I admit. I had a easy pregnancy. Then, I had an even more ridiculously easy labor and delivery.
Here's the story if you feel so inclined to read...
At 36 weeks I was dilated to a 2 and 50% effaced. A week later I was at a 3 and 50% effaced.
He raised his red flag and told me if I kept working the way I was, (which was a lot that week, 8 hour days at Bed Bath and then prepping for a wedding every night) I was going to have to ask my co-workers how they felt about cleaning up placenta cause I was progressing so quickly.
He wrote me a note saying I had to take it easy at work. Which definitely helped.
The only other problem was I also had a really big wedding that weekend that needed to be delivered to McMinnville. I got a pretty exasperated look from him on that one. But he said no. You are not going to McMinnville. Because if I went to McMinnville and went into labor while in McMinnville, I would get stuck in the little town of Dundee. On labor day weekend. Where the closest hospital to deliver at would be my hospital, over an hour away.
Come Sunday, I didn't go to the wedding. But I decided, "Hey, lets try to go into labor." So Ryan and I went to the mall to do some air conditioned mall walking. We walked and walked. I used the escalator as a stair master more than once. I jogged (yes jogged) up the 6 flights of stairs of the Nordstrom parking garage and back down. We went to target and I had to return some stuff and then we went home. When we got home and after I had bounced on my exercise ball for a half hour or so I decided to lay down before dinner. This was around 5pm and I was really excited cause Dad was grilling salmon. Mmmmm. Then... ow.. that really hurt.... 6 minutes later.... OUCH that contraction REALLY hurt. but I didn't think too much of it. I didn't think I had actually done it. I didn't think I had actually gotten myself to go into labor. So I didn't write them down for 15-20 minutes. I had Ryan come in and lay down with me and help me relax. We started to write them down as we ate dinner... 5 minutes... 6 minutes... 8 minutes... 6 minutes... So I called labor and delivery. Told her my situation and how progressed I was on Tuesday. She asked, "do you want to have a natural birth?" and I said "HA! No. Give me the drugs" and she said okay well come on in. (apparently if I wanted to have a natural birth she would have said wait till the contractions are 4 minutes apart then come in)
So Ryan and I load up our stuff (luckily we had installed the car seat that morning so it was ready to go) and went to the hospital. They put us in a triage room and right as the nurse was telling me, we are going to wait a while and monitor your contractions before we have the doctor check you... MY DOCTOR walks in cause he was the Doc on call! HA! It was awesome. He looked at me with a "what are you doing here?" look on his face and I just smiled and said, "hey look I didn't go to Mcminnville!!" Haha.
We were admitted and moved to room 10. Called Mom and Dad and everyone else saying "We're gonna have a baby!!!!" At this point, it was around 6pm.
We walked the halls, Caitlin and Robbie came to visit, Mom and Dad came to visit. Doctor Traynor came and checked me again and said I was only to a 5. My options were to break my water, have me
walk around and try to progress things and then get an epidural, or to get and epidural, break my water and see how that progresses while staying in bed and if things don't go quick enough after 2 hours to give me some meds to help speed things along.
I chose option number 2, get epidural first and then see what happens. Getting the epidural wasn't as horrible as I thought it could be. I have a problem with my lower back on the right side, and for some reason I could feel weird pain there at first, but then it went away and I was all tingly. I got the epidural around midnight. Since I couldn't feel anything all of us took the opportunity to get some rest. Mom, Dad, Caitlin and Robbie had gone home, but told us to keep them updated.
Two hours later I woke up and my legs felt like baluga whales. Ryan woke up to me punching myself in the thigh. he kinda freaked, "What are you doing?!?" and I said, "I can't even feel that!!!" It was so bizarre!
Dr. Traynor came in and check me and said I was to a 9 and fully effaced, and would be ready to start pushing... IF I could feel anything... which I couldn't. And he said, "well, we need you to be able to feel the contractions a little bit", and I said, "doesn't that defeat the purpose of the epidural? Can I just try to push anyway?" but he said no, and they turned the meds down and said we'll start pushing in an hour. I called Caitlin, Mom & Dad to update them. Mom had previously said she didn't want to be in the room, but I didn't want to not call them and have her wish she would've come. Caitlin showed up around 3:30am I think.. my parents around 3:45am. Thats about the time Dr. Traynor came in and asked if I could feel anything, I still said no, but can I push anyway? He said okay fine we'll wait another 10 minutes and if you still can't feel anything you'll start pushing anyway. As he and my delivery nurse Lisa got on some of their delivery gear, and right after they explained how I should push and what it will feel like, I could feel the contractions! At one point before all of this, Caitlin speedily french braided my hair so it would be out of my face and not look completely horrendous, cause I wasn't sure how messed up gross I was going to look after it was all over, I was very grateful to have her there!
At 4:05 a I started to push. Caitlin, Mom & Dad (who had his eyes closed to not see more than he needed to but being in the delivery room more than enough times could hear exactly what was going on) were sitting on the couch and chair to my right, Ryan was up by my head and would whisper in my ear and help me remember to put my chin to my chest while pushing. I pushed three or four times. I remember asking if I was doing it right, because I couldn't really feel what was going on down there. Lisa and Dr. Traynor both enthusiastically said, "you're doing great! You want to feel her head?" I said, kinda meekly, "no thanks, I'll just wait until she's out. How many more pushes do you think?" He said, "maybe three or four." I think I pushed two more times, then he said, "hmm... ok, maybe only two or three more times." And before I could even feel the next contraction, as the doctor was looking at the monitor, Lisa looked down and said, "uh, doctor?" He then looked down as well and said, "oh! Okay... push push push!" So I pushed... then I feel a quick build-up then release of pressure. I hear mom say, "oh Aly!" At 4:28 am, I look up and see this little, squirmy, sticky-looking baby in the doctor's arms. And I say (tenderly and highly-medicated), "oh! My little alien!" They put her on me, and she was sticky... and kind of gross. Ryan got to cut the umbilical cord, even though he had said beforehand that he didn't want to when the doctor had asked. He's glad now that he did.
While I was getting cleaned/stitched up, the baby nurse took Ella to give her her first exam and take her weight and footprints. Apparently, epidurals make you a little loopy after birth. I don't remember how many times I said, "I just had a baby..." but it was enough that Dr. Traynor told me that from there on out, every time I said it I owed him a quarter. Ella got her first bath, then was swaddled and given to me. We had our first good snuggle, and that was the first time I kissed her. I know it sounds horrible, but I didn't kiss her when she was covered by the goopy, sticky stuff, it was just a little too gross for me.
Mom, Dad & Caitlin all got to hold her, and then they went home. Then we all slept. We were in the hospital for three days and had lots of visitors. Figuring out breastfeeding has been the biggest challenge. Even though the nurses said I had all the right equipment. Apparently the amount of colostrum I could produce quickly and efficiently was amazing, awesome and wonderful. The latching without it hurting was hard. I had to use nipple shields. I would still try and practice having her nurse naturally but I would still use the shield for 8 out of the 9 feedings (or 22 out of the 23 feedings it feels like) every day. But, for the last 2-3 days she won't eat with it on. She'll only nurse naturally and it doesn't hurt! She doesn't stay on as easy, but it makes feeding her easier cause I don't have to worry about that stupid silicone thing getting lost or falling on the floor and having to clean it or the dogs getting it.
First family photo
Ryan and his baby girl
With Grandma & Grandpa
Auntie Aimee My Friend Sydney
Ryan's Brothers Family
Going home today!
A little nap before we leave the hospital
Meeting Great-Grandpa Harold