If you hear me talk about giving birth then you’ve heard me say, “I go quick.” The problem is quick, when it comes to giving birth, can mean different things to different woman. For me quick labor means 2 hr and 40 minutes or less.
When Seth and I found out we were expecting again we were thrilled!!! However, when you know you go quick and you always hear that the more babies you have the faster labor goes. Plus you live 45 minutes from the hospital (although I switched practices at some point with Ephraim so we were only 30 minutes, not that it mattered) and you know you have to wait for a babysitter to get to the house to watch your other kids and you’ve already had one dream (after I had Haven before I got pregnant for Ephraim) that your husband delivered your next baby in the car on the way to the hospital, you start to get a little nervous. In fact, you start wondering if you really are going to make it to the hospital in time. So much so that you try to talk your husband into a home birth. When that’s a no go, for various reasons that now make us laugh, you start praying.
Now let me ask you something, if all the above were true for you and then you had another dream (this time you were pregnant) that your husband delivered the baby in the car, what would you do? After I freaked out a little, thought I was crazy, and probably even shed a few tears I started talking very seriously to Seth about the possibility of delivering this baby. There was just no joking about it, well maybe a little, but we really did talk very seriously about it a lot. We even asked the midwife what we needed to have in the car if Seth did have to deliver the baby and Seth watched a few “how to” videos on youtube.
Ephraim was the 4th baby I was going to deliver. With my first 3 I’d had some Braxton Hicks contractions but never anything regular and never false labor. The moment I felt that first hard contractions it was go time and I had a baby in my arms in less then 3 hours. With my other babies I always went early. Gideon was well way to early, Jericho was early by a week exactly, and Haven was 1 day short of being 2 weeks early. I figure I’d go early with this one as well. Like the others, I thought that as soon as I felt that first hard contraction I’d be well on my way to having a baby in my arms. I should have known better because NOTHING about this pregnancy was like my others. Because of this, I kept joking with Seth that I was going to be over due and have a long labor. However, when I felt that first could be hard or turn into hard very quickly contraction 5 weeks early I realized I probably wouldn't be over due and then I freaked. I had nothing ready, partly because we didn’t know if we were having a boy or a girl, and I didn’t “feel” ready. After the contractions seemed to slow down and disappeared all together I went to bed wondering when this baby really would come and decided I needed to get some things ready. The first thing I got ready was our “car kit” full of stuff the midwife told us we’d need on hand to deliver a baby in the car. Not much really just some sterile towels, a bulb syringe, an old shower curtain (my idea) to cover & catch as much “gunk” as possible and keep from ruining our car, Seth insisted on having “something” to cut the cord in case of an emergency (one of our other babies had the cord wrapped so tight around her neck they had to cut it) *please note that they (midwife, Drs, EMT) tell you NOT to cut the cord (despite what 911 guy tells you) if you deliver a baby at home (or anywhere besides the hospital.) So I tucked a knife in there and found a plastic zipper bag to keep it all clean and threw it in the trunk of the van.
38 weeks pregnant for Ephraim (3 days before he was born)
At some point I had another round of false labor, which was getting very old by the way. And I felt like a fool texting the babysitter (yes right away cause I go so quick) “heads up this might be the real thing” only to text her back and hour or more later saying, “nope false labor again” I felt like the boy who cried wolf but this baby had to come some time right!?!
That brings us to Haven’s important appointments. I’m not to get into what kind of appointment or why they were so important right now but she had 2 very hard to schedule, very important appointments. The first was scheduled 2 1/2 weeks before I was due and the other 1 1/2 before I was due. I was so nervous I’d be having a baby on one of those days or in the hospital or something because that’s right around the time I “tend” to go. I even called to see if I could get put on a cancelation list, which I did, but no cancelations. I kept telling the baby he/she had to wait till Havey’s appointments were all done.
Haven’s first appointment was scheduled for early in the morning and everything went well. However, I wasn’t feeling the best and had started “seeing stars” and had a really bad headache by lunch time. So, Seth convinced me to call the midwife just to talk thing through with them. They, of course, wanted to go in and get checked. I wasn’t a huge fan of the idea but I went in for the sake of the baby just to make sure everything checked out normal. I’m so glad I did! Not because something was wrong, they were worried about early signs of preeclampsia, but decided it had more to do with dehydration and stress. Because it was not a scheduled appointment I got to see the midwife on call who happened to be due the same day I was, she was great! We were both large and in charge and happy to just sit and chat a bit about babies! One of us (Seth or I) again voiced our fear of not making it to the hospital in time where as this angel of a midwife proceeded to look Seth straight in the eye and tell him what an awesome job he was going to do delivering this baby at home and that if the baby came that fast there weren’t going to be any problems and how millions of babies all over the world are NOT born in hospitals and how my body knows exactly what to do and how both of us were going to do great! It was the best appointment I’d ever had. Despite all the wonderful midwife said we were NOT planning to have this baby at home or in the car, but she did put our minds at ease if it happen to work out that way. Seth and I both left hoping that I would have the baby before I had another appointment and feeling like we were ready to welcome this baby into our world!
To be continued.....