Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Labor of Love

Happy Wednesday!

Several weeks ago I shared the story of how our sweet Ellen entered the world over at The Grant Life's weekly Wednesday Labor and Delivery series.  Kelley has created a whole "Mommy Panel" and someone shares a story every week.  You can read my story below if you haven't already and then head over to The Grant Life for today's featured mommy!

I was due on Friday, September 3, 2010 with our third baby.  I had my usual normal/uneventful pregnancy, and we had found out she was going to be a girl at my 20 week ultrasound.

I had my 40 week appointment on September 2.  My OB was going to be out of town for business over Labor Day weekend and I was a little anxious hoping that he would be there for the delivery.  He assured me that nothing was really happening and I would most likely see him on my Tuesday, September 7 appointment.

We went about our normal weekend activities.  On Sunday, September 5 I woke up and noticed I was contracting here and there and didn't really think anything of it.  My husband did ask me that morning (like he had for the previous 2 weeks) if I thought "today was the day."  I told him I had some contractions, but not to get too excited.

We went to Sunday Mass at 10:15 AM and I noticed that I was still having irregular contractions.  After Mass I told Ryan the contractions hadn't really stopped and suggested we take the kids on a walk after lunch to see if they continued.  (When I had Jude, we got to the hospital and they made us walk and it was another 15 hours before he arrived.)  It was around 12:30 or so that we went walking.  I was timing my contractions on Ryan's iphone.  Once I timed them I realized they were actually about 3 - 5 minutes apart.

We walked home and I called my OB's exchange.  His partner was already at the hospital and would be waiting for us.  We live about 35 miles from the hospital I deliver at, so we said we would be there in about an hour.  I folded a load of laundry, finished getting my bag ready, started getting overnight bags together for the kids to go to my in-laws, and called my mom to let her know what was going on.  It was now around 2:30 PM and my contractions were picking up speed.  Ryan put everything in the car and I ran waddled upstairs to get one last thing.  By the time I got to my room I was doubled over in pain from the contractions.  Then again at the top of the stairs.  I thought Ryan was going to have to come and carry me out of the house.

Somehow I made it downstairs and into the car.  All I remember about the car ride to my in-laws and then to the hospital is the pain.  We practically threw the kids at Ryan's parents and were going about 85 - 90 mph to the hospital.  I was yelling and moaning and shaking (and burping) the whole ride.  The entire trip usually would have taken 45+ minutes.  We made it in 30 minutes.

Ryan drove up to the ER, hopped out of the car, and grabbed a wheelchair for me.  (He later told me he ran the chair - with me in it - over his little toe and it hurt...but he didn't dare say anything in the moment!)  The first nurse that saw us took one look at me, calmly handed her clipboard to the person standing closest to her, and said, "I'll take you up to labor and delivery."  She took me upstairs and the whole time I just kept thinking how relieved I was that we were at the hospital.  She took me to a room and the L&D nurses wanted me to get into a hospital gown.  I told them I really needed to use the bathroom.  I tried to go, but started contracting and ended up on the bathroom floor in pain.  I came out of the bathroom and they helped me into a gown and checked me.

I was at 9 cm.

I cried.

My water had not broken, but was bulging.  I didn't realize it at the time, but the nurse asked the doctor if she should go ahead and break my water.  He said not to.

I asked if I could get an epidural.  I was told that I might not be able to.  I cried again.  The anesthesiologist came in and said she would go ahead and do a spinal block since I had epidurals with my previous deliveries.  There were about 9 people holding me down while she worked because I was shaking so badly.  The anesthesiologist didn't get the epidural in the first time and the doctor calmly suggested to "try one more time."  She got it and the relief was within seconds.  I was so thankful to be able to catch my breath.  Everything had happened so quickly.  It was 3:30 PM when we checked into the hospital and I had the epidural at 3:45.

Within 20 minutes I had my water break and then another 20 minutes later it was time to push.  A few pushes later, Ellen Anastasia entered the world at 4:48 PM on Sunday, September 5 weighing a whooping 9 lb., 11 oz.!  (I am still forever grateful that I was able to get that epidural.)

Feeling much better with some pain meds and ice chips.

She's here!  75 minutes after hospital check-in.

And she's HUGE!  My biggest by far!

Ellen with mommy.  A full head of hair like her older siblings.  

We are still so grateful that my water didn't break in the car and that Ellen wasn't born in the car!  
And I'm still holding onto my bragging rights for delivering a 9lb., 11 oz. baby!




  1. Awww.. I loved reading this again! Such a cutie :)

    Ps.. did ya still want me to do your blog design? I emailed ya but havent heard back :)

  2. Oh man, labor is such a wildcard, isn't it?! It's crazy that it took you 15 hours, I think you said, of laboring at the hospital with Jude and then no time at all with Ellen. Crazy! And yes, you deserve those bragging rights. :)