It was December twenty-third and I was either two weeks past my due date or there were two weeks still left until my due date. The doctors had disagreed about my dates early on and they seemed more confused as my pregnancy progressed. I’d had multiple scans, with my last one projecting a big baby. I definitely felt overdue! I had hoped and expected for a Thanksgiving baby yet I was still very much pregnant at Christmas. So, anyway, it was December twenty-third and I’d been having braxton hicks contractions all day.
I took Maggie to a park to play with friends in the afternoon. It was a comfortable day and we stayed for a while. When Stephen got off from work just before dinner time, he met us at the park. We went to waffle house for dinner and I had a grilled cheese sandwich and some hash browns.
The braxton hicks continued so I called my midwife once we were home. Neither of us really thought I was in labor but she said I could come in to the hospital to be monitored.
My exam showed that I was 3cm dilated so there was hope that something might be starting anyway. I was told to walk for an hour and then I’d be checked again. During the walk around the hospital, I squatted with each contraction. When the hour was up, I was 4cm dilated!
A few family members came and picked up Maggie and headed back to our home for the night. I was excited! I labored but didn’t progress much over the next few hours so I was given pitocin. The contractions picked up and I dilated more. The midwife offered to break my water but I wanted the epidural first so that’s what we did. I really struggled being leaned over the side of the bed for the epidural because my belly kept getting so hard and it was definitely hurting. But once that was done, she broke my water and I was pain-free.
After a little while, I was worried that labored had stalled because I wasn’t feeling anything but when I asked my nurse, she laughed and said, “Honey, your contractions are off the chart!” I was stunned and so relieved! I was going to have the baby soon!!
A little while later, we had a heart rate scare as Joshua didn’t seem to be responding to the contractions all that well. The nurse flipped me on this side and that, trying to get him to respond better to labor. I was worried that if things didn’t change soon I’d be having a c-section. But shortly after, I was fully dilated and it was time to push!
It’s funny how epidurals work on different areas and you can feel this with one baby and this with another baby. Well, I felt no contractions whatsoever but I felt all of the pushing and burning. The ring of fire, as they say. Ouch. I pushed for about thirty minutes and then he was born. Joshua Theodore came out weighing 8lbs 1oz. He was a dark-haired, squished head little sweetheart. My first boy and such a darling.