On Friday, October 9th I started to feel some contractions. Finally! The weather was nasty but I wanted a brisk walk to see if that helped things move along so we went to Opry Mills mall. We walked and we made plans for our friend Cassie to stay the night with Liam. Around 8:30pm, my contractions got stronger and were 4 - 7 minutes apart. They didnt last more than 30 sec but, being first timers, we decided to check in at the hospital at 10:30pm. To my dismay, I was only 3cm dilated. I threw up a few times (so glad someone warned me about that) and they made me walk for an hour. We wandered lonely, quiet halls, breathing through the pain and hoping for some change. I was still only 3. Walked another hour, still only 3. So we were sent home. Exhausted and defeated, we got home at 2:30am and sent our babysitter home. Dan crashed in the guest bed and I labored alone in our bed, the shower and the bathtub until the sun came up. By the time Dan and Liam were awake, I couldn't talk or walk during contractions. THAT'S when I was ready. Mr. Bobby came to get Liam (and showed him the time of his life!) and we headed back to Triage.
It was 9:00am on Saturday, October 10th. I was 5cm dilated and was sent straight to a delivery room. We diffused essential oils and put on music and thought we'd be meeting our son soon. I wasn't checked very often but my contractions were strong so I was sure things were progressing. I labored on the ball, in the tub and leaning against the wall. Dan pushed on my back through each one. Baby was still a little high, not resting my cervix yet. So we did everything we could to get him in position. The on call doctor checked me around 2pm and I was incredibly disappointed to find out that I was only 5cm after 17 hours of contractions. Tense, high strung and in "I can't do this anymore"stage so we were offered two options: an epidural to calm me down, relax, and let my body take over or to break my water. We had an hour to decide and we tried all kinds of natural methods to progress labor and nothing worked. Still at 5cm. So we made the very difficult decision to get an epidural. Got that at about 5pm and once it kicked in, my contractions got stronger! Then the doctor broke my water. Things were progressing and I was at 7cm very quickly. The rest is a bit of a blur. I sat in a few different positions to see if contractions would get closer together and baby would move (he was sideways, not totally wrong but we wanted him face down and lower.) Dan had said he didn't want to watch but as it turns out, he was very interested. So, we asked for the mirror so I could watch.
My sister's wedding was happening in Portland! Just about everyone we know on the west coast was there. We sent as many updates as we could but I was fully dilated right before she was walking down the aisle. I had no idea how long pushing would take. I finally got in push position at 9:30pm.
As I started to push I heard beeping. My epidural had run out! I was too numb to feel the pushing and I hated it so I told them not to refill it. I had set out for a natural birth after all. I pushed until 10:30 and he started to crown. That's when about 5 nurses come in. Baby's heartrate dropped so I put on an oxygen mask. I had a cheering section and I got my second wind. It took another few pushes and he arrived, huge, slimy and purple. They gave him a quick wipe and he was on my chest.