The day passed by and I put the kids to bed. I was sitting at the computer at 11:15, and I was about to go to bed when I had a contraction. It really felt like a real one and I thought, maybe tonight's the night. But I didn't want to get my hopes up yet.
About 3 minutes later, I had another one, and I decided to open an app that times contractions. I timed them for a bit and they were coming every 3 minutes, lasting for 30 seconds. I realized, this was most likely the real thing. I was excited, but then I started freaking out. It seemed like since it started out so strong and suddenly, it was going to be a quick labor, and I was home alone with the kids!
I called Steven and he said he was finishing up and heading home, but he was a half an hour away. I called my mom and she said she'd head over, but she lives an hour and a half away. Then I called my doula, and she tried to get me to relax and calm down, but after I hung up with her and tried to nap or at least rest, but I just couldn't. The contractions were too painful. This was definitely happening tonight!
I wanted to call my mom, Laura (doula), and Steven and tell them to HURRY UP, but I was worried they wouldn't drive safe if they felt like it was an emergency. So I just kept myself busy with cleaning and last minute packing in between contractions. I was resting against furniture and breathing through them at that point. With each one, I got more worried that I'd have the baby before anyone got there.
Steven finally got home, and I tried to decide whether we could wait for my mom to arrive to watch the kids, or whether we had to wake the kids up and go straight to the birth center. We decided to call my sister-in-law and see if she could come over. She could, but she had just been in an accident the previous day and she didn't have a car, so Steven had to go get her. I really struggled to stay calm while he was gone!!
I called the midwife to let her know my ETA, made sure everything was ready to go, and wrote my sister-in-law a quick note with tips on taking care of the kids if they woke up. They arrived and I rushed out. I tried not to act like it was too serious because I didn't want Steven to rush or drive unsafely. Sometime on the 20 minute drive, I kind of stopped being aware of things around me and went into labor mode. My memory of the rest is a bit fuzzy.
When we got to the birth center, the midwife checked me and I was only 3cm dilated. I was upset because I thought that meant the labor would go on for much longer. Then my water broke and there was meconium in the water. The midwife was worried the baby was in distress and told us that we were transferring to the hospital. I was annoyed and didn't want to go, because I was pretty sure the birth center where I had Brynna did not transfer just based on meconium in the water. But I knew we had to trust the midwife, so we left for the longest 10 minute drive of my life.
Since it wasn't an emergency transfer, we took our car. I couldn't sit let alone get buckled so I sort of crouched on the floor in the back, leaning against the back seat and just trying my best to deal with the contractions without having the freedom to move around. It wasn't too fun.
We finally got there and Laura (doula) was already there. I wasn't sure how she was there because I didn't think we had called her and told her to come to the hospital, and aside from that it hadn't been long enough for her to get there. So because of those things, I felt just so emotional that she was there, like she had been brought to me through magic or something, lol.
Someone tried to get me to ride in a wheel chair but I kept getting out because the contractions were unbearable in that position. I remember leaning against the front desk while they were admitting me, just trying to relax and breathe through a contraction. Then we went upstairs, although I really don't remember going. I guess we went in an elevator.
We were in the hallway and they were preparing our room when Laura asked me if I was pushing. I'm not sure what I replied but she could tell I was. We went into the room. I guess Laura had told someone that I was already pushing. A doctor came in and I told him I wanted an epidural. I thought I was still 3cm or maybe 4 by then, and I didn't think I couldn't deal with this pain much longer. So he checked my dilation and said I was 10cm and he could see the baby's head!
I thought, oh ok! I can do this! I tried to get up, because I was still laying down from the exam and it didn't feel like I could deal with the pain from this position. But the contractions were too painful and close together so I ended up pushing the baby out like halfway through getting up, kind of laying on my side. I'm not entirely sure how many pushes it was but it was only a few minutes of pushing.
Then, she was here! I felt like I was going to pass out for a second, but then I was ok. They gave her to me and I held her on my chest. She gave a little squawk or two, but didn't really cry. They suctioned her and checked her heart rate while I was holding her. I could feel her moving and see her breathing so I wasn't too worried. But they were still worried she had aspirated meconium so they kept checking her periodically.
After a few minutes, I tried to nurse her, and she latched right on. She nursed for quite a while. I told Steven I was sorry he hadn't gotten to hold her yet but he didn't mind. We just stared at her, smiled at eachother, and talked for a while. We were so happy she was finally here!
I asked what time she was born and someone told me 3:30. I thought it was neat that her birthday was July 28 since my birthday is November 28 and Kay's is January 28.
They wanted to take the baby for an exam sooner rather than later because she seemed to be having trouble regulating her breathing. I handed her over and they put her in one of those hospital baby beds. I talked to her while they checked her. Laura was next to her because I think Steven was in the bathroom. They got her stats and everything, and told us she was 7 pounds 4 ounces and 20 inches.
They called in another doctor, a pediatrician, and I became a little worried. Sure enough, they then told us they were taking her to the NICU because of her irregular breathing rate. They said they would just watch her for 4 hours to make sure she was ok, and that she most likely was. I was so sad as they wheeled her out!! And with the monitors on her heart and everything, it looked much worse than it was. But they told me that I'd be able to go be with her soon, so I tried to be practical and calm.
I got up to go to the bathroom and was surprised how fine I felt. Just a little sore. I realized I was super lucky to have had such a quick and easy birth. Laura brought me some food, then said goodbye and went home. We waited for someone to come and give me a checkup, then move me from labor and delivery to the maternity ward. It wasn't too long before they did that, and I don't know what time it was but the sun was up by then. Then I had to wait for another checkup there before they let me finally go to the NICU.
Steven had dozed off so I snuck off without him. I know, it seems like I should have woken him, but I was worried he'd fall asleep and drop the baby, lol. Plus I didn't know when he'd have to drive and I knew he'd been running on no sleep for too long to drive safely. So I texted him to let him know where I went and headed to the NICU. I got all scrubbed and washed, then went in. She was all hooked up to monitors and I just wanted to cry, but I reminded myself that it was just a precaution. She was fast asleep, so I just held her and stared at her for a while.
The nurse there told me she was doing well, and they were going to transfer her to my room. So I headed back up to the room. On the way I texted and updated my mom, Steven, and Laura that the baby was ok and being moved to my room.
It seemed to take forever, but they brought her in and I just relaxed and nursed her for the longest time. My mom told Steven she was having some trouble with the kids acting up. They missed us and were having a rough time. So Steven went home to get them (my mom didn't have their car seats) and they came and met the baby. They barely even said hi to me, they were just all over Skyler. It was so adorable. :)
Then Steven took the kids home and my mom came to meet the baby. I think I finally dozed for a while at that point. The rest of the day is honestly a blur but I basically just nursed the baby on and off and slept when she slept. I was really happy that she was nursing so well, and I seemed to have plenty of milk already. It was clear, so I guess it was collostrum, but there was really quite a lot of it. She even spit up a few times.
In the middle of the night, they came in to do a checkup and they did a blood test. A while later, they came back and told me the results said she was jaundiced. It was to the point where they wanted to put her under the photo-therapy lights. They got everything set up and she was put under the lights at 4am.
She did not like being naked at all, she kept startling and basically needed constant comfort. They said they'd come to do another check at 4pm. My mom came to help me at some point, and I got a little bit of sleep. When 4pm finally came around, I was exhausted. They did a blood test and we got the results within the hour. She had to stay under the lights, and they'd do another check at 4am. I was pretty upset. I just wanted to get my baby home where I could snuggle her all day.
Steven brought the kids to visit, they were thrilled to be there, but extremely upset when it was time to leave. My mom couldn't really watch them because they were just really acting out. They missed me and their normal routine, and were probably having trouble processing the whole new baby thing.
The night went by soooo slowly. Finally, they came back to do another blood test. Around 5am, they told us she could come out from the lights! I was thrilled. I started asking when we could be released. They said they'd do another checkup in a few hours and if everything looked good, we'd be discharged.
The kids came to visit, and while they were there a photographer showed up to do a complimentary photoshoot. It was a little chaotic but it went well, she got some adorable shots. I'm definitely planning on buying them. At some point, a doctor came to check Sky, and said we were good to go. We were discharged and left around 1pm.
Kaylee appointed herself official babysitter for car rides. She sat next to Skyler and comforted her the whole way home, which was about 10 minutes. She did a great job, Sky was quiet the whole way. :)
Then we got home, and it was the most amazing feeling. I was SO happy to be out of the hospital and with my family. The kids were thrilled to have me and the baby home. They just wanted to hold and pet her all day long. I was a little nervous but very excited to start adjusting to life with 3 kids!