It was a week and half before my due date and my first day of maternity leave. We had just gone to bed after talking to everyone in the family. “Yes, I’m still pregnant,” and “Yes, I’m feeling OK,” were the type of assurances that dominated our conversations.
I woke up at midnight feeling uncomfortable –nothing unusual in that!– so I went to the living room and laid on the couch. Half an hour later I woke my husband. I thought my water might have broken and I was feeling really uncomfortable; we decided to call the hospital.
Since this was my first baby and I couldn’t time my contractions (I was just in constant pain!), they thought I was a long way from having my baby. They told me to take a shower. I followed their advice and called back at 1:00 a.m. I told the nurse I really thought I needed to come in. They said that the person I’d spoken with earlier was delivering a baby and would call me back later. I called again half an hour later, repeating that I really thought I needed to come in. They said to go ahead, since it was a slow night they would check me and send me home if I wasn’t ready. My husband asked if we should call anyone, but I didn’t want to just in case I was in false labor.
So we got into the car and flew to the hospital. In the beginning I had wanted natural childbirth, but by then I was already in so much pain, which I assumed would go on for over 12 hours, so I told my husband I wanted an epidural as soon as we arrived.
We pulled into the hospital at 2:00 a.m. and made our way to labor and delivery. We seemed to be at the desk forever. They couldn’t find my chart and were taking a long time to check me in. I finally got to my room, put on the gown and waited to be checked. By this time it was about 2:30 a.m. My husband again asked if I wanted to call anyone. Again, I said, “No.”
When the nurse came in to check me I asked for an epidural. “Wow, you’re 10 cm. dilated already!” she said. “You don’t get an epidural or any phone calls. It’s time to push!”
Robert arrived about an hour later at 3:43 a.m., weighing six pounds, thirteen ounces and measuring ninteen inches long. That’s when we got to call everyone with the good news!
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