Monday, April 25, 2011

The Labor Story: Thursday-Monday

Thursday night, I started having some real but sporadic contractions. I called in a sub for the next day, but they slowed down during the night, I decided to go ahead and go to work, since all the labor literature I had read recommended staying active (and distracted) during early labor. And I was really glad I went. It was the last day of the six weeks, and I knew it was my last day. The kids worked on projects and group work, and I got everything finalized and ready for the sub to take over on Monday. It was amazing to be able to wrap things up like that.

Then, things got a lot more challenging Friday night. Stronger, longer but still sporadic contractions started. We were packing to go to the hospital at 2:30 am. Casey asked when I thought we'd be having this baby, and I said...in the next twelve hours. Man, how little did we know at the time. You certainly can't plan everything!

So, I kept having long contractions 1 1/2- 2 minutes each, 6-15 minutes apart through the night, and the next day and Saturday night, and Sunday, all day, and Sunday night. (FYI-5 minutes apart for an hour is when you're in active labor...so this was all "early labor.") I spent a lot of the day pacing around the house Saturday and doing circles around the living room Sunday. The worst part was the three nights in a row of sleep interrupted every 15-45 minutes with intense pain. It felt like it would never stop. By that point in time, the only thing keeping me together was knowing that we had an induction scheduled Monday morning.
If I didn't hate that shirt before, I definitely hate it now. ;-)

But Monday morning did come. On Thursday, I had been 3 cm dilated, and after three nights and two days of contractions, I was only at 4 cm.
This is me before they broke my water. Happy to be making progress. The plan was to do that, then only use the pictocin if necessary. So, after they broken my water, I was in active, fast hard labor with contractions every 2-5 minutes. The doula, Michelle, rubbed my back, spoke soothingly, directed me how to moan and to relax, encouraged me to walk. But after almost four hours of that, I was done. In about 10 seconds, I decided I wanted the epidural. It took 30-40 minutes to get IV fluids in and the epidural, and meanwhile they checked my dilation again. On average, active labor usually should get one cm of dilation an hour. I had only 1 cm progress in those 4 hours. This was the labor that would never end!

The epidural was absolute bliss. I slept for three hours, the longest I had slept in three days. In those three hours, I almost completely dilated, without pictocin. I hadn't planned on getting an epidural, but I also hadn't planned on being in labor that long, either. Rest was obviously what my body needed. To rest and relax. After that, we joked around while we waited for the OB to arrive. Then, after 30 minutes of painless pushing, the most amazing little person arrived. Casey asked the doctor if he could help deliver him, so I saw Casey pull him up and out and onto my chest. It was the most amazing moment of my life.This last little video sums it up perfectly.
video

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Indiana Jack Meyers

My sweetums.

Indiana Jack Meyers was born on Monday, at 4:49 pm. He weighted 6 lbs and 14 oz, and measured 20 inches. His hair is brown, just the same shade mine was when I was younger, and he's got a plenty of it. Excellent. The nose is also definitely mine. The lips are probably Casey's, and definitely the long fingers and toes come from Daddy. Everything else, we'll see.

So far, we know he likes being swaddled, eating (especially at night!), and sleeping most anywhere, especially his swing. He likes looking at the animals in the swing, pack n' play, and mobile in his crib. He does not like being changed or baths. He likes it when you talk to him. Friday, I explained the process of making cheese, and he listened attentively, but nodded off during the bread making process. Another day. He also likes being read to. Night before last, Casey read to him for about two hours during a fussy period. Last night, it was Grapes of Wrath during a before bed feeding. Mommy likes being read to as well.
He is my sweetums. I love him.

Monday, April 11, 2011

3, 2, 1...0?

So, tomorrow is the official due date. April 12th. And I am definitely not in labor. A few Braxton-Hicks contractions, but no nesting, no water breaking, no real contractions. We've been hoping and hoping that he wouldn't come early, and I'm really glad he wasn't. It seems like every mom that had her baby early wanted to tell me about it...but none of the ones that were late.

But now we have to start worrying about him not coming on his own. Friday, at the doctor appointment, our ob said she wanted to tentatively schedule an induction for April 18th, not to pressure us, but simply because those induction spots can fill up, since many folks want to induce. We don't. I don't want medicine I don't need, and I don't want to try to force a natural process that's obviously saying, "I'm not ready." But what if that natural process doesn't kick start on it's own? The more we read, the more complications there seem to be with medical interventions (like induction, epidural, c-section)...but there are serious complications that arise for post-term pregnancies (at 42 weeks) as well.

So, ideally...Indy needs to come on his own in the next two weeks. I talked to our doula Saturday and she gave us some recommendations, take some supplements, see a chiropractor, etc. So we're trying those things along with what our ob recommended.

I also decided, at 2 in the morning Saturday night, that no matter what, this is my last week of work. I could go into labor at any time, of course, (which Indy is reminding me of, as he has hiccups right now) but even if I don't go into labor by next Monday, it's time to hand things over to the substitute. I had planned to keep working up until he comes, and I hadn't felt the need to quit working, really. I enjoy teaching and my energy levels have been really great lately. But I ended up staying late every day last week trying to get everything ready in case I went into labor the next day, and I don't need the stress. 4 more work days. I'll finish out this six weeks and be done. It's so hard to hand over my classroom to another teacher, but other things have to take priority. Good things, like our baby boy.

Casey keeps saying, "I'm ready to meet him." Me too. I want to hold him. See him. Wonder who he looks like. Feed him, cuddle him. Take care of him. Be his mom. I'm ready.

So, be ready too, little Indy!