The morning I went into labor, I stood in front of our vanity with a smile on my face after a small water balloon broke at my crotch. I turned to my husband and said I either just wet myself or my water broke! I cleaned up the floor and told him I was going to take a shower and then call the doctor.
I wanted a natural birth and this was my first biological kiddo. I was in no hurry to have someone tell me to go and be stuck in the hospital. My Group B Strep Test was negative and so I wasn’t worried about infection.
After getting ready, I called the on-call line and spoke to a nurse. I told her my water broke and I wasn’t having contractions. She said I needed to go to the hospital and I politely said that I didn’t. She told me she’d have the doctor call me back.
The doctor called and said he wanted me to head to the hospital. I said I didn’t need to. He mentioned risk of infection. I volleyed back the negative strep test. He said go. I said I would after I got a few things done. I had priorities for my day and giving birth wasn’t top of the list yet!
We had puppies to walk, my husband’s appointment at Walgreens for his TDAP and flu shot, and getting our kids to my MIL’s. Yep, you read that right. He waited so long the time he scheduled to get in for his shots became the morning my water broke!
My next stop after dropping the kids off should have been to stop for a sandwich! Sadly, it was not.
I Pee from My Vagina?
At the hospital, having checked my cervix and swabbing for fluid, the intake nurse returned and said my water hadn’t broken. I must have just peed. Silly me who has been peeing for 39 years! I wasn’t familiar with it coming from your vagina!!!
I said that I had been leaking while waiting for them, that there has been water and blood on their bathroom floor as I had to use the restroom. She said she’d take another sample…which came back negative.
So, she had papers for me to sign to send me home. Fine by me I said! I didn’t want to come in that early in the first place. I’d only had one contraction so far and I was getting hungry. I pose the final question though of how the hell do I know when to come back in if I feel 100% sure that my water broke?
Because was so adamant, the nurse checked again and the last result was positive. (Shocking this was not.) Now the nurse wanted me to start Pitocin. I started bawling and was prepared to just give in and be pissed that everything I’d planned for was going to be undone by “the man”!
My husband came to my rescue and said I wanted to labor as naturally as I could. The nurse said she’d go back to the doctor and see but reiterated that it wasn’t up to her.
She came back and said that the doctor was willing to let me go until 7 PM which would be 12 hours from when my water broke…deal!
The Longest Workout Ever
In labor and delivery, I got all setup with monitors that I could walk around with for baby and me. We have music going, labor ball ready and Childbirth PowerPoint printed slides out for tips on how to get things progressing. My goal was to start progressing, having contractions and dilating on my own, by 7.
We walked the halls as nurses cheered me on. I did squats, pelvic tilts and rolls on the ball, and lunges but no contractions.
On one of our laps around the floor, this sweet nurse told me to do lunges sideways rocking back and forth from side to side. She said babies don’t like that motion and start moving. So, in the hallway outside of our room, I used the railing to do sideways lunges. My husband told me not to overdo it. Love it! I seriously had been doing a workout for 5 ½ hours at this point.
7 o’clock came and my cervix heck, disappointingly, had me still at a 2. It was time to move forward with the next agreed upon steps and start Pitocin. The nurse started with the smallest dose to get things moving.
Then I continued to work out!!! I could see on the monitors that if I was moving, contractions seemed to be rising and falling. I could feel nothing as I did more lunges, squats, and walking.
Hours came and went with Pitocin increasing; I kept feeling no contractions but pushing my workout to get the spikes on the monitor until the nurse decided it was time to try and swap out Pitocin bags for a new one. She said it’s a wives tale that switching the bag can bring on labor but we would try it and it sure did for me!
The contractions were strong and I wanted to labor in the tub for the “natural epidural” effect. We yanked off my labor dress via unsnapping snaps (lifesaver) and I gave it a shot. Bad part was we couldn’t use the jets. Ugh. The nurse couldn’t monitor the baby with the jets going. My back was in so much pain that the tub wasn’t worth it.
I moved to the toilet to go to the bathroom and the contractions started hard core!! I held onto the handicap bar to ride them out until the urge to puke came on. I had to stand up quickly to projectile in the pot I was sitting on.
The toilet was the place I felt comfortable and the nurse said I could labor there but I was not to push if I felt the need. So, there I sat.
My husband was the best coach as I tried to be so polite to tell him I didn’t want to be touched. He told me how great I was doing as I told him I was done. I said the word that I dreaded, epidural.
His look back to me was “what do I do now?!” He went out into the room and got me the pictures of our kiddos and our puppies to remind me of our prep work and keep me focused on my goal not to have interventions.
I said that I appreciated all that he was doing. I loved that he was keeping his part of the bargain and keeping my eye on the prize. The problem was the prize had turned into a shit pie and I wasn’t having any of it!
The nurse suggested we check my cervix and when we did, I was at an 8!! My brain switched into the mode of “Oh, it’s on!”
Yep, I Pooped
I knew what an 8 meant and I wasn’t a wimp after all. My inner voice patted me on the back and said you feel like it’s hell because you’re in transition and getting prepped to push!
I know women who have asked their husbands if they pooped and I didn’t need to ask. While I labored standing on the bed using a bar to squat, I pooped every push. I begged my husband to get the essential oil spray we had to mask the smell I was creating.
With no real movement down and out from my kiddo, the nurse suggested we go old fashioned and have me on my back with me holding my legs up by my ears. This did the trick!
She had her fingers pushing on my perineum to try to help me not tear while I yelled at her to get them out. I told her I couldn’t take what she was doing on top of the labor pains.
She coached me on what kind of pushing I needed to do. She would say, “Right there! Right there! I need you to push just like that.” The only problem was I wasn’t doing it so how the hell could I make sure it happened?! I was pushing until my eyes were going to bug out of my head and then my body just took the contraction and ran with it. I had to push to a point and my body took care of the rest. Amazing!
This whole time I could feel his head coming down and then going right back up after the contraction stopped. Little stubborn bugger!
Making a Home in the Birth Canal
The nurse had the doctor come in because she thought I was close. I got excited because I knew if the doctor came, I had about 25 minutes left and I could handle 25 minutes.
The doctor came and went. I said, “Did he leave?!” She said not to worry and that things were going well. I wanted to cry but we kept working.
A little while longer and the doctor came back. I continued to push and push while he now had his fingers tugging on me while I wanted to kick him square in the chest.
Finally, he told me to reach down and pick up my baby boy! I pulled him up, out, and to my chest.
My husband took pictures of this beautiful moment and immediately texted them to all of our family to let them know the great news. Everything was so perfect!
**Minus the fact that now every family member has photographic evidence of what my right nipple looks like.