Thursday, July 15, 2010

Nolan's Birth Story: Part II

       For Part I, click here.

And because I know that pictures make everything more exciting, 
here's some shots of our little blessing at home with us. 
I'll have more pictures to share from the hospital in the next post 
(including the reaction on my face when I first see Nolan come in to the world), 
so stay tuned!

       We started to pay more attention to the cramps, or perhaps I should say that I was paying more attention to them. Jon thought that it was great that my body was getting warmed up for the impending birth but strongly doubted that what I was feeling was early labor. My pains weren't what you see in the movies. The pain never completely faded away, but rather grew in strength and then dulled. They didn't seem to have the  clear wave pattern of contractions that you learn about, with a definite beginning and end. I was ten days early; most first pregnancies are late deliveries. We still had things to get done. This was just my bodies way of getting ready for the big show to come. Jon was sure of it.
       Although we weren't sure what was going on, I kicked into ultra nesting mode. If this was the beginning of a long labor then there were WAY too many things that needed to get done. And immediately. I rushed (and barked at Jon to help) to get all of our newly purchased goods put away, do the dishes, dust, finish washing the infant clothes, move my no longer needed work clothes to a downstairs closet, vacuum, and finish packing our hospital bags. Jon humored me all the while.  He took Blue up the hill for some exercise, just in the case we were heading to the hospital in the next twenty-four hours. Soon it was already 11:00 am, and the pain had yet to subside. Of course, we turned to modern technology to help us track the contractions. We downloaded an iphone app from contraction master (I know, they've thought of everything), which easily enabled us to mindlessly chart them. As waves of cramps hit me, I'd take a thirty second break from vacuuming or tidying to track each one.
       I hopped into the shower. If we did to go to the hospital, I wanted to be fresh and clean. Standing in the warm water, I shouted at Jon when a new contraction was beginning and ending, with him charting each of them on the app for me. We were averaging contractions that were two minutes apart and thirty seconds long. These didn't exactly fit the pattern of five minutes part and lasting for one minute each, that everyone tells you to utilize for your guideline of going to the hospital. But they were gaining in strength and so consistent, they  had to be something, right? That day we had plans to go to a friends for a lunch BBQ and to stop by and say hello to some other friends. Jon was wondering if I was going to be up to going to the BBQ and I was wondering if we were about to have a baby. 
       I worked on drying my hair and getting dressed, while intermittenly taking breaks for some lamaze style breathing and different pain positions. At 1:00 pm I told Jon that we at least needed to get looked at.  Jon quickly hopped in the shower while I tried out different positions on our birthing ball and couch. The contractions were now averaging about 45 seconds long and had grown in strength and remained only two minutes apart. Two minutes wasn't allowing me much time to come up for air. Was I farther along then I thought? It was 1:30 pm and I had been having pains for four hours. This must be labor, right?
       And so began the surreal drive to the hospital. We were straight out of a movie. The back seat was piled high (literally) with our birthing ball, extra pillows, hospital bags, diaper bag and boppy. I experienced about seven contractions during the twenty-five minute trip. Gripping the roof handle on the interior of the truck I braced myself when each new contraction came. Comfortable I was not. I think Jon still thought we might swing by our friends BBQ after getting checked out and released from the hospital but Nolan had other plans in mind.

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