Six years ago, my son was born on his due date.
22 months ago, my daughter was born a day before her due date.
So, with my third baby, when I started having contractions more than 2 weeks before my due date… I was sure it was false labor.
It was a Saturday morning and I had stuff to do! But those darn contractions wouldn’t go away. I figured the smart thing to do would be to go to the hospital, get checked out and then continue with my day. In fact, I was so sure it was false labor that I had my husband drop me off at the hospital while he went to run one of our chores.
Color me STUNNED when I get up to triage and they say, ‘Darlin, you’re 6 and a half centimeters dialated!”
So, I quickly call my husband and tell him to hurry his butt back to the hospital – This is it!
The whole experience didn’t start out great. As you know, they have to put an IV into your arm every time you give birth. It took them 4 tries to get it in. At one point, my arm blew up the size of Popeye’s because the IV was in wrong. It was awful. In fact, they were wheeling me to the labor and delivery room while still trying to get that IV in. It was at that moment I decided not to get an epidural. Clearly my body was not reacting well to needles.
Up until then, I was very open-minded about the epidural. I had one with my son, I didn’t have one with my daughter. So, I went into this third pregnancy thinking I’d play it by ear. But after IV-GATE 2013… My mind was made up.
And then I was thrown another curveball. The nurses told me the person that would deliver my baby is a midwife. I should have known. I was giving birth on the Saturday morning of the long Labor Day weekend. Of course all the doctors were at their beach houses or on their yachts in the middle of the Gulf.
But as it turns out, I adored the midwife! She was incredible! She encouraged me to stand up and move around, she showed me this cool little hula-hoop maneuver to try and get the baby to drop and she demonstrated the best breathing techniques so I wouldn’t get nauseous. She was also in my room constantly! The other two times I gave birth I saw the doctor for about 5 minutes before they were there to catch the baby. But the midwife was in my room every 15 minutes checking up on me.
Anyway, I got to the hospital around 9:45am and at noon I told the nurse that the time was now. After about 3 good pushes Lexi Sloan made her way into the world! Apparently the cool thing for hospitals to do now is to put the gooey, just-born baby right onto your chest and keep her there for about an hour. I was finally like, dude, I love her and all but you gotta hose her off! Besides, I was dying to know how much she weighed! ((7lbs 11ozs, by the way))
Overall, it was the best delivery experience out of the three. Yes, it was also the shortest which may have had a little something to do with it!
By now, I consider myself an old pro at this giving birth thing… But even after 3 babies there is always something new and different. I guess the best advice I can give is to go into the labor and delivery process with a very open-mind. You can prepare all you want – But from that day forward, it’s what the baby wants that really matters!
Our guest writer, Laura has 3 kids. Cameron is 6, Audrey is 23 months and Lexi Sloan is 2 months. She has been married for 13 years and has lived in the Tampa area her whole life. She’s Associate Executive Producer for Fox 13 news. She also writes a blog called www.Audreyseyes.org that details her daughter’s eye condition called aniridia.