i jumped up off the couch and within 2 seconds my blaring alarm was energetically turned off. After a night full of anything but sleep, the moment of anticipation had finally come. it was 5:30 am. I was supposed to be at the hospital at 6am. after shuffling around pretending to be gathering stuff that in reality had been gathered for weeks, we were out the door.
i didn't eat anything before i left because I wasn't sure if i was allowed to. rookie mistake number one. i got to the hospital and they denied me food but said that i would've been fine had i eaten right before i came in. awesome. okay, actually not awesome. but the awesomeness that ensues later on in the story makes up for it, let's be grateful for that. the flavored ice chips were great, but they weren't bacon egg and cheese biscuit great. moving on. they started me on pitocin at 7:30 am. go ahead and ask me what we did from 6 to 7:30. i could not tell you. i think i mostly watched jeff eat his bacon egg and cheese biscuit and lamented over the fact that i was not doing the same thing. they told me to expect a long labor since it was my first and since i was being induced. the average was 18 hours. truly, i was expecting a 24 hour labor or longer.
they stuck the IV in my hand. i cried. jeffrey snickered under his breath and texted my mom "5 minutes in and she is already crying...it's going to be a long day." but seriously it hurt. she missed my vein. and then it just really stung for a long time. and i couldn't move about the cabin the way i wanted to, if you know what i mean. ball and chain. they checked my cervix and i was dilated 2 cm, 80% effaced. minutes later, the contractions started. and they kept going and going. they were 8 minutes apart for probably an hour, then 5 minutes apart for about 3 hours. they hurt- but not agonizingly so. they just felt like bad period cramps. for the first 4 hours i was pretty happy to be 'in labor' but not writhing in pain. this is me smiling in between contractions.
so, it had been 4 hours at this point. my doctor came in and checked me. i was at a 4. i was pleased with the progress. and then? he broke my water. it was a weird feeling. like i was just laying there peeing myself uncontrollably. so that was fun for about 4 seconds until the contractions went from bearable to "so this is the infamous labor pain!" they started to HURT. and kept getting worse. soon they were 2 minutes apart. i had to squeeze jeff's hand and kick my feet into thin air and unsuccessfully think happy thoughts. definitely the worst pain i've ever felt. at this point, the word epidural started to swim around in my mind. i wanted to be tough. but the thought that the pain would actually get worse was unimaginable. shout out to all those women who have chosen to go natural- i seriously am in shock that you were able to do that. make yourself a medal. so after an hour of painful contractions, i requested an epidural. best decision ever. oh man i just wanted to invite the anesthesiologist into my home, make him a turkey dinner and then kiss him. i didn't even feel the needle, but sure enough, my legs started getting warm and tingly. my gritted teeth quickly transformed to a delirious smile. i was in heaven.
i was even happier when they checked me after they gave me an epidural and i was at 5 cm. yippee! HALF WAY THERE!
guess what i did after that? i texted everyone in my recent contacts that an epidural was the best thing on this planet, as if they were wondering. and then i enthusiastically rejoiced to my family about how awesome it was to not be in pain. i felt like i was on cloud nine. and then with a smile on my face, i took a nap! i was in full blown labor and i took a nap! see what i mean about the best thing on this planet?
i woke up an hour later (it was about 3:30 pm at this point, a little over 7 hours total in labor) when my nurse came in to check me. she was awesome by the way. i told her i was so glad she wasn't a grumpy, impersonable lady. that was one of my biggest labor fears. so she checked me and nonchalantly said "you are at a 9".....WHAT?! i dilated 4 whole cm by taking a nap. this was too good to be true! i was seriously in shock! she went to call my doctor so he could start making his way over. i was having a baby. for real. and it was happening SOON.
my doctor came in 30 minutes later to check me. yeah, my baby's head was making her way downtown. his eyes widened and he started scurrying around getting everything set up and hoping my baby wouldn't just fall right out. at 4:10, i started pushing. on one side, the epidural was not quite as strong so i knew when i was having a contraction. i just felt a lot of pressure, and i knew when i felt that it was time to push. so i felt a contraction and i pushed. i pushed with more energy and passion than i knew i was capable of producing. i grit my teeth and closed my eyes. it was the most empowering feeling ever. she started to crown on the second push and there was immediately this spirit in the room that is indescribable. i pushed through two more contractions, and she was out! 7 minutes of pushing? not too shabby!
then i saw her. i saw my child. my daughter. the one that had been inside of me for the past 9 months that i never thought id actually meet because it seemed too surreal. she was purple and slimy, but i've never seen something so beautiful in my life. i'd never felt such an overwhelming feeling or even known such a feeling existed in the magnitude that i was feeling it. i started bawling. there was nothing i could do but cry and shake and reach out for my sweet little baby. they put her right on my chest. all was right in the world. all was more than alright. beauty and joy in its purest form. 'this is what life is all about' is what i thought to myself the second they laid her on me. but really, this is what life is all about. "happiness is the object and design of our existence"and if this isn't happiness at it's finest- then nothing is!
after an emotional observance of my new baby, i told my sister to put food in my mouth ASAP. it was necessary.
she kicked me constantly. she made me puke hundreds of times. she caused constant fire in my throat. she turned me into a sick, tired, zombie for 7 of the 9 months. she took a toll on my body- physically and emotionally, that's for sure. but oh, she was worth it. ten times over. she is my little miracle. my angel. and in one sudden moment, my whole world.
oh we love her!
i seriously canNOT believe she is actually here! it felt like i was pregnant for years. and therefore it felt like the day would never actually come. but here i am, sitting in my humble apartment with my sweet little baby sleeping on my chest. sticking her bum out and puckering her lips. i can't tell you how many hours i spent daydreaming of this very moment. and it's sort of ironic how we just spent a fortune on hospital and medical bills, yet it seems like i won the lottery. like, the power ball and then some. the gratitude in my heart seems to be spilling out into a big puddle of love juice everywhere i go. i look at my baby and half the time i have to hold back tears. i don't know what i did to deserve this- but i am one happy and grateful girl!
jeff is such a wonderful dad. my heart literally almost bursts each time i see him with her. fireworks in my chest! he is so smitten. he was changed in an instant and the love he has for this little girl was startling to him. i am so happy knowing that he will be the father of my sweet daughter. it is such an amazing thing to become parents together. our love for each other has grown exponentially. seriously?! who even knew there was this much room in a heart for love??? are you kidding me?! it's really good you guys i totally recommend it. the whole, getting married and having a baby asap thing,,,,
we are a little bit obsessed :) i'll show you a few pictures and you will be too.
oh, little baby jane. you are loved. excessively so.
and i can't post this without a shout out to my wonderful mother. she has taken care of me so well. i don't know how i would have done this/would be doing this without her. the only reason I'm able to write this out right now is because she is just busy being a saint and doing everything for me. i also appreciate her now more than ever. caring for a child as a mother and having a mother to care for you are 2 of earth's greatest blessings. thanks mom!