How Chase came to be born, part 1

on Monday, September 14, 2009

So many emotions and thoughts keep swirling around in my head that I hope this makes sense. I want to write and capture the story of the past several days. It requires that I back up to last Sunday, 9/6/09.

I went walking through the Art Fair with Mandy and picked out lovely gifts for Lindsey's wedding. I was super excited, but the baby was feeling much lower and my abdomen was getting tighter and looser off and on. I got the sense that the baby was coming sooner than later and I scheduled a date with Angela to go to lunch and get our toes done together for Tuesday. I wanted to be sure that I could make use of her pedicure certificate BEFORE his arrival!

9/7/09--Labor Day
I woke up on Monday feeling like, huh, I wonder if I'll be laboring ON Labor Day. I don't think I slept the greatest, but felt more contractions off and on. I had a bit of spotting before Mom, Christy, Paul, and Gwendolyn came down for a picnic. I definitely felt off and felt myself turning inward emotionally. I told mom so that she would be prepared if I went into labor that day. No luck. Ryan, Kayla, and I had a lovely afternoon in the shelters of Bryan Park eating and relaxing. I kept holding Gwendolyn thinking, whoa, sometime soon, I'll have one of my own to hold!

I got my toes done and went to the Dr. I was 1 cm and more effaced than I was a week ago. I was a little disappointed. I kept asking Dr. Crooke if I was going to have the baby tomorrow, and he said, nope. We made a game plan for the next week ahead and he started asking me about induction and how I felt about it and pursuing pain management options. I told him my thoughts and he sort of countered them, which I found to be very confusing at this point. I was beginning to feel very much ready to have the baby out. Tuesday evening I went for a walk around home. I decided to walk up the hill to Summit Elementary to challenge my body a little. I was talking to mom and she thought I was walking the hills at the dog park and told me to be very careful. I made a HUGE deal of how, no, I was walking on the side walk, which I think I could do just fine. Well, walking DOWN the huge hill, talking on the phone with her and walking Rudy, I tripped and skinned my right knee and my left hand, kind of badly. My first thought was, is the baby ok? After I determined that I didn't really knock my belly, I thought, huh, maybe this will induce labor.
I then managed to run into this couple that Ryan and I connected with from Child Birth class, and Steph (due 9/12) and I went for a longer walk. My skinned knee and hand didn't really hurt, so I walked for another 1/2 hour. She and I talked about inductions and epidurals and how what we learned in Childbirth class (which was very much about one intervention leading to another, induction shouldn't be done unless medically necessary, etc.) with what the doctors were telling us. I found it to be very comforting that she was struggling with the different messages that the Childbirth class (which was at the hospital) and what the doctors were saying. I got home and cleaned up my scrapes and had a good night sleeping for 4-5 hours straight.

Wednesday was my secret due date. From 32-ish weeks on, I felt that Chase was going to be born early and on the 9th. Not because of the cool date, it just hit me one moment that this is when I thought he would be born. I took Rudy to the vet in the morning and kinda relaxed the rest, not really feeling up to much of anything. I had a really nice conversation with Lindsey. It was nice to talk about her new job and excitement in her life and to talk a bit about how hard the waiting and not knowing of late pregancy was for me. When I got off the phone with her, I tried to go to work, but I couldn't find a parking spot, so I gave up. Rudy and I went for a decent walk at the dog park and then Ryan and I cooked a lovely meal together. We had grilled vegetable, ham, and brie sandwiches. It was the second time I'd had brie in 9 months and it was absolutely delightful. Brie is on the no-no list because it isn't pasteurized, but I decided I didn't care at this point.

9/10/09 12:30 am
I woke up with an absolute start. This pain shot through my whole body, and laying on my side made it so I felt like I couldn't breathe. It initially panicked me. Once I got out of bed and got situated on the couch, I realized that these were contractions. They were fairly painful and but they would stop and start with no pattern. I found these to be frustrating and I was just feeling tired. I didn't get any more than 2 hours of sleep that night. As Ryan was getting ready for work, I had another one of the whole body shock contractions. I told him I didn't think that he should go to work today, that I wasn't 100% sure whether this was real labor or false labor. He decided he would take off, just in case. We went for a walk from about 6:15 to 7:15 and I was contracting with more regularity and needing to take breaks when some of them would pass. I just felt like walking. I went to the bathroom around 7:30 and had bloody show. When I got out, I went to Ryan and said, "I think we are going to have a baby today". I felt really excited and ready to get the show on the road. I called mom at 8 and told her what was going on with my body. She decided that she would come down after she stopped by work. I called the doctor and left a message asking how to progress and then went and laid down.

By the time that mom got to our house at 9:30, my contractions had totally fizzled, leaving me really disheartened. I thought that maybe I was crazy, that what seemed so regular and like a sure thing was just Braxton-Hicks. Mom had me lay down again and rest, but I couldn't sleep.

We made an appointment to see Dr. Crooke at 1 pm to get my cervix checked.
We went to the doctor and I had dilated another centimeter. Ryan was disheartened. We talked a little about our options for induction, but I wasn't ready to make any decisions. Ryan was in favor of trying to be induced on Thursday night because he thought it would give Friday and a full weekend on both ends of his alotted paternity time. We talked to Claire on the way out and she suggested that I come back by the office in the late afternoon to see if my body had made any more progress through the rest of the day. We decided that was a good course of action.

I spent the day working on the birth ball because my hips and lower back were sore. I didn't fall into any more regular patterns of contractions. I realized that my scrapes on my knees and hand were going to be a real bummer for labor, but at this point, I felt like it was going to be several more days before anything really happened. We went back to the doctor's and he was kind of wondering what I was doing there. I hadn't made any more progress, but that was because my body wasn't really doing anything. We came home with a plan. We decided I was going to have a sleepless night in one of two ways: either I was going to go into real labor, or I was going to see if I had enough of a regular labor to get myself admitted to the hospital and then go ahead with induction. I was really nervous about induction, but I felt embarassed and upset that I had mom come down and Ryan take off work for a whole day for nothing. Ryan and I went and picked up pizza and my contractions began to pick up. I had to stop when some of them came again, and I felt really encouraged by that. We ate a little dinner and then mom and I went off to T.J. Maxx for a couple of hours. Mom needed to buy pajamas, a shirt for the next day, and we shopped for jeans (for her). My contractions were working while shopping, but weren't anything that I could handle. As we were checking out, mom saw this basket/bassinet thing and she said, "this might be nice for the baby". More on that later...

The whole night, I was restless. I kept trying to find a position not just to sleep, which was out the window, but one that I could just let myself relax in. At 1 ish, I got another one of those shock your whole body contractions and I realized that laying down was just out. I got up and took a long hot shower and tried to position myself on the couch comfortably. This lasted for awhile, then I tried to lay down again, because it had been one position that I was contracting regularly in.

more later....


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