While this is still fresh on my mind and I have two girls napping I need to get this down. Warning: it's wordy...
My due date with Colette was July 31st. I had guessed that the baby would come on the due date but I was more prepared to be overdue. On Tuesday (29th) I picked up my mom from the Boston airport and was feeling some occasional contractions. On Wednesday morning I woke up after a sleepless night and we headed to the doctor for my 40 week appointment. I had been feeling contractions pretty consistently but they were not painful and still 20-30 minutes apart. Since my last labor was very long I figured that I would be feeling contractions for a while and then I would probably have the baby in a few days. The midwife asked me if I wanted her to check me (if I had dilated) and I said no because I didn't think it was necessary. I felt that I wasn't making progress yet.
My mom and I ended up spending the day shopping. I even purchased a fantastic chair from Habitat restore that I can't wait to share. By the end of our shopping day I was feeling really tired and my contractions had picked up but were still not painful. That night I ended up doing my 40 week chalkboard to get ready for my due date picture. We were watching TV and my contractions were picking up even more. At one point I looked at Brian and said, "I think I might be in early labor". We went to bed pretty late but I was still feeling like I had a couple more days. I was even really excited about a sample sale at Timberland the next day.
At 2am I woke up to pain. I was having full contractions and they were 4-5 minutes apart lasting about 30 seconds. I was a little in denial and kept thinking that the contractions would subside. I took a bath, started making lists, and I even took my 40 week picture.
Taken at 3am(ish) in between contractions.
At around 3:30 the contractions were starting to be much more painful and were 2-3 minutes apart lasting 45 seconds. Since we live 40 minutes from the hospital I decided I should call and see what they say. My midwife said to wait until they were really painful or lasting longer. I made it about 30 minutes before I woke up my mom and Brian and decided we should go. My contractions were much more painful this time and felt different. It was a really rough ride to the hospital and the bumpy road was causing the contractions to speed up quite a bit.
We got to the hospital around 5am, they checked me right in, and I was ready to get this thing going. I was surprised at the pain this time around because I had good control of my pain last time, but I really felt it. When the midwife came to check she said that I was only at a 3 but it looked like things were moving fast. She also said that the baby was face up (apparently that can cause some more pain). This is the moment that it hit me. I did not feel prepared AT ALL. I started crying, I was in pain, I missed Amelia (our first day being apart ever), and I was having bad anxiety. Because of the stress I was putting on myself the pain started to get even more severe. The midwife asked me if I wanted an epidural and I absolutely did. At this point I was not able to manage my anxiety and I needed help relaxing. I went into this labor feeling open to anything but felt grateful that I was able to have help with my pain management. It took close to 2 hours and 2 more centimeters before the anesthesiologist came in but the medicine kicked in immediately and I was relaxed and happy.
The rest of my labor was quite boring by comparison. With the epidural I was relaxed and slept here and there. The hard part with an epidural is you are stuck in the bed but I felt that was okay compared the the pain and anxiety. The midwife came back in to check me at around noon and discovered that I was at a 10 and almost ready to push. She broke my water and we needed to wait for the baby to drop. Amelia never dropped and I ended up basically just pushing to get her to drop. The only issue with that was she was so high her cord slipped over her head and ended up snapping when she came out. I decided to let the baby try and come down on her own instead of running the risk of that happening again. After a couple test pushes and an hour the baby was not dropping. We decided that giving me a little pitocin may help get her to move down a little. After some more waiting I started feeling pressure and even a little pain. I even felt like I needed to push. The midwife came in and said the baby was ready. I started pushing at 3:25pm and Colette made her debut at 3:28pm.
Everything was very peaceful for a minute and then a little dramatic. When she came out the midwife said, "reach down and grab your baby". I opened my eyes and reached to pull her the rest of the way out. When I grabbed her to pull her to my chest I felt a distinct snap. Her cord has snapped! The nurse and midwife acted quickly and there was minimal blood loss for both of us. What are the chances that this happened again? Apparently Colette had a short cord and it didn't reach. The funny part about the drama was after a couple minutes and her laying on my chest I finally asked "does anyone know the gender?" Brian said, "I think it's a boy". The nurse lifted her up and said, "nope, it's a girl". Brian saw the cord and assumed it was boy parts. Everyone started laughing.
She was so tiny and had the best little newborn cry. She looked right at me and Brian and we were hooked. I felt immediately blessed that we had a healthy baby. I would've been truly excited if she had been a boy but it felt right that we have another girl. I almost felt relief because sisters are so fantastic and all the girl clothes we already have. The rest of the hospital stay was full of sleeping, eating, diapers and blood testing. Due to the cord snapping we had some low blood sugar moments but everything ended up just fine and we were healthy to go home in a couple of days.
Here are some pictures from our first 48 hours with Colette.
Getting her weight. I don't know why but I love this crying picture.
Her little hand is so sweet.
Soaking up some heat.
Brian is the best at soothing our babies.
Amelia was ready to go after a couple of hours visiting.
On our way home!
I feel very fortunate to have had 2 healthy babies and 2 healthy labor/deliveries. We are adjusting to being a family of four and I can't wait to watch our girls grow up together.