Well, this post has taken me about a month longer to post than I planned on it taking, so I just hope I still remember everything!
On Monday, April 25, I had a regular checkup with my midwife for my 39 week visit and I had also planned to have my membranes stripped like I'd done with Caroline on the off chance that I would get lucky and have it initiate labor two pregnancies in a row. The day I had it done when I was pregnant with Caroline, I went into labor that night. Since we live about an hour away from the hospital, the nurse I saw that day recommended that I stay around Lexington for the day, but since Caroline had dance class that afternoon, it wasn't really an option for me to stay.
After my appointment, I headed back home and made it just in time to catch Caroline's dance class. I decided after her class that I wanted to take her out for a treat so we went to Dairy Queen and had an ice cream date.
After ice cream, we headed to my parents house, where we've stayed the last few months while Juston's worked out of town. My sister was making jokes about me calling her in the middle of the night because she was sure I was going into labor and either her or my dad would be the one to drive me to the hospital if it were to happen during the week so that my mom could stay with Caroline and we wouldn't have to drag her along. When my sister left, I told my mom I should just randomly call her at 3 am to chat and annoy her! Well, at 3 am on the dot, my water broke. This was definitely a new experience because I had to have my water broken with Caroline after I'd already had my epidural so I didn't feel it the first time. Well, it was quite an experience, let me tell you! haha.
My last bump selfie from the morning of
Luckily, I'd had clothes laid out to dress quick as well as all of my things for the hospital already in my car for when the time did finally come. Well, my sister was ready faster than I was and in about ten minutes or less, we were dressed, in the Jeep and on our way to Lexington. I'd awakened my parents to let them know what was going on, so Dad decided to follow us in his truck. He even packed a flashlight and towels in case we didn't make it to the hospital and needed to deliver on the side of the road which cracked me up! We made it to the hospital in about 40 minutes without getting pulled over and my dad got there about ten minutes or so behind us. We of course pulled up to a locked entrance on our first try, but found the main entrance shortly after. The security guard on duty seemed a little flustered when we told him I was in labor and he told us the way to the labor and delivery floor. My contractions started about twenty minutes into our drive to Lexington and were about 2 1/2 minutes apart once they started. They weren't so bad during the drive over thankfully.
Once we got the the L&D floor, we were had to ring the bell to get access and when they responded to ringing the bell, all I could say was "Ummm, I'm here to have a baby," I mean, why else would I be there ringing to get in? They buzzed us in and we were immediately given a room since my water had already broken. My contractions were getting a little bit closer together but not too bad yet.
They took me to a room where I got changed into my delivery gown, unpacked a few things and got settled in for what could be a long morning. My sister had the foresight to plug in our electronics like the video camera and camera that we'd want later on; she was such a huge help, I'm so lucky to have the family I do.
Shortly after we got into a room, my dad showed up and we all just got ready to hurry up and wait. Juston finally showed up from Hazard right around the time the nurse got my iv started and hooked me up to all the machines. My contractions went from uncomfortable to unbearable in about thirty minutes, but the only anesthesiologist on call for L&D was in the OR with a C-Section patient, so I had to wait. My nurse told me that I had to have a bag and a half of fluids through my IV before I could get my epidural anyway, but my labor was moving right along. I have never felt so much pain in my life as what I felt during labor waiting for my epidural. I found out after the fact that I was about 9 cm before I finally got my epidural. I thought I was pretty tough until those contractions almost brought me to tears from the pain.
Finally, after lots of begging and cussing, the anesthesiologist showed up, everyone else but my nurse left the room and they administered my epidural in about ten minutes. At that point, I could have cried tears of joy. I was still feeling quite a bit of the contractions on my right side, but it was such a relief compared to what I had been feeling. At 7, the nurses changed shifts and I met my new nurse, a big, tall man, who would likely be assisting in the delivery since I was progressing so quickly. I used the same all female practice of OB's /midwives that I had used with Caroline this time around specifically because I didn't want any male who wasn't my husband in the delivery room, but honest to goodness, our new nurse, Mel, was so amazing!
My midwife showed up in my room around 8:15, two more nurses came in and started prepping the room for Carter's arrival and a new anesthesiologist dosed me with more meds in my epidural since I still had quite a bit of feeling. Well, by the time he finished with me, I was literally completely numb from the waist down. I had no control over my legs whatsoever, they were complete dead weight.
By about 8:45, they had me all set up to push, and about twenty minutes later, Carter was getting all cleaned up and checked out.
Big fella tipped the scales at 8 pounds 3 ounces and 19 3/4 inches long. After the nurses clean him and finished up, I got to hold him for the first time and we did skin to skin.
A little while later, my sister and dad came in to meet the newest member of our family.
I wasn't gaining any feeling back in my legs after a couple of hours, so they decided to move me up to the maternity floor in the bed. We were put into our new room and had to tell our amazing L&D nurses bye. They were seriously the best, I can't say enough good things about them.
Carter got his first bath, had his footprints done and was seen by the pediatrician. My mom had been taking care of Caroline for us, so they got to come visit that afternoon finally.
Caroline was SO excited to meet Carter and she could not stop kissing him and loving on him. She really didn't want to let anyone else hold him while she was there.
The next two days passed by in a flurry of visitors, medical staff checking on me and Carter and counting dirty diapers and nursing sessions. Thursday, we were finally ready to go home, after a run to Chick-Fil-A for some chicken minis. I was so ready to get home to Caroline I couldn't stand it!
Life as a family of four is pretty sweet.