It was Saturday night, August 6, and Eli and I decided to go out for date night. I was getting bigger and more uncomfortable. Baby Girl was due in 3 weeks. We figured we might be running out of time on how often we'd be able to go out. We settled on our typical date, dinner and a movie. You can never go wrong with that combo.
We decided to hit up Asian Buffet. It probably wasn't the best choice, but I was major craving and due to the gestational diabetes, I'd held off on carbs for a LONG time. I wanted to reward myself a little. After dinner we headed next door to watch Captain America. We're big fans of the Marvel comics movies (and are super excited for The Avengers).
As soon as we settled in and ready to watch, the contractions started. I wasn't too concerned. I'd been experiencing Braxton Hick's contractions for the past couple of weeks. I sat back and did my best to enjoy the movie. About a quarter of the way through the movie, I realized that I was still having contractions. I told Eli and he whipped out his phone and use the contraction app he had downloaded earlier. My contractions were consistently 20 minutes apart. By the end of the movie they were 15 minutes apart. I still wasn't too worried though because the contractions weren't painful.
Sunday morning, August 7, I woke up and realized that I hadn't felt Baby Girl very much. I did a kick count and was a little concerned. Eli and I decided to go to the hospital and do a non-stress test. I was supposed to be doing them twice a week anyway due to the diabetes and I missed the second time that week.
I got to the hospital and got hooked up to the monitors pretty quickly...and then was left there for almost two hours. Usually the NST takes about 30 minutes. The nurses were pretty busy. I believe there were 8 babies delivered that morning and they were running all over. I'd done enough tests that I knew everything was okay. The baby's heartbeat was strong and consistent and my blood pressure was fine. I did ask the nurse (when she finally came back) about my contractions. They were about 10 minutes apart. The nurse informed me that it was normal and I shouldn't worry unless they were hurting, 3-5 minutes apart for 30 minutes, or if my water broke. We were sent home and told to rest.
We got home, had some lunch, and after deciding that I couldn't sit through 3 hours of church, we settled down to take a nap. That was about 2 hours after leaving the hospital. I got all comfy and laid down. As soon as I got in bed I felt a sharp pain in my abdomen and my stomach got super hard - another contraction. It went away and I tried to get comfy again. Not too long after I went through another contraction. Eli started timing. 20 minutes later he called the hospital, told them my contractions were 5 minutes and painful. We headed to the hospital again.
As soon as we got there, they hooked me up in the same room as before and checked my vitals. The nurse came in and informed me that I was dilated to 4 cm and had a "droopy bag". Side note* The week before at my appointment I was at a 2 and 100% effaced.* The nurse said that they would go ahead and admit me. I was sure to tell her that I wanted an epidural. The anesthesiologist had just left, so it would take a while to get him back, but they would get him.
I got moved to a delivery room and hooked up to all the machines there. By the time I was admitted and hooked up, it was about 4:00. It had been about 2 hours since my contractions started and they were getting pretty intense. The nurse checked me again and I was at 6 cm. She was surprised. Most people moved about a cm an hour and I had changed 2. No biggie though. The anesthesiologist made it then and hooked me up with the good stuff.
After that it was just a waiting game. My family showed up. My in-laws were on their way (from Scipio and Logan). I could still feel the contractions, but they weren't painful anymore, just uncomfortable. I was stocked up on ice chips and Eli was being awesome. The doctor came in and broke my water when I was about 7 cm.
The nurses came in and checked and kept me posted. Around 6:45 I called in the nurse because I was pretty sure something was going on. I had the nurse check me again and I was at 9 3/4 cm! I was super freaked out. Labor was happening and I really felt unprepared. The nurse came back about 15-20 minutes later and checked me again. I was at a 10!
I was waiting for the doctor to come in, but the nurses reminded me that the doctor typically doesn't come until a head is seen. My brothers and father-in-law left the room and I was left with the nurses, Eli, my mom, my two sisters, and my mother-in-law. I know that's a lot of people, but it made the delivery so much easier!
The nurse started me pushing. I was so scared that I was going to have to push for hours. When it was time for Melissa to push with Maci, she only pushed for 30 minutes. I was convinced that since I progressed so quickly, I was going to have to push for a long time. The nurse ran for the doctor on the second contraction. Eli had seen a head of hair already! When I finished with my fourth contraction, Miranda asked the doctor about how much longer. The nurse said, "Probably another five contractions." The next contraction hit, I pushed, and my baby was delivered! 19 1/2 minutes of pushing. My doctor held the baby, looked at Eli with a grin, and said, "Five more. Pish!"
It was such an amazing experience! Our little Monica Lucia was born at 7:25 pm, was 5lbs. 8 oz., and 17 inches long. Eli cut the umbilical cord and went with her to the nursery. She had retractions when she was born and didn't cry, so they had to suck her lungs out. She had about 15 ml of amniotic fluid, but she was healthy!
I cannot even explain the elation I felt when she was born. When doctor put her in my arms (messy and all), everything else disappeared. The love I felt at that moment for Luci and Eli is unexplainable. Everything in the world was right and perfect.