Our baby’s due date was August 3/4. For some reason I truly thought I would be early this time, but it wasn’t to be. On August 4th, I didn’t have another OB appointment booked until the 7th, but I wanted to see if she could get things going with a sweep like she did last time. I called to see if they happened to have a cancellation that day, and they did! I got my sweep, and although it made me lose a bunch of mucous over the next few days, it didn’t do much. I was only about 2cm dilated and my cervix was still fairly long and hard.
On Thursday, the 6th, I began to feel very minor cramping at really random times during the day. So minor I didn’t even mention it to anybody until the end of the day. On Friday, the 7th, those cramps became a bit stronger in the afternoon, but still very manageable; easy to ignore. I mentioned at supper time to Tim and my mom that I was feeling stuff. After supper we were watching a movie and I got up off the couch to get popcorn around 7:00pm. I felt a little something gush from me so I went to the bathroom and passed a blood clot. That didn’t seem quite normal to me so I called labour and delivery and they had me come in to be checked.
We got there around 7:30 and I was hooked up to the monitors. Baby was doing well but I was still bleeding a tiny bit. The OB checked me and found me to be about 3-4cm. She decided it would be best to induce me, just out of precaution. They didn’t really know what could be wrong, if anything, but I was feeling up for having a baby that night, so I agreed!
I was hooked up to the oxytocin at 9:00pm, on the very lowest setting. I was continuing to get my manageable cramps regularly. At 9:30 the OB broke my water and the first cramp after that was noticeably no longer just a cramp. I was having real contractions! They probably could have done just that, without putting me on the drip! According to my history, I have short labours and the breaking of my water is followed fairly quickly by delivery. So I was pretty much expecting to have a Friday baby yet.
The contractions started to become stronger and I changed positions. I had been on my hands and knees with Tim applying pressure to my back during contractions since that’s where I was feeling all my pain. But at some point I flipped onto my back and I started to feel the pain in the front. Soon after, I asked for the gas. I don’t know how much it actually helps for the pain or just gives me something to focus on, but for me the gas is pretty helpful. The OB came in probably just before 11 to check to see where I was at since she had a c-section getting ready to go. I was only 7cm, so off she went. With my very next contraction I started to feel more pressure, and after the next contraction after that, the nurse checked me again and I was 8cm! One more contraction brought me to 9cm and I was really wanting to push! I heard the OB ask to hold off on the spinal for the section, but upon hearing that it was already in, I think I heard her utter a small curse word. Apparently there were 4 births happening all at once! I was very ready to push this baby out of me, and thought the resident was the one there, telling me when to push and when to stop, but later Tim told me that the OB was actually there. Just in and out super quick. I heard voices telling me to push, big one, small ones, then I heard “we have a shoulder!”. Apparently the shoulder got stuck. And apparently my nurse jumped on me to help it out. I had no clue until she apologized after the fact. Birth is the one and only time you can be jumped on by a person and not even realize it.
He surprised us all by being 9lb4oz. His brothers were 7lb3oz and 7lb10oz, so I was not expecting that! Because of his size, he got his shoulder a little stuck and caused some second degree tearing.
Looking back at all my labours, I can say that I felt the most aware and alert between contractions during this one. I think I talked and maybe even laughed at little jokes. I don’t remember anything between contractions of my other births. I did realize, though, that I keep my eyes shut during the entire thing. Too much effort to keep them open! Smiling, yes. Opening my eyes, no.
Patrick is just a name we liked that happened to follow a little “hard C” pattern of the other boys’ names. John is Tim’s dad’s middle name (Calvin’s middle name is William – shared with Tim; Victor’s middle name is James – shared with my dad).