So it all began on Sunday the 22nd...
I woke up having contractions...nothing new. This had been happening on and off since the beginning of February. I noticed an hour or so later that they were getting a little stronger, so I started to time them even though I had claimed to have given up on timing because it led me no where. I timed a couple and they were ten minutes apart. I decided to take a shower and see if that helped alleviate some of the achiness. It didn't. When I was out of the shower, my contractions were 8 minutes apart. I sat down on the computer for a while and they got down to 6 minutes apart. I was sure this was going to be the real thing. So I started cleaning EVERYTHING. I also made our grocery list and we headed out. I continued to have contractions throughout the store and when I got home they were 4 minutes apart. I had been timing for over 3 hours with them being consistent, getting closer together, and slightly more uncomfortable.
We decided to go ahead and go down to the hospital. I got there around 3:30pm and got hooked up to the machines in triage. I kept having contractions - but I ultimately was sent home because I was still closed and 50% just like I had been two weeks prior. The triage nurse said I was having contractions - I'd have one strong one, then one or two small ones, and then another strong one. She said that if we timed the strong ones, they were 9 minutes apart and instructed me to come back when they were closer. This was a huge disappointment to me. I knew that my body was doing what it did when I went into labor with Matthew and Cami - it was stalling. We grabbed some McDonald's on the way home - all the while I was still having contractions. By the time I went to bed Sunday night, I was exhausted. Physically and mentally and had decided to ask to be induced when I went into the doctor on Monday for my appointment (39 week). I have always been against induction and wanted to wait it out, but I knew my body was failing me and I knew I wasn't going to make it mentally/emotionally until my due date and possibly then some.
Monday morning, I woke up still having contractions. At this point, they were not uncomfortable, so I stopped timing them. I was irritated at them already. I had my appointment (brought the kids along since school was cancelled) and when it came time for doc to check me, no progress had been made. Still 0cm, still 50% effaced. He told me that we could do one of two things: 1) do absolutely nothing and let things happen like they should or 2) induction. As I said, my mind was made up for an induction. He asked what day. I said ASAP. So he set me up at 3pm. I started relaying this to Nick and to my mom-in-law and we got everything planned for the kids and what not. I got home and finished packing my hospital bag and did some laundry and cleaned up some.
I was admitted into the hospital around 3:30pm. The plan was to do a dose of Cytotec every 4 hours and then if I was 2cm in the morning, break my water and start pitocin. If I wasn't 2cm, I'm not sure what they would do - probably have sent me home. I got my first dose of Cytotec at 4:30pm (there was an emergency c-section that happened as I was getting admitted). I started having contractions at 6pm and they continued all night long. I never needed another dose of Cytotec. My body WAS stalling on me because the second it got the meds - it went full-force laboring like it was supposed to do. I was checked a few times over night and was making some slow progress, but still contracting regularly. I never slept and wasted time watching HGTV and Comedy Central. By the time shift change rolled around at 7:30am, I was feeling those contractions and wanted to walk around the L&D floor to help aid the pain. However, the doc had to check me and see what was going on. Honestly, I thought that with my body progressing on only one dose of Cytotec - the doc would just let me continue naturally. But she went ahead and broke my water at 8:30am - after confirming I was 3cm and 80% effaced AKA everyone was impressed that one dose of Cytotec had me progressing that fast and that well. As soon as the doc ordered the pitocin, I ordered the epidural. Going into this process of induction, I had come to terms with the possibility of a c-section and even though c-sections terrify me - I was so over being pregnant after the hell that was Sunday that I didn't care anymore. I just wanted to be done with pregnancy, heal up, and cuddle my sweet boy. I told Nick that if they put me on pitocin, I was most definitely getting the epidural. Pitocin is no joke!
They started my pitocin at 9am and the contractions between then and 9:30am when I got my epidural were hard. I ended up getting really shaky and nauseated - which didn't happen in my other two labors. It was so weird to feel so out of control of my body. Having contractions made me feel more in control because I was steadily breathing, closing my eyes, trying to relax, and counting slowly. The epidural probably would have needed to be redone because I jumped forward when he got me - the right side went numb like it was supposed to, but my left side was only partially numb. I still felt the pain and pressure on that side. I started feeling strong pressure like I needed to go number 2 and the nurse came in to check me again. I was only expecting 5cm, maybe, because they had literally just started my pitocin - it was only 10:30am. But my nurse announced I was 10cm and started calling the doc in and preparing everything for delivery. I immediately teared up. I couldn't believe it was already time to meet Mason. My nurse finished setting everything up around 10:50am and while we waited on the doc, she had me do a small, small push - as she stated, like I was relieving myself (peeing) - and immediately upon me slightly pushing, she hollered "Okay, stop! No more pushing!" - apparently, he was right there!! The doc hurried in and got ready, we waited for my next contraction that started around 11:06am. Three pushes in that one contraction and Mason was born at 11:10am on 2/24/2015 :) My discharge papers don't count the overnight stay as actual labor - so all-in-all, my labor was a little over 3 hours long! Easy breezy, right?!
He immediately peed on the doc that delivered him - who he also again peed on during his circumcision. They took him over to get him cleaned off and under the warming lights. I thankfully did not tear at all! He was such an easy, easy labor and delivery. He clocked in at 7lb 2.8oz and 19.75 inches long - smaller than his brother and sister who were both born on their due dates (he was born at 39 weeks 4 days). He didn't cry a ton and still really hasn't cried a ton. He's a very sweet, calm baby. I am so in love with him. Matthew and Cami are also extremely in love with him. They brought books to the hospital the second day to read to him. Matthew is now always jumping up to his side any time he cries here at home - or really whimpers. Mason hates his feet being out and messed with. He likes his arms free. He is the most adorable baby ever. :)
As for my actual hospital experience, all of my nurses were incredible. I saw two different docs - one for the first day and water breaking, one for the delivery and day one postpartum visit - then I saw my own doc on day two postpartum visit. I've seen the first two docs for appointments in the office when my original obstetrician was out after having a spinal cord injury and I liked them both. The doc I switched to is also amazing and I was happy to see him too. The dining staff was amazing and the housekeeping lady was hilarious. I loved the lactation consultant too. Honestly, the whole hospital staff was just funny and made my stay and labor & delivery a very happy, smooth process.
Also I definitely miss cable - I swear I just binge watched so much HGTV and Food Network - it's not even funny. I also have gained my appetite back and the hospital food was incredible. Especially the desserts - like this cherry cheesecake. I also got to have popsicles, in addition to ice chips, during my active labor - which was awesome!
We came home on Thursday and so far, it has been very easy going. I have been feeling more energetic and I don't feel nearly as worn out and tired as I did with Matthew and Cami. We even made a trip out to Target on Friday and survived! Momma had to get some better fitting tops because even my best planning didn't account for what would happen when my milk came in! :S Mason slept the whole entire time we were out. I hope that he stays as sweet as he is now. I decided to not do baby updates here on Fantastical...instead I will occasionally write about baby/mom stuff on my other blog, Teacher's Pet to Teacher (for example, I have a baby essentials series coming up!).
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