My story begins with a very wonderful pregnancy- fairly uneventful, except for gestational diabetes. My due date was April 22, 1999. On April 7, I woke for my ritual "bathroom trip" around 12:30 AM to some fairly painful "Braxton-Hicks" contractions. I went back to sleep to awaken again for another "bathroom trip" around 2:00 AM, still having the "Braxton-Hicks." I climbed back into bed but couldn't fall asleep because DH was snoring. I thought about waking him, but decided to go lay down on the sofa instead, just in case I went into labor - I figured he would need his rest. I woke in the morning to nothing. I figured my contractions must have stopped around 2:30 AM. Around 9:00 AM I had my first REAL contraction- low on my belly and like a menstrual cramp. I didn't have another one for about 30 to 45 minutes. Then they started coming about every 15 minutes or so. I wasn't timing them. I didn't think I was really in labor. I figured that the contractions would stop.
I was home alone and bored, so I called my sister on the phone. After a little while she insisted that we start timing my contractions. At 10:50 AM we began timing them, 4 to 6 minutes apart. After about 25 to 30 minutes of this, the contractions had become pretty hard and I was unable to talk or write during them. We'd been timing for about 40 minutes; all the while my sister kept telling me that I was in the second stage of labor and I needed to call my husband to come home from work (which is about 45 minutes away from where we live). I argued a little while but she was persistent and so I hung up with her and called him to come home. Meanwhile, I called my aunt, just to have someone to talk to. She was very persistent that I should call my doctor right away. After a few minutes of "arguing" with her- she won! I called my doctor's office and the nurse told me that he wanted me to come in so he could put me on a monitor. I told her that it would be at least 45 minutes before I could get there because I was waiting for my husband to get home from work. She told me that he had one patient left to see and that he had to be somewhere at 2:00 PM and that she needed me to find someone else to bring me into his office right away. So I called my grandmother and she agreed to take me to his office. Meanwhile I called my husband and told him to come home and get my bags, then meet me at the doctor's office. When I stepped out of the car once we arrived at the doctor's office my water broke, only I wasn't sure that's what had happened. They put me in a room and examined me, telling me my membranes had ruptured and I was at 6cm and 100 percent effaced. "This is every O.B.'s dream," my doctor said as he put me into a wheelchair.
A nurse wheeled me upstairs to Labor and Delivery. When I got into my room I got undressed, put on the hospital gown, climbed into the bed and with the second contraction I had (by the way, by this time they were about one minute apart!) I felt the baby's head and an overwhelming "pushing" sensation! I told my grandmother to go tell the nurse that I was pushing. She ran into the room saying "Don't Push!!!!" That is such a joke! No one had ever told me that pushing is out of your control - it is just something that happens on its own! Everything gets jumbled up here. The nurse starts calling for the doctor and other nurses to help her prepare me for delivery. I am yelling for my doctor and my husband. We had planned a Lamaze delivery and I am really needing him at this point to help me relax and focus and breathe! I can't do any of these without him! The doctor and my husband both managed to arrive before our baby was born! Twenty-eight minutes after I arrived in my hospital room my daughter, Karli Blayne, was born. She weighed 7 pounds and was 20" long. Needless to say I had no drugs at all! I am very, very glad of that. It was an indescribable experience that I will always treasure. Don't get me wrong, it was excruciating, but worth every second... and it is true- you do forget the pain!