at 1:30pm. She called over to the hospital to schedule the c-section for 9:30pm (allowing the 8 hours of no eating/drinking).
Our next step was the hospital. Contractions were happening more often now and I was still leaking amniotic fluid. Needless to say, I was incredibly uncomfortable. Erin rushed home to get the baby stuff (which I had been meaning to put in the car for the last week) while I sat hooked up to a million monitors and continued to be pumped up with fluid. The waiting was really the worst. Time seemed to be going by both quickly and slowly.
By 8pm, I was in complete pain. The contractions were so intense and without any medication, I was really struggling. The natural route was never part of my birth plan so I couldn’t wait to get into the operating room and finally get my spinal.
The nurse came in to let us know there had been an emergency c-section and there was another patient scheduled at 8:30 so our time will most likely be bumped later. At this point I was begging for anything to eat or drink… ice chips… a mint… anything. My stomach was growling and I couldn’t focus on anything other than the hunger and painful contractions. Erin did his best to keep my spirits high. I tried to distract myself with TV… I couldn’t really figure out the remote so I was stuck watching Dancing with the Stars and Jeopardy.
The nurse came in every so often to check on me. I was miserable. I begged for updates but the hours continued to pass by with no approximate time in sight. Around 10pm we finally received word that we would be able to go into the OR soon. *finally* They started prepping the bed and wheeling me over around 11pm. I was so relieved to finally be progressing. Contractions continued as they wheeled me into the OR. Erin gave me a big kiss before I went into the room. They had to get me prepped and then he would be allowed in.
The room was so cold. Freezing actually. I was just shaking as they layered warm towels on my body while they prepped for the procedure. It sounded like a TV show… there were a bunch of people in the room checking off items. I sat on the bed, cringing from the terrible contractions that continued to come in big waves. When they finally administered the spinal tap, I was as still as a statue. Literally did not move at all. Within seconds, the pain was gone and I watched as they lifted my legs and I couldn’t feel it. Strangest thing ever.
They put up the curtain and I laid down. Erin was finally allowed in. He looked so nervous for me. I have never felt more relaxed in my entire life. I was in a daze as they poked and prodded me behind the curtain. Erin sat right next to me, telling me encouraging words and being sweet. I heard the doctor tell Erin that the baby was about to come out. I watched as Erin looked over the curtain and look back at me with tears in his eyes. She was here! Her little cry was music to my ears. A rush of emotions came over me and my eyes welled up with tears. I was so excited she was finally here. Erin rushed over to the table where they were checking out the baby. All I could see is a lot of blue and wiggly legs. Lots of tiny little cries. I watched as Erin cut the umbilical cord. The whole hospital staff was so amazing in making sure we captured all the special moments that they helped take photos.
After they cleaned the baby up, they handed her to Erin and he brought her over to me. She was so beautiful. So tiny! I waited so long to meet her and couldn’t believe she was finally here. I couldn’t believe how alert she was. She looked at us and it was pure love. I’ve always heard this from other moms (and always thought it was bologna before) but I didn’t know I could love something so intensely. In an instant, my heart warmed and nothing else mattered to me… just this little baby. I knew as soon as I saw her that being her mom would be the greatest honor in the world and I would do anything for her. As soon as she looked at me with her sweet eyes, my life changed forever.
The next four days were magical. We just spent time bonding in our room while we tried to figure out this new way of life. We felt blessed to have the love and support of our family and friends as they dropped by to see our new arrival. The entire experience was so special. I couldn’t imagine a better way to spend an anniversary.
Welcome to the world Palmer. xoxo